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 Natural Life Extension: Fasting, Mono-diets and Raw Food Days (and Chelation Therapy) 

You can clean your teeth or rinse your mouth out whenever the taste becomes unpleasant (a usual occurrence at the beginning of a fast).

The symptoms of anxiety/restlessness might indicate that withdrawal signs are appearing in relation to a chronic food allergy. This happens because we literally become addicted to substances to which we are allergic if we have them frequently in our diet. The frequency of exposure prevents them producing obvious allergy symptoms, but produces chronic symptoms (called a 'masked' allergy) which you might never relate to allergy. If these symptoms of edginess, anxiety and restlessness do not pass within 24 hours, break the fast (see below for how to do this) and consult an expert (naturopath, clinical ecologist etc.) for further guidance.

No medication or supplementation should be taken during a fast, and if you are on a course of such treatment you should clear with whoever prescribed it that you can abandon it for the duration of the fast. If you cannot stop the medication do not fast without supervision. No smoking of any sort should be allowed during a fast.

  • If you do have any detoxification symptoms, avoid at all costs any use of medication to treat this, since the body reacts unpredictably when fasting. A far simpler means of getting rid of the symptoms, if you can't face continuing with the fast and its early and short-lived symptoms, is to break it (see below). Usually, though, all that is needed is patience and rest to allow the body to take care of itself. All social and business obligations should be put on hold, and stress avoided if at all possible. This is a time for physiological and mental rest.

  • Your bowel function may stop during the fast, and this is not something about which you should be concerned. If a fairly high intake of vegetables (raw) and fruit was achieved on the day before the fast, then a bowel movement should occur during it. If not there is no reason to resort to enemas or other methods of making the bowels open, as they will take care of this function on their own in the fullness of time. Do not be concerned, and do not take anything to reverse the situation, if the bowels do not work for a day or so after the fast (or even if a degree of diarrhea is noticed).

  • Avoid exercise during the fast, although some fresh air and a little walking are fine. It is highly desirable that some exposure to sunshine be achieved (not sunbathing) if possible.

  • As indicated, you might feel a little cold, so dress more warmly than usual (one extra layer of clothing) and rest in pleasant surroundings as much as you can. This is not a social time, but best reserved for sleep, rest and contemplation. Even reading might be too much of an effort in the early stages.

  • By Sunday afternoon you should be feeling comfortable, without apparent hunger, the headache and nausea should have eased, and you should have slept more peacefully than for many years. Your mental function should have a clarity you had forgotten existed. It is time to break the short fast (the same procedure is used for a short and a long fast).

  • Around mid-afternoon on Sunday (assuming you started on Friday night with the small meal recommended) take one of the following:

    1. An apple, either raw or baked in the oven, or lightly stewed (no sweetening) or
    2. a small bunch of grapes or
    3. a few prunes or
    4. a small bowl of live yogurt or
    5. a small bowl (mug) of thin homemade vegetable broth/soup.
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     About The Author
    Leon Chaitow ND, DO, MROA practicing naturopath, osteopath, and acupuncturist in the United Kingdom, with over forty years clinical experience, Chaitow is Editor-in-Chief, of the ...more
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