What I felt after 5 days fasting|5日間の断食の後に感じたこと

What I felt after 5 days fasting

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Eating is a joy for me.

But sometimes I get sick of myself thinking about food too often. When I’m sitting at my desk, my thoughts tend to wonder what I’m going to make for dinner or the restaurants I want to try next. And I tell myself “Stop playing and get to work.” But still, I reach for a snack. There are times when I feel like I’m a sad animal who lives to eat. There are piles of things to do that I, as a human have to accomplish, but I have been procrastinating.

The five-day fasting was a good opportunity for me to re-evaluate the relationship between myself and my act of eating.

An urge of detoxification after the holidays

On January 6, after I had eaten and drunk a lot, and the New Year’s mood had settled down, I set my self for the challenge of five-days fasting.

Before that, I had tried to fast for several times but not in a prepared way. I would wake up one day and decided, “Okay, I’m not going to eat today.” But by the end of the day, I often felt stressed out by my hunger and ended up eating a lot afterwards.

The reason I decided to try it again was that I saw some videos on YouTube where people shared their fasting experiences. I was intrigued by their comments about feeling “detoxified” or their intestine got cleaned.

I also realized how wrongly I fasted. If you really want to feel the effects, you need to have a few days of “preparation period” before and “recovery period” after the fast. In these periods you need to eat a certain diet to rest your stomach and reduce the amount too. In this way, the hunger would be less painful. So, I decided to try a proper fasting again.

When I started the fast, I had a few expectations in my mind.

-To feel “detoxified”.
-To lose some weight.
-To cleanse my skin.
-To concentrate better.

I’ll tell you how I found about these points in the part below.

During the fasting

So, after 3 days of preparation period, in which I mainly ate oatmeal and light soup, I started to fast. During the fasting, I took only liquids: a lot of water, herbal tea, kombucha, and miso soup without any solid ingredients.

On the first day or two, I felt a little motivated, or rather, a little excited about the unknown experience of fasting. I felt hungry, but I still had some energy left in my body and could work normally.

After the third day, I got used to the hunger. I did a lot of reading that day, and I was able to concentrate for a long time. Then, I started to notice a certain sensation in my body. My hands and feet became very cold. Sometimes when I stretched or exercised, I could feel the blood slowly warming up as it flowed through my limbs. On the other hand, when I drank water, coldness flowed through my limbs again.

On the fourth and fifth days, I was bored. I was a little disappointed because I didn’t see as much “change” on my body as I thought. I also felt I miss cooking, which I didn’t have to because I didn’t eat. All I could think about was what to eat after fasting. I started to feel dizzy at the slightest move. I felt that it was difficult to think hardly and to work quickly or passionately.

I was drinking 200-300ml of kombucha during the fasting, based on the method I found.
But I am not sure how much it improved my digestion.

After the Fasting

After fasting, I found that most of the effects I had expected were not as dramatic as I had heard about.

-Detox: I was expecting to have better bowel movements after the fast, but to be honest, I didn’t find it so much different than normal.

-Weight loss: This was the most visible. I lost 4 kg during the fast, gained 2kg during the recovery period, so I lost 2kg after all. My belly became very thin at a time and stays flat after I started eating again.

-Skin: I didn’t find so much improvement in my skin. On the contrary, I had itchy and red rashes appeared on the 4th day. (It was gradually fixed during the recovery days.)

– My concentration dropped after the third day. I realized that working on an empty stomach is difficult for me.

So, other than losing a little weight, I honestly don’t feel that anything dramatically changed in five days.
However, I did get a good insight into how my craving works.

Observing my appetite

I realized that for me, a series of small stresses throughout the day relentlessly create the urge to eat.

It was the moments I feel interruptions in the work I do or disturbed by my emotions. For example, when I was writing a blog post thinking “I’m going to write with this structure and that…” and I noticed that the title and conclusion didn’t really match. It becomes a minor irritation. Then I reach for my cup of coffee, go to the kitchen to get some fruits, or some chocolates or cookies if they are in stock. I realized how I had developed a habit of taking something into my mouth even when I am not really hungry. It doesn’t mean that I can quit this habit immediately after noticing. But I think that once you consciously observe it, it is quite effective in controlling it.

I also feel that through the experience of fasting, I have become a little more careful about what I eat. By not eating at all for a period of time, I was able to notice how the two or three meals of a day have impacts on me. I realized that the sensations of cooking: touch, smell, and temperature when chopping vegetables and cooking in a pot also give me pleasure and energy as well as the act of eating. I also began to pay more attention to the amount of food my stomach could digest at one time. In this way, I came to want each and every meal meaningful and nutritious.

Then, gradually I feel I’m getting better at soothing the little hungry creature in my stomach, telling it “are you really hungry? or “I don’t need a snack right now.”

In the end, it’s about releasing the attachment to the acts

The five days of fasting was an interesting experience for me.
However, I don’t think that everyone who wants to improve their eating habits should fast nor do I think that fasting is always-worth-trying experience.

These days, I’m reading a book called “Journey of Awakening” by Ram Dass, who is famous for his writings on spiritual experiences and meditation. And I found a description concerning “purification” of life.

In summary, it tells that we should keep in mind that life itself and what is in it are not obstacles, and it is the attachment to life that is the obstacle, and the reason why we attach to it.

In other words, if there is something in you that you want to fix, don’t cling yourself to removing it. It is more important to observe the reasons and motivations for why you find a problem with it and why you are obsessed with it.

When it comes to eating, it’s not that eating a lot is wrong or that eating less is wise. In the end, if you remove your obsession with eating or not-eating, good or bad, and if you can be conscious about why you want something, then you won’t be controlled by that action.

So, I’m not especially going to recommend you something as extreme as fasting for five days. But, if you want to try, research thoroughly about how to do, considering consulting with trainers and counsellors, and do it at your own risk. Maybe, you will find more effective methods than the one I tried.


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“生活それ自体や、生活の中にあるものは何も障害とはならないことを心に銘記せよ。障害となるのは生活に対するあなたの執着であり、執着しようとするあなたの動機なのだ。” ラム・ダス 「覚醒への旅」




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