Well folks, it’s been exactly one month since I began a 5 day water-only fast. I waited to tell you about this experience so I can also include post-fast details…or maybe just because it is soccer season. Anyway, who cares?! Here it is.
Six reasons why you should experience the magic of a supervised water-only fast:
1. The post-detox glow
Really, it’s much more than a glow. It’s a sensational feeling. Fasting cleans out the whole system. It revitalizes and rejuvenates. It also removes you from the daily grind. Normally, I’m caught up in the chaos of family life…so the lack of schedule felt amazing. Meditation and journaling filled my days. Between lectures and cooking demos, I bathed in the California sunshine. After 5 days of fasting I felt pure, refreshed, relaxed…and SO ready to eat! Have I told you how much I love to eat?!
See…after five days of fasting and three days of glorious food, here I am all glowing and stuff!
2. Discover what you body can do
Shortly after paying my deposit to visit TrueNorth, my excitement turned to, “What the heck did I just sign up for?” As I scavenged through the pantry between meals, I wondered how I’d make it through five whole days with NO FOOD! I reassured myself by reading studies and articles about the benefits of fasting. I read about tumors shrinking, diabetes disappearing and high blood pressure dropping. I learned about autophagy- where your body starts to consume dysfunctional or diseased cells…yes please! Who doesn’t want their body to repair and clean itself? During the fast, I spoke with people with health problems who were fasting much longer than my measly 5 days. So I sucked it up and made a commitment to my health.
I came across this instagram post (above, center) while I was fasting…just what I needed to read while surrounded by only water.
3. Reset and Cleanse
Doing a “cleanse” seems to be what all my health-conscious peers rave about…and for good reason. Interrupting your normal routine to focus on clearing out the junk is always a good idea. I’ve done a couple variations of this. Sometimes it means downing green smoothies twice a day. Often it includes avoiding dairy, wheat, sugar and caffeine. In the case of fasting, nothing goes down the drain except clean water, so those pipes will be shiny and clean! And afterward, you get all these beautiful juices to restart your system!
4. Health immersion
Several days at TrueNorth will help you reprogram your brain and taste buds. You become educated and empowered to make better choices! Bad nutrition information is everywhere…eat this, not that. But it’s hard to know what is fact and what is crap. So much of our “food” comes from big businesses who market the “health benefits” so they can sell us junk we don’t need. At TrueNorth, each day you have access to doctors, interns and cooking gurus who can answer your questions plus twice daily lectures on various health topics (posture, sleep, nutrition, oh my!). I found myself overwhelmed with ideas; luckily I brought my trusty journal to jot it all down.
5. Take aways
Absolutely the best reason to visit TrueNorth Health is for the life-changing tools, education and inspiration you take home. My whole family is benefiting from what I learned…mostly because I’m responsible for groceries and cooking. Also because I talk about what I learned. And I’m offering them all the nutrient-dense foods from my new cookbooks (I’m sure they’ll thank me later when they have strong, healthy bodies and glowing skin)!
First, there was the coffee. I didn’t drink it for 9 days while at TrueNorth and I felt great. So why would I reintroduce it?!
Then the food. It hasn’t changed much, but I pay more attention to nutrition information and I have cut out some crap.
Next went the late night snacking…right out the window. Poof! Well, it wasn’t that easy. But I learned the benefits of extending the time between dinner and breakfast. So each evening when I get bored and feel the urge to snack, I just remember the healing that will take place when I give my body a chance to rest. And I know I will sleep better if I limit evening consumption.
Next went the alcohol. Now, I’m not saying I’ll never have a drink again…but I haven’t had the desire to drink alcohol since leaving TrueNorth. Kind of like the coffee…do I really need it?! Not sure yet. Check in with me later.
Last, and most important. I pay more attention. I pay attention to how I treat my body. I pay attention to my sleep schedule and how it makes me feel. I am mindful about creating a self-care routine. I take long baths. I read books that make me laugh. I blast feel-good music in the car with the windows down. I pay attention to myself so I can be a better mom, so I can be responsive and not reactive. I am here, in the present, taking it one breath at a time. Living the best life that I can.
I’m not looking to add years to my life, but I will add life to my years.