1. mugen shiyo
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    mugen shiyo Contributing Member

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    Has Anyone Ever Fasted For A Week Or More

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by mugen shiyo, Sep 9, 2011.

    Just wondering, I was reading about fasting and on the one side there's a whole bunch of medical cautions and taboos telling you your screwing with your body, and on the other side, it seems to give you anywhere from a clean body to heightened senses. Just wondering if anybody had experience fasting for a week or more? I also watched youtube video's with women who claim to have done it, but half of them don't seem very convincing at all.
     
  2. psychotick
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    psychotick Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hi,

    Yes, but not intentionally. I had glandular fever at the time and the idea of food was simply repulsive. Most people can survive for a week without food, as long as they get fluids. As to how good they'll feel. It'll depend on their condition going in and other physiological state. Some people start feeling faint if they don't eat every few hours. Others are less troubled. But a week without food will leave people lacking in energy, after all their bodies will essentially be eating themselves, starting with their stored fat and muscle glycogen, but when that runs low, moving on to their body's protein. As far as heightened sense go, I wouldn't think so. I'd expect someone in that state to be lacking in interest about the outside world, (you know that when you're tired you're not alert and some one starving wouldn't exactly be full of beans - no pun intended). But as the body catabolises itself, people might start having strange visions as they move between wakefulness and sleep. The body chemistry would be undergoing major shifts, and that means the brain chemistry as well. They might well believe they have heightened senses, just as they might well believe they are in communication with a higher power.
     
  3. psychotick
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    psychotick Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hi,

    Yes, but not intentionally. I had glandular fever at the time and the idea of food was simply repulsive. Most people can survive for a week without food, as long as they get fluids. As to how good they'll feel. It'll depend on their condition going in and other physiological state. Some people start feeling faint if they don't eat every few hours. Others are less troubled. But a week without food will leave people lacking in energy, after all their bodies will essentially be eating themselves, starting with their stored fat and muscle glycogen, but when that runs low, moving on to their body's protein. As far as heightened sense go, I wouldn't think so. I'd expect someone in that state to be lacking in interest about the outside world, (you know that when you're tired you're not alert and some one starving wouldn't exactly be full of beans - no pun intended). But as the body catabolises itself, people might start having strange visions as they move between wakefulness and sleep. The body chemistry would be undergoing major shifts, and that means the brain chemistry as well. They might well believe they have heightened senses, just as they might well believe they are in communication with a higher power.
     
  4. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't think it's a good idea. fanatics like to make you believe it is all beneficial but I don't think it's for everybody, and definitely not something we all "need".
     
  5. topeka sal
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    topeka sal Senior Member

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    No eating for a week? You're joking, right? :D

    Like psycho, I fasted for a week due to salmonella poisoning and, though there were obviously other factors at play, I could barely walk by the end.

    I do know that for centuries people have used fasting to achieve discipline, altered states of consciousness, and enlightenment (some Eastern religions come to mind, as well as the story about Jesus fasting). But as for the health benefits, I don't buy it. After the fat is gone, your body starts eating the muscle (starts eating itself!). Just my opinion. I haven't done any reading on the subject.
     
  6. mugen shiyo
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    mugen shiyo Contributing Member

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    I'm amazed by it. Like you, I thought a person could only go for a week without fasting, but it turns out that the record is actually about 80 days on nothing but water. That's insane. At first, I thought it was remarkable self-control, but they say after a week or two it just feels normal to them.

    I'm not so sure about the health risks from what I see or hear. For people with preexisting problems before they start this fast, it can definitely be a problem, but for some things, I think fasting can actually have a beneficial effect. In short periods- three days to a week at the latest. But it definitely seems weird because fasting is based around your health being based on what you eat or don't eat and it doesn't matter what you eat, if you don't get exercise with that, the body atrophies. Seems like a loss either way.

    For those who go longer, just seems like a statement of willpower, like how long can I stand on these hot coals. Just because you can doesn't make it a good decision.
     
  7. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    It depends what you mean by 'fasting'. My Catholic mum gives up chocolate, meat etc for Lent and the church calls this fasting. During the month of Ramazan people fast from sunup to sundown, as you probably know, but some people don't realise it means you can't put anything at all in your mouth--not even a drop of water, you can't clean your teeth during these hours, or take medication. You can't have an injection, or a cigarette (or sex) either, or anything else that might help you relax and make things more bearable or the time pass more quickly.
    In a hot country (it was about 40 degrees C here last month) it's pretty difficult to keep this up for long. Actually, any people with a physical weakness, children, nursing mothers etc are forbidden to fast. The fast is not supposed to be about mortifying the flesh at all, people here tell a whole lot of (partly bogus) stuff about the health benefits. It's a certain type of discipline, that's for sure, although people here are amazed when I tell them some Catholics don't have sugar or meat for the whole month--when the day ends it's no holds barred and apart from alcohol they eat anything they want (non-stop into the night--they generally put on weight at this time!) The actions of the prayers after the fast-breaking meal (bending and turning) are actually good exercise and help the poor old digestion. The worst thing about the Ramazan fast is nearly everyone has a headache by midday and is in a foul mood and road rage becomes rampant! Since going back to work, I've hardly ever done the fast--in my town people are very laid back on the subject and no one does it unless they want to--cafes are all open etc.
     
  8. evelon
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    evelon Active Member

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    I've fasted since lunch time, nothing but coffe and biscuits.
     
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  9. mugen shiyo
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    mugen shiyo Contributing Member

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    Having to work and fast would be a dealbreaker for me. High irritability and headaches at a job sounds like a bomb floating through gasoline. That's funny about the road rage. I imagined someone fasting getting cut off by a guy eating a triple layer sandwich :p
     
  10. Snoopingaround
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    Snoopingaround Banned

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    I am wondering why the starter of the thread would be interested in trying it? Any reason you are considering this in the first place?
     
  11. LaurenM
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    LaurenM Member

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    For true fasting-no food and water at all-I can't even make a day. If I don't eat, I get irritable and tired very quickly, and I'm all over pretty miserable to be around, no matter how hard I try to be chipper. To me, fasting shouldn't be miserable. It shouldn't be pleasant, either, but it should be something to where you don't make everyone else suffer too.
     
  12. colorthemap
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    colorthemap Contributing Member

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    This is a key point, as take Ramadan it is a whole religious month. But this can be done without any long term effects as you do eat at the wee hours of the day and night. I really see no benefit in total fasting(like not eating anything at anytime of the day).
     
  13. VM80
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    VM80 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Because the body is not meant to, perhaps?
     
  14. heyitsmary
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    heyitsmary Member

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    I have a friend who's trying this liquid diet where she basically doesn't put anything in her mouth except this bizarre lemon water concoction for ten days. She seems relatively miserable and she's only been doing it for three or four days. She's also cheated more than once. I've heard all of the theories about fasting and its benefits but I can't imagine ever doing it. I like food way too much. :D
     
  15. J.P.Clyde
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    J.P.Clyde Prince of Melancholy Contributor

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    I do not fast nor do I recommend it. I'm vegan so I probably do not get all my nutrients from one meal. So if I don't eat for a few hours, I'm trying to push myself to do things. I get the hunger headache and there have been a few times where I felt so weak. I drank water, but after a while my body was like water isn't enough. Not that I have tried fasting, I just know fasting would be impossible for me.
     
  16. mugen shiyo
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    mugen shiyo Contributing Member

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    I once wanted to try it cause I saw it as this whole test-of-will thing, but when I heard you lose weight I dropped that quick. Fasting has to be girl thing because I can't see myself losing twenty pounds or more and liking it. But I did hear that it could boost you health and clean your digestive track out, but there's was no real proof to that and all I ever hear of people who fast is aggravation and spiritual elevation. I didn't need either at the time.

    I had a friend also who did something like this, only her fast was this smoothie bull-crap her doctor told her she had to take. Was something about her immune system being jacked up. She was supposed to be on that for a month, but I doubt she stuck with it. Chocolate doesn't stand a chance around her.
     
  17. hiddennovelist
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    hiddennovelist Contributing Member Contributor

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    My sister-in-law does fasts like that. She insists that it's good for you because it cleans out your colon and helps you lose weight that you wouldn't be able to using another method. She's thinner than me, so maybe she's on to something, but somehow...I doubt it.

    I don't think completely abstaining from food and drink for an extended period of time is good for you. My family does it for 24 hours once a month, and I really want to do some research to see if that has benefits for your body or if it's bad for you.
     
  18. art
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    art Contributing Member Contributor

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    Fasting/intermittent fasting is very much a pillar of the so-called 'paleo-movement' discussed hereabouts recently.

    Provided you are fundamentally healthy and your diet is good, fasting, from time to time, is more than likely, a very sound practice. Perhaps the surest way of prolonging life in (literally) lab rats is to restrict their calories. There's a good deal of evidence to suggest that by fasting intermittently one can enjoy the same benefits that accrue from calorie restriction without reducing one's overall calorie intake. Fasting prompts some pretty powerful responses in the body: ketosis and autophagia and, within reason, both have been shown to promote health.
     

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