Sunday, March 30, 2014

Why Short Term Fasting Works Well For Women

There are many weight loss programs out there but men and women may not experience the same results.  Some programs work better for women such as short term fasting.  In the first instance, let’s don’t be afraid of the word ‘fasting’, as we are not talking about fasting for a day or a week.  It is a matter of extending the time in between meals which won’t be a big deal to most people.
When man and woman get married and moved in together, both living busy lives, eating out is kind of unavoidable, may be 2 or 3 times a week.  At home they may cook relatively healthy meals and generally eat breakfast and dinner together.
This somewhat normal life in time will make a difference between man and woman in their body weight.
After a few years of marriage, most men may remain similar in weight but women may put up 15% or even more in weight. Why does this happen?
Something wrong with the metabolism?  Stress at work? Pregnancy? Or rare hormonal disorder?
Well, women usually put on weight because of eating too much.
More specifically, wives put on weight because they eat the same amount of their husbands
They are eating almost everything in the same size servings.
When they would go to the restaurant and order the same meal, men didn’t get the ‘Big Guy’ serving size, while women got the ‘slim girl’ serving size…both plates looked identical.
When husband made them healthy omelets, he didn’t make one for himself then a half an omelet for the wife, he simply made two omelets.
This is the plight of women. 
Most serving sizes in restaurants are too big for the average man, let alone a woman who is 4 inches shorter and 40-60 pounds lighter.
And, for the most part, when eating at home people usually don’t ‘downsize’ the portion sizes for the smaller person.
Even if we tried, we generally end up at some middle ground that is still a little too much for an average sized woman. Let say a man stands 6’2” weights 200 lbs and his wife stands 5’6” weights 135 lbs, both eating the same amount of food day in and day out.  The weight problem will bother the woman much faster than man.
This is why short term fasting works so well for so many women. It gives them a chance to play a little catch up. Or more correctly to play a little ‘fall behind’.  Allow an extended gap in between meals, such as 12 hours or 18 hours, once or twice a week.  In fact there are many variations in doing short term fasting and that women can try and work out a way to tie in to their life styles.
Short term fasting allows woman to eat at a restaurant without having to leave 1/3 of their food on the plate.
When eating at home with their family, they don’t need to cut their chicken breast in half and giving it to the dog.
It is a dietary custom/portion size equalizer.  If you want to find out more about short term fasting, there is an ebook called Eat Stop Eat fully focused on the topic.  


Sunday, March 23, 2014

My 5-Day Spiritual Fasting Experience

I’ve recently gone through a 5-day spiritual fasting, however not quite successfully.

Many things in life are easier to know than to do.  Even I’m an experienced faster, I would give myself a marginal fail.

Although spiritual fasting has a religious origin, I don’t do it out of religious reason.  I’m recently facing health problem and many things in life seem to be out of control, hence the fast.

I started the fast after Sunday lunch.  Monday and Tuesday I had a cup of white coffee in the morning, a glass of fresh orange juice for lunch and milk for dinner, and of course water throughout the day.  Wednesday I had water only.  I failed on Thursday morning as I felt so weak and that I still had to work, so I grab a little cereal bun.  I then do water fasting through Friday evening.  I broke my fast with a pear, a banana and a few slices of salmon sashimi.  Raw food is a good idea to break fast as it’s easy for the relaxed body to pick up the digestive work again.

Although many people do salt water flush** in the morning, I did it twice on Wednesday night and Thursday night.  I was successful even I did it at night because I had been in a fasted state for a few days, it didn’t matter I did it in the morning or at night.  As I had to go to work in the morning, I found it convenient to do it in the evening.

After the flush, my body had a wonderful feeling of relief and comfort.  Although I do intermittent fasting all the time, bloating is still occasionally bothering me.  The relief feeling was really good.  Mentally I tried to stay calm with everything and try not to get angry with things that I normally will. 

For anyone fasting, the purpose should be to become a better person, to recharge one's spirit. Try to avoid conflict with other people; try to improve your character; try to find your own connection to a higher power. In that sense, I would give myself a pass as well.

However I grade myself an overall marginal fail not because I ate a tiny breakfast on Thursday, I also didn’t manage to maintain that refreshed spirit for long.

Fasting in Ramadan is an amazing spiritual exercise. When we're fasting, we're in a spiritual zone. But once our fast ends, it's all too easy to lose what we have gained. And that was my case.  So I’m planning to re-do this exercise again.

If you have had a successful spiritual fast, congratulations, I’d like to hear from you and share your experience.  For others who want to do this exercise, do try to keep the spirit of your fast alive throughout the year. If you got rid of bad habits, don't go back to them. If you've just ended a lengthy fast, try to keep fasting a few days every month. Keep up whatever spiritual practices you did (as much as you can) during your fast. Let us not be angels during our fasting days and devils the day after our fast is finished.

You don’t have to worry if you fail.  There are few things in life that you succeed in the first time.  Keep up the spirit and try a few shorter fasts to start with and you’ll be there.

**Note:  Salt Water Flash  cleans up our entire digestive system and is generally part of a Lemonade Diet, aka Master Cleanse, usually done in the morning with an empty stomach. Do not do it until you have a good understanding of it.  Click here to find out more about Master Cleanse Lemonade Diet 

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Do You Need Media Fast?

Fasting is defined as willingly abstaining from something for a period of time. It is most popularly used in the terms of food, but really can be applied to anything in life. Fasting not only gives us a chance to get away from something, but also the clarity and silence that may be needed in order to really figure out what is going on with our lives. 


So what is media fast?  Readers of this blog may have some kind of intermittent fasting experience.   For beginners, it may means not eating until noon. For others, it means only eating within an 8-hour window each day and fasting the other 16. Others fast for a full 24 hour period once a week.  As for myself, I eat once every 24 hours.  There are numerous other approaches as well.  

What about media fast?

In Hong Kong at the Mass Transit Railways stations, there are all kinds of announcements.  Recently I notice an interesting one – ‘please mind the steps when using the escalators, do not only look at your mobile phone’.  In deed, the way Hong Kong people get addicted to their iPhone, iPad, iPod, i…everything is in a somewhat morbid state.  I’ve seen someone when getting off a bus, his eyes were still on his phone with fingers moving, perhaps composing an email.  In fact, I don’t see anything that cannot be deferred for a few seconds in order to get off the bus safely or use the escalator in a more safely manner. 

Over a social dinner, there was almost no interaction between my friend and me, because her attention was only on her iphone and ipad…that’s why I could only propose buffet when she invites me to eat.  That way I can focus on food, and she can focus on anything she loves.  Isn’t the morbid usage of media seriously affecting our lives?   

In fact, the excessive use of media does not only happen in Hong Kong, it’s a worldwide scenario.  If you can live a better life going on food fasting, are you able to survive without media for a period of time at least each day and regain control of how you want to spend your time, in a more positive way?  Here are a few of my suggestions.

Computer Fasting:  Schedule your computer time as needed. Get on, check the emails, respond right away, delete or file, and keep that inbox clean. Read the sites you want to read and then move on. Do it once a day or twice a day. Don’t just come on all day long and wander around the internet, as you could easily waste a whole day and be less productive.
Email Fasting:  When holidaying, set out-of-office alert such as ‘I’m on holiday with no internet access.  If it is urgent please contact…’  Remember, it won’t be the end of the world if people cannot reach you.  There must be ways that things can move on without you.  My former boss used to take us to offsites where there were practically no mobile connection of any kind (except Inmarsat).
Cell Phone Fasting: Do not make phone call unless it is extremely time sensitive.  Only answer phone calls from important people, whom you are expecting them to call.  Turn off the phone for a few hours a day (at least when you are eating or meeting). These are precious moments in your life that could be used for whatever you want them to be, instead of just talking to people who are looking to kill some time and gossip. Nothing is that urgent.  Do not make excuses such as ‘what if someone calls to inform my house is on fire or the day care centre calls for emergency’.
News Fasting: Check the head pages of Yahoo or MSN in the morning and look at the headlines, anything that is important will be there. Click on it if you find something you want to know more, if not then you’re done for the day. No need to sit through 30 minutes of pure negative energy from the local news. Take control over what information comes into your life, and what does not!
TV Fasting:  Enjoy the shows you like, turn off the TV when they are over.

These are just a few example of how you can apply the practice of fasting to any part of your life. You could fast from negative people, eating out, drinking, information overload, etc and more. Take control of how you want to spend your time, and the only way to know what you want to do is take time to just rest and relax.

I’ve come across a consultant who worked with a university student who was failing her grades. After a review of her schedule and her life, there was no question she was overwhelmed. As a result, her studies were suffering. Her life was so noisy that she had no peace.

The consultant counseled her to fast from all unnecessary input, including some favorite activities. Here is her fasting list.
  1. Stop watching all TV.
  2. Stop all online surfing except for course papers and research purposes.
  3. Fast from Facebook; block all incoming social media notifications.
  4. Completely cease listening to her iPod. Remove those ear buds!
  5. Quit coffee; her caffeine intake was abusive.
  6. Check email only three times a day.
In just 2 weeks, this young woman went from frazzled to calm and peaceful. It was challenging at first, but she was counteracting an addiction.

That’s the point. If you can’t stop checking your email every 3 seconds or Facebooking for hours a day, you are addicted. Those activities can contribute to stress-related illness and cause people to feel overloaded.

If you don’t think you can get rid of the actions that are controlling you, you likely are hooked. It’s time to fast. Fasting can be an easy and effective solution.

Today, review your schedule and decide if you need a media fast.  

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Fasting Is Not Just For Food

Fasting means willingly abstaining from something for a period of time and is mostly used in the terms of food.

Fasting not only gives us a chance to get away from something, but also the clarity and silence that may be needed in order to really figure out what is going on with our lives.

Do you ever feel overwhelmed by life?

Most people have experienced stress related to work, family, relationship, responsibilities, or simply life in general.

Need help? Well, it’s at your finger tip.

What is it?  Fasting.

The Process of Fasting

Have you ever felt overwhelmed because of the choices you have made—and society will continue to add to your obligations, if you let it.

Input from so many sources can swamp even the most organized individual. That’s how fasting comes into play.

Food fasting has been used for centuries to cleanse the system of toxins and give the body a break from the constant demands of having to process food.

Research has confirmed there are as many psychological benefits to fasting as there are physical benefits. For those who has successfully gone through any fasting process (either long or short) could reveal evidence that fasting can restore control.

If you fast successfully, you prove to yourself you can implement self-control over food; it indicates that you have the ability to re-gain control over other things in life.

I fasted from food for one reason:
·      On my way to relieve my bloating problem, with the side effect of weight lose.

Food fasting may not be for everyone but it taught me one important lesson in life - I can say ‘No’.  If you could learn to say ‘No’ through food fasting, you can learn to say ‘No’ to a number of other things in life, through which to re-gain your power of control and live a better life.

Food is not the only fixation that can be the focus of a fast.  Media fast is another hot topic which I’ll talk about in my next post.

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Benefits of Juicing

The Benefits of Juicing 
Most people do not eat their daily amount of recommended fruits and vegetables. Products like V8 have grown in popularity because many of those same people are realizing that in order to improve their health and avoid common illnesses or disorders, they must improve their diet. V8 provides a convenient way to add essential fruits and vegetables to your diet between meals. But why spend money on a product that is filled with unhealthy preservatives when you can juice your own produce at home and modify your juicing recipes to match your personal preferences?
 
Consuming fresh juices of fruits and vegetables has many benefits.
 
Fruits and vegetables are filled with essential vitamins and minerals that are vital to curing or fighting many common disorders. Recently, it was discovered that cabbage juice helps to treat peptic ulcers. And keracyanin, which is the pigment found in cherries, can help ease gout attacks and increases the movement in both fingers and toes.
 
Citrus fruits also play a major role in treating certain afflictions. Many can attest to the healing power of cranberry juice and its effect in preventing kidney stones and urinary tract infections. Plus, the healing power of grape juice is also widely well know. Grape juice contains a compound called trans-resveratol, which is believed to help reduce the risk of atherosclerosis.
 
By drinking at least three glasses of grape juice a day, you can prevent heart attacks just as effectively as taking an aspirin on a daily basis. But what most people do not know is that the pit of the grape contains powerful antioxidants called proanthocyanidins, which are considered even more potent antioxidants than vitamin C or vitamin E. Juicing grapes gives you the opportunity to consume these healthy benefits because when you juice grapes, you put them into the juicer with their seeds and all.
 
So why not just buy bottled juices? It’s simple. Bottled juices do not give you the healthy benefits that juicing fresh fruits and vegetables give you.
 
When you go through this blog, I never recommend packaged juices.  Why?  Because they are made from fruit concentrates and not whole fruit juices. Plus, packaged juice has to be pasteurized before it can be sold. Part of the pasteurizing process includes boiling the juice to stop the growth of bacteria and other various organisms. However, boiling the juice also destroys the natural vitamins and minerals within the juice, therefore decreasing its nutritional value. The major benefit of juicing at home is that you can avoid all of this and take full advantage of the total nutritional value of your fresh fruits and vegetables.
 
Juicing does not have to take up a lot of your time. It’s easy and quick to throw a few pieces of produce into your juicer and enjoy a fresh glass of juice within minutes. Juicing does not have to consume your life, and drinking even one glass of fresh juice every day will boost your vitality and your health in ways that you won’t expect.
 
For more benefits of juicing, click here.

Great Juice Recipes for Juicers


I have often heard of people starting out juicing by using their blender. I’m here to tell you that this is a huge mistake. A blender and a juicer are two separate appliances and they perform two different functions. 

A juicer’s purpose is to separate the liquid juice from the pulp. With a juicer, you can place your produce into it in manageable pieces -- peels, stems, and all. The juicer extracts the juice and disposes of its pulp. A blender, on the other hand, will not separate the pulp from the juice. Plus, a blender is not capable of giving you the kind of juice quality that you are looking for with juicing. If you were to toss stringy or hard vegetables like carrots, beets, or celery into a blender, the mixture would come out gritty instead of being like juice. 

Now that you are fully committed to using a juicer rather than a blender, feel free to create your own delicious juice recipes. 

Many people do not know where to start when doing this. They might be taking this task too seriously. The best part of creating your own juice recipes is using your imagination. You already know the taste of the fruits and vegetables that you desire to juice. You just have to think about which ones will taste good together. 

If you are looking to juice a vegetable that might not taste so good, consider mixing with it a fruit that has a strong taste. Lemons are great for this purpose. Some other fruits that you might want to try for this task are strawberries and citrus fruits such as oranges. You should also limit juice from green vegetables to 2 ounces per glass, or else you may experience some gastric discomfort. 

If you are a beginner at juicing, there are a few things that you need to know. First, avoid juicing bananas and avocados. They are very soft and can clog your juicer. Leave the juicing of those fruits to the pros for now. 

Another thing you should know is that most fruits and vegetables can be juiced as a whole in manageable pieces, but you should remove the rind of citrus fruits like grapefruit, tangerines, and oranges. Keep as much of the white pith as you can with these fruits, because that’s where many of the nutrients come from. Lemons and limes can be juiced whole with their peels. 

Allow yourself to be creative and don’t worry about making mistakes. Experiment with the flavors you like. Start off using just two or three different fruits and vegetables. Once you get the hang of juicing, you can broaden your skills and add a little bit more to your recipes. Juicing offers your body a huge amount of benefits. Vegetables are responsible for healthy muscle, tissue, glands, and organs, but it is only through juicing that you are able to consume one-hundred percent of their available nutrients. So, take full advantage of juicing and the healthy options that it offers you. 

Click here for more Great Juice Recipes for Juicers.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Juicing Information



 Juicing Information 

As my fasting weight loss success all began with a 6-day juice fasting, hence I’ve developed this blog.  Since then juicing has become an important part of my diet.  For those who are afraid of the word ‘fasting’ and for those who are afraid of getting hungry, juicing is an ideal solution.  I’ve researched the topic and pulled together some juicing information to share with you.  Here’s the first article, and a few more to follow. 

Juicing Information 

Many people are taking their nutrition and health seriously. They have turned to juicing to improve their health, increase their energy, and reduce their chances of developing the common health problems that face society today. 

Juicing involves pureeing fresh fruits and vegetables to make a juice or a smoothie. There are several benefits to juicing your daily serving of fruits and vegetables rather then eating them as whole foods. 

By drinking fresh juice, your body is able to quickly absorb the many vitamins, minerals, and overall nutritional value that fruits and vegetables contain by bypassing the digestion process that is necessary for whole foods. The nourishment of the fruits and vegetables are easily delivered across the intestinal walls and into the blood, where your body can use them right away. 

As a matter of tradition, we cook vegetables before eating without realizing that fruits and vegetables are healthier if they are eaten raw. Enzymes that play a key role in your metabolism are mainly found in raw foods. Enzymes convert the food you eat into body tissue and energy, increasing your metabolic rate. In turn, this helps you to burn more calories and leads to weight loss. 

In addition to an increased amount of energy and assistance in weight loss, juicing can also delay the effects of aging and promote longevity. Juicing gives you access to the essential vitamins, minerals, amino acids, essential fatty acids, and enzymes that raw fruits and vegetables contain. 

The nutritional makeup of these foods is stripped due to cooking, preserving, etc.  More importantly, fresh fruits and vegetables contain compounds known as antioxidants. These antioxidants neutralize the free radicals in your system. These free radicals are responsible for many degenerative diseases such as cataracts, high blood pressure, and even cancer.

Juicing can also help combat diabetes. Type 2 diabetes means your body has become resistant to the insulin produced by your pancreas. Recent research has shown that raw produce is the best super food for diabetics. It nourishes your body and stabilizes your blood sugar levels in ways that cooked produce cannot. 

In the past, experts have cautioned people with diabetes to stay away from sugars, even the ones found in fruits. Recently that opinion has changed, and we have found that specific nutrients such as vitamins A, B, and E, iron, potassium, etc. found in fresh fruits and vegetables aid in managing the disease naturally. Specifically, the vitamin B7 which is found in mangoes, nectarines, and peaches aids your digestive process and activates your enzymes. Diabetes is controlled by food intake and results from the inability to process sugars, making digestive health a priority for diabetics. Plus, manganese -- which is found in carrots, celery, cruciferous vegetables, garlic, beet greens, parsley, and spinach -- helps to reduce insulin resistance overall and improve the metabolism your glucose. 

Juicing is a simple and great way to optimize your health and energy. The best thing about juicing is that you can change the recipes and create ones that are specific to your needs and tastes. By simply learning about the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that will benefit and treat your specific disorder, disease, or condition, you can create your own scrumptious recipes and power juices to improve your health. 

Click here for more juicing information.