Is it healthy or recommended to do a 48 hour fast once a week? Many professionals recommend participating in a 48 hour fast 1-2 times a month, not every week. There are other, less intense, fasting methods that can be used as a supplemental fasting practice while working up a 48 hour fast like the 16:8 fasting method. This fasting method requires the person to have an 8 hour eating period with a 16 hour fasting period in-between.
There are many health, fitness, physical, mental, and spiritual benefits proven to come from fasting. Whatever your reasons are, we’ve included information on intermittent fasting, the benefits of fasting, how to participate in a 48 hour fast, and other inclusive information.
What Is Intermittent Fasting?
Intermitted fasting has been popularized for its health benefits and aid in weight loss. Rather than dictate what foods a person can eat during the fasting period, intermittent fasting is a designated time period of fasting. This can alternate between 15-hour to 24-hour fasts but is easily adjustable depending on the individual’s goals and lifestyle.
There are even apps designed to customize a person’s intermittent fasting period. The applications allow for customization while keeping track of time fasted versus time left for the fasting period. Normally, these applications will also send out a notification when the fasting period is over.
The Purpose Of Fasting
Health And Fitness
Intermittent fasting is oftentimes used as a tool to reach health and fitness goals. This fasting method has been proven to reduce inflammation, improve cholesterol levels, stabilize blood sugar levels, reduce stress, improve brain health, and improve heart health. The benefits of intermittent fasting also extend to managing weight, aiding in weight loss, and reducing the risk of certain diseases.
For certain religions such as Christianity, Buddhism, and Judaism, fasting is used as a tool for spiritual growth. Fasting has not only been shown to improve one’s physical health but has been proven to aid in mental health such as decreasing depression.
When fasting for religious reasons, one physically denies the flesh (or body) to focus on mental or spiritual needs instead. During this process, discipline can be improved by testing willpower during this physically demanding process of denying the body’s need for food during the fasting period.
Is Fasting Healthy?
Some may find fasting to be extremely restrictive, unhealthy, or unnecessary, even with the many benefits proven to come from fasting. Whether for health, fitness, medical, or religious reasons, fasting has been shown to result in numerous benefits beneficial for one’s physical, mental, or spiritual health.
48 Hour Fast Once A Week
A 48 hour fast involves drinking fluids, like water, that contain zero calories and no foods throughout 48 hours or two days. Hydration is essential during a fast, so make sure if you participate in any sort of fast, that you are drinking plenty of water.
Calorie-Free Fluids Acceptable During The Fast
- Black Tea
- Herbal Tea
How To Participate In a 48 Hour Fast
To get started in setting up for your 48 hour fast, it is recommended to utilize one’s sleeping schedule to successfully cut into that 48 hour time period. Depending on how long you sleep or manage to sleep that night, and when you start the fasting in the evening, around 8-12 hours of your 48 hour fast will have passed. Remember to work smarter, not harder!
An example of this would be if you are starting your fast on a Monday, you would stop eating the evening of that Monday. The fast would proceed all the way until Wednesday evening to hit 48 hours.
Breaking The 48 Hour Fast
When breaking the 48 hour fast, it is recommended to eat something light. Following the example provided above, if the fast is broken that Wednesday evening then eating a light dinner is recommended. The next day, Thursday, gradually begin to reintroduce regular foods into your diet.
It is important to note there are risks to overstimulating the digestive system when breaking a fast improperly.
Examples of such are:
Benefits Of A 48 Hour Fast
A 48 hour fast is often used as a tool to “reset” the body. Whether this is for spiritual, physical, or mental reasons, it is up to that person. Either way, there are plenty of benefits resulting from participating in a 48 hour fast.
Some benefits include:
- Reduces Risk Of Obesity
- Improved Digestion
- Reduction Of Inflammation
- Reduces Insulin Resistance
- Improved Heart Health
- Prevents Cancer
- Boosts Brain Health
- Reduces Glucose Levels
- Reduces Blood Pressure
- Reduces Stress
Risks Of Participating In A 48 Hour Fast
There are risks that come with participating in a fast, especially a longer one such as a 48 hour fast. It is always recommended to start off small, to test out how your body reacts, before taking a leap forward by participating in a 48 hour fast.
Notable risks that occur during a longer fast:
- Hunger Pangs
- Fainting (In More Serious Cases)
- Digestive Problems
Who Should Avoid Fasting
Any individuals that have diabetes must first check with their doctor, a medical professional, before attempting to participate in a fast. Fasting can affect insulin and medication efficiency which are essential for diabetics.
Those with an eating disorder, pregnant, breastfeeding, or those taking blood thinners, blood pressure medications, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) should not participate in a fast whatsoever.
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Does 48 hour fast burn muscle?
A 48 hour fast can cause the body to tap into muscle stores, which can lad to muscle loss.
Is it healthy to fast 2 days a week?
Participating in a 48 hour fast has numerous health benefits, but it is recommended to start off with a smaller fast to fully understand process of durating through a fast. It is also recommended to only participate in a 48 hour fast 1-2 times a month.
Does fasting 2 days a week help lose weight?
It does! It is not recommended to participate in a 48 hour fast every week, only 1-2 times a month.
What happens 48 hours into a fast?
48 hours into a fast your body will shift into ketosis, having burned the stores of sugar, and will henceforth have started to burn fat.
Which is better 24 or 48 hour fast?
Both have health benefits. It is recommended to start off with a shorter fast before participating in a longer fast like a 24 hour and 48 hour fast.