Find out if fasting is right for you…

If you follow me closely on Instagram or Facebook, then you probably know I’ve done quite a few 3-day fasts over the years.

In fact, I completed my 15th one just last week.

But let me tell you, I didn’t just jump into fasting overnight. (Ha! No pun intended.)

Yes, fasting can produce some major health benefits, and it’s been used for a long time as a therapeutic tool to help reverse or prevent health conditions such as cancer, diabetes, and other chronic diseases.

However, without the right supervision, guidance, or preparation, fasting can do more harm than good.

There was a time when my body couldn’t even handle intermittent fasting for 12 hours, let alone 3 full days.

I eased into intermittent and prolonged fasting over time, and I’m going to share the 4 simple steps I took (below) to get there so you can use fasting as an appropriate health tool as well.

BUT here’s what you need to know first…

Fasting isn’t right for everyone, regardless of how popular it is. And even if it’s right for you, it’s important to tune into your body to know if it’s the right time for you to fast or not.

I’ve seen too many clients walk through my virtual practice door frustrated with the lack of results they’ve seen from their fasting attempts, or feeling wiped out and worse off after trying it.

In the midst of healing my Hashimotos and reversing mold illness, my body couldn’t tolerate fasting at all. My body was burdened by too many toxins, depleted, and dysfunctional at the time to metabolize fat for fuel and feel good while fasting, even for short periods.

Fasting has been a part of human existence probably since the beginning of time, as our ancestors roamed the earth, alternating through times of feast or famine and hibernation during the winter months.

However, our modern-day culture has altered our fasting instincts and biology with the introduction of fast food drive-thrus, processed foods with exceptionally long shelf lives, and high carbohydrate and sugar diets that leave you craving more food than ever before.

To top it all off, the majority of our modern-day food leads to blood sugar issues, hormone imbalances, and liver and gut dysfunction, which negatively impact your ability to utilize fasting effectively as a tool until these internal issues are resolved.

And then there are the toxins and stressors that our bodies encounter every day, which alter hormonal balance and other metabolic processes, leaving the body less capable for effective fasting.

A body that was once born with a natural ability to tolerate fasting no longer can due to the evolution of the food industry and our environment.

In this week’s video and blog, I’m sharing 4 simple steps you can take to get your body into fasting shape and to make fasting more effective. 

Let’s break down what fasting is first…

When it comes to intermittent fasting (especially as it relates to the Keto diet), there are basically two schools of thought:

#1- Fasting means not eating anything containing calories or nutrients for a period of time (i.e. water fasting).

#2- Fasting means not eating any sources of immediate energy, such as carbs or proteins (i.e. sometimes fats are ok)

Both approaches focus on training the body to primarily utilize fat stores for energy to become “fat-adapted.”

The standard American diet and even most other whole food or primal diets, such as Paleo and Whole30, constantly supply the body with readily available fuel sources in the forms of carbohydrates (veggies, fruits, nuts, etc.) and proteins (meat, beans, etc.)

Training the body to be fat-adapted requires limiting sources to these readily available types of fuel and forcing the body to tap into its own fuel storage – fat.

Then there are prolonged fasting periods, which typically exceed 24 hours and can go on for days.  At this point, one’s body ideally should be fat-adapted in order to access its own fuel source so you can feel your best during these longer stints.

With prolonged fasting, there are also multiple schools of thought. Some do “water only” fasts, while others might include a daily cup of bone broth, like I do sometimes. Most approaches produce health benefits and you should choose one that works best for you and is in alignment with your goals.

I use prolonged fasting as a tool to restore and reset my digestive tract and flush out inflammation every few months. The cells of the intestinal lining have the ability to completely regenerate within 72 hours if you avoid consuming food, giving you a whole new, stronger, healthier digestive tract and a boosted immune system.

Having a cup of bone broth at night and taking daily supplements can help restore the body  and maximize fat metabolism during this time for additional benefits, such as toxin elimination, hormonal health, energy, and sleep.

But as I cautioned earlier, fasting isn’t for everyone, especially depending on your current health status.  For example, fasting could make you feel worse if you have existing hormone imbalances or a high toxic body burden from mold or other environmental factors.

It’s always important to consult with your health professional before trying any method of fasting.

And before you jump right in, follow these 4 simple steps to get your body into fasting shape and to make fasting more effective…

1 – Test, Don’t Guess.
It’s better to know about underlying hormone or nutrient imbalances before you dive into fasting. At a minimum, check your thyroid, cortisol, estrogen, testosterone, and melatonin levels, along with your vitamin and mineral balance, before starting a fasting routine. If any imbalances exist, lay the foundation to reverse them with a therapeutic diet, adequate sleep, appropriate exercise, stress reduction, and nourishing supplements before jumping into fasting.

2 – Fuel Up with Fat.
Slowly ease your body into the transition by progressively reducing your carbohydrate intake and fasting with fat as your primary fuel source. Fat is not readily available as fuel when ingested, so it still requires your body to tap into its own fat fuel sources. Allow yourself to have a fat-only meal in the morning, such as coffee or matcha tea with ghee and/or full-fat coconut milk. This will deliver some of the essential nutrients your body needs so it can still function at its potential while staying away from carbs or proteins that can hijack fat for fuel metabolism.

Training your body to use fat for fuel is the key to having energy and sleeping well while fasting.

3 – Ease Into It.
Don’t go for the gold right from the get-go. Start by making dinner your last meal, fasting overnight, and gradually extending the time you eat breakfast in the morning a few days a week. This is basically what’s called Intermittent Fasting.

I started by having dinner by 7:30pm and my first meal around 9:30 or 10am the next morning, resulting in a 14-hour fasting period. As your body adapts, your energy will improve, letting you know when you can extend the length of your fasting window.

(NOTE: Women’s hormones are particularly sensitive to food deprivation, so it’s best to fast every other day instead of every day when getting started, and to honor your body’s needs around certain times of your cycle.)

4 – Salt and Supplement.
When avoiding food, you’re also avoiding access to nutrients, so it might be essential to supplement what you’re missing. When fasting, supplementing with vitamins and minerals will help maintain sleep quality, keep your hormones happy and your energy balanced, and support the process of fat metabolism. Our ancestors salted meats to preserve them for food storage and ate every part of the animal (organs, cartilage, etc.) so the nutrient values in their bodies were much higher than ours, even when they were forced to fast.

While fasting, I continue to take my daily supplements to ensure my body has the nutrients it needs to get the job done.

Certain herbal teas, such as Pique Tea, also help support the body while fasting. During prolonged fasting periods, I’ll have 1-2 cups of black or green tea in the morning and one cup of green tea in the afternoon.

Plus, I add an extra packet of LMNT electrolytes to maintain hydration, balance cortisol, and boost energy.

I also take specific binders to help capture toxins being released from fat (where they are stored) as it’s broken down for fuel to make sure they are eliminated and not recirculated.

You’ll know your body is ready for fasting when your energy is even all day long and your sleep is spectacular, especially when you start to lengthen time between meals.

We want to think of the body as a well-oiled machine that is ready to adapt to anything we throw at it, but that’s generally not the case, considering all the variables that impact our health in this modern-day world.

With most diet trends, people have a tendency to dive all-in without considering if their body is ready for it, and when it “doesn’t work,” they give up.

Often, it’s not the diet that didn’t work, but something else under the hood that got in the way. This is why it’s always better to test, not guess, in order to figure out exactly what is right for your body, so you don’t go spinning your wheels, wasting money or time on failed attempts or health improvement strategies that aren’t right for you.

If you want to find the missing pieces of your health puzzle so you can effectively use fasting as a tool and feel your best, then…

I have TWO CLIENT OPENINGS for the month of June!

CLICK HERE TO BOOK an Ideal Health & Weight Discovery Call with me.

During this 45-minute Discovery Call, we’ll explore what’s currently going on with your health, your goals and how we can work together with the right lab tests and resources so you can feel like your best self.

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