Coronavirus and Fasting

This topic contains 4 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Jayneyw 2 months, 1 week ago.

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  • Hi There,

    I haven’t posted on any forums since shortly after reaching (and more or less maintaining my goal weight range) nearly five years ago. However, I was wondering a few things and thought I’d open a discussion.

    First, let me give you some background. Without belaboring the point, while I have a couple of what we yanks refer to as pre-existing conditions (in my case, gallstones and very slightly elevated breast cancer risk), I’m otherwise healthier than I’ve ever been in my life.

    Because I like eating, something I started doing about three or four years ago is fasting four days weekly (though I’m adding a fifth this week–today). Just FYI, when I fast I have only water (and lots of it), fiber, and my daily supplements. In other words, this week, the last meal I ate was dinner this past Sunday, and I’m currently looking forward to having breakfast tomorrow–whatever I weigh. Of course, I see benefits of that, but I was just recalling that some time ago someone on one of the forums said that he was flipping the 5:2 and making it 2:5, which is what I’m doing this week as I’ve said. My questions to you are:

    1. Do any health care professionals on this forum know anything about whether or not fasting has any impact on either a) decreasing risk of getting COVID-19 in otherwise predominantly healthy individuals, or b) making it go away/go away faster for those unfortunate enough to suffer from it (i.e. Boris Johnson)?

    2. Would anyone care to weigh in on the impact it might have on the food supply if enough of us switched to 3:4 or 2:5 fasting? If enough of us did that, we would certainly have no tendency to buy out the grocery stores!

    These are just some thoughts and questions I have. It will be interesting to see if anyone replies, and if so, what those replies are.

    Many thanks for reading this,

    Jayney

    I don’t know if you are going to get a good answer, but I’m curious too. I’m not a health care professional. Personally what I decided was shorter fasts are likely safe and may be helpful but this probably isn’t the best time to longer fasts, (2+ days in my book.) There are profound effects that happen when fasting longer. This is just a personal viewpoint. I’m currently doing 2, 36 hour water fasts a week but I personally feel that pushing it as hard as I want to do.

    I think the second question has a lot of merit because it is possible there will be more food shortages over the next year. That could happen for many reasons. Personally I think there is some advantage in being used to fasting as there might come a time when it is a useful tool. However in the end, we have to eat to live.

    Thanks Dykask. I see your point, and I realize that fasting four-five days straight is rather extreme, but in my case, because I’m a) healthier than most people my age who I know, b) used to fasting like that, unless I hear otherwise (which I’m totally open to), and c) since I’ve been continuing to fast this long and it’s likely that we’ve seen the peak virus activity in this area according to a nurse I know, (and yes, most people here continue to keep our distance) my current plan is to continue alternating 4:3 and 5:2 unless I hear otherwise.

    Regarding your last comment, obviously, a lot of people would have to be fasting for some significant number of days per week to even make a dent on all those hoarders out there, but I agree that getting used to fasting for days at a time might be useful if the food supply ever gets to that point, (which I sincerely hope it never does).

    I can’t give an authoritative answer for your first question, and only an opinion on the second. I think IF is a good way to cope with a global crisis like the one we have. If enough people do it, then yes, it would keep people from buying more than necessary, and probably leaving more for others who are not as fortunate as us to go shopping when we can. But that might not be a solution that’s great on a bigger scale.

    Thanks Mukica, I appreciate your post and see what you mean. Due to everything (including the gym) still being in lockdown (until at least June 1st here, though that seems unlikely for my specific area), although we are in phase 1 of a four-phase reopening, gyms won’t reopen here until phase 3. Since we still have enough cases that we likely won’t enter phase 2 on June 1st, I have no idea when gyms will be open again. I’ve ordered strength-training exercise equipment to use until then–which has yet to arrive, so for the last three weeks (last week included–and likely this week as well) I’ve been water/fiber/supplement fasting with exercises five days weekly. I wouldn’t normally do that, but desperate times require desperate measures, and this is what I need to do to keep my weight in check. If, in addition, I also buy less food and leave more for my neighbors, I’m quite content with that. Although, as you say, if I’m the only one doing so, that probably won’t make much of a dent on a larger scale.

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