Yesterday, since it was Friday, I decided it was time for a beer, fries, and a burger. I don’t indulge in beef that regularly, but when I do, I like it big and a little bloody. So, I gorged myself at a local beer/burger joint, and then immediately regretted it. You know that feeling in your stomach when you’ve shoved in too much food? The pooch of it? The swelling, the discomfort, the self-inflicted pain?
Add to that the fact that I also had about 3 or 4 beers (I lost count), and we’re in trouble.
I went, tipsy, to Barnes and Noble, of course, and purchased about $50 worth of books. That is, apparently, what drunk geeks do with their drunk-ness over the age of 35. No dancing on bars, or getting into posh bars, or even carousing. Just book buying. (Life, as I knew it, is officially over, thank God.)
Today, after a less than satisfying night of sleep, I decided to try the “one-day fast”. Apparently, scientists in Salt Lake realized that Mormons die less frequently of heart disease because of prescribed one day of fasting each month. True story. Google it if you don’t believe me. The benefits of fasting, however, don’t just accrue to the believers. Us non-believers also get the same benefits.
So, I grabbed my water, and set off to see if this has any legs. I researched the hell out of fasting this morning, just to make sure I wasn’t going to irreparably injure myself. As it turns out, unless you are a diabetic or have another serious condition, fasting for one day is perfectly appropriate for just about everyone. I’m on hour 15, if you count the fact that I didn’t eat after midnight last night.
And I’m STARVING.
I’m also light-headed and exhausted, which is probably why it is recommended to fast on a day when you don’t have to do anything else. Like read theory, which I erroneously thought was going to be possible with low levels of blood sugar. However, that is exactly the point of fasting, to “reset” the body’s metabolism, sugar levels, cholesterol levels. It’s like a cleansing of all the crap that we love to eat.
So far, so good.
I think that one of the hidden benefits of this process will be that I have a better appreciation for food. And the fact that some people in the world don’t have the option to starve themselves for just one day – theirs is a more permanent state of hunger. I’m already dreaming of the piece of toast I will reward myself with past midnight, and the good, nutritious food I’ll have tomorrow, when I resume my regime of working out. This has also reminded me to send a check to Jorge Munoz, of NYC, who I read about in the NYT. He feeds – out of his own pocket – a group of Spanish-speaking day laborers in the city that would otherwise go to bed penniless and hungry (if no one contracts them). He does it because he is an immigrant himself, remembers what it was like, and vows not to let anyone go hungry if he can help it. For a living, he drives a NYC bus.
I’m not suggesting that you have to fast to donate, but it’s good for your heart in two ways, rather than just one.
Send donations (any amount, his sister Luz tells me, will help):