Fasting Saviors

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Depending on what kind of extended fast you are doing, there are helpful things you can do to make your fast more pleasant. 

Have a cup or two of Black Coffee/Tea

Black coffee and tea won’t break your fast and can be an excellent go-to during a fast.  Besides providing your taste buds something different than water, coffee and tea may help suppress appetite, making it easier to stick to your fast.  If you want to keep your body in a fasted state, be sure to avoid loading your coffee with milk, sugar, and other additives. A teaspoon of MCT oil or heavy cream can be good options as they’re unlikely to alter your blood sugar levels or total calorie intake significantly.

Get Quality and Quantity of Sleep

Not getting ample sleep will make fasting, especially an extended fast (12 hours plus), more challenging.   We often want to reach for food to provide our bodies with energy when our bodies needed sleep in reality.   A lack of sleep has been found to trigger increased levels of ghrelin (a hunger hormone) and decreased levels of leptin (a satiety hormone), leading to increased hunger and appetite.  Also, it is difficult to eat while you sleep, so getting the correct quantity of sleep will naturally keep you from eating. 

Move that Body

One way to avoid unintentionally breaking your fast is to keep busy.  Going for a walk or doing other light exercises can help distract you from your hunger.  Walking or exercising in a fasted state also comes with remarkable benefits.  Going for a walk before breaking your fast with a meal can serve as a reward and something to look forward to after completing your stroll.  Walking before you eat can also help your body digest what you are about to consume.  

Stay Hydrated

20-30 percent of the fluids come from the food you eat.  That makes it that much more necessary to make sure you are keeping yourself adequately hydrated while fasting.  The amount of fluid your body needs is quite individual, but a good rule of thumb is to drink half your body weight (lbs) in ounces of water per day.  Being slightly dehydrated, even by 1 percent, can result in fatigue and headaches, which will make it difficult to reach your fasting goals.  Add a pinch of Himalayan sea salt or a squeeze of lemon to add electrolytes, minerals, and flavor to your water.  

To MAS health,

Michael

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