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  • Writer's pictureAnupam Singh

My Experience with a 72-Hour Water Fast: Challenges, Rewards, and Lessons Learned

Intermittent Fasting Benefits

72-hour water fasting

Intermittent fasting is a popular trend in the health and fitness industry, and for good reason. It is a simple and effective way to improve your overall health and well-being. From weight loss to improved digestion and mental clarity, the benefits of intermittent fasting are numerous. Here are just a few:

  • It can lead to weight loss. By reducing the number of calories you consume and increasing the amount of time between meals, intermittent fasting can help you achieve a calorie deficit, which is key to losing weight. Moreover, it can also help your body burn fat more efficiently and improve your metabolism.

  • It can improve your digestion. When you give your digestive system a break by fasting, it can help your body better process food and absorb nutrients. Many people who practice intermittent fasting report improved digestion and a reduction in bloating and digestive discomfort.

  • It can enhance mental clarity. Fasting has been shown to increase the production of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which is essential for brain health and can help improve focus, memory, and overall cognitive function.

  • It can improve your overall health. Intermittent fasting has been linked to a reduced risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.

In conclusion, intermittent fasting is a simple and effective way to improve your health and well-being. From weight loss to improved digestion and mental clarity, the benefits are numerous. So, if you're looking to improve your health, consider giving intermittent fasting a try.

My 72-Hour Water Fasting Experience

After completing a successful 48-hour water fast a few months ago in Malaysia, I was eager to go on a 72-hour water fast in Bangalore now that I was on my own and had minimal distractions. Having watched several YouTube videos and read articles about how intermittent fasting could improve one's overall well-being and immunity, I had my breakfast consisting of idli, sambhar, and chutney before starting my fast.

The first day went smoothly, without any hunger pangs, except for a brief period towards the end of the day. In fact, I felt light and unburdened by the pressure of eating three times a day. Later in the evening, I went for my daily walk to a nearby lake that I had recently discovered. While experiencing occasional sugar cravings, I refused to let them interfere with the pleasant weather and the beauty of the sunset. I slept well that night without needing to use the restroom.

The next morning, I woke up early with a fruity smell to my breath and a mild diffuse headache in the frontal region. I attributed the fruity smell to ketosis, where my body started breaking down fat for energy after depleting my stored glycogen. I was not too concerned about my headache, as it was mild and not throbbing like a migraine. I did have a small bowel movement since I had eaten the previous morning. Although I felt hungrier on the second day, I managed to keep my mind off it by reading and staying hydrated with water every half an hour. I completed the first 24 hours of my fast without much struggle, but I knew the next 48 hours would be a true test of my willpower and determination. I kept myself in bed, occasionally getting up to drink water or use the restroom. Later in the evening, feeling a bit lightheaded, I went for a walk, which helped take my mind off food. I slept peacefully that night.

On the third day, I woke up feeling a bit woozy, contemplating whether I should break my fast after completing 48 hours or continue for another 24 hours. I decided to go with the flow and not stress about it. After the initial hunger pangs, I felt much better than the previous morning, feeling as if I had crossed a significant hurdle. My breath smelled even more fruity than before, and my headache persisted but did not intensify. I felt confident that I could continue for another 24 hours, so I did not break my fast. Despite feeling much lighter and not weighing myself, I knew I had lost some weight, and my muscles felt tighter as they were depleted of glycogen. The temptation to break my fast was strong, but my determination to complete my 72-hour fast was even stronger. In the evening, I went for a walk to the lake, but my feet were dragging. I had to muster all my reserve energy to walk, but once I reached the lake, I decided to sit for a while, appreciating the beauty of my surroundings. For a few moments, I was blissfully aware of the tranquil water of the lake, the chirruping of the birds, and the trilling of the crickets. I soaked up all the positive energy before proceeding home. Surprisingly, the walk back seemed effortless, and I was happy with my decision to have gone for a walk. My sleep was peaceful and rejuvenating.

On the fourth day, I woke up feeling refreshed and energized. My hunger pangs had significantly reduced as my body had adapted to the lack of food. Although I felt capable of extending my fast for another day, I was aware of the risks of fasting for more than three days. So, I skipped breakfast and spent my morning reading in bed. In the afternoon, I decided to break my fast by eating a mango. A few hours later, I prepared khichdi, which tasted heavenly. I had developed a newfound appreciation for food and the simple pleasures in life. The past 72 hours had tested my patience, tolerance, and determination, and I felt light and buoyant, as if a significant burden had been lifted from my shoulders.

In conclusion, going on a 72-hour water fast can be a challenging but rewarding experience. As with any significant change in diet or lifestyle, it is important to do proper research, consult with a healthcare professional, and listen to your body's signals. Fasting can help improve overall well-being and immunity, but it is not suitable for everyone. While on the fast, staying hydrated, staying distracted, and maintaining a positive mindset can make the experience more manageable. Breaking the fast with healthy, nourishing foods and appreciating the simple pleasures of life can make the entire experience more gratifying. Whether you decide to try a fast or not, it is always important to prioritize your health and well-being.

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