Extended fasting is when you fast longer than 48 hours. If you’ve been listening to my podcast episodes, you’ve heard me talk about extended fasts and how beneficial they are to the body.
Extended fasts allow you reach certain levels of cell rejuvenation, autophagy, increased growth hormones (that promote lean muscle and fat loss).
After building my fasting muscle I started doing extended fasts. At one point, I was extended fasting once a week. I always felt clear-headed, had amazing energy, and felt my best when I was right in the middle of an extended fast. These days I have slowed down on doing extended fasts, not because anything went wrong but because I was also losing a lot of weight. Since I am now at my goal weight, I prefer to do occasional alternate day fasts.
Although, I wouldn’t recommend an extended fast unless you have fasted for at least 18-20 hours. Fasting is certainly mental but you also want to physically prepare your body for an extended fast. You want to make sure you have eaten the correct foods prior to going into your extended fasts. This is not the time to binge on all the foods because you are getting ready to begin an extended fast. You can eat normally. I’d also recommend eating foods rich in healthy fats, protein and complex carbohydrates. You want your body to be able to withstand an extended fast, so before starting one you want to feed it well.
Additionally, when you are extended fasting you want to make sure you have lots of water, hydrate your body. You want to have sea salt nearby (I use himalyan pink salts which I love and work very well), as well as electrolytes. When you don’t eat you lose important salts that your body needs to maintain its homeostasis (or equilibrium). To balance this out its important to take electrolytes that replenish the salts that are lost while fasting. Extended fasting may also sometimes cause constipation. In order to help with this situation you want to have some magnesium that can be taken everyday. I use a magnesium powder which contains no sugar, so it does not break my fast.