When should you not attempt an extended fast?

Hello fellow fasters, this short post is just to adress some concerns about which groups of people may have to consider not attempting an extended fast. All attempts at longer fasts than 24 hours should be taken with precautions and make sure you are well informed with fasting and what it does to your body.

Some groups of people should especially be careful when it comes to attempting longer fasts and some should even never do so for varying reasons, some of these include:

  • Young children and teenagers below the age of 18. They are young and still growing, need enough nutrition at different stages and need to make sure their bodies develop. If you’re reading this as a minor, then please be careful with fasting and consult your parents.
  • Same goes for elderly people with different health conditions, please make sure you consult with your doctor before attempting a longer fast.
  • Seriously ill people, if you suffer from chronic heart or kidney conditions, then you definitely shouldn’t fast since your body can be put under certain amount of stress during fasting. Please consult your doctor.
  • Women that are trying to get pregnant or currently are pregnant. Research on this topic when it comes to fasting is still very new and not set in stone. Pregnant women need plenty of nutrient-dense food.
  • If you have or are currently struggling with a eating disorder. In many ways, fasting allows us to control our food intake in a very extreme way and this can be dangerous combined with a eating disorder. Using fasting as a healthy tool for weight loss or controlling blood sugar is vastly different from using it to rapidly lose weight when you don’t need to. Please take care of yourself and be mindful of this.

Fasting is a great tool but has downsides for some groups of people, and I personally ask you to please be careful. For most people it’s perfectly safe and healthy to fast, but for some as outlined above it can cause complications and be outright dangerous. Do your research and make sure you are in the right shape, phase in your life and in the right mindset before attemping an extended fast.

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