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Author Topic: Trying my first fast  (Read 10773 times)
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AdamB
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« on: June 06, 2011, 04:19:42 PM »

Some background on me I am a 38 year old male in good shape but last fall I got bronchitis and after several rounds of anti-biotics and steroids suddenly got mysterious joint pains. Pain in my feet, left thumb, right elbow, hips (real bad). That went on for 4 months while I tried desperately to fix it. I started the paleo diet eliminating dairy, gluten, legumes but the pain was still around but seemed to decrease a bit or come and go. Then one day I burned my mouth inside on something and I couldn't eat anything for several days but cold squash soup. Over that 4 days I started feeling better. On the 5th day I switched to sweet potato soup and then 24 hours later the pain was back big time. I didn't connect the dots. Kept doing paleo and started feeling better again but it took 6 days. Then about the time I got better I ate a gluten free pad thai meal and the same thing happened next day I was in bad joint pain. I looked at the ingredients and noticed "Soy" was in it. I quickly found the sweet potato soup I had eaten previously and yes it contained Soy also. So In January I quit eating soy and my life improved immensely. I felt good for about 3 months but never 100% still very slight joint pains. Lately it seems to be getting worse again although nothing like the Soy days. My sister recommended Barbara's book so I got it and have read it. It has been really helpful and I am starting my first fast. Today is the first day on it. I am just doing water this time although I may break down and go back to the squash soup or cabbage juice. I am a bit nervous to do carrot juice since a skin allergy test said I was mildly allergic to carrots but I haven't tested that yet.

Anyway today is day 1 no real change yet but it's just been 24 hours. Lately I have been having pain in my left ankle and neck both of which have been pretty mild but continuous for at least a month. Trying to see if the fasting will shut down that pain. I will post on here as the days go on how its going.
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Barbara Allan
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« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2011, 07:28:11 PM »

Dear Adam,

Welcome to my Conquering Arthritis forum.  I am delighted you have joined.

If you already know you react poorly to carrots, I recommend you find some other vegetable you can juice that you feel fairly sure agrees with you.  It usually takes about three days on a therapeutic fast (vegetable broth, vegetable juice) to feel better.  That assumes that whatever vegetables you choose to use agree with you and don't trigger any inflammation.

I look forward to you ongoing posts.

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AdamB
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« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2011, 01:59:45 PM »

Thank you Barbara!

Today is day 2 but today I had no vegtable juices only water. I want to have some clear indication/break in my pain to spur me on and I am afraid/paranoid of being sensitive to the very vegtables I choose to fast on so I did juice yesterday but just decided to go water only starting today. My pain level may have dropped a very slight bit I think. I am going to use the pain I had on my first day as a baseline so I will say it was a 10 (in reality it was more like a 2) but I need a larger scale for observation purposes here. If yesterday was a 10 then today maybe was a 7 or 8 still there but maybe it did drop down a bit. Today was very tough in the hunger department. This takes a lot more willpower than I imagined. My mind seems a little "jumpy" is how I would describe it haha. Will post again this time tomorrow.
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Barbara Allan
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« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2011, 06:15:51 PM »

By the end of the third day, is usually when the inflammation turns off. 

Yes, the hunger is greater on a water fast than a juice fast.   I hardly notice the hunger most of the time on a juice fast.

The physical hunger should diminish tomorrow.  You may still have the urge to eat out of habit, however.
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AdamB
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« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2011, 11:23:27 AM »

Starting day 3 today is a lot better hunger and craving wise. I feel like I have a lot more energy too. Yesterday I was doubting I could do this and thought a lot about how and when I could break the fast. Posting on here was a great way to give myself some accountability and it helped. I think I can do this now. Pain wise things have improved too from yesterday my neck pain seems to have went from a 7 yesterday to a 3 today. Left ankle pain is still the same about a 7 but as Barbara said I haven't made it to the end of day 3 yet. I am interested to see what tomorrow will be like. Barbara I am sure the 3 day period not the exact same for everyone so I intend to stick with it a little longer if necessary. When I break the fast I intend to do it like you say in your book which is slow with one food at a time starting with alkalizing food. I have been considering spinach or apple like you did.

One thing since I was still having pain this morning I was a bit discouraged which forced me to look harder at what else I am exposing myself too. I looked at soaps and shampoos and then I put some lotion on my hands and elbows like I do every day and then (for the first time) read the bottle of lotion and it said of course Soybean oil. I was a bit shocked. I do remember you said in the book to remove all environmental things you react too. I washed all that off the best I could but wondering how much skin absorbtion of a known allergen can aggravate or initiate gut related sensitivities like arthritis. I would think it wouldn't be as much of an issue but not sure.
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Barbara Allan
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« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2011, 01:50:24 PM »

Yes, checking all the products you are using is a good idea. 

It isn't just what we swallow, but anything that we put in our mouths (including tooth paste), that we inhale (including food odors and exhaust fumes) and anything that touches our skin (such as shampoo, lotions, soap, hand sanitizers) that can trigger inflammation.

As long as you are still be exposed to something that is triggering your inflammation, you inflammation will not go completely away, even on a water fast.  On a fast (when our bodies are clearing out irritants at a much faster rate than when we are eating) it usually takes three full days from when you withdraw an inflammatory trigger until it is is cleared from the body and it is no longer triggering your inflammation.  When eating, it usually takes 7 days for an triggering substance to be completely cleared.

Because you still had soy exposure yesterday, it will probably take three days from your last exposure, for that inflammation to go away.
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AdamB
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« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2011, 08:08:37 AM »

Results of my fast...

Even though my remnant pain never fully susided I think I learned another food I react too. I broke the fast yesterday with cabbage and definitely had a reaction to it. I had previously had cabbage on my list of 4 foods I suspected (cabbage, onion, chocolate, garlic) after a reaction a couple of weeks ago. I made some cabbage juice yesterday morning and drank it and it kind of burned my mouth and throat and tasted pretty bitter. Later I ate some whole cabbage. By early this morning my neck pain had gone from a 1 to a 6 I couldn't sleep it was so bad last night. It is still pretty bad today. I am backing off the cabbage for now and eating other stuff. There is one more source I have identified so Barbara the fast wasn't a loss and I appreciate your help and support!
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Barbara Allan
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« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2011, 04:25:48 PM »

Adam, it is good that you now know that cabbage is a problem for you.  You are right, that is one valuable piece of knowledge you have gained.  

Now if you avoid all your known allergens (including the lotion you were using with soy) and you have caught them all (including any hidden sources), you should start feeling better within a week.  

If you haven't caught and eliminated all your allergens, you will feel better, but there will still be some nagging little bit of inflammation/pain/fatigue/brain fog/not feeling quite right.

The fewer the sources of problematic food and chemicals that are left, the easier it gets (if you are paying attention to when you are better and when you are worse) to catch the remaining culprits.

For anyone else reading this post, the easiest way to identify problematic foods and substances that are triggering your inflammation is with a blood test:
http://www.ConqueringArthritis.com/alcat

Although I fasted and then used selective reintroduction to indentify my own food sensitivities (and it worked), it took me two years of fasting once a month, until I finally caught all my hidden sources.  This blood test can cut years off the process.  The blood test also makes fasting optional.   You only need to fast if it makes sense for your particular situation.  Fasting isn't mandatory although for some people it a good choice.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2011, 04:30:49 PM by Barbara Allan » Logged
Nicole
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« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2011, 08:19:35 PM »

Hi Adam,

I am new to this forum and just read your postings about fasting.  You haven't posted since early June, so I was wondering how you are doing.  I also did a fast in May, and it was crazy hard with the cravings for food.  But I was feeling pretty darn good by the end of day 3 (pain was gone, but my joints ached!  as if they had been beaten up and needed some healing).  But unfortunately the pain and swelling came back immediately on day 4 and I couldn't identify which foods caused it.  I have since decided to do Alcat, and will most likely order the kit this weekend.  I am 38 years old and just got tested for RA in March.

Thanks!
Nicole
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AdamB
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« Reply #9 on: July 14, 2011, 07:28:39 AM »

Hey Nicole I am still here doing ok. Since my posts earlier here I have been doing a rotation diet and have been able to identify some further foods that cause these flare ups for me. Peanut butter is one and Alcohol was another one. In both cases my pain had pretty much subisded through rotating some foods that I had identified that didn't give me problems but on 2 different occasions when I had an alcohol drink the next day the pain was back and it stayed for 4 to 5 days before going away again. Same thing on 2 occasions with peanut butter. So far here is the list of things I know for certain I react to:

Soy,
Cabbage (i avoid the entire mustard greens family for now but haven't tested others in the same family yet)
Alcohol (could be anything yeasty so I avoid that stuff to for now until I have a chance to test it)
Peanut Butter
Cottonseed oil
Sweet potato


One observation here I found it is very difficult to find the first couple of things you are sensitive too but once you find them finding the next things become a bit easier. Easy is relative though I have been going at this since January and still working on the problem. I ate peanut butter over the weekend my second test of it and hurt for several days. At night I would get stiffness in shoulders and neck and it was painful to move. Not as bad during the day with lots of movement.Yesterday I started feeling good again and today I am going fishing in the mountains with a friend I feel pretty good again. Once that food gets out of my system its like night and day.

I am going on vacation over the next 7 days in the outer banks of NC so that will be a bit tricky for me. I plan on lightening up on the rotation for that period only. I will be eating at restaurants a lot and that can be challenging for me cause most of them use soy in everything. My plan is to eat a lot of steamed or broiled seafood along with baked potatoes and salad. Fasting taught me that I don’t “have” to eat it’s not always a requirement to have 3 meals a day so if I can’t find something that works I will just skip it and be fine.
« Last Edit: July 14, 2011, 07:50:42 AM by AdamB » Logged
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