3 Day Water Fasting Experiment [Journal]

fastingDo you know how POWERFUL fasting is?

Fasting is guaranteed to help your body repair itself of toxins and diseases; it’s natural and effective (plus, 100% cost-efficient).

And no…

…you’re not going to die if you don’t eat.

Recently, I did a 3 day water-only fast, and in this article I’m going share my journal entries.

**2015 Update: Because a 3-day water-fast is too short and with minimal results, I performed a 10-day water-fast in 2015, with tremendous results. Please read 10 DAY WATER FAST (AGAIN. BECAUSE IT WORKS.).**

Understanding “Fasting”

There are various types of fasts: juice fasts, apple fasts…etc.

The type of fast I undertook was the cleanest and the best fast – water-only fast.

This means we’re not allowed to eat ANYTHING. Only drinking water is allowed.

As for the period of time, it depends, you can do it from intermittent fasting (skipping breakfast) up to as many days as you can.

The Energy Source

The stereotypical doubt: no food = you die..

Believe it or not human beings can actually survive for more than a month without food and just water.

Where do we get the energy?

There are two modes of body energy usage:

  1. Directly from food you eat.
  2. Storage of energy in your body: fat, muscle and organ tissues.

Basically all of us are in the first mode, and I don’t think it needs to be explained how it works.

Ketosis - official term for the body energy consumption mode.

Ketosis – official term for the body energy consumption mode.

To activate the second mode, you’d have to make your body switch by fasting, and this normally takes about 2-3 days. Once that happens, you don’t feel hunger anymore because you’re not using the first mode, and you begin getting energy from your storage of fat, muscle tissues and organ tissues.

It sounds scary but you’re not going to die. Lose weight? Definitely.

Advantages and Disadvantages

whats-the-point-of-fastingBenefits:

  • Naturally heal your body of most malfunctions.
  • Trains your self-discipline.
  • Helps you lose weight (fat + muscle).
  • Lets you find gratitude in simple dishes.

When we fast, our gut is not busy anymore digesting food we eat, this means we’re allowing the energy normally used for digestion for repairing and healing.

It’s important because the gut causes the majority of the diseases we have – even the so-called “incurable diseases” according to useless Western medicine such as asthma, eczema, cancer, diabetes and more.

And drinking water will help flush out toxins from the body, and to hydrate ourselves.

The longer you fast, the more you will heal. Most importantly, your eczema will heal, plus other dysfunctions (most) that you have.

Downsides:

  • Feel really hungry (in the beginning).
  • Lose weight that you might want to keep such as muscles (there’s a counter-argument that makes sense is by losing muscle cells, you can help clear out cellular junk that uses up place but is fake muscle = for looks but not real strength).
  • You might lose out social hours with friends and family.
  • You might experience side effects: weakened memory, fatigue, lack of focus, slower reaction time, lack of attention, dizziness.

First, you will feel extremely hungry and it’ll require strong self-discipline to resist from eating until you finish your session. But the hunger goes away as soon as you switch your energy source – perhaps a few days.

Myth: Fasting ≠ Starving

It’s a common myth to believe that fasting means starving, but they are two different ideas.

Fasting is when you stop eating and change your energy mode to your body storage.

Starving is when you have basically depleted your body storage of energy and what that means is you have around 4% body fat and you will look anorexic. This can only be achieved with at least 30 days+ of fasting for the average person.

Body fat percentage chart.

Body fat percentage chart.

Pre-Fast Days

There are 3 points for beginners to know:

  1. Warm up: because our body isn’t used to this sudden change, it’s recommended that we begin really healthy eating habits the weeks before the fast.
  2. Never attempt a long session of fasting without first “training” for shorter sessions.
  3. Cool down: don’t cram yourself with a big feast as soon as your session finishes, readjust slowly.

So, as a regular reader you might know that I’ve been on the strict eating diet for a long time, on this page where I showcase a list of foods I only eat.

I’ve been eating healthy so that’s not an issue. Also, I’ve done a 3 day apple-only fast before, so I sort of know what the fast will feel like. Plus, I’m only doing this water-only fast for 3 days.

The day before the fast began, I had a big feast of pizza though (not recommended).

Friend Support:

Also, I got a friend to do the 3 day fast together with me, he promptly agreed and it was a lot easier to have done it together with a partner. We also had a deal that whoever broke the fast pays the other person $50 (Chinese currency). There was the competition factor that stopped us from stopping, too, which greatly helped.

Day 1: Not Too Shabby

My stomach growled before lunch since I didn’t have breakfast. The hunger didn’t really strike too strong for the day.

During class, I had a little piece of pastry since my friend shared it with everyone. It was only the size of half of the palm and it wasn’t that filling anyway, but I promised myself later I’d stop.

In the afternoon, I played about 2 hours of basketball and after that, the hunger started to strike in for a while and stopped.

I cheated again after basketball and drank a bottle of Oolong tea, but it’s healthy anyway. But still, I promised myself I’ll resort to water for the next 2 days.

Day 2: Temptation Resisted

Today, the day got through easier than the previous day.

The typical busy morning I used to have transformed into a non-rushy block of time, it gave me a sense of simplicity. At lunch, I went to a quiet classroom and did work without noise and distraction.

In the afternoon, a friend offered me this little desert treat, I was extremely tempted to eat it, but I controlled myself and put it in my bag to eat it after the fast. I knew I made a promise the previous day and I need to let me digestive system take a complete rest.

At night I slept a little earlier than usual because I had this really strong headache with no obvious cause except for my fasting experiment. I looked up some information online and they call it the “detox headache” which was similar to “healing crisis” – when your body undergoes massive detoxification.

Day 3: Fasting Finishes

Can't believe I actually a photo of 3 bananas and an apple...

Can’t believe I actually found a photo of 3 bananas and an apple…

Today, I fell asleep in two classes for a little while because I was way too exhausted and debilitated. I could barely walk up stairs and walk without feeling half of my feet. I also told my basketball coach to skip the tryouts for me today because I was fasting so he let me off until next week.

Tonight around 9:15pm I ate 3 bananas and an apple. It tasted AMAZING.

And I felt quite full unlike normally I’d still want more food, I suspect that my gut capacity has decreased in size.

Post-Fast Days

The morning breakfast were fruits only as well: apples and bananas.

Then at lunch, I ate some cooked veggies: tomatoes, egg, cucumber and Chinese cabbage.

I have to say, I definitely appreciate food a lot more than I used to, and this experience also trained up my level of self-discipline. Feeling hungry won’t give me an instant urge to eat that I can’t control anymore – just one or two meals – I can easily skip them.

Original 5-Day Fast Plan Stopped- Why?

Originally, my friend and I planned to do a 5-day fast but at the end I gave in and stopped after day 3, which was still a great feat for us.

It wasn’t too challenging to resist the temptations to eat when all our other school mates were eating around us and during lunch time when everyone would just get out and eat and we’d stay alone in the room to rest and do work.

What really moved me to give up was my lack of energy (also partially because of my 6-7 hours sleep every night – my body needs more sleep). Plus, I needed the energy to not fall asleep during class, to learn new materials, to do assignments better, to pay more attention in class and memorize well.

Mainly, it was to have enough time to cool down with simple foods so we can have a reward feast few days later in the weekend.

Effects of Fasting

During the fasting days, I had:

  • Weak memory – couldn’t hold on to an answer for more than 3 minutes, bad memory such as giving a key to someone and suddenly forgetting I gave it.
  • Less energy up to the point it was even too hard to walk.
  • Extreme dizziness (near fainting) when I got up too fast from sitting, the blood pressure couldn’t readjust fast enough.
  • Bad focus – enough said.

Also on the good side:

  • Smoother skin on many parts of the body.
  • More oil production (less dryness) on certain parts of the body.
  • Self-discipline greatly trained.
  • Lots of time freed up (and it’s okay to not have a bowel movement during a fast).
  • Less intense scratching – there wasn’t as much scratching at night as before but I did continue to get a few and that is most likely due to detoxification symptoms.

But overall, it was a great experience and a nice story to share around with friends and family.

Who should not participate?

Fasting is not for everyone:

  • Pregnant/nursing mothers
  • Diabetics
  • Liver/kidney disease
  • Advanced thyroid malfunctions
  • Irreversible wasting diseases e.g. AIDS
  • Cardiovascular diseases
  • Severely weak
  • Malnutrition

Read more (who should & who shouldn’t).

Also, if you have something important to do in the following days like the exams coming up or a big meeting, you might want to postpone your fasting for the later.

How to fast?

Instructions:

  1. Warm up your body a few weeks ahead of time with healthy eating habits.
  2. Make sure you have nothing important coming up during the days.
  3. Choose a reasonable amount of time for the fast: start small. 3 days, 5 days, 7 days are good periods to begin with.
  4. When you finish the fast, don’t cram in a big feast directly after. Cool down your system by simple meals.

Fast every once in a while for good health.

I strongly recommend you to fast periodically to give you body a “reset” for better health. There are 3 main options:

  1. Intermittent fasting: every day – eating only in an 8 hour window (skip breakfast) and eat only from 12pm to 8pm.
  2. Weekend fast: water-only fast for 2 consecutive days per week (weekend).
  3. Periodic stronger fast: perhaps once every 2 or 3 months – a one week long fast.

Extra Resources

A week-long fast journal from someone

Is intermittent fasting healthy?

The many benefits of fasting

Guidelines for breaking a fast

Fasting 101: Fasting for weight loss

Juice Fasting Vs. Water Fasting – It’s Decision Time (I’m thinking about doing a juice fast next time, it’ll be a lot easier and it is probably more easy on the body – check the article out, it has some really good points)

Final Thoughts

3 days weren’t actually enough to completely detox my body for the complete removal of eczema, it’s normally about 21 days. But anyway, that’d be near impossible for me with my hectic schedules with school.

Look at fasting as “system wipes”. If you want the fastest strategy to detoxification of your body, to rid eczema, then go for a fast.

Gives you good health, saves you money, frees up time, why not?

5 Comments

  • comment-avatar
    Jasmin ali 21/04/2015 (10:25)

    Your completely spot on. fasting is a great detoxification method. My religion promotes fasting too!

  • comment-avatar
    Susan 24/07/2015 (05:20)

    Thanks for sharing your experience. I was thinking of trying this for my eczema. I saw a video of another guy who cleared up his eczema doing a 3 day fast. I was thinking of 4 days for me (if I can do it).

    • comment-avatar
      Harrison Li 24/07/2015 (22:37)

      Glad to hear you’re going to test it out. But in most cases, it takes double-digit days to achieve strong results. Though your skin will stop itching in several days.

      P.S. I just did a 10 day water fast. Stay tuned for a post in a week or so!