I am going to embark on a water fast and I want others to join in. Read on for more info.
What is Fasting?
Fasting is primarily the act of willingly abstaining from some or all food, drink, or both, for a period of time.
You are choosing to not eat anything. Now some people will choose to do a juice fast. They have nothing but freshly squeezed juices to help detoxify their body.
I am more of a fan of water fasting. Nothing but water. That’s it. I have actually done a 14 day water fast back in 2008 and it was amazing. I felt great. But I really did not know enough about it to make the results last.
In short I went back to my junk food ways.
Now a lot of people have come to believe that we need to eat every 2 to 3 hours. Bullshit. When you eat the body releases insulin. This is the fat storage hormone. When insulin is in the bloodstream you cannot be burning body fat. It just can’t happen.
But why in the hell would I not eat you ask?
Because it is the ultimate way to allow your body to heal and go through a complete detoxification process.
And trust me we are toxic as hell. The chemicals used in our food, our cosmetics, our clothing, our household goods and more are making us so sick and so fat it is criminal.
Let’s look at what happens physiologically when you fast.
Hopefully I’m not surprising anyone here by noting that the body stores glycogen. Glycogen is a polysaccharide form of glucose, stored in both the liver and in the muscles.
After digestion, the liver begins releasing its stored glycogen to the body for use in running the brain and other systems.
In humans, just the overnight fast of sleeping is enough to nearly deplete liver glycogen. That big brain doesn’t stop working and sucking up glucose just because you’re unconscious.
When the body runs out of glycogen in the liver to fuel the brain, it turns to amino acids. Through the process of gluconeogenesis, the liver breaks down these proteins to create glucose. Before the bodybuilders in the crowd pass out at the thought of losing a single ounce of their hard-earned muscles, the interesting thing here is that the body isn’t necessarily using muscle proteins at this stage. The liver is able to meet most of its glucose needs by recycling lactate and alanine.
Around the eighteen hour mark, when we move into the “fasting” state, muscle proteins become the chief source of amino acids to fuel gluconeogensis. The breakdown of fat stores through lipolysis also provides glycerol, which the liver converts into glucose.
I don’t think a bit of muscle protein breakdown is necessarily a bad thing, so long as your lifestyle is typically anabolic. I’d think that allowing the muscles to consume worn out proteins allows for better rebuilding of new muscle fibers, clearing out cellular garbage.
Another interesting thing is that not all amino acids are broken down for glucose. Some are known as ketogenic amino acids. In humans, the two aminos that are always converted to energy through ketogenesis are leucine and lysine.
A lot of people actually notice an increase in muscle mass when they fast. I have to wonder if a low-carb diet with fasting versus a typical high-carb diet with fasting has any effect. Low-carb diets tend to be protein-sparing. While the body still needs glucose, the increased protein intake on a low-carb diet supplies the necessary amino acids to generate adequate glucose. Just a thought.
Losing Body Fat
Lipolysis is the process of mobilizing fat from the body’s adipose stores for breakdown into usable energy. There are essentially five main hormones controlling this process: epinephrine, norepinephrine, glucagon, and adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), along with insulin. As I mentioned earlier when insulin is up, fat mobilization is down. The other four hormones are lipolysis inducers.
During water fasting, insulin drops due to the lack of incoming calories from the gut. Along with that, blood glucose levels decrease to baseline. With no influx of glucose and fatty acids coming from the gut, there is no need for the storage hormone.
That sounds really good to me.
There is so much more going on with water fasting. There is amazing stuff going on with the thyroid, and growth hormone(we all should want more growth hormone and water fasting does this for us!)
We are conditioned by marketers that we need to be eating all the time. Not so.
Water fasting allows the body to heal, rest, breakdown and burn body fat, and detoxify itself.
So here is what I am going to do.
I am embarking on a water fast and I would love for anyone else out there who has thought about doing a fast to join me. I am going to take daily photos of myself and I will keep track of how I feel.
The first few days can be tough as your body starts to get rid of toxins. You will feel sluggish and maybe even a bit depressed. And yes you will feel hungry. That hunger is psychological only. Your brain is used to getting a steady supply of sugar from food. Fight through that and you will be on your way to experiencing the benefits of water fasting.
Who is in?
Have any of you done a water fast before? How did it go?
Please share your thoughts in the comments and please share this post with everyone. Thanks.