Renowned holistic lifestyle coach, Luke Coutinho enlightens us about the benefits of fasting to the mind, body and soul.
We have several inner physicians inbuilt into us, and fasting is one of them. Fasting if done the right way and broken the right way can be therapeutic and there is extensive research to back this up and the more we dig deeper into its mechanism, the more we are in awe of this amazing wisdom our bodies have.
Fasting is one of the tools that helps activate and tap into our inner intelligence. The science behind this is simple. When we fast, we give our digestive system a break. This break helps conserve energy that otherwise would have been spent in digestion. This conserved energy is what is then channelised into repair, recovery, growth, rejuvenation, and healing.
The beauty of fasting is that its effects are not just limited to our physical health, but also transcend at an emotional, mental and spiritual level. Fasting – in some form or the other also exists in all religions. For Ramadan, Muslims have an entire month- dedicated to fasting, to cleanse and purify their mind, body, and spirit.
Here’s how fasting can have miraculous benefits on our physique and psyche-
Physical benefits of fasting
● Fasting provides higher energy levels to the body.
● It aids in better digestive health, reduces bloating, and helps indigestion. People who have observed fasting, have reported waking up with absolutely no bloating at all. It also helps in improving gut microbiota (good and bad bacteria ratio).
● It reduces arthritic pains and swelling by reducing inflammation.
● It helps in improving immunity.
● It helps people find control over their cravings for sugary and junk food.
● Fasting is also known to be anti-aging in nature and helps in detoxifying the body while improving hormonal imbalances
● Fasting also promotes stem cell regeneration, autophagy, and lean muscle growth, while generally extending one’s lifespan and vitality
● It’s also a great stimulus for HGH (human growth hormone)
Mental benefits of fasting
● It aids in better concentrations levels.
● It helps with better mental clarity, clearer thinking process, and no mental fog.
● It also helps protect the brain against neurodegenerative conditions, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
Emotional benefits of fasting
● It provides a sense of increased sense of gratitude.
● It helps increase the sense of calm and happiness.
● Fasting is known to promote the emotion of feeling good from within, positive, peaceful, happy, and overall, in a better mood. It’s also known to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression (has to be supervised and is not a replacement for medication).
Spiritual benefits of fasting
● It helps build a deeper spiritual connection with oneself.
● During fasting, it’s easier for us to connect our physical body to our spiritual self. Unfortunately, a lot of people believe that fasting is only a religious activity, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. While it’s true that most religions do encourage fasting, you can still be a non-religious person and fast. One can also meditate better when the digestive system (along with its communication with the brain function) is given a complete rest.
● Since our thoughts during the fasting period aren’t all so consumed by what we are going to eat next, we have more energy to devote to spirituality. Dry fasting also cleanses our chakras while giving way to more creativity with our heightened awareness and brain activity.
The most natural and realistic way to fast is circadian rhythm fasting. In simple words, it means sunset to sunrise fasting where one eats their last meal of the day early (ie close to or with sunset) and breaks it after sunrise (the next day). This allows for a minimum of 12 hours of beautiful fasting and it’s by far one of the most effective ways to embrace fasting based on our experience. In fact, it is what one must adopt anyway because our body isn’t designed to digest late-night meals and snacks according to the laws of nature. So, an early dinner followed by fasting for about 12 hours, with no food in between, except plain water (if required) gives a much-deserved break to our body. This is smart and intuitive fasting because it aligns fasting with the cycles of nature. This is smart and intuitive fasting because it aligns fasting with the cycles of nature.
“There are fasting pods found in Mexico called ‘fast incubators,’ wherein people are surrounded by nature and aren’t exposed to any smell of food or noise. One can fast for any period of time – depending upon their choice – ranging from 10 to 30 days. People who have gone for this, have reported amazing improvements in their healing process for various diseases. Many have even reported improvement in their eyesight and the sense of hearing returning to them.”
About Luke Coutinho
Luke Coutinho is globally renowned in the field of Integrative and Lifestyle Medicine and the Founder of LCHHS. Luke’s approach to prevention and healing revolves around five important pillars: Balanced Nutrition, Adequate Exercise, Quality Sleep, Emotional Detox and Spiritual Wellness. He not only spreads awareness and optimism on social media by sharing information but also his programs work towards helping individuals with severe illnesses and lifestyle diseases and reducing their pain and suffering using an integrative approach. Luke has received tremendous recognition for his work and has been felicitated by several industry leaders across the world. Luke has authored many books on health and lifestyle like “Eat Smart, Move More, Sleep right “, the national bestseller with superstar Shilpa Shetty called “The Great Indian Diet “, the internationally acclaimed “The Dry Fasting Miracle – from Deprive to Thrive“ amongst many others.
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