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Yoga practitioners have a different take on intermittent fasting. Read on

Updated on:12 May 2021, 12:14pm IST
Intermittent fasting might make you lose those extra kilos, but the results won’t necessarily be long-term, as per yoga practitioners.
Dr Hansaji Jayadeva Yogendra
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yoga and intermittent fasting
Yoga practitioners look at intermittent fasting with a quite different perspective. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

There are a lot of dieting fads and trends dominating the health and fitness field right now. People turn towards dieting and fasting as a quick solution to get that slim figure before a big event, or simply because they want to look good for the upcoming wedding season. One of these trends is intermittent fasting.

Intermittent fasting is when you are supposed to increase the fasting window and decrease the eating window. So you basically get to eat in intervals—long intervals.

In the eating window, you can eat absolutely anything and everything but just ensure that you don’t binge eat. Again, there are different ways to do this as well—some even recommend a complete 24 hours fast. However, yoga doesn’t really approve of this way of fasting.

Yoga believes in long term changes
This kind of fasting works well if you just have a short-term goal in mind. However, the moment you stop the intermittent fasting and go back to your normal diet, you are back to square one!

This is the sole reason why yoga doesn’t really believe in such fads. Yoga believes in the long-term and permanent changes rather than short-term effects.

Intermittent fasting
Intermittent fasting is loaded with pros but it has its flip side too. Image courtesy: Shutterstock.

The only fasting that yoga recommends is the one which happens naturally, that is when you don’t eat anything after your dinner at 7PM, and directly eat the next day’s breakfast at 7AM. That gives a good 12 hours gap in between for the digestive system to get a little break.

Yoga believes that the main purpose behind fasting should simply be to overcome your weaknesses for food, to improve your health, and for self-development.

Fasting in yoga is only for controlling your desires, which is also a major klesha, known as raga, that is an attachment for a particular thing.

Also, listen:

Here’s how you can go about it
To cleanse the body from the inside, yoga recommends picking a day in which you eat nothing but fruits and boiled vegetables, without any added spices, salt or sugar.

You must strictly avoid all those shops that sell food items for ‘fasts’. Just stick to the basics and you’ll be fine.Yoga always says moderation is the key and strongly believes in mitaahara. 

Also, read: Considering taking up intermittent fasting? Take this quiz before you dive in

In today’s day and age, our bodies are being constantly pushed and overused. All of the unnecessary fatigue is because of untimely or unhealthy eating.

Fasting just provides us with an opportunity to heal, repair, detoxify the system, and gives the body some love and care that it deserves.

Dr Hansaji Jayadeva Yogendra Dr Hansaji Jayadeva Yogendra

Dr Yogendra is the Director of The Yoga Institute.