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Commentary on the method of unloading diet therapy (therapeutic fasting)
Medical fasting is also called the method of unloading diet therapy. And although both titles reflect the same process and have the right to exist, the second one, according to many authors, is preferable.
Medical fasting is a method of dietary treatment, and not rational nutrition, but since it is often used without qualified medical observation, not very educated people, I consider it necessary to dwell on this method of treatment in more detail.
The method of therapeutic fasting is used in the treatment of many diseases: cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, joints, respiratory, allergic, obesity, a number of mental disorders.
The method is based on the ability of a person to endure relatively long periods of famine, inherited from distant ancestors.
Despite the fact that from ancient times people knew about the curative effect of abstinence from food, the controversy surrounding the method of unloading and diet therapy has been going on for more than a decade. This method had its ups and downs; he seems to have as many supporters as there are opponents.
Adherents of unloading and dietary therapy consider it a general healing method aimed at mobilizing the body's defenses. This system forces the body to turn on reserve forces and direct them to normalize metabolism, improve digestion and blood circulation, and also to cleanse the body of the end products of metabolism.
The period of complete abstinence from food can be short-term (1-3 days) or long (up to 40-50 days). It can be divided into several phases.
The first phase (food excitation). Its duration is 2-4 days.
On the first or second day, the hunger-striker is annoyed by any mention of food: the look and smell of food, staying in the kitchen, etc. He is in a bad mood, sleep is disturbed, worries about the rumbling in the stomach, feeling of sucking or pain under the spoon. Weight loss is approximately 1 kg per day.
The second phase (growing acidosis - acidification of the internal environment of the body) lasts about a week. The feeling of hunger disappears, pain and discomfort in the stomach disappear. Thirst appears. General lethargy, general weakness is increasing. Nausea, headache, dizziness and even fainting are possible. The loss of body weight during this period is reduced to 300-500 g per day.
The third phase (compensation) begins approximately from the 9-10th day of abstinence from food and lasts from 2 to 5-6 weeks. During this period, energy needs are covered by 82% at the expense of fat, at 15% at the expense of proteins and at 3% at the expense of carbohydrates of its own organism. The body uses the least biologically significant tissues of the body as the source of these substances, “eating” itself (the so-called endogenous nutrition - nutrition at the expense of its own tissues). At the same time, changes associated with impaired liver function, loss of vital proteins by various organs and tissues, vitamin deficiency are observed. All this can be harmful to health, as it leads to metabolic disorders and reduced body resistance.
During the time of total abstinence from food, a person loses 15-17 kg of body weight.
The next stage, the recovery period, is no less complicated and responsible. Its duration is 10-15 days. It is very important to hold it correctly so that all previous efforts and deprivations are not in vain.
Start eating most often recommended carrot juice. They drink it with teaspoons, washing down every spoonful of juice with a glass of water. The recurring feeling of strong hunger is easily quenched with warm water and 1-2 teaspoons of juice. Weakness increases. The mood in this period is unstable. An independent chair appears after 2-3 days. On the 4-6th day of the recovery period, the appetite increases, so you should gradually expand the diet. In addition to juices and plant foods, you can begin to eat animal products. Body weight is rapidly increasing, and for many in 10-15 days it reaches its initial level. At the same time, physical strength returns, normal stool is restored.
In order to consolidate the effect of therapeutic fasting, after completing the course, one should switch to a vegetarian diet for a while.
For therapeutic and prophylactic purposes, one-day (24-hour) fasting is recommended. It is used in acute gastritis, enterocolitis, gastric bleeding, acute cholecystitis, pancreatitis, cardiac asthma, myocardial infarction, and overweight. One-day fasting with good portability can be held weekly. Here it is important to pay attention to the fact that in this case, as with a long fast, a recovery period is necessary. Therefore, in the first meal after a daily fast, it would be good to eat only salad and boiled or steamed vegetables. In the second reception, you can include meat or other animal products.
Oddly enough, obese people suffer the most from fasting.
This is due to the fact that although they have too much fat reserve, the metabolic processes for its use are slow. Having spent on the first or second day of carbohydrate reserves, the body to cover energy costs more begins to spend its own proteins, with difficulty adapting to the use of fat. And we know that proteins, as the main plastic (building) material, can be consumed as an energy source only in exceptional, emergency situations.
The body has no special depot for proteins and can not save them "in reserve". In general, with prolonged fasting, tragic outcomes (death) are not due to lack of energy, but because of a shortage of plastic material, primarily proteins. After all, if billions of old cells perish in our bodies every hour, then it is necessary that young ones appear in their place, the base of which is protein.
Foreign scientists on the basis of the conducted studies proved that in the process of medical fasting, the body also eats its own highly differentiated proteins, including lymphocyte proteins - the shock detachment of the body's defenses. Therefore, with increasing demands of a protective nature, starvation puts the body in extremely unfavorable conditions.
The course of therapeutic fasting is a serious load for a person, a kind of stressful situation, and it should be carried out exclusively under the supervision of a specialist. It should be remembered that fast-diet therapy is not the only method of treatment, there are others in which nutrition plays an equally important role. In cases where unloading therapy is carried out without sufficient evidence or not under the supervision of a specialist, medical fasting may do more harm than good.
Unfortunately, often supporters and active propagandists of unloading-diet therapy with enthusiasm begin to use this method of all patients in a row. Especially this trend has intensified in recent years, due to the emergence of private clinics, where the income of a doctor-entrepreneur is directly related to the number of patients.
But there is not and never will be a single method of treatment for all diseases! The human body is too complex system, and if it fails, then they can not be corrected by acting on only one link. So the method may have negative results. Therefore, it is not surprising that after the end of the course of therapeutic starvation, some patients have been unhappy with their health for a long time, some of them only note short-term success, others - exacerbation of the disease.
A lot of problems arise after, because, having completed the course of unloading and dietary therapy, sooner or later everyone should return to normal diet. Many can not cope with appetite and within 1-2 months not only return the lost kilograms, but also add new ones. In others, with the onset of normal dietary symptoms, the symptoms reappear. Still others violate the prescribed mode even during fasting or during the recovery period and only aggravate their condition. The fourth after fasting, even months later, can not restore normal physical fitness and in appearance it is difficult to say whether a person is healthy or sick.
In addition, it is necessary to emphasize in particular that the mechanistic idea that, in the course of a long-term fasting, cell slag removal is a delusion. The human body never accumulates metabolic products in the cells, that is, slags, they immediately pass into the blood and are removed by the cells of the liver or kidneys. At the same time, the astonishing constancy of the internal environment of the body is maintained; the systems responsible for this process have a large margin of safety. As a result, even significant deviations in nutrition do not lead to noticeable changes in the chemical composition of the cell.
Another misconception is the attempt to compare medical fasting with Christian fasting. But this is absolutely wrong! Fasting, as already written in the first part of this book (see the chapter “Vegetarianism and fasting”), provides for restricting certain types of food, rather than severe starvation, since long-term and complete refusal of food leads to profound pathological changes in the structures of the human body, some sort of their self-destruction.
In case of therapeutic fasting, a whole complex of protective measures, such as cleansing enemas, baths, massage, breathing exercises, and increased physical activity, is necessary for excretion of decomposition products (toxins). The church does not envisage anything like this during the fasting period, and this is not necessary, since the plant food in itself cleans the intestines well.
In conclusion, I would like to note that in recent years, many new methods of carrying out unloading and dietary therapy have appeared, which are different from the classical ones. However, if you decide to experience these questionable methods in many cases, at least consult a qualified dietary specialist.
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