Spiritual Benefits of Fasting

Spiritual Benefits of Fasting
Let's get started learning about some of the basic benefits of fasting in this new series with our first installment, Spiritual Benefits of Fasting.  


Fasting has a long tradition in many religions as a way to worship.

I've personally never been part of a religion or spiritual practice that specifically focused on fasting, although many within the community may have done it. However, millions, probably billions around the globe fast for spiritual reasons.

And it totally makes sense now that I know what I know about fasting and how it makes my mind so much more clear. I can imagine when practicing reflection how powerful fasting can be to help you get more in touch with your higher purpose.

Some main benefits of fasting for spiritual reasons are:

  • fasting releases your body from the task of digestion and gives your body time and energy to focus your mind more on contemplative action
  • fasting instills discipline over your life and desires
  • fasting can strengthen your resolve when integrated with prayer or meditation
  • fasting can remind of us our human frailty and remind us that we need something more than just the material things in our lives
    Have you ever fasted for spiritual reasons? If so, what is your favorite part?  Do you think learning more about fasting in general could help your spiritual fasting be more successful?
Check out some of the other articles in my series on fasting:

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What Is Fasting?

What Is Fasting?
What Is Fasting?
There are quite a few different reasons why you may be considering a fast. Often our first step into fasting is ordered by the doctor for a particular test or medical procedure. Or maybe you’ve read about the health and spiritual benefits of fasting and are interested in giving it a try.

By definition fasting is willing abstinence from food and drink. Different people fast differently. Some will take a little food or nutrition in the form of juice; others will stick to only water, black or green tea, or black coffee during for the duration of their fast. I personally do what is considered a "clean fast" meaning I only have water, black coffee or green tea, and nothing else during my fasting window.  Because you are either fasting or you are not.  

Fasting for Spiritual Reasons

Fasting has a long tradition in all major world religions. The idea is that the removal of food and with it the worrying about food preparation helps you turn inward. Fasting is used as a way to meditate, pray and get closer to a higher being based on your faith.

In Christian faith, fasting is used as a tool to atone for sins and bring us closer to God. Quite a few Christians will fast for 40 days during lent (the 40 days leading up to Easter). In other faiths - Native American and yogic traditions come to mind; fasting allows the person to reach a higher level of spiritual awareness and is used to gain visions. No matter what your faith, your soul and mind can benefit from a fast.

Fasting for Health

There’s been a lot of talk in the alternative health industry about the benefits of fasting. The basic idea is that if we abstain from food for a period of time, our bodies move energy from processing the food we eat to maintenance mode. The idea is that when food is scarce, our body does everything it can to keep us in good shape to go out and hunt and gather.

Without food in your system, your body shifts to burning fat for energy, resulting in fat loss. This shift away from burning sugar for energy also helps with insulin levels and certain types of fasting (in a controlled environment under the supervision of your doctor) can help reverse diabetes. In addition, fasting has been shown to lower blood pressure and bad cholesterol levels. There is even healing on a cellular level going on.  It's called autophagy, and we will discuss this in future posts.  

Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting is a particular type of fasting where you go for long periods of the day without food, but end up having one or two meals. In essence you’re extending the period of time you usually go without food (while you’re sleeping) by several hours to give your body a chance to switch into fasting mode with all its health benefits.

Unlike traditional fasts where you go without food and most drink for three or more days, intermittent fasting still allows you to eat during a smaller window in your day. Other forms of intermittent fasting have you fast for one or two days per week, eating normally the rest of the time. Either method is a good alternative to traditional fasting and often easier to do and maintain will going on with our everyday life.

Next time we will learn more about some of the different ways to fast (and I'll share more about my favorite).  

Check out this blog on how I got started as an intermittent faster and my first experience with hypnotism. 

Ready to learn more and see if how intermittent fasting can improve your overall health, help you reach and maintain a healthy weight, and increase your energy?  Book a Discovery Call today!!!

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