Fasting has been around for centuries, with people doing it for various different reasons. For some, it helps them connect spiritually with a higher power, whereas others do it for health and fitness purposes– specifically weight loss. But going without meals could potentially lead to dehydration, especially when done for a prolonged period.
In this piece, we shall cover several ways to stay hydrated when fasting, starting with the perks of fasting alongside why you should stay hydrated.
The Various Benefits of Fasting
Fasting for health has many potential benefits, from weight loss to an increased sense of well-being. It can help reset your body’s natural hormone levels, restore proper metabolism, and even improve your immune system too.
By decreasing the amount of stress on our digestive systems, we’re able to give them a rest, while also potentially reducing inflammation in the body. Furthermore, studies have suggested that fasting could slow down signs of aging by eliminating damaged cells and stimulating cellular regeneration, ensuring a healthier future ahead!
Why it is Important to Keep Yourself Hydrated While Fasting
Staying hydrated is vital when fasting, and as you may have guessed, this is due to a decrease in water intake alongside an increase in metabolic activity. During fasting periods, the body begins to use stored energy, which can result in dehydration if not managed properly.
Furthermore, our bodies need electrolytes to maintain an ideal balance of fluid distribution between cells, muscles, organs, and membranes. This helps ensure that proper metabolic function continues smoothly, with enough available energy for physical activity and emotional well-being throughout the day.
So, Can You Drink Water When Intermittent Fasting?
The answer is yes, as long as you don’t overdo it as this could cause feelings of discomfort or bloating during your fasts! According to John Carney’s piece on mistakes to avoid when fasting, experts suggest keeping it at about one 8-ounce glass every two hours throughout the day, to avoid dilution of electrolytes, which could induce headaches and fatigue.
Non-Water Alternatives to Staying Hydrated During Fasting
While the best way to stay hydrated is by consuming adequate amounts of water, several other alternatives can help you enjoy the perks of maintaining proper hydration while fasting. Coconut water, for example, is high in essential minerals and electrolytes, which can help replace what has been lost due to dehydration and fasting.
Alternatively, you may also consider herbal teas as a hydrating option during a fast. Peppermint tea, for instance, might help stimulate digestion (after fasting), while chamomile is known to help reduce stress in the system. Many people also rely on vegetable broth or juice as an additional source of hydration during their fast.
Snack Smart on Light Foods and Healthy Drinks that Help Maintain Your Hydration Levels During Fast Day
Maintaining your hydration levels while fasting is essential, so it’s important to snack smart with light, hydrating foods before or in between meals. Salads with plenty of water-filled vegetables such as cucumbers, tomatoes, and lettuce are a great option for snacking in between fasting periods.
Additionally, consuming fruits like melons or berries (fresh or frozen) before fasting can help keep your body hydrated enough to last through the fast. Smoothies and soups are other great alternatives you might want to try to maintain the necessary hydration levels while fasting.
Avoid Sugary or Caffeinated Beverages
Last but not least, it’s best to avoid sugary drinks such as soda and energy drinks when fasting. These are known to cause a sudden spike in blood sugar levels and lead to dehydration, so they might as well make it on your list of bad habits to give up for good. It is equally important to abstain from the consumption of caffeine as well.
The diuretic properties associated with coffee may have an effect on your body’s ability not just to rehydrate itself but also to absorb effective amounts of electrolytes when needed. If you must ingest something with caffeine during your fast, opt for decaf or herbal tea so that hydration remains consistent.
Overall, staying properly hydrated when fasting can greatly improve your fast-day experience. If well approached, doing so will also help provide the vital minerals and electrolytes your body needs to keep metabolism at peak during fasts.