Hello everyone just recently I finished a 5-day, no food, water only fast and I wanted to share my experiences with everyone. Recently, I was at a continuing education conference and one of the presenters talked about why someone would want to do something like this. He stated 4 main reasons why extended fasting might help an individual. The first one was to try to determine any food sensitivities/allergies. The second was to decrease overall body/joint inflammation. The third was to boost overall immunity. The fourth being to generally give your digestive system and liver a rest since they are almost always working.
In the past I’ve completed short term fasting with just one food for 3 days and water but this is the most extreme time I’ve ever gone without food ever….. and I have to say it wasn’t that bad- although at times I felt terrible.
Let me start off by explaining how I felt day by day….
DAY 1….. I felt absolutely terrible with the worst headache that lasted for about 6 hours but surprisingly not hungry. On this day I decided to start a list of foods that I craved during this process (see below).
DAY 2….. Was like day one without the headache I did try to lift weights and workout but my overall energy for lifting was absolutely terrible but for general day-to-day stuff was okay.
DAY 3….. This is when I was supposed to experience the most mental clarity and euphoria yet I only expiernced my “normal” state of mind. the same general energy for day to day tasks and surprisingly not hungry.
DAY 4….. I tried to work out again….. lifting weights was an act of drudgery (I love to lift) and I probably should not have attempted this, although I got through a minor work out no problem… just lots of perspiration to the point of soaking my shirt through. By this day still no Euphoria or mental Clarity, yet I did notice that minor chronic aches and pains in my joints had gone away and also my looking forward to breaking the fast started to increase. I was tracking overall weight during this time and I will get to that at the end..
Day 5….. Was more of the same except my desire to break the fast was what I thought about most. Physically I was still not hungry, but mentally I was looking forward to eating food.
What was on my craved foods list? Surprisingly NOT my favorite food in the world (peanut butter) or things like pizza burgers or even coffee (which I really enjoy also). I had 4 things on my list: 1.. Sauerkraut (weird right?) 2..Smoked salmon 3..Steamed Veggies (any kind) 4..Organic grass-fed beef bone broth. These all just really sounded great to me.
I started at a body weight of 164 lb and at my last day I was at a body weight of 154. 8 that’s around 10 lb loss in 5 days….. now I was expecting to lose some muscle that’s for sure…… I definitely lost some fat around my midsection (no, I totally forgot and should have included some before and after pictures) and for sure lost a lot of water weight. If you are just trying to lose weight (FAT) this is NOT the way of accomplishing that……….(Contact me at jkphysicalculture@gmail and I can help you achieve those results via form first training and optimal nutritional guidelines.)
Overall from my experience,
By day 3-4 my chronic achy joints were significantly lessened to the point of non-existence. It felt great to complete a great test of willpower like this. I never really thought about how how many days I could go without food (I know the human body can go without food for about 2 weeks as long as you have water-that would suck for sure especially if you were in a survival type situation). Towards the fifth day this became kind of miserable especially if you like food. But while doing this 5 days I did not experience any great physical hunger sensations/pangs if you will. It did what was expected in reducing overall body inflammation I had a couple spots that were not injuries they were just kind of achy joints and that completely went away and hopefully it also did the stated goal of giving my digestive system and liver a rest because they’re always working if you think about it.
Obviously not being able to eat for 5 days especially if you love to eat and love food. You do not feel that great especially if you’re trying to do a work out whether it’s cardiovascular or lifting weights (you will not be setting any records and should probably save fasting for a period when you are also taking a break from your training). For general energy, just running errands etc (no hard labor) you should be fine. I did not experience a great sense of euphoria or mental clarity until 2 days after breaking the fast and also the killer headache I had the first day which is probably due to coming off of caffeine. I did not have restful/restorative sleep during this time as well.
In the future I may incorporate an intermittent fasting approach which you can read about all over the Internet and people’s experience with that. Where maybe one day a month I do something similar…….. or limited to just fresh vegetable juices Etc
If you consider yourself tough/stoic and like mental willpower challenges I would say you can give this a try, if you’re in any kind of diseased state or poor physical condition………then, like with all exercise you should talk to your medical provider first before attempting any kind of fasting.