I am so glad you replied. i am starting a fast tonight. I am sorry for all your suffering. Congrats on having kids. How did you do it. I wish I had children. FAsting is not a quick fix, but I believe in it as the best healing. It takes a series of fasts to heal. I think usually people end up having a practice of fasting in their lives, when they have major illness, and choose fasting as their way of healing. For me, the fast provides immense relief. The challenge comes after the fast, when I am really challenged to change my ways. I have to eat not like a food addict but a lot more slowly and I have to eat A LOT LESS, no matter how scary that can me. I don't even eat a lot to begin with. It's just, I have to get USED to how LITTLE food my body can handle, often. And I have to feel safe and secure in that and know that my body really knows best and IF I am gentle and DON'T force my body full of too much food for it to handle, it will really begin to be healthy. This is what I have learned about fasting. THis is my biggest challenge -- becoming accustomed to eating VERY VERY LIGHTLY after the fast for as long as it takes for my body to adjust and become able to handle what are thought of as "normal" amounts of food. I have to be so brave and just ignore the fears of starvation etc. ... I could really use support in this, in just trusting and surrendering to my body bravely, knowing it will thrive if I eat ever so lightly and am gentle. Working with a food addiction in all this presents a huge challenge. I really need also to stay away from influences in the main stream of society that raise my fears and my denial and want to invalidate my body's wisdom when my body wants to push away the food. I have an extra struggle because I am thin -- very thin. I have read many case studies of emaciated persons fasting and the consensus is unanimous among the oldtime fasting experts that I have read, that emaciated persons actually do very well fasting, even for long periods. Someone recently sent me a reference to an emaciated man who healed from ulcerative colitis by fasting for 30 days on water only. He did fine. An author I recently read said thin persons do better on fasts than obese persons and that thin persons actually live longer under starvation conditions than heavy persons. So a thin person will survive starvation longer than a fat person! ... So... my weight has ordinarily , for a significant period of my life, been between 70 and 80 pounds, -- all my essential tests done by hospitals (most recently about 10 days ago) show me to be in perfect health, all my blood levels of everything A-OK, so I am fine. I am less than 70 pounds
at the moment, but it is due to my level of dehydration. I am very very very small-boned and am 4'10" tall. So that is my physical status. I feel confident , more or less, but I do tremble about the prospect of fasting, a bit. ...I also reassure myself that thin people , as these authors often report, don't lose significant weight at all, really, when fasting. One person in a study actually lost no weight, fasting for one week. i would love for this to happen for me, but I do not want to get scared if I lose a little weight. I don't mean to go on about weight. I just want to vent a little bit about my pre-fast tremors and fears. i want to be open with my fasting partners, too, because it helps me not to be afraid. it helps me to feel solid in the support I am receiving. I feel the support is informed support. It feels like solid support if my support people know exactly what is up.
So! I really just need emotional support and someone to vent to. The difficult part for me with fasting is that, since I am food-addicted (eat for comfort -- have destroyed my body doing so . Found non-fattening ways to do it, for which I am thankful; so I do not have a weight problem; but still am driven to food and unable to respect my body when my body cannot handle food, which, by now, with the dysbioses I have brought on with my decades of comfort eating , which , by now, as I say, is almost all the time. Meaning my body can just about never tolerate food. Only by fasting will I heal. i have never been able to fast long enough , consistently enough , to get better, to bring my body's bacteria back into balance. Mostly this has been due to my paralyzing fear about my thinness, and there being no support , that I can really find, to get over that and get into fasting. But I know I can get over it and get into the fasting that I need to do. I just need to keep on trying )
So - I am off to get one final "hit" of food -- a 6 -ounce bag of pine-nuts -- pretty low-carb, and raw, but obviously a case of compulsive overeating -- to have as my last thing before beginning my fast. It is like 900 calories at once. Ugh. I kind of tend to eat a huge hit of food like that right before a fast -- though this fast has been quite mild as far as that behavior is concerned, AND, most importantly, I am actually committed to never overeating again, after the fast -- to enter into a new way of life. I have started creating my sprouts with my sprouter and cleared out all the triggering food in the house -- I am on raw foods only but there are problematic items within the universe of raw foods, of course. Anyway, after the fast I will stick to a living diet -- sprouts only. And I will have I think a maximum of 300 calories at a sitting and allow 2 hours to process every 100 calories I eat. So after a 300-cal. meal wait 6 hours before eating again. I have been able at times to stick to these food rules. They are what are required for me to live healthy, or , this is what my body has required, since it has been in its state of illness. After healing I may well be able to be looser -- but I know these have to be the rules for now. I am going to start a "Day count" of days of adhering to these food rules. i will recognize 30 days, 60 days, 90 days, etc. of this "food-sobriety" the same as an alcoholic in AA would recognize those amounts of time not drinking. i think that RIGHT after the fast I will probably only be able to handle a couple of hundred calories a day. I want to fast 21 days. But I don't think I wil actually fast totally, for that long. Probably 17 days just on water, then 4 days making a VERY slow transition to eating food. I want to plan it this way so I do not rush into eating. I'll want to stick to sprouts... so maybe a couple of bites of alfalfa sprouts every say 4 hours the first day and see how I feel. ... What I would really like is to fast until I feel well and until I feel actual hunger. If I end the fast in a state of feeling hunger, I know I will do fine with the eating, but I do also know I will have to keep VERY strict control of the post-fast eating. My system is just that delicate.
I say all this about the 17 days etc. but I am not experienced with longer fasts -- most I have fasted is 4 or 5 days. But still I can do this, I know, and I feel it WOULD be a right and safe and gentle thing to do, to fast that long. I do have to be perfectly honest, though, so as to give myself maximum chance of learning and success -- and say that I cannot really visualize myself fasting that long. But I DO want to do DO IT!!!
This leaves only the problem of how to support myself emotionally during the fast. Someone suggested the EFT technique and using that and self-hypnosis to achieve fasting with greater psychological ease. I am so confused and food-toxic right now I cannot even make a plan. There is so much I want to get done before the fat and detox hitting me and trapping me in bed. What can I do to bring about a successful long fast????? I want to get all my tasks and errands done. i want to get in touch with support people. I want to write about what I am doing on the forums here. i want to learn EFT. i want to meditate for a long time -- that has helped my fastng in the past. I just want to affirm fasting as an activity that ... I can endure... that is OK.
well- off to , sadly, get the pine nuts. I want to eat that and sleep and wake up and get organized and into action... I also want to have some little projects for my time (dare I hope to succeed in actually having a substantial period of time??? fasting??) in fasting... oh God what to do
I think I have to read some more of this oldtime fasting literature. i am really going at this fasting project willy-nilly and not really concentratedly or to a consistent set of people voicing where I am at, what my behavior is, what my thoughts are and my fears. Oh wish me luck; maybe i can jsut exuberantly DO IT!
Talk to you soon, I hope.