Here's how you can survive your 'food fasting' this Lent

Alixandra Caole Vila (The Philippine Star) - February 18, 2015 - 5:22pm

MANILA, Philippines – It’s not like  lighting is going to strike you from above if you do not fulfill your Lent fasting, but keeping up with your vow to fast is as important as any promise.

Fasting is a simple reminder of what it means to suffer and to understand the sacrifice Jesus did for humanity. As a form of penitence, many people fast or voluntarily give up certain types of luxuries during the Lent season. The most common form of fasting during Lent is fasting from food.

We know for a fact that going on for days without eating as much as you want is not an easy challenge. But don’t give up just yet! Here are some helpful guides and tips on how to stick with your plan to give up a little more food for this holy season.

Seek for your doctor’s advice. You cannot just declare a “no food for 40 days” without seeking for professional’s advice. To ensure that your fasting is safe, consultation with your doctor is recommended. This specially applies to people with health conditions.

Lent is not about going hardcore. We understand that giving up food is not easy. Fasting does not mean killing yourself by starvation as fasting is prescribed for only two days throughout Lent–Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.

Refrain from meat. For starters, try abstaining from all animal products and allow the consumption or fish or fowl. Abstinence from meat is only prescribed on Fridays during Lent.

Go for a single meal. Just so you could have the energy to keep you going, munch on a SINGLE meal late afternoon or early evening each day. Eat half of the rest of your meals on prescribed days.

There's such thing as collations. During fasting, eating two small snacks called collations. Remember that these two snacks are not supposed to be equal to a full meal when put together.

Give up two from your diet that you are accustomed to eating daily. We know you love bacons, rice and coffee, but this is a good time to give those up. Quit on sugar or caffeine but make sure you stock up on sugar alternatives that can help energize you.

Choose juice. If you are on a juice fast, drink raw fruit juices such as apple, grape, and pineapple, which are good source of natural sugar and great energy booster.

Water! Water! Water! If it isn’t obvious enough, hunger and dehydration is the formula to your early demise. It is wise to abstain from strong stimulants such as caffeinated and sugary drinks (soda, softdrinks, powdered juice) during a fast. Also, avoid soy protein drinks.

Herbal laxative therapy. The body begins detoxifying during a fast, dropping the toxins into the intestines. The toxins can hurt your intestines or reabsorb into your bloodstream, making you feel nauseous. It is important to take laxatives during the fast early during the fast and then intermittently throughout the rest it to keep away the toxins.

Rest if you must. Feel free to take a break and do not exhaust yourself too much. The logic is as simple as this: There is no enough food to support your grueling activities. So you need not to be super active during your fasting.

Pray.  Remember, you are not fasting to cut some inches from your waist. You are doing this to purify yourself. Seek for strength and realign your heart with God.

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