When people think of fasting, they think they can't eat ANYTHING for a prolonged period of term, but that's incorrect.

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Fasting to me, means just not eating specific foods for a health reason.

Many of us believe we have to eat every single day. We need the food to rebuild our cells, and build muscle, right? Well, this is a myth.

We do not need to eat every day. In fact, there has been some research done that shows that primitive organisms that eat food less often survive longer than those that ate every day.

The truth is, fasting is terrific way to restore our health. It goes hand-to-hand with cleansing, and something we should do occasionally from time to time.

We need to take a break from food once in awhile, and should be done by people with specific ailments such as arthritis, digestive disorders, and diabetes.
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So when should you fast? You should fast during these occasions:

- If you have arthritis
- If you have coated tongue
- During the Equinox to mark the start of a season (Most people cleanse during this time too)
- If you have the cold/flu. It gives your body a chance to rest, and restore its health. If you have a cold or flu, never overeat. Just drink lots of liquids and juices.
- If you don't feel hungry
- If you have constipation problems.

There are bad times to fast as well. In particular, you should not fast during these occasions:

- If you just had a surgical procedure and are recovering from it. You need food for your body to rebuild. When you are hospitalized, you usually aren't eating much anyway, so fasting is not needed.
- If you're trying to rebuild. If you are finished with cleansing, or close to finished, you need to rebuild your body, and start eating powerful foods such as beef.
- If you're too skinny. Fasting will just make you even more skinnier, which will not be good.
- If you don't produce a lot of bile. If you fast, you may form more gallstones.

There are many types of fasts, and it can get confusing as to which one to do. For the most part, it's rather simple. Any of them works, and you need to conduct kinesiology and ask yourself what type of fast you wish to do. A water fast, though is something I would not recommend to most people, unless you have a naturopathist looking after you.

Juice Fast

- A juice fast involves simply drinkinng fresh squeezed vegetable and fruit juices. Don't drink pasteurized juice whatsoever. Commercially package juice is okay ONLY if it is 100% organic. Otherwise, avoid it at all costs. If you're juice fasting, make sure you are diluting the juice by at least 40% or so.

3 Day Fast

- In the first day, you consume no solid foods whatsoever. You just drink some fruit juice, such as grape juice. You may also drink veggie juices such as carrot juice. In the second day, you eat just broths. And finally, in the third day you drink just vegetable juices. You may repeat this 3 day fast again if you feel you need to.

Dry Fast

- An extremely easy fast. All you have to do is drink just 1 quart of fresh water everyday. This flushes your system. Don't do this for more than three days though.

Tea Fast

- Just drink herbal teas such as peppermint and dandelion tea. This type of fast is known for healing ailments. If you drink parley tea during this fast, it will completely flush out your kidneys, and help edema. If you want to help your lymphatic system, drinking nettle tea would be best.

- Kichadi

This is such a great food, and fast. I do this often for a few days prior to colon or liver cleansing. It really reenergizes your system, and prepares your body for a complete detox.

- 100% Healthy Foods

During the holidays, most of us eat junk food half of the time. Afterwards, it's best to switch to a 100% organic, healthy diet that consists of fresh veggie, fruits, and good fats. Cheating is something we all do during the holiday season, we just need to get back on track, and eating just organic foods for a week afterwards is great for our body!

- Master Cleanse

A colon cleansing regimen that involves taking a lemondate drink, alongside with a series of salt water flushes. The problem I have with this colon cleaning internal cleansing regimen is that you shouldn't be consuming so many lemons every single day.. It puts such a burden on your liver!

Fasting for Weight Loss?

Unfortunately, I wouldn't suggest doing any water fasting if you want lose weight. It simply is not effective, as you lose just water weight. On the other hand, if you do lose any body fat while fasting, you lose it waaay too fast. As a result, your skin contains these ugly pouches, that is quite dangerous (you need a surgical procedure to remove it!).

How to Prepare for a Fast

First, you need a juicer machine. This is a must. You can't rely on buying juice from the supermarket as most of these are pasteurized and will make you feel even worse. Second, you need to buy only organic fruits and vegetables. This might mean spending a bit more money, but it's worth it. You never know what normal fruits contain. Buy herbal teas such as dandelion, and peppermint tea.

How to Break a Fast

One of the golden rules when fasting is to break the fast extremely slowly and carefully. If you don't, you might just have ruined all the health benefits of fasting. In the first day after the fast, simply drink vegetable juices, and cooked fruit. You may also drink some spicy tea.

Gradually add cooked foods, but make sure you mix them with lots of spices. Oatmeal is also a good food to eat afterwards. Later, you may eat stuff like steam vegetables. A few days later, you may eat any solid foods.

This article was written by Angela Chang, a herbalist, writer, and blogger. Visit her website at Isagenix and Colon Zone.

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