Everything You Need To Know About Water Fasting

Have you heard about the latest water fasting trend? It is popping up everywhere, and it has made us wonder what exactly water fasting entails. Why are people doing it, and is it honestly good for you to do a water fast? Let’s take a deep look at water fasting with the help of Medical News Today and see why this liquid trend has become so popular.

Note: The content of this article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional advice. Always consult with a qualified professional for advice tailored to your individual circumstances.

What is Water Fasting?

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Water fasting is when a person drinks nothing other than water. They also stop eating regular food completely, so water is the only thing they consume. There is no juice, soda, coffee, tea, or other beverages in the fast- just plain, crystal-clear water! Eating or drinking anything else would effectively end the fast and may negate any positive effects a water fast may have on the body.

How Long is a Water Fast?

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There is really no set amount of time that a water fast should last. Most water fasts seem to last about 24 hours, but the times vary greatly. If you are considering a water fast, talk to a medical professional, such as your family doctor, to determine how long you should water fast. Together, you can devise an effective but safe amount of time to follow this fast.

How Much Water Do You Drink?

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Once again, there is no set amount of water that you need to drink during a water fast. You will likely be pretty hungry and thirsty, so sipping on cold water will be your only relief! You may find yourself drinking quite a bit! However, some experts recommend that you try to consume about 2-3 liters of water every day. While you want to stay hydrated, you also don’t want to overdo it by drinking way too much water. It is a fine balance!

What Type of Water Do You Need for a Water Fast?

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Any kind of plain water will work! It can be ice cold, warm, or even hot water. Changing the water’s temperature may help keep the diet interesting as you sip on the same thing all day long.

Some experts recommend drinking mineral water, which can help replace any important minerals that may be lost during the water fast. Just make sure the water is plain and not flavored!

Water Fasting for Weight Loss

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One of the main reasons why people start a water fast is to lose weight. While water fasting may help you drop a few pounds, it can be hard to keep this weight off. Experts have found that gradual weight loss through diet and exercise is easier to maintain than quickly dropping pounds. Once you start to eat normally, that weight may come right back!

Water Fast for Autophagy

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Studies have shown that water fasting may help promote autophagy, a process in which the body’s cells clean out any damaged or unnecessary components in the cell. The body breaks down and recycles any harmful or potentially dangerous cells. Autophagy can help with conditions like cancer, infectious diseases, or other metabolic syndromes. Doctors may suggest water fast for people struggling with any of these ailments as a way to potentially heal the body.

Spirituality

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Water fasting has long been practiced for spiritual or religious reasons. Fasting, in general, is often used to cleanse the body or show commitment to a certain religion. Most religions do allow water as part of a fast, so even though each fast can be different, most would fall into the category of a “water fast.”

Exercise During a Water Fast

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Water fasting can be very strenuous on your body. You will function on very little energy and have no real way to replenish it. Most healthcare professionals recommend that you do not exercise during a water fast. If you plan to start a water fast, be prepared to avoid any highly physical activity for the length of the fast.

Start Slow

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If you have never fasted before, you may want to start off slow. Experts recommend beginning with a shorter fast to ensure you have no adverse reactions. If you plan on doing a longer fast, consider talking to your healthcare professional first so they can determine whether it is wise for you. Fasting is mentally and physically strenuous, so you want to be fully prepared!

What to Eat Before a Water Fast

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When you start a water fast, you will not eat or drink anything other than water for an extended period of time. Preparing your body before the fast is essential! Make sure you eat nutritious, high-energy foods leading up to the fast. You may also want to consider slowly reducing the size of your meals, building up to the fast at a steady pace, and allowing your body to adjust to consuming less food.

Benefits of Water Fasting

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Water fasting may help with quite a few major health issues. Many people turn to it to lose weight and, in turn, help with heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, and diabetes. Fasting has also been shown to help with autophagy, reduce stress, reduce inflammation, and balance hormones. While more research must be conducted to make these claims more conclusive, many people already believe in the power of water fasting!

How Do You Feel During a Water Fast

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Water fasting does take a serious toll on the body. It can make you feel weak, dizzy, and even nauseous. When you eliminate all food from your diet and drink only water, your body will lack the fuel to thrive. You will be tired! Be sure to rest, sit, and avoid too much activity while you are fasting.

Water Fasting is Not For Everyone

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Not everyone should try water fasting. It is not considered safe for children, seniors, or people who are chronically ill (unless directed by a doctor). Experts also recommend that anyone with an eating disorder should avoid fasting. The bottom line is that you should always check with your healthcare provider before starting a major water fast!

This article was inspired by Medical News Today and originally published at WMN Lives.

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