Water Fasting During My Day of Pain
I started my period this past Sunday morning – Boo. It showed up in the wee hours of the morning after getting our new puppy, Einstein. Einstein hates his crate already and cried a lot that first night, so I was already short on sleep.
I woke up in a lot of pain. I was sure to drink a lot of water upon rising and I took some Vitalzym and a probiotic, which did help ease the pain.
I pulled out my dear heating pad and tried to relax — which was hard given the new pup mixed with my older boxer Alice – who just wanted to play with her new, fragile little brother
The dogs helped distract me from the pain that was pulsing in my center. I kept looking at the clock, thinking that I should eat something, but my mind would not land on anything that I “felt” like eating, and I definitely did not feel like cooking anything.
My body is very sensitive to most foods when I start my period (my worst day of pain). I’ve been thrown into fits of awful uterine contractions where I just want to curl up in a ball and die when I eat the wrong foods.
Some culprits that come to mind include beans, avocado and chocolate. I try and steer clear of anything with high amounts of fat, anything that is hard to digest and anything with higher levels of phytoestrogens on the first day of my period.
So…as Sunday continued, all I put into my body was water (and my digestive supplements which should be taken on an empty stomach). This was all my body wanted.
I did notice that as the time progressed that I was not overly hungry for food. My body was in so much pain that it just didn’t want it. The only reason I considered it is because I am used to eating everyday. I mean, you need to eat to fuel the body right?
At seven o’clock Sunday evening (24 hours from my last meal) I opted for an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory smoothie with coconut milk, chia seeds, fresh coconut, a banana and a blend of frozen blueberries and cherries. Yum!
Benefits of Fasting
After spending my day of pain fasting, I decided to look further in to see if there are benefits to fasting during menstruation or if it was a dangerous thing for me to be doing.
One of the main benefits I found was that fasting promotes detoxification in the body. When food is refrained from the body, it then turns to its fat supplies for energy.
These fat reserves then release chemicals that have been stuck in our systems out through our waste systems — chemicals, such as dioxins, that have been absorbed from our environment. Dioxins have been linked to endometriosis.
During a water fast, energy is diverted away from the digestive system. This is a big deal considering the fact that digesting, assimilating and metabolizing food requires a lot of energy!
Freeing up this energy allows the body to focus on healing and recuperating, moving energy towards improvements to the immune system – detoxing and repairing cells, tissues, organs, and eliminating foreign toxins as well as natural metabolic wastes.
Human growth hormones (HGH) are also released during a water fast due to greater efficiency in hormone production, allowing the body to heal itself and repair damaged organs. HGH is often depicted as the anti-aging hormone.
Short fasts (as little as 20 hours, no longer than 32 hours) are enough to improve insulin sensitivity and other metabolic functions. Short fasts reduce oxidative stress and inflammation in the body. They also assist in the reduction of bloating and can help increase energy. Definite bonus 🙂
Another benefit of fasting is the result of a calmer, clearer, happier mind set. This makes sense given the fact that fasting calms and quiets the insides creating a lighter feeling, while removing negative, toxic waste from our bodies.
On the Positive Side?
Fasting allows for cleansing of the body, initiating the body’s own healing process – it creates an environment for healing — sounds like a great place for a gal with endometriosis to fall into 🙂
I ended up water fasting for about 24 hours. I did notice as the day passed with me just drinking water, that my pain levels did decrease. My flow was bright red and free flowing, which is a good thing — painful flow must go out — if it stays in there I just feel awful and bloated.
I woke up the next day feeling much better and while my stomach was growling, I was not overly hungry like I normally would be, given the lack of food my body consumed the day before.
I didn’t find anything (outside of religious reasons) why it is not good or safe to do a short fast during menstruation.
I think that fasting during my day of pain was a positive for me and a result of me taking part in reconnecting with my body (part of my happiness project for this year). My body did not want food and I listened.
I have refrained from fasting in the past because I just do not do well when I am hungry. I get super moody (up to points of chaos, lol).
But doing it on my day of pain was easier since my mind was so far from food. My body needed to be able to heal itself from the inflammation and pain and food was just going to get in the way….
If you do decide to do a short fast, be sure to drink plenty of water, and to continue to eat a healthy, balanced diet so you do not have to suffer with detox symptoms amidst your other pains.
Also, I was able to do a successful water fast on my pain day since I’ve given up traditional pain killers and over the counter medicine including Ibuprofen and Tylenol.
I do not recommend doing a water fast if you are still taking these medications, as they will tear up your stomach! I find that Vitalzym has been a great replacement for these traditional pain killers and should be taken on an empty stomach.
Have you tried a water fast? Have you done one during your painful day(s)?
I would love to hear about your experiences in the comment section below.