Fasting is a short term form of starvation. Fasting for short time periods, when done right, is both safe and effective for weight loss, though fasting is also a regular commitment by many religious groups.
Water has no calories, no sodium and no side-effects. Ideally, you would drink water when fasting to lose weight. Flavored waters are a good second choice, since they help you avoid boredom without filling you up. Don’t drink alcohol when fasting, since this has empty calories and dehydrates you. Avoid coffee, since this dehydrates you, though the energy pick me up may make you feel like you’re losing more weight. Mint tea and green tea are fine as long as you don’t add too much sugar. Avoid sports drinks and energy drinks. Some energy drinks have as much sugar as soda. Diet soda in moderation is tolerable when fasting to lose weight, but the salt may make you retain water.
Consuming low calorie fruit juice when fasting to lose weight is called a juice fast. This is acceptable when you may be fasting for 30 hours or more, if you are unable to avoid food entirely because of medicine you are taking or are concerned about your blood sugar.
Secondary Weight Loss Solutions When Fasting
You can take a diuretic at the start of a fast if you are drinking several liters of water or hydrating beverages over the course of the fast. If you will not be drinking anything over the day, don’t use a diuretic in an effort to lose weight even faster.
Don’t try to colon cleanse while on a fast. When you are fasting, your body is still drawing energy from the food you ate the prior day. Cleansing the colon is stressful and can dehydrate you. The euphoric feeling it causes in some is caused by dehydration or even malnutrition. The lassitude afterward is the result of extreme exhaustion.
Fasting, Activity and Inactivity
If you are fasting, you should restrict heavy physical activity. You can go for light walks, do housework, join in yoga sessions and do stretches. Don’t go jogging, lift weights or climb ten flights of stairs. And expect to sleep an extra thirty minutes or more at night to offset the reduced food intake.
Breaking the Fast
When breaking the fast, don’t eat candy or easily digested carbohydrates. The sudden intake of quickly absorbed food could cause your blood sugar to spike. Eat complex carbohydrates, fruit or eggs. In short, breaking the fast regardless of what time of day should resemble a healthy breakfast like the whole grain toast, yogurt, fruit and egg white omelets that graces many cereal commercials.
Don’t let the fast become a caloric bank account on which you can later draw. For example, don’t use the 2,000 calories you didn’t eat while fasting become an excuse to hit the dessert bar at the buffet. However, fasting to lose weight can become a good way to transition into a healthier diet.
Fasting to lose weight can also get you in touch with your body’s signals. We often eat to alleviate boredom, mistake thirst for hunger and eat well before we are significantly hungry. Fasting for a day or two will allow you to feel true hunger before satisfying it. This will help you get in touch with the true sense of hunger, and it will allow you to recognize hunger relative to thirst and peckish from famished.