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Fasting properly: Tips for feeling good and persevering during the fasting period

Lent traditionally begins on Ash Wednesday. For 40 days (until Easter Sunday) the motto is: completely or partially do without certain food, drinks or other luxury items. But it is not just for religious reasons that many people decide to consciously avoid Lent every year. Some want to lose excess pounds by fasting, others want to cleanse their bodies or practice self-discipline. We give tips for feeling good during Lent.

Find the right fasting method

Fasting cures, therapeutic fasting, intermittent fasting, intermittent fasting & Co. - those who want to fast are spoiled for choice. But no matter which fasting method you choose: Always critically examine your physical constitution and any promises of success before you start fasting.

For example, ask whether the Promises of healing and health are scientifically tenable. Because: an often promised one Purification and detoxification through fasting cannot be detected in the body. The liver and kidneys are the main detoxification organs of the body, which work reliably in healthy people, so that hardly any toxins remain.

Longstanding unfavorable eating habits cannot be eradicated in a brief period of abstinence.

Nonetheless, fasting can do one The impetus for a more conscious, health-promoting lifestyle and change your diet.

Council of Consumers: All fasting methods in which certain food groups such as animal products, sugar or alcohol are avoided for a certain period of time are more health-friendly than total fasting. There are also scientific studies that prove positive health effects in rheumatism, arthritis or gout.

Therapeutic fasting

One of the most famous fasting methods is the so-called therapeutic fasting according to Buchinger. No fixed diet is allowed here. Only tea, water, juices and vegetable broth are allowed to be consumed during Lent, so that no more than about 500 calories are consumed per day. The therapeutic fasting is supported by forced bowel movements (enema, laxatives).

Therapeutic fasting usually does not last longer than a week, depending on your personal constitution, of course. It makes sense to consult a doctor before starting therapeutic fasting.

Fasting properly: tips for persevering in the fasting cure

Fasting is a huge change for the body. Our tips will help you feel good during Lent:

  1. Total fasting for no longer than 1 week
    If you want to completely avoid solid food, it is fundamentally important, even for healthy people, not to fast for more than about 1 week.
  2. Consult a doctor before fasting
    If you do without food or calories completely (for several days), it is always advisable to have fasting support and instructions from a doctor. This is especially true if you regularly take medication or need to inject insulin.
  3. Move your body slowly
    Fasting is a major change for the body. As a rule, it is therefore advisable to prepare yourself and your body for fasting before the start of the fasting period with 2 to 3 changeover days on which you eat less and less. Only then is it possible to drain with laxatives, for example during therapeutic fasting, in order to completely empty the intestines.
  4. Resist temptations
    If you have decided on total fasting, you should not make any exceptions at the beginning of the fasting period and also resist small temptations. Because then it is really easier to eat nothing at all. Even a piece of chewing gum stimulates the flow of saliva and only increases hunger.
  5. Drink a lot!
    Calorie-free drinks can help satisfy your hunger pangs. In order not to have to forego taste entirely, in addition to water (flavoring with a dash of fruit or vegetable juice is allowed), teas in all variations (without sugar or milk) or clear vegetable broth (vegetable stock) are good options. Drink at least 2.5 liters a day.
  6. Start slowly again after fasting
    After you have finished your fast, you should slowly get your body used to solid foods again. It is therefore advisable to plan for 2 to 3 days of acclimatization, during which you will slowly start eating again.
  7. Distraction and movement
    In order not to be tempted during the fast, one thing is particularly important during the fasting week: distraction. A lot of exercise and walking in the fresh air are good for you during Lent. Of course, you shouldn't do competitive sports if you don't eat anything.
  8. Relaxation helps you persevere
    Relaxation exercises are also offered during the fasting week. For example through yoga, meditation or Pilates.

This content was created by the joint editorial team in cooperation with the consumer centers in Saxony and North Rhine-Westphalia for the network of consumer centers in Germany.