Fasting as Cure-All

Discussion in 'Health and Lifestyle' started by midcan5, Jun 4, 2012.

  1. midcan5
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    midcan5 liberal / progressive

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    Unfortunately this article is by subscription only. But it is so fascinating I recommend it to everyone, not as a panacea but as something to think about. When I was finishing military duty stateside I would fast for a day frequently. I had forgotten that till I read this article. I was super skinny then so the why escapes me, but I do remember reading something Norman Mailer wrote about fasting and detoxification.

    A few snippets below, check it out if you can find a smart liberal friend who reads one of the last best magazines in America.

    "Out of the public eye, however, a few scientists, less known than Macfadden but more methodical, had become intrigued by the art. One was Frederick Madison Allen, a physician at New York’s Rockefeller Institute who was renowned for his work on childhood diabetes. Allen theorized that since diabetes was a disease of excess glucose, taking glucose away—by, say, fasting — might ease a diabetic’s symptoms. He further theorized that any improvements achieved by fasting might be maintained afterward by a diet very low in carbohydrates, the raw material of glucose. Allen fasted dozens of children for a week or more, and it seemed to him that they did not fall into diabetic comas as readily as patients treated with the standard palliatives. Allen, however, had no control group, and his conclusions were more impressionistic than scientific."

    [..]

    There is little evidence to support the lumbago hypothesis, but there is some evidence more generally that fasting detoxifies. For more than a week in 1984, sixteen Taiwanese victims of PCB poisoning were quasi-fasted (they ate nothing for one day and drank a modest amount of juice thereafter). Subsequently their PCB-induced migraines, hacking coughs, skin pustules, hair loss, numbness, and joint pain either faded or disappeared entirely."

    [..]

    "In the 1960s a professor of medicine at the University of Pennsylvania named Garfield G. Duncan became troubled by the epidemic of American obesity, which then afflicted a shocking one man in twenty and one woman in nine. (Today it afflicts one in three men and women alike.) Like other researchers, Duncan fasted obese patients and studied how many regained their lost weight. Unlike other researchers, he noticed that the blood pressure of every patient who was hypertensive fell to within normal limits during these fasts. He reported, for illustration, the case of a man of fifty-three years and 325 pounds whose unmedicated blood pressure was 210/130 and whose medicated pressure was 184/106—still menacingly high. The man fasted for fourteen days without drugs, and his blood pressure fell to 136/90. Six months later, it was 130/75. Duncan did not record how many of his patients sustained such improvements after their fasts, but the possibility of a simple cure for some forms of hypertension seemed well worth pursuing."

    rest of piece below.

    "Starving your way to vigor: The benefits of an empty stomach" By Steve Hendricks
    Starving your way to vigor: The benefits of an empty stomach?By Steve Hendricks (Harper's Magazine)
     
  2. midcan5
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    midcan5 liberal / progressive

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    bump - so much nonsense is posted in this forum - bump.
     
  3. William Joyce
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    William Joyce Chemotherapy for PC

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    All plausible to me. I suspect there are benefits to the body from occasional fasting. Give the system a rest and give the body a chance to process crap through.

    Try this: do a night-day-night fast. In other words, have a regular day. Go to bed. Wake up, maybe have coffee, but that's it. Water in the day, nothing else. Go to bed. Wake up, then go back to normal. That's pretty cleansing, and not very difficult, only slightly uncomfortable.

    I'm sure our ancestors went days without food...
     
  4. uscitizen
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    uscitizen Senior Member

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    Why does time pass so slowly when on a fast?
     
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