Fasting may become a necessary medical therapy for most people given the environmental toxin burden facing the United States and other countries around the world. For example, the Natural Resources Defense Council reports that there are 80,000 chemicals currently being used in the United States, and most of them have not been adequately tested for human health safety.
There are many types of fasting that range from water only, juice only, to intermittent fasting. The most practical for most people is intermittent fasting. When you go several hours without food (water not included) your body will rely on burning fat for energy. One common technique is to eat during an 8-hour window period each day or several days a week. Another common technique is the 5:2 approach, where you eat a healthy diet 5 days a week without time restriction, and then eat low calorie, such as 500 calories, for two days a week. Other people experienced in fasting may have water only one day a week or for several days one to two times a year.
Mediterranean-Intermittent Fasting Combo
One interesting modification with fasting is combining intermittent fasting with a Mediterranean Diet (as given in Chapter 7). According to an article in the Journal of The American College of Cardiology, the combination of intermittent fasting (8-12 hours) along with a Pesco-Mediterranean Diet (consume fish instead of other animal products) is the ideal cardioprotective diet.
Fasting should not be used for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. It also can be problematic with Type 1 diabetes, children, teens, those with a history of eating disorders, and in these cases should only be used under a doctor’s guidance.
Dr. Mark Stengler NMD, MS, is a bestselling author in private practice in Encinitas, California, at the Stengler Center for Integrative Medicine. His newsletter, Dr. Stengler’s Health Breakthroughs, is available at www.americasnaturaldoctor.com His clinic website is www.markstengler.com