Simply put I found the “fasting” experience fantastic and right up there with one of the best things I have done! In part this was purely the physical effects of the cleansing – my skin felt great, the body free of toxins (possibly for the first time in 20 years) and I generally felt healthy and full of energy. Certainly there was also the satisfaction that comes with actually finishing the fast itself (and quitting smoking for that matter), something I wasn’t too sure I could do when I started.
But I think the real value for me was the result of the overall process, what I would perhaps call the “body meditation” – effectively 10+ days of reading, thinking about (and experiencing) the bodies various “ins” and “outs”, how we treat it, what it needs. And in doing so I realized that this process was something I had never really sat down and thought through in a lot of detail before – quite amazing really, how much we take our bodies for granted. Taking time out to educate, experiment and “clean house” so to speak, couldn’t make more sense to me in the context of our co-dependency (body + mind).
All of which created a lot of clarity and resolve for me personally, on how I aspired to live my life moving forward – perhaps moving my diet away from processed foods – starches, dairy and meat towards more raw food – fruit & vegetables. And in other ways looking to control my acidity better and more regularly cleanse – the “liver” and “kidneys” are definitely next!
That’s was the gist of it at least – it is hard to really distill the whole experience into words, but I have structured a range of other thoughts below to summarize this where I can.
The Big Picture (My version at least) – The modern diet in the last 20-30 years has changed dramatically with all its processed foods, alcohols, cigarettes and drugs etc. These have created a lot of new challenges for a body that was never designed to deal with these things. The end result is that these come into the body much more acidic than simple fresh foods would be and your stomach has to break all this down and make it more alkaline to process it. As the body is not designed to operate at these levels, it reacts by compromising maintenance in other areas of your body – stomach, colon etc (Likely responsible for many modern cancers) and also fortifies your intestines / bowel with a special lining in order to protect the body from the higher acidity levels of food that is now required to process. Over time, the typical westerner’s intestine becomes lined with 20 – 30 feet of this ‘Mucoid plaque’ that is lining the walls, some of it up to an inch thick. The net result of this plaque is that
- Many toxins get caught up in the lining (including those from stress & bad memories !)
- The lining makes it much harder (and much less efficient) to extract nutrients from food and
- It therefore takes much longer for important titbits to enter the blood stream & get distributed
With all that said, the goal of the cleansing and colonic is really to remove much of this plaque and return the digestive system to its peak operating efficiency. Lots of amazing stories abound on the results of this from cancer sufferes etc, I’ll leave that paraphrasing to the Americans, but you can find out more by reading the following book by Richard Anderson, ‘Cleanse & Purify Thyself, Book 1, I highly recommend it and it forms the background to the cleanse program as we did it.
The colonic cleansing itself – Not as bad as I feared, the first day was intense but after that the whole process was fine. In terms of results, I certainly made a lot of progress clearing some of the mucoid plaque away from the intestines (several metres at least – big stuff!!), but can see that this needs another few fasts to really finish the job. Not many other fellow fasters had the same success on this front as me I think – as they were mostly healthy vegetarians, hippies and women I can see that I obviously fitted the bill and needed this the most.
Of hunger – was not really an issue actually. The first day was a little challenging, but after that I was pretty ok and didn’t crave food at all. I certainly felt that I could have kept going past day 8 (though I was ready to stop). The much harder challenge was the tobacco cravings. Megumi was different, after day 6 she had no energy and felt faint and really needed to eat or balance out things with some iron. She did some blood analysis after the colonic that was really interesting in showing this as well.
Of weight loss – Not very significant, I lost about 3.5 kg, which is not as much as I was expecting and I pretty much put it back on within a week of finishing the fast. Since I have lost almost 20 kg or so in the last 9 months anyway, I had probably already burned the easy stuff off.
Of first meals – Suprisingly disappointing on day 8, I had a bowl of fresh papaya and couldn’t finish it. After that, it was not the food, but the f lavours that I craved really, so once the stomach was ready to handle solids again, I quickly launched back into lots of thai soups, spicy salads and anything with a real zing or taste to it. I did manage to steer clear of meats, processed foods and starches for about a week though. Noticeably when I did start eating non-fresh foods again, I feel heavy and tired immediately afterwards.
And of the future – I would definitely do it again in the next 12 months I think and apply some of the principles and thinking to the rest of my life, hopefully. I do wonder though why we aren’t taught / educated better about these things as part of growing up though. Its not like fasting or enema’s are modern, it is mentioned in the bible and many other cultures fast religiously – obviously though its not in big corporates (Food, Medical & Pharma’s) interest to see us all eating better and more healthy, but maybe our kids will be better off.
Next time around, armed with some more foreknowledge I will probably do a more thorough preparation so I can get the maximum out of it. I also intend to flush my liver and do a kidney cleanse as well when I find some time in my travels, as these are the 2 organs I have probably been working the hardest over the last 20 years 😉
Also check out: ‘8 Days, no Food & a beach’ – Part 1