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Home > Nature Cure Treatments > Fasting
Fasting

Fasting: The first medicine
In Naturopathy, fasting is observed as a method of self-purification. It is also practised in many religions. Muslims, Hindus, Jains, Buddhists and Christians, all observe fasting as a spiritual practice. It is natures most effective and least expensive medicine for treatment. Charak, Susruta, Hypocrates, Galen, Paracelsus and many great authorities on medicine have regarded it as a very dependable and curative method. It is a common knowledge that even when animals and birds fall ill, they withdraw from food, and therefore, recover faster.

The modern lifestyle, irregular eating habits, overeating and consumption of junk food, repeated use of drugs, sedentary living and lack of exercise generate lot of toxins and morbid matters in the body. These impurities affect the digestive and assimilative organs. They derange the system and clog the internal cleansing process.

As an unclean drain spreads infection, an impure organism invites diseases. Fasting, by depriving the body of food for some time helps the bowels, kidney, lungs, and liver expel disease-causing toxins and impurities. Additionally, it gives the needed rest to critical organs in the body. According to Dr Ranger Berg, an international authority on nutrition: "During fasting, the body burns up and excrete huge amount of accumulated wastes

Types and Methods of Fasting
There are three types of fasts:
1. Water fast
2. Juice fast
3. Mono-Diet fast.

Traditionally, pure water fast was practiced but fasting on juice is considered more beneficial. For certain diseases mono or single fruit or vegetable diet like bitter gourd, papaya, wheat grass juice, grapes. cucumber, etc., is prescribed because of their curative properties. Fasting on alkaline juice eliminates uric and other inorganic acids. Vitamins, minerals, enzymes and trace elements in fresh fruit and vegetable juices restore bodys balance and revive its vitality.

The juice should be diluted in pure water and one glass should be taken every 2-3 hours. During fasting, enema should be taken every alternate day. The total liquid intake should not be less than 10-12 glassfuls in a day. Physical rest and mental relaxation is essential during fasting. Simple exercises like short walks may be taken followed by a lukewarm water bath in the morning.

To start with, fasting may be done once in a week or a fortnight for a day or two. For certain chronic or critical diseases the duration varies from one to four weeks under strict guidance of a qualified naturopath. Breaking of fast must be gradual with a light and liquid diet for 1 or 2 days before resuming the normal diet. Over-eating after fasting defeats the very purpose of fasting.

Benefits
During fasting the body decomposes, burns and destroys diseased cells and tissues. The eliminative organs like lungs, liver, kidney and skin are revitalized. Accumulated wastes and toxins are expelled. The process of digestion is improved. The body engine is overhauled, cleansed, serviced and fine-tuned. Fasting, dieting and moderate exercises bring about rapid reduction in weight of the obese people. Long-term fasts should be under proper guidance.
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