Holistic Healing

How to do Prolonged Fasting 🍽 A Guide to Getting it RIGHT

In this article we are going to get into the specifics of how to maturely navigate a prolonged fast. As fasting becomes more popular as a healing modality, many people (myself included) are testing their boundaries by extending their protocols.

girl
Day 30 Mango Feast – I have learnt many Do’s and Don’ts with Each Fast

Some are going for 30 days, 60 days. The Master Fast System even sees people clocking in 108 days. 

Before you get all eager beaver on me, please read this article in full so you can better understand how to fast SAFELY. 

Keep in mind I am no fasting wizard and I do NOT recommend diving into a prolonged fast without guidance and support from someone who is highly qualified and experienced in the arena of detoxification. 

I can happily guide you on a short and sweet fast. However, if you are wanting to take the body into deep detoxification, I recommend seeking out the best of the best to support you.

Why Fast?

Usually the motivation behind wanting to do a prolonged fast, is to heal a relentless and chronic condition. If this is true for you, I suspect that Western medicinal practices were unable to get to the root cause of your condition and you are now turning to alternative healing methods. 

Welcome my friends. Taking healing into your own hands can be scary, confusing and simultaneously liberating and beyond informative.

A word of caution – proceed with care. 

A prolonged fast is a means of getting out of the body’s way. It reduces the burden of digestion so the body can better exert its energy towards healing. 

However, it is not to be taken lightly and can pose serious danger to the physical and mental bodies if done incorrectly. It is also essential that it come from no other place than love

A Word of Warning

Again! Full disclosure. I am no doctor.

I speak only from the experience of being a guinea pig in my own little lab of healing and all I can offer is my story. 

If you are considering going into a prolonged fast I highly recommend doing your research and by this I mean speaking with a detox specialist. Speaking to someone who is thoroughly knowledgeable and who can offer you safe guidance. 

Be wary of those who are too dogmatic in their approach to fasting and most importantly – listen to your body. Listen to its cues, listen to your intuition. Try not to confuse this with your ego. I’m talking about your inner most which is always trying to guide you – this is a source worth listening to.

Alright, let’s dive in.

Prolonged fasting, in my book, that I just invented then… would be anything over the 24 hour mark. 

I truly believe fasting for less than a week on liquids or fruits – you are still going to be in very safe territory. You might experience a few headaches but it is short enough that you wouldn’t HAVE to take any other measures.

Once you start to push past that week mark, the game changes a little (a lot even)

..but first let’s talk about the types of fasts you can extend!

Fasting Options

There are multiple types of fasts that you can prolong, including; dry fasting, juice, water and mono fruit feasting. Each of these will take your body into a state of detoxification once you start to dig deep. 

how to do prolonged fasting
Juice Fasting

Another note of caution – All of these methods come with their risks, but I especially do NOT recommend dry fasting for an extended period of time. Not unless you have been playing these games for a long time and are deeply informed. 

Not to say dry fasting doesn’t have profound healing benefits. It is however, not child’s play and it needs to be executed in a certain way.

How To Prepare the Body

First thing to do is take a look at your current diet. This has a big influence over how you will fare on your fast. I don’t recommend jumping into a prolonged fast (a couple of days, no worries), if you are coming from the SAD diet! 

eggs and meat
Classic SAD Meal

The Standard American Diet – a way of eating that really is a sorry, sad state of affairs. No judgement, this is the case for most of us and what is considered to be the ‘norm’. 

This diet includes animal products, a lot of grains and processed junk. Although this is considered standard practice, it is an extreme way of eating and jumping from one extreme to another poses risks and it is one of the main reasons that fasting gets a bad wrap.

When people don’t take the time to clean up their diet first and dive right in looking for a quick fix (guilty), they suffer.

They then go on to point the finger of blame at the fruit and juice and write the whole protocol off as being unhealthy. 

So, if your diet is looking relatively SAD… clean it up a little first. Ditch the animal products and junk for a while and start to bring in more plant based whole foods. Slowly increase your fruit intake and hydrate the body. The longer you spend transitioning, the better you will fare.

Get The Essentials 

If you are committed to a prolonged fast there are some additional protocols and practices you can bring in to ensure your body is in a state of elimination. 

Fruits have an astringent quality to them and that works to stir up and pull at toxicity so it can be released. However, when you are on a liquid fast you should expect your bowels to slow down. Even if you are planning on whole fruit fast, you can still become constipated as although fruits are energising, they are not stimulating. 

You must comprehend the importance of elimination

It is vitally important that you are releasing the toxins that are stirred up in the body when fasting.

This is the whole purpose of cellular detoxification and to not do so, can do more harm than healing. 

If you are not going to the bathroom every day, you are allowing toxicity to circulate around the system, so be prepared to;

Take cleansing herbs like Triphala

Do enemas 

Book in for a colonic

how to do prolonged fasting
Enema Kit – Not nearly as Complicated or Intimidating as it Looks

During Your Fast

Once the diet is cleaned up and you are prepared to keep the body in a state of elimination, you are ready to dive in. 

Keep in mind, that the first couple of days are the hardest! It is easy to throw in the towel at this point because what is one or two days… you’re not so invested. Trust that once you get past those initial days, it can become relatively easy to keep the ball rolling. 

Next pointer. Always be prepared!

If you are juice fasting, bring your juice with you. You are on fruits, take snacks. Maybe you are on a water fast. Well my advice then is to just stay home and consider yourself a recluse…

In all seriousness, you do not want to isolate yourself if you are a social being, regardless of what type of fast you are on. For my fellow introverts, this is not such an issue – you don’t have to tell me twice to lay low. 

It can help however and be in your best interest to avoid situations that you know will trigger cravings, IF you think you are likely to cave. Just don’t put yourself under lock and key and give yourself cabin fever. You will only come to resent the experience. 

You do however want to use this time as an opportunity to rest. I advise that you to listen to the body here and try not to over exert yourself. If you do, you will pay the price. 

Emotional Detox 

For most of us, we go into a prolonged fast to work on the physical body. Perhaps to try and solve a chronic condition or to lose some weight. 

What only a few people are talking about and what MORE people need to acknowledge, is that when you detox the physical you will inevitably be confronted with some emotional and mental baggage.

What’s more – Fasting can be a deeply spiritual experience.

Even if that word is a giant turn off for you and spirituality is not your jam, think about it in terms of psychology. When the body fasts, so does the mind.

The mind can in fact (and probably will), struggle much more than the physical body. It has to battle a lifetime of addiction, pleasure seeking and discomfort avoidance.

Another word of caution;

This is a big one my friend.

If you have experience with an eating disorder, it is very likely going to be triggered by a prolonged fast. 

This has been my experience and I am still dealing with the consequences.

I personally do not consider this to be a necessarily negative. I see it as an opportunity to heal unresolved trauma and shed layers of ego that are not serving me.

We can only overcome that which haunts us, by having it rise to the surface so we can face it and then let it go. Suppressing, ignoring and avoiding, only deepens our wounds in the long run.

To deal with emotional detox, you must ensure that you have the tools and the emotional maturity to navigate what comes up. Do not shy away from what surfaces and be willing to sit with that which arises in meditation. 

If you are not a meditator, there are many other creative means of catharsis.

However, If you would like to learn to meditate and reap profound rewards, please reach out to me for more guidance and support.

Otherwise, be prepared to debrief with someone you trust. 

The emotional work can look like many things and will be different for each of us, but if you feel like you are not ready to face potential demons, then I do NOT recommend prolonged fasting.

Detox Symptoms 

Once the ball is well and truly rolling, it becomes a little easier to keep at it. You are a little more invested and you can connect to that bigger picture. 

However! Although you might be more committed in the mind, there is always the potential for the curve ball that is detox symptoms. You might not get any, but be prepared. They range from mild to wild; cold and flu symptoms, fevers, headaches and fatigue.

We will all experience detoxification differently so the key here is to listen to YOUR body. 

It is fine to push past a little discomfort and trust in the process but if it becomes too intense at any time then be prepared to be at peace with breaking your fast.

You don’t fail, it doesn’t mean it didn’t work, it simply means that you have the emotional intelligence to listen to your body. Many people do not and they suffer. 

Breaking Your Fast

You’ve done your 30 days. Maybe you smashed 60. Well played good sir, a pat on the back is more than deserved. I know you are excited to break your fast, to live out those food fantasies that have been plaguing you over the course of the last however many days…

STOP. Right there my friend. 

Your fast is not as over as you think. 

Breaking your fast is AS important as the fast itself. If not MORE.

If you practice yoga, you can relate this to your Shavasana. That pose at the very end where you lie really still – even though you might be REALLY ready to move onto what’s next.

You do this, you take this time, because THIS is where you reap the rewards!

This post fast period is also where you can really harm the body, if you end up indulging too soon on the ‘bad’ stuff. 

Your digestive system is highly sensitive right now, so you need to go slow. The first couple of days have some watermelon, or another high water content juicy fruit. When it feels right, bring in some other fruits.

Give it a few days minimum before you break into some salads and lightly cooked steamed veggies and work your way slowly back into heavier foods (if that is where you are going). 

Bombarding your body with all those ‘naughty’ foods you may have dreamed of, is one of the worst things you can do. It wreaks havoc on the digestive system and will have you right back at square one. Worse than square one.

Trust me, I have done this more than once and it is not as easy to avoid as you would like.  

Just try to remember your goals. Why you fasted for so long and use this place of reduced cravings to propel you forward into a more sustainable and healthy lifestyle change. 

Take Home Message

That’s it from me. I feel as though you are now a little more informed on how to prepare for a prolonged fast. What to expect during your fast and how to break it in order to continue with your healing or weight loss journey. 

Believe me when I tell you it is not just a physical experience and that you will have to navigate many emotions. Be prepared to do the work and comprehend that prolonged fasting is no quick fix.

Holistic Healing

I want to get specific with you.

I am talking easy to read, simple food lists.

This article is going to share with you those foods that cause mucus in the body and those that leave little to no residue behind.

If you are on a healing path, the amount of mucus in the body is going to impact your detoxification process and the aim should be to eat foods that are eliminated with ease.

vegetables

So join me now, while I give you some intel on which foods are causing obstruction and which are of no burden to the system.  

Ps. Don’t shoot the messenger 😉

Mucus

Even the word itself is gross. I know.

Unless you have been eating a diet of predominantly fresh fruits and veggies from the get go,

OR have been working diligently to clean the body for a couple of years…

then you are likely full of it. 

No offence meant my friends. I am in the same boat. The good news, is that you can stop adding to problem right NOW by making some dietary shifts. 

Why should you worry about mucus in the body you say? 

Well, If you look into the work of healers like Arnold Ehret, you will see that it is the belief that mucus is the foundation of all dis-ease.

Allergies, gut issues, skin conditions, adrenal fatigue, thyroid problems, even your mental state, is thought to be the result of obstruction in the body. 

So my questions to you are;

Are you suffering from a relentless condition? Unable to find the answers in allopathic medicine? Have you been told you will only be able to manage your symptoms and be on medications till the end of time itself? 

I am not a doctor. However I will make make the wild assumption that when you present to the GP with most conditions, it is unlikely that they will dive into the depths of your diet.

Again, I have ZERO medical training. I am only a guinea pig in my own lab of healing… BUT, if you have explored many ‘healing’ avenues and popped many a pills and you are STILL looking for answers,

maybe mucus is the problem?

The Mucusless Diet Healing System

The concept behind this system of healing, is that our bodies are full of mucus.

When we ‘catch’ a cold, what happens is that the mucus that is already lying dormant in our system is triggered. The body then goes to work trying to expel it. I try to keep that in mind when I get sick and see it as an opportunity to get the gross stuff out. 

If you have been eating from the highly mucus forming food list (which I’ll elaborate on next), then this stuff is inside of you. Different bodies are at different levels of efficiency when it comes to elimination and some might appear to get away with eating more of the ‘bad’ stuff than others. 

However if you are suffering, it could be time to clean house.

MDHS Book
Mucusless Diet Healing System – Arnold Ehret

The principles of eating mucus free originate from the teachings of Dr Arnold Ehret and his work The Mucusless Diet Healing System. He holds mucus responsible for being the primary form of obstruction in the body. The foods you eat either add to this obstruction or they don’t.

It is that simple. 

An excess amount of mucus and obstruction in the body creates the perfect breeding ground for parasites and pathogens to take residency. This is thought to lead to all variety of dis-ease and is often the reason why we are malnourished as the body is blocked from being able to absorb nutrients. 

Highly Mucus Forming Foods

Animal products

Grains

Processed foods

Moderately Mucus Forming Foods

Nuts

Seeds

Legumes

Oils

Fats

Avocado

Coconut

Mildly Mucus Forming Foods

Starchy vegetables – potatoes, pumpkin etc.  

Non Mucus Forming Foods

Fruits

Green vegetables

Leafy greens

Sprouts

Mushrooms

Mucus Lean 

Detox specialist Alexandra Cousins, founder of Mucus Free Living, suggests that if your aim is to heal the body while following the principles of mucus free, then you want to be eating a diet of 95% mucus free foods.

This is going to allow the body to work on eliminating current obstruction, while at the same time it will not be adding to the problem.

Diet change alone will only get you so far. It is recommended that you incorporate other practices like enemas, colonics and cleansing herbs to really dig deep. Cleaning up the diet is the first step, so for now just make that your priority. The rest will fall into place as you start to dig deeper into healing. 

If you are an individual of extremes (like myself), and want to dive right in to all fruit and get the job done, I have to give a word of caution…

if you have been eating a lot of mucus forming foods over the years (and haven’t we all), diving right into 100% fruit can put the body too quickly into a state of detox.

It is likely that your body will be pulling up toxicity quicker than you can release it and this can feel rough to say the least. 

I truly understand the desperate desire to heal and the temptation to dive head on in to every and any protocol that resonates even slightly. However, this is what gives detoxification a bad name.

Many are simply going in blind and doing more harm than healing. Unless you are working against the clock and dealing with a life threatening illness, I recommend taking your time. 

There are no quick fixes in healing… and if you have time on your side, go slow (ish).

Transitioning really is key! This means eating more of the salad type meals, lots of leafy greens and experimenting with some MUCUS LEAN foods!

Mucus lean is fun and to be used occasionally when needed.

sweet potato
Sweet Potato – Satisfying Mucus Lean Meal Option

Maybe you need to slow detox down or you have an insatiable craving for the ‘bad’ stuff. Mucus Lean options are the ‘best’ versions of that meal you are fantasising about and they help to stop you from caving entirely to the craving.  

Mucus lean foods aren’t highly mucus forming but nor are they profoundly healing.

Basically, they just won’t add to the problem. This opens the door for you to bring in some of those mildly mucus forming foods, like sweet potato, pumpkin and the more starchy vegetables. There are even some grains that fall into the mucus lean friendly category like quinoa, spelt, amaranth and buckwheat. 

Also. Mucus lean pizza is a thing. True story. 

These won’t become a staple in your healing protocol but when they are needed, it’s even better if you can pair them with a big leafy green salad. This acts as a sweeping broom in the digestive tract and will help with elimination. 

ELIMINATION is the key word here.

Notice that many healing protocols are based around adding in this and that ‘healing’ supplement. Mucus Free is NOT about adding in anything.

It is about eliminating that which is not serving you. 

Where to Go From Here?

It is going to depend on your goals, how you will navigate these principles in your healing protocol. If the aim is deep cellular detox, then you want to be consuming 95% mucus free foods. 

At times you may want / need to slow your detox down and this is when you’ll be looking to bring in some leafy greens, big salads and more of the green vegetables. 

If you are not digging deep into detox but still want to be working towards a healing path (and not adding to the problem). Then those mucus lean options are going to be an occasional amazing, SATISFYING, option. 

green juice
95% Mucus Free Food for Deep Healing

Buen Provecho!

My Journey into Mucus Free Living

A wee bonus story, to add a personal touch.

I remember when I first found the Mucusless Diet Healing System.

It had been about five years since I had embarked on my journey to heal my gut and hormones. I was going around in circles. Jumping in and out of a raw fruit based diet, committing for a month here and there and then finding myself in binge town.

There would be periods where I would eat only fruit, followed up by a ‘&^%k it’. I’d throw in the towel and going for dinner and drinks with friends.

I did this because my erratic stints on fruit were not giving me the quick healing I wanted. A lot of the time I felt as though I was ‘restricting’ myself for noting and sometimes this would break me.

I was impatient and not emotionally mature enough to navigate my egos of addiction and indulgence when they would arise.

The periods of indulgence would last a day or two (sometimes a week) and then cue the self imposed guilt and punishment.

This would take the form of a fast to ‘get back on track’ – something like a 3 day water fast ought to do the trick and make me ‘clean’ again…

These were dark days my friends. A relentless, repetitive cycle of bingeing and fasting. Wanting desperately to heal but at the same time caught in my food addictions and social ‘norms’. 

I had really gotten it into my head that raw was law and that if I as much as heated up my food I was destroying it. Burning away all of the nutrients along with any chance I had at healing. 

I was obsessive, anxious and growing more and more unsatisfied daily.  

Fortunately, at some point mucus free living crossed my path, and it offered me a life jacket when I was drowning.

Avoiding foods that are highly mucus forming offered me A LOT more freedom than avoiding everything other than fruit.

I am not saying one paradigm is right and the other wrong. However at this point in MY journey I needed some flexibility and some room to breathe., while still feeling as though I was on a healing path.

The Mucusless Diet healing system gave me just that. 

This protocol still emphasises fresh fruits and vegetables, but it also encourages the individual to take time to transition. To eat some steamed vegetables and to even eat some

STEAMED SWEET POTATO… 

Writing this down, I hear the insanity and I hear the obsession. The enthusiasm I had for being ‘allowed’ some sweet potato… Oh boy. 

This was the beginning of me relaxing about food. I have come even further since then, but this was when I started to see that extreme fasting modalities were not something I was ready for at that time.

I am so grateful that I am no longer stuck in any one dogmatic box.

A box that would have me unable to sleep at night because I ate some damn potato and ‘ruined my detox’.

The principles of the Mucusless Diet Healing System truly helped me take that first step towards food freedom. It allowed me to continue my healing in a way that was much more nourishing and loving for my entire being.

Holistic Healing

Mango Benefits Weight Loss 😋 Full Transformation

In this article I am going to share with you some mango benefits and how they can help with weight loss. Imagine such a thing – actually being able to fill that hunger void and not put the body in a caloric deficit (which it hates) and still drop kilos effortlessly.

mango benefits weight loss
Mangoes for Days

It sounds like a trick or a trap, but it’s not. I did exactly this eating mangoes only for 30 days and I am going to share my experience with you. 

I just want to mention that it is now my belief to use fruits and fasting medicinally.

For SHORT intermittent periods of cleansing.

Until recently I was of the mind set that I needed to detox forever and this did not serve me.

This might sound like a very common sense thing to not do, but fasting can have you dance on the edge of disordered eating if not done from anywhere other than a place of LOVE.

Just be conscious of yourself. Observe your actions and their motivations always.

Eating ONE fruit is definitely restrictive in terms of variety, but in regards to actually being able to eat when you are hungry and as much as your heart desires,

this is all about abundance.

A typical ‘diet’ will have you counting calories and macros and weight loss usually comes at the cost of restricting yourself when your body is asking to be fed. 

Eating ONLY fruit, for a short period of cleansing or weight loss is a more satisfying option in my book.

Just keep in mind what I said earlier – do not get sucked into the trap of trying to eat this way forever.

I have played this game and I suffered. The key is to listen to your body, find balance and nourish yourself with a variety of foods. 

Eat a Rainbow of Fruits and Vegetables

Weight loss is a tricky thing.

It often entails periods of under eating followed by binging and this is because, RESTRICTION is the devil. I know eating only fruit sounds like the epitome of restricting yourself, but when I say restriction, I mean denying yourself when you are hungry.

Even juice fasting, which I AM a fan of (when done wisely), can run you into trouble. However, eating the fruits whole instead… this I have found this to be a much more loving, and nourishing experience.

I have also found that it yields the same kind of results as a liquid fast in regards to weight loss.  

Although this article is diving into the glory of the mango, you can achieve the same kind of results with any high water content, juicy fruit. Pick your favourite. Pick something that is cheap and that is in season. 

Mix it Up

At this point, I’ve done a few mono fruit feasts. In Australia mangoes are never an option for me. They are too expensive and it is too hard to get my hands on ones that are ripened to perfection.

Especially considering how many I need in a day.

watermelon
Watermelon with Lime Juice – Classic Feast in Australia

Instead I would feast on what was available and that was typically watermelon and grapes. Both I enjoy, but none of them are as satisfying as ye old mango.

During the entirety of my 30 days on mangoes, not once did I get sick of eating them. Sure, cravings for other foods would sneak on in, but I would just eat some more and be feeling satisfied.

I genuinely looked forward to every meal. I took advantage of their versatility and played around with eating them whole, blending into a smoothie or freezing them for nicecream.

Sometimes I would get real fancy and add lime juice and chilli flakes and this was always a flavour explosion. So taste wise, no issues at all for the full 30 days. 

Mangoes & Weight loss – Is more, really more?

It is. Go ham.

In terms of a diet plan per se, it will be individual but seriously, you can’t go wrong. There is no wrong way to do a mono feast, as you don’t even have to worry about food combining.

I know you people want specifics though, so here is what I did:

Between 9-13 mangoes a day.

10 was my sweet spot.

4 for a meal was my average, 3 times a day.

I would have a smoothie for breakfast – usually with lime juice, sometimes with ginger. 

Eat them whole as snacks during the day – sometimes with some chilli flakes. 

Nicecream with lime juice for dinner.

I ate when I was hungry and I enjoyed more when cravings hit.

I called it quits when I was full. 

It was as simple as that! 

Let go of any concept of having to count calories. I can’t stress enough the importance of not overthinking it. The joy of eating fruit, is in its simplicity.

My Results

On day one I weighed in at 50kgs.

50kgs ish, Pre Mango Feast

I know this is not a big number but weight loss was not my goal.

I have severe gut issues that I am constantly trying to heal with different modalities.

My sole driving purpose was to relieve my symptoms of bloating, lethargy and heaviness in the body.

After 30 days on mangoes, I felt lighter, brighter and more comfortable in my own clothes.

My bloating was not entirely gone (especially by the end of each day), but each morning I was basically symptom free – gut wise.

44kgs Post Mango Feast

In regards to weight loss, which was a pleasant by product of the feast, I lost a total of 6kg. This is a noticeable amount in my body, but I believe if I had more to lose it would have been a more significant drop.

You lose a lot in the first couple of weeks and then there is a plateau. However, you will lose more, if you have more to lose. This 6kg drop was appreciated, but this was not the big win for me.

The big win was in the ease in my bloating and in my mental suffering related to my gut health.

I found myself at peace in my own skin, which was not something I had experienced for years. 

To Wrap Things Up

The most important thing when it comes to weight loss, is to do so in a way that is gentle on both the body AND the mind.

If the mind perceives that it is being restricted or starved, you will suffer. I have done years of repetitive cycling on and off restrictive fasts from binging, to fasting… this never serves weight loss (or health) goals in the long term.

All this does is confuse the body and play havoc on the mind.

Although fruit only is restrictive in terms of ONE food, it does not restrict the body or the mind in terms of hunger or calories. 

What is more, is that simple mono fruit meals give the whole system a break. This will help to ease digestive woes, which are so relentless and common these days. 

I recommend short periods of fasting over trying to dive into a fruitarian or even a raw vegan lifestyle. I am not saying that they can’t be done, BUT I believe they have to be done with guidance and with care.

From my own experience, I have pushed my body too far by eating in such a limited way for too long.

The key is to listen to YOUR body and your intuition. Don’t let any diet dogma that doesn’t resonate for you, determine your way of eating.

Be smart. Fast and feast with care and make sure you are coming from a place of love always.