Give Your Digestion A Break
Post Christmas and New Years holidays are a good time to just detox and give our digestion a break. Yes we can start by cutting out alcohol, caffeine and sugar but in this article I want to take it a bit further. You can feel so good when you live like this most of the time. What inspired me is reading some of Michael Mosley's research on intermittent fasting.
We have always thought that prolonged starvation is clearly bad for us. Eating disorders are clearly bad for us. Hence intermittent fasting must be a little bit bad too. However, what has been found is that the opposite is true, it is actually good for us and this has been confirmed by studies completed by Prof Valter.
It is good to remember that our ancestors in paleolithic times did not eat 4.5 meals a day as we on average do now. They would kill, gorge, sleep and then have long periods of time without food. Now we eat all day. I am a strong believer in giving the digestion a break. A break between meals where only water and herbals teas are consumed. We also do not need big meals for every meal especially if we are not burning it up with exercise. In saying this, intermittent fasting is not advised in pregnancy or for children under 17 years of age but they can still have breaks in-between their three meals.
Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting:
- quality and longevity of life
- autophagy - "autophagy" - means self eat and is the process where the body recycles old tired cells
- weight management
- clearer thinking - it increases the BDNF ( brain derived neurotrophic factor)
- better moods and sense of wellbeing
- prevents diabetes
- cardivascular health and better cholesterol
- add chemotherapy especially prechemotherapy treatments
- reduce IGF-1, which means that you reduce your risk of a number of age related diesases, such as cancer
- switching on your repair genes. Great for epigenology
- giving the pancreas a break so helping with increasing insulin effectiveness.
When I was at University I was taught about fruit and vegetable days and this was probably my first introduction to intermittent fasting and for a period of time I did a fruit and vegetable day once a week. Then there is the granny smith apple days that people do to help take the pressure off their gallbladder. My next understanding of this concept was Hugh Jackman's interview where he talked about "The 8- hour Diet". He would eat within an 8 hour window and then not eat for 16 hours of the day. Hugh said that this was what has kept his weight down and that he felt great and slept so well on this regime. Currently the latest interest is Michael Mosley's 5/ 2 diet. He fasts twice a week having a high protein breakfast and then drinks throughout the day ( Personally, I do not agree that coffee should be included) and then has meat/fish and vegetables at night. His colleague Mimi Spencer has the two meals a day similarly but she adds a piece of fruit in the middle. You need to find what is right for you.
My regime is what works for me and having epliepsy I do need regular nutrients but I do not need much. My strict days are probably 2 -3 days out of 7. I start with a vegie juice or carrot and celery chewed raw. I consume Herbal teas that suit my system and water in-between meals. For lunch I have salmon, eggs, basil leaves and some nuts or soup, sashimi/salad. For dinner it is fish/meat/turkey and vegies (no potato). Then more Herbal tea. On the other 5 days it is basically the same but for breakfast it might be a protein nutribullet/ or low carb fruits and nut mix, lunch will be buckwheat cruskits and some goat's cheese and avocado included. The ideas are there for you to try. If you have any concerns or questions please do not hesitate to ask your practitioner. It may be a start just to keep to three meals a day and have a break in-between.
Whatever the case the message here is to give your digestion a break. Take a break in stodgy high fat high carbohydrate food, a break in toxins and a break in-between meals so that your digestion improves. I am more energized on my stricter days than normal days. If I start the day right I am encouraged to eat right for the rest of the day and do not crave the wrong things. One wrong thing and I am set off with craving and it is not worth it. In saying this if you go off the track DO NOT be hard on yourself but just start again the next day. Remember if our digestive system is taking up all our energy trying to process what we consume then it is wasting precious energy we could be using for other things. LIFE is precious and the more energy we have the better.