12 Questions To Ask Before You Fast
Fasting continues to emerge and grow as a popular health and fitness trend. Whether you are fasting for religious purposes, using intermittent fasting to optimize your health, or periodic or prolonged fasts to renew your health commitment and create a physical transformation, there are tremendous benefits to the fasting lifestyle, including weight loss, lower blood pressure, improved metabolic health, mental clarity, better moods, more energy, and healthy aging—all backed by science.
The basic premise of fasting is the alternation between eating and fasting periods, strategically creating patterns of cycles of fasting. How long your fasting cycle is and what you do during your eating cycle will influence the physiological experience that your body has—mental, physical, and emotional. Fasting creates an environment for healing on the cellular level due to the trigger of autophagy—autophagy is your body’s natural way of cleaning house. Your cells clean and recycle old and damaged parts, resulting in a profound benefit: cellular rejuvenation and renewal. The precise measurement of autophagy in humans is tricky, yet most experts agree that humans’ process begins after 18-20 hours in a fasted state.
As there are several practical approaches to integrating a fasting lifestyle, choosing a method that works for you is a personal preference that should be determined by your goals, your current health, and your lifestyles. In many ways, it’s not about identifying which fasting method is better than another; rather, the way to approach the fasting method is from a strategic perspective– which one is right for me, right now. Eating and fasting is a lifestyle continuum, and at some point, your body may benefit from any or all of the fasting methods.
Here are a dozen excellent questions to discuss with a health practitioner—before you fast.
- Is fasting right for me?
- Which type of fasting should I try?
- How long should I fast?
- What is my fasting goal?
- What can I eat or drink during my fast?
- Should I continue taking any supplements or vitamins?
- What will break my fast?
- How should I expect to feel during my fast?
- Can I work out during my fast?
- Are there any activities I should avoid during fasting?
- How should I break my fast?
- What are some of the risks or signs to stop my fast?
- How often should I fast?
- What type of fasting will support my healthy aging goals?