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Less-rigorous-than-water Fasts





Category: Fasting
Source: How And When To Be Your Own Doctor

There are gradations of fasting measures ranging from rigorous to
relatively casual. Water fasting is the most rapid and effective
one. Other methods have been created by grasping the underlying
truth of fasting, namely whenever the digestive effort can be
reduced, by whatever degree, whenever the formation of the toxins of
misdigestion can be reduced or prevented, to that extent the body
can divert energy to the healing process. Thus comes about assorted
famous and sometimes notorious monodiet semi-fasts like the grape
cure where the faster eats only grapes for a month or so, or the
lemon cure, where the juice of one or more lemons is added to water
and nothing else is consumed for weeks on end. Here I should also
mention the "lemon juice/cayenne pepper/maple syrup cure," the
various green drink cures using spirulina, chlorella, barley green
or wheat grass, and the famous Bieler broths--vegetable soups made of
overcooked green beans or zucchini.

I do not believe that monodiets work because of some magical
property of a particular food used. They work because they are
semi-fasts and may be extremely useful, especially for those
individuals who can not or will not tolerate a water fast.

The best foods for monodiet fasting are the easiest ones digest:
juices of raw fruits and nonstarchy vegetables with all solids
strained out. Strained mineral broths made of long-simmered
non-starchy vegetables (the best of them made of leafy green
vegetables) fall in the same category. So if you are highly partial
to the flavor of grapes or lemons or cayenne and (highly diluted)
maple syrup, a long fast on one of these would do you a world of
good, just not quite as much good as the same amount of time spent
on water alone. If you select something more "solid" for a long
monodiet fast, like pureed zucchini, it is essential that you not
overeat. Dr. Bieler gave his fasting patients only one pint of
zucchini soup three or four times a day. The way to evaluate how
much to eat is by how much weight you are losing. When fasting, you
must lose weight! And the faster the better.

Pure absolute water fasting while not taking any vitamins or other
nutritional supplementation has a very limited maximum duration,
perhaps 45 days. The key concept here is nutritional reserves. Body
fat is stored, surplus energy fuel. But energy alone cannot keep a
body going. It needs much more than fuel to rebuild and repair and
maintain its systems. So the body in its wisdom also stores up
vitamins and minerals and other essential substances in and
in-between all its cells. Bodies that have been very well nourished
for a long time have very large reserves; poorly nourished ones may
have very little set aside for a rainy day. And it is almost a
truism that a sick person has, for quite some time, been a poorly
nourished one. With low nutritional reserves. This fact alone can
make it difficult for a sick person to water fast for enough time to
completely heal their damaged organs and other systems.

Obese people have fat reserves sufficient to provide energy for long
periods, but rarely can any body, no matter how complete its
nutrition was for years previously, contain sufficient nutritional
reserves to support a water fast of over six weeks. To water fast
the very obese down to normal weight can take months but to make
this possible, rather diverse and concentrated nutrition containing
few calories must be given. It is possible to fast even a very slim
a person for quite a bit longer than a month when their body is
receiving easily assimilable vitamins and minerals and small amounts
of sugars or other simple carbohydrates.

I estimate that fasting on raw juices and mineral broths will result
in healing at 25 to 75 percent of the efficiency of water fasting,
depending on the amount of nutrition taken and the amount the juices
or broths are diluted. But juice fasting can permit healing to go on
several times longer than water might.

Fasting on dilute juice and broth can also save the life of someone
whose organs of elimination are insufficiently strong to withstand
the work load created by water fasting. In this sense, juices can be
regarded as similar to the moderators in a nuclear reactor, slowing
the process down so it won't destroy the container. On a fast of
undiluted juice, the healing power drops considerably, but a person
on this regimen, if not sick, is usually capable of working.

Duration of juice fasts can vary greatly. Most of the time there is
no need to continue fasting after the symptoms causing concern have
been eliminated, and this could happen as quickly as one week or
take as long as 60 days if the person is very obese. Fasters also
lose their motivation once the complaint has vanished. But feeling
better is no certain indication that the need to fast has ended.
This points up one of the liabilities of juice fasting; the person
is already eating, their digestive system never shut down and
consequently, it is much easier for them to resume eating. The thing
to keep in mind is that if the symptoms return, the fast was not
long enough or the diet was not properly reformed after the fast.

During a long fast on water or dilute juice, if the body has used up
all of it's reserves and/or the body has reached skeletal condition,
and the condition or symptoms being addressed persists the fast
should be ended, the person should go on a raw food healing diet. If
three to six months on raw food don't solve the complaint then
another spell of water or dilute juice fasting should be attempted.
Most fasters are incapable of persisting until the body reserves
have been used up because social conditioning is telling them their
emaciated-looking body must be dying when it is actually far from
death, but return of true hunger is the critical indicator that must
not be ignored. True hunger is not what most people think of when
they think they are hungry. Few Americans have ever experienced true
hunger. It is not a rumbling in the stomach or a set of
uncomfortable sensations (caused by the beginning of detoxification)
you know will go away after eating. True hunger is an animal,
instinctual feeling in the back of one's throat (not in the stomach)
that demands you eat something, anything, even grass or shoe
leather.

Seriously ill people inevitably start the cleansing process with a
pre-existing and serious mineral deficiencies. I say inevitably
because they likely would not have become ill had they been properly
nourished. Sick fasters may be wise to take in minerals from thin
vegetable broths or vitamin-like supplements in order to prevent
uncomfortable deficiency states. For example calcium or magnesium
deficiencies can make water fasters experience unpleasant symptoms
such as hand tremors, stiff muscles, cramps in the hands, feet, and
legs, and difficulty relaxing. I want to stress here that fasting
itself does not create deficiencies. But a person already deficient
in minerals should watch for these symptoms and take steps to remedy
the deficiencies if necessary.





Next: Raw Food Healing Diets

Previous: Foods For Monodiet, Juice Or Broth Fasting



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