Here we are at day 3. The following is a breakdown of what to expect for the next 4 days. But, before that let me share – or vent – depends on your perspective. Don’t get me wrong with the whole fasting thing, I love food. I’m a lover of bread, homemade butter (yes, I make that), pizza, cheeses (glorious CHEESE), cakes, cookies, beef, and love to explore new foods. Fasting is not an easy thing to do….Oh, and I love popcorn! I HAD to get that out so I could concentrate! Yesterday, I walked to the kitchen and was offered red velvet cake and Red Lobster Cheddar Bay biscuits! May the Force be with ME. What I have learned with fasting is that all the things that would stop me from completing the fast become magnified.
This morning I washed my hair in the shower and as I stood there I could feel my hands quiver a bit. Immediately I thought about the things that will happen during the fast, how THAT popcorn was just around the corner, and then I thought about the end game as well as those who are participating with me. I get to see where I tend to make excuses for my lack of commitment. The following quote was shared with me by a coach in a meeting at Landmark Education – the time I was a head coach in the Self-Expression and Leadership Program (my favorite of them all). It reminds me that all too often I am in my head with all the fearful questions, doubts, excuses, reasons, and ways out that seemingly rationalize the choice I am about to make. But, the choice is usually getting out of something instead of staying in it. It is that “fear that likes to dress itself up and parade around like rational hesitation,” that always comes in.
“The irony of commitment is that it’s deeply liberating — in work, in play, in love. The act frees you from the tyranny of your internal critic, from the fear that likes to dress itself up and parade around like rational hesitation. To commit is to remove your head as the barrier to your life.” – Anne Morris
As I sat speaking with a friend about the need to get another car, he was giving me plenty of options, but my mind took on that little “rational hesitation” for many good reasons. Of course they are all rational, but not real – at least yet. But, it is my commitment to a vehicle that matters. Just like it is my commitment to health, holistic living, a loving relationship (yes, I’m single!), caring for and supporting my son, and my other goals/values that matters. They may not always look like I want them to, but remaining committed is important.
With all that said, the third day presents a milestone. It will represent the reduction in hunger, and usually a time when headaches disappear. I haven’t had a headache and my hunger has subsided. Besides thirst for water, and the annoyance of seeing red velvet cake and cheddar bay biscuits, I’m good!
DAYS 3 THROUGH 7
Stage 2 (Day 3 to 7)
Fats, composed of transformed fatty acids, are broken down to release glycerol from the gliceride molecules and are converted to glucose. The skin may become oily as rancid oils are purged from the body. People with problem-free skin may have a few days of pimples or even a boil. A pallid complexion is also a sign of waste in the blood. Ketones are formed by the incomplete oxidation of fates. It is suspected that the ketones in the blood suppress the appetite by affecting the food-satiety center in the hypothalamus called the appestat. You may feel hungry for the first few days of the fast. This effect is temporary. The desire to eat will disappear. Lack of hunger may last 40-60 days.
The body embraces the fast and the digestive system is able to take a much-needed rest, focusing all of its energies on cleansing organs and the lungs are in the process of being repaired. Periodically, the lymphatic system expels mucoid matter through the nose or throat. The volume excreted of this yellow-colored mucus can be shocking. The sinuses go through periods of being clogged, then will totally clear. The breath is still foul and the tongue coated. Within the intestine, the colon is being repaired and impacted feces on the intestinal wall start to loosen and are autolyzed.
From the third day onward the rate of the breakdown of fatty acids from adipose or fat tissue continues to increase, hitting its peak on the tenth day. This seven day period, after the body has shifted completely over to ketosis, is where the maximum breakdown of fat tissue occurs. As part of protein conservation, the body also begins seeking out all non-body-protein sources of fuel: nonessential cellular masses such as fibroid tumors and degenerative tissues, bacteria, viruses, or any other compounds in the body that can be used for fuel. This is part of the reason that fasting produces the kind of health effects it does. Also, during this period of heightened ketosis the body is in a similar state as the one that occurs during sleep – a rest and detoxification cycle. It begins to focus on the removal of toxins from the body and the healing and regeneration of damaged tissues and organs.