FASTING CENTER INTERNATIONAL
FASTING WISDOM ARCHIVE: Why Doctors Fast & Recommend It - Fasting Quotes - Who Should Not Fast - Ten Fasting Physicians Praise FCI's Juice Fasting Program - Why & How You Fast - How Long & What Type of Fast - Fasting Cancer Survivor Removes Chemo Toxins & Their Adverse Side-Effects - Is Supervision Necessary - Fasting Chief Surgeon Gains "Secret To Wellness & Wholeness" - Fasting CEO Removes 70 Lbs. & Improves "Every Aspect Of Life" - Fasting Ph.D. Learns Weight Control Lessons - Fasting Surgeon: "Your Program Saved My Life" - Fasting For Weight Loss, Businesswomen Also Gain Health - CEO's Great Health Fast Success - Biblical Fasting - Fasting Eases Social Worker's Bipolar II Suffering - Fasting Cured Minister's Hernias - Fasting Cured M.D.'s Binge Eating - Fasting Cured Pilot's Arthritis & Allergies - Fasting Cured Ph.D.'s Bursitis & Hay Fever - Fasting Cured CEO's Hepatitis C & Chronic Fatigue Syndrome - Fasting Cured Ph.D.'s Jaw Tumor - Fasting Cured Columbia Senior's Binge Drinking & Food Addiction - Fasting Cured Teacher's Bulimia - Fasting Cured CEO's Diabetes 2 - Fasting Cured J.D.'s Obesity, High Blood Pressure & Depression - Fasting Cured Minister's Morbid Obesity, Heart Wall & Valve, High Blood Pressure, Cholesterol & Sleep Apnea - Fasting Cured J.D.'s Irregular Heart Rhythm, Palpitation, Hot Flashes & Night Sweats - CEO's Diary on FCI's 40-Day Fasting Program - Fasting Ed.D. Learns From Repeat Fast - Fasting Inspires Compassion - Fasting: Why Is WebMD's Article On It Misleading & Erroneous?
Your Personal Fasting Guide. . .
IF YOU'VE NEVER FASTED, you may wonder how long and what type of fast is right for you. As always, it's worthwhile to look at what those who've fasted before us have done--including how fasting has benefitted them--especially those we respect as our greatest role models. Historically, nearly all of our species' greatest thinkers have done prolonged fasting.
All three Fathers of Western Medicine practiced and prescribed prolonged fasting--Hippocrates, Galen and Philippus Paracelsus (who concluded, nearly 500 years ago, that: "Fasting is the greatest remedy--the physician within!"). Pythagoras, Socrates, Plato and Aristotle also practiced and prescribed prolonged fasting, with Plato stating he fasted "for greater physical and mental efficiency," just as Pythagoras, another veteran faster often described as the West's first pure mathematician, wouldn't even introduce his advanced students to his higher theorems and tenets until they'd done 40-day fasts. Likewise, everyone knows that literally all our greatest spiritual teachers did prolonged fasting, including the Buddha, Christ and Mohammed.
SO, FIRST THINGS FIRST: Whether spiritual fasting of Biblical fasting, fasting for a health problem or fasting for a health solution, know that long fasts differ greatly from short fasts, just as why you fast differs from how you fast. Thus, those wondering if there's any benefit in fasting occasionally--fasting one day a week or fasting every other day, fasting weekly or fasting every other week, or even fasting monthly--should consider the following fasting advice from a 35-year Fast Master. As all know, the human body has very specific, daily nutrient needs. Thus, fasting every other day would soon throw her or his system completely out of balance, from a nutritional biochemistry standpoint. For this reason, Fasting Center International has never recommended such a thing; quite the contrary.
As for fasting one day a week, Mahatma Gandhi chose to do that after age 40. However, he also did periodic, prolonged fasts, following a 1930 fast he described as "21 days of uninterrupted prayer," during which he felt "an indescribable peace within," concluding: "There is no prayer without fasting!"
Few know that Gandhi initially went to fasting to control his overeating, and fasting one day a week does cut one's food intake by one-seventh. Personally, however, I've long practiced systematic undereating--eating only twice daily, although covering all the body's nutrient bases. Part of Fasting Center International's (FCI) scientific Fasting Program teaches our global clientele--on seven continents representing 220 countries--how to cover these daily nutrient requirements with our 60-page Lifetime Optimum Health Plan which all clients receive. This Plan is, by the way, the intelligent follow-on missing from most all 'diets,' which is part of why 'diets' have failed Americans "99.5% of the time," according to Washington Post research into more than 26,000 popular 'diets' which have come and gone in America over the past 70 years.
AS NOTED on the How Do I Start link of FCI's Fasting.com website: "Two-thirds of America's adults (167 million) and 1-of-3 children are overweight or obese. One-third of U.S. adults (over 18) have managed to balloon themselves into clinical obesity, some content with mild obesity--measured as 30+ on the Body Mass Index (BMI)--while others extend themselves into morbid obesity (BMI 40+) and even malignant or super obesity (BMI 50+). Those at the most tragic extreme of this scale are the super-super obese (BMI 60+)." If you wish to calculate your own Body-Mass Index--to determine whether you are underweight, normal weight, overweight or obese--click here: U.S. National Institutes of Health.
In light of the above epidemic, so-called 'fasting' for one day a week is the equivalent of having tried to put a band-aid on a New Orleans levee break during Hurricane Katrina. First off, once one stops taking solid foods, it takes 3-to-4 days to shut down the various systems in the body, before it moves into the advanced stage or autolysis or self-digestion, which is where true detoxification begins.
Secondly, as a study of Neuro-Linguistic Programming reveals, human minds do not give up deleterious, addictive habits after one day; they're simply too ingrained. This is why prolonged, scientific fasting is so enormously successful at helping the obese move themselves out of that fast lane of the slow-suicide path--fasting long enough to shed the unnecessary weight, wisely removing themselves from clinical obesity while simultaneously addressing the causes of their addictions, plus doing the neuro-linguistic programming necessary to reorient themselves into more intelligent dietary and lifestyle habits.
UNFORTUNATELY, our culture encourages everyone to look for a 'quick fix'--fast food; bariatric or obesity surgery; cosmetic (Botulinum Toxin Type A, a.k.a Botox) injections for frown lines and brow furrows; teeth whitening; MysticTan (spray-on tanning); forehead, brow, face, neck, arm, buttock and thread lifts (designed to reduce the early signs of aging, and to delay the onset of wrinkles, sagging skin and weak contours), etc., ad nauseam.
As is clear, the overwhelming number of Americans have become acculturated to wanting a quick fix or instant gratifiation, no matter what the problem. . .with as little investment of their commitment, energy and time as possible. In other words, they don't want to break a sweat (and most don't, refusing to even exercise moderately, let alone regularly). Sadly, this short-cut approach to reality has resulted in America's largest and most successful export becoming globesity, itself. BBC reports that: "An estimated 400 million people, worldwide, are classified as clinically obese, and obesity is now recognised as a major global health threat, comparable with HIV/AIDS.
Over a year ago, I was invited to address this epidemic in a documentary film project, "The Heavy Truth," in which I noted that during my 14-month sabbatical through 55 countries in 2003, even then, only a handful on those nations did not have McDonald's supersizing the locals (over 31,000 restaurants in 119 nations); Subways, 30,506 in 80; Pizza Huts, 12,800 in 90; Burger Kings, 11,455 in 56; Wendy's, 6625 in 22; Taco Bells, 6040; Dairy Queens, 5600 in 12; Baskin Robbins, 5800 in 30; Arby's, 2800; Papa John's Pizzas, 3000 in 28; Applebee's, 1970 in 21, etc., with the smaller fries following suit, now that many chains feel they've "saturated" the U.S. market: Denny's, Domino's Pizza, Jack in the Box, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Winchell's Donuts, et. al.
None of these restaurants provide nutrition of real sustenance, which everyone understands, I trust, by this stage of the pandemic. Thus, I'm afraid that one-day, so-called 'fasting' is just another wrinkle on the 'quick-fix' mentality which has Americans everywhere on Slim-Fast or Optifast or Medifast 'diets' (not 'fasts' at all, since they're taking solid food continuously, albeit ground into powders used in shakes a half-dozen times daily) which are actually deleterious to good health, just as we've built the world's largest pharmaceutical industry on the strength of seeking instant relief from whatever ails us--nasal congestion to headache relief (most headaches result from toxins). . .mood enhancers to indigestion adjusters.
Not surprisingly, this all flows from the unfortunate approach of Symptomatic Medicine--placing quick-fix band-aids on whatever symptoms arise, rather than more intelligently addressing the actual causes underlying them. Unfortunately, this has come to apply not only to an individual's physical health, but to our nation's War on Terrorism, for example, from quickly abandoned efforts to apprehend Osama bin Laden after his terrorists destroyed our World Trade Center and jet-bombed our Pentagon, to "shock-and-awe" misadventures into regime-change in third-world nations whose major misfortune is to sit atop the dwindling natural resources necessary to help maintain Corporate America's global hegemony, or what some still perceive as our nation's Manifest Destiny.
ELSEWHERE, this lack of serious commitment to fasting can be seen in the total lack of interest among our overwhelmingly Christian nation to the fact that from the beginning of Christianity, prolonged fasting was practiced by the Old Testament saints, Ahab, Hannah, Ezra, John the Baptist, the Apostles, and the New Testament church. Christ, Daniel, David, Elijah and Moses all did 40-day fasts. In fact, the "Bible," which Christians, Jews and Muslims share, has 74 fasting references.
Extended fasting was also practiced by Martin Luther, 1483-1546, Ger. theologian, translator and leader of the Protestant Reformation in Germany; John Knox, 1505?-72, Scot. Protestant clergyman and religious reformer; John Calvin, 1509-64 (born Jean Caulvin or Cauvin or Chauvin), Fr. Protestant reformer; John Wesley, 1703-91, Eng. clergyman, evangelist and founder of Methodism, and countless others. Francis of Assisi, (born Giovanni Bernardone, 1181?-1226), Ital. preacher and founder of Catholicism's Franciscan Order, reportedly did 40-day "epiphany" fasts every year prior to Lent.
Bill Bright, founder of Campus Crusade for Christ, did his first 40-day fast at age 72. Two years later, he was awarded the Templeton Prize for Progress In Religion, and in accepting that $l million prize, he promised to use it--in its entirety--to promote the combined power of fasting and prayer among Christians, nondenominationally, explaining: "During my 40-day fast, I was impressed to pray that God will call at least 2 million Christians to fast-and-pray for 40 days, for the coming great revival."
Yet, presently in Western cultures everywhere enshrined with 'Golden Arches' and 'Pizza Temples,' the vast majority of all active Christians--including 1,058,069,000 Catholics; 391,143,000 Protestants; 174,184,000 Orthodox; 78,038,000 Anglicans, and 199,701,000 'other' Christians--still disregard Christ's fasting teachings and example, as well as those of Moses the Lawgiver, David the King, Elijah the Prophet, Esther the Queen, Daniel the Seer, Anna the Prophetess, Paul the Apostle, and myriad others. This, despite the fact that there is more teaching in the New Testament on fasting than on either repentance or confession. Jesus, in fact, taught more on fasting than on baptism and the Lord's Supper!
JUST AS MOST ALLOPATHS in the West are still unfortunately ignornant of the fact that all three Fathers of Western Medicine practiced and prescribed prolonged fasting, most Muslims do not take seriously the suggestion of Mohammed (570?-632? A.D.): "She or he who does good of her or his own accord shall be rewarded, but to fast is better for you, if you but knew it."
Countless millions of human beings made prolonged fasting our species greatest, fastest, safest (biochemically), least expensive and most effective healing modality long before Mohammed, Christ or Buddha appeared on Earth. However, over the past 35 years FCI has been blessed to supervise our world's largest, nonresidential fasting clientele, noble Muslims on every major continent--all of whom know the Koran endorses prolonged fasting "so that you may safeguard yourselves against every kind of ill and become righteous"--have been doing long fasts each year throughout the length of Ramadan (and beyond)--under our skilled, veteran, professional supervision--to accomplish all of the myriad goals this marvelous, self-improvement technique offers those with the courage and discipline to do it.
Because Ramadan, from the food perspective, involves abstaining from food merely from sunup to sundown each day, many practitioners (although obviously not the case with all) freely admit that they then gorge themselves during feasting after sundown every night, and often again with huge breakfasts before first light. In fact, I've read studies estimating that food consumption in the Muslim world actually increases about 20% during the month of Ramadan, each year.
Such half-day 'fasts,' of course, have no relationship to prolonged, scientific, therapeutic fasting--designed to detoxify the body of a lifetime of accumulated chemical toxins, drugs, uneliminated metabolic wastes, excessive cholesterol and triglycerides in the bloodstream, heavy metals, intestinal parasites, etc. Similarly, they do not allow one's system--particularly the digestive, assimilative and eliminative organs--to shut down seriously, in order to rest, rejuvenate and regenerate.
Only prolonged fasting can accomplish these physiological goals, as well as significantly increase one's clarity of consciousness and enhance one's innate spirituality. To accomplish these noble goals, far longer fasts are required, exemplified by Christ, who followed his baptism at age 30 by fasting 40 days--afterward concluding that "The Father and I are One!"--and by Buddha, who at 36 fasted 49 days, achieving Enlightenment or the Awakened State in the process ('Buddha' is Sanskrit for 'Awake').
WHAT MORE NEED BE SAID? Half-measures and band-aid approaches failed Americans in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina, just as one-day fasts are about as effective at resolving our nation's obesity epidemic as a mosquito attacking an elephant. Also, such 'band-aid' approaches to the serious health problems currently staggering our nation's health-care system are not going to be dented by one-day fasting, any more than the Bush Administration's Economic Stimulus Plan reversed what later became the deepest and longest recession since the Great Depression.
I hope, for all reading here with a serious interest in fasting, that this has been somewhat insightful. As always, the finest motivation is to intelligently address a problem's actual CAUSES, rather than simply creating another palliative for its SYMPTOMS. Likewise, if none of the world's best fasting clinics/centers have done water fasting over the past century, then scientific juice fasting is definitely the 'type' of fasting you want for the safest (biochemically) and most efficient methodology.
Additionally, how 'long' you fast should be commensurate with your fasting goals. For example, if you pull up the HOW DO I START page of our extensive website, you'll see how much weight our 'average' client loses during each of our Scientific Fasting Programs--from our 20-day to our 120-day Program. On the other hand, for the nearly half of FCI's global clientele NOT fasting to lose weight, our patented TOTAL Detox. Fasting Program is designed for those wishing to Hoover their ENTIRE temple, rather than just a bit of the basement and attic. We nickname that Program the Full Monte!
Anecdotally, during our 35 years as the global leader in our field--with clients on seven continents representing 220 countries--we've discovered it takes your chronological age number plus 17, in number of actual juice fasting days (plus five transitioning days on each end--to intelligently enter, and then skillfully break your fast), to remove the inner, toxic waste dump accumulated over your lifetime: toxic chemicals, drugs, uneliminated metabolic wastes, excessive cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood, arterial plaque throughout the body and brain, intestinal parasites, heavy metals, etc. Think about it.
Finally, I wish you only the very best in life, regardless of whether you choose to consider prolonged, scientific fasting as the best means--proven over millennia with more testimonials from our species' greatest thinkers, spiritual teachers, and Fathers of Medicine that all other healing modalities combined--to regain whatever portion you're still able of your birthright potential of optimum health and unclouded consciousness. . .where I've chosen to live these past four-plus decades, first achieving optimum health, happiness and healing power through prolonged, scientific juice fasting, and then maintaining it through 2-to-3 weeks each year of maintenance fasting, kind of like a Spring cleaning.
Beyond that, may you enjoy a stable, meritorious life with a good heart, helping to end unnecessary suffering whenever you're able. Respectfully, Dennis Paulson, Founder/Director, FCI
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