Things to know before you start fasting
Fasting looks different for everyone and is an incredible tool for women. However, based on our biological cycles, there are more optimal times for women to fast.
We have burn energy through 2 ways:
Sugar burner (through glucose stores in our body): What you access when you are eating.
Fat burner: We tap into something called ketones and ketones that helps us burn energy from fat.
Before fasting, you should aim to stabilize your blood sugar first. A way to start is to remove the refined carbohydrates and sugars, along with eating the right oils. Once your blood sugar is more stable, you can add on 13 to 15 hours of fasting.
Incorporate a fast into a healthy diet -- whether you’re on keto or are vegan, add a good amount of vegetables and good quality protein to your diet. We often hear from clients how expensive it is to eat well.. In our opinion, it is too expensive not to. If you’re eating heaps of processed food what impact is that having on your long term health?
It is important to get the foundations of healthy and clean eating first (we have resources to help you eat healthy on a budget in Singapore here) before adding fasting as the next layer toward healing.
Some people think that as long as they fast 17 - 24 hours, they can choose whatever they want to eat outside of their fasting window. This is called a dirty fast and something we don’t recommend.
Fasting according to your menstrual cycle
If you are a woman in your reproductive years, you need to map your fast according to your menstrual cycle.
Assuming you have a normal 28 - 35 day cycle, the day you bleed is day 1. There are four variations to women’s menstrual cycle.
From day 1 up up till about day 10 to 12, your body is building estrogen - this is a great time for your body to be in a fasted state and for longer fasts. Reduce the number of fasting days and/or switch to gentler intermittent fasting.
And if you're already regularly fasting 24 hours and above, you may want to reap the benefits of autophagy, deep healing and detoxing, and consider the ProLon Fasting Minicking Diet within the first 10 days of your cycle.
The week before your cycle is the time you need to make the hormone progesterone, so you'd want to focus on eating hormone building foods and avoiding ketosis.
Our hormones like healthy fats, like olive oil, avocado, nuts and seeds, as well as ample fiber from fruits and vegetables and quality proteins like eggs, fish and meat
Nurture the body instead of adding stress to the body - fasting can be a form of additional stress to the body. You might even want to opt out of intense form or exercises (no marathons, CrossFit e.t.c) and go for other gentle forms of exercise like brisk walking or yoga.
Fasting, especially longer fasts during this time might also make you feel more anxious and create a hormone imbalance. And if progesterone is absent or levels are too low, irregular and heavy menstrual bleeding can occur.
If you haven't already, use apps such as Clue to help you track your cycles. The more you know what's happening on the inside, the better your response to taking charge of your health.