The Flaming Vegan

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Break Free From the Shackles of Your Own Making By Fasting
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Break Free From the Shackles of Your Own Making By Fasting

Turning into a vegetarian is one of the best experiences of my life. It takes effort to break the old patterns of the mind and choose what you consider to be wise.

Navratri season began in India (and many places abroad) from yesterday. This is the time for a new beginning every year. Rituals are performed that help you let go of the past and start afresh.

There are many things that happen during Navratri and each has its own benefits. Here I want to talk about fasting. It is during these pious 9 days of Navratri when most people observe fasting.

Fasting simply means saying no to heavy food for a specified period of time. Fasting gives us a short term relief from our cravings and the mindlessness we all seem to live in.

All of us have a daily routine and with that routine come some habits and patterns that we live by. The idea is not be slave of the habits, break the routine for a while and in general, feel good.

Navratri is celebrated with vibrant colors and folk dances from Gujarat like Dandia and Garba that have become internationally popular now.

According to Ayurveda, fasting helps in cleansing the accumulated toxins in the body. We do not go totally without food in all fasts. For example, during Navratri fasting, most people live on fruits and fruit based food items. There is a huge variety of preparations that can be done with fruits alone!

This keeps the stomach light, body energetic and mind alert. We also cut down common salt completely during these days and some use Pink Himalayan salt.

Looking at it spiritually, fasting takes you a step closer to detachment; you become more aware of yourself and the cravings of your mind.

You start to see the difference between what you need and what you want. This realization starts with food but can be extended to other spheres of life as well.

Fasting has a tremendous affect on the body and the mind. You begin to feel better health with every passing day. If you have not fasted before, you may just start with observing a fast on first and last day of Navratri.

A balanced lifestyle is also recommended with fasting diet which includes eating and sleeping at the right time, drinking lots of water, chewing your food well and doing little exercise like yoga and stretching etc. All these when combined together get you greater benefits.

Navratri fasts make me realize that by changing a few habits we can really make big changes in our life – physically, emotionally and spiritually.

You too can break the habits that have held you back in the past towards a better healthier life and Navratri season is the best time to start!


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  1. kristo
    voted! I know it can be hard to get into a fast at first, but they are amazing after a few days. I used to do them when the season changed for two week periods. During that time I became obsessed with food because I couldn't have any, just liquids. A little boring, but you feel amazing after its done.
    1. Akanksha
      yes..we do consume potato, tomatoes, nuts, sago and different type of fruit based flours..that does make a variety of dishes! And of course, a huge variety of fresh fruits available here!
  2. Shabs Online
    Shabs Online
    Fasting sure plays a great role in bringing about our improved version...and Navratri brings along that special season of festivities that goes on....till Diwali! So first fast thn feast..... :P Voted! :)
    1. Akanksha
      yes exactly! Thanks for reading Shabs :)
  3. Veganara
    Voted. I keep hearing about the benefits of fasting, I must try it for myself. I did a detox once, where I had nothing but water and herbal tea for a couple of days, and found that very hard! Maybe you need to do it for longer to get the benefits.
    1. Akanksha
      I would say make green tea and lot of water a part of daily routine. You can keep occasional fasts like once a week or month and consume fresh fruits on that day. Cut out the grains and salt and you will definitely see the difference. It also depends on the amount of toxins present in your body at that time. Sometimes we are so used to them, we feel uncomfortable without them!
  4. Anubhav Lal
  5. Sumit  Bhardwaj
    Sumit Bhardwaj
    Rightly said Akanksha! Fasting, if combined with Yoga, increases the "Prana", the life energy, in one's body. Body has to undergo a lot of work to digest the heavy food we eat everyday and the life energy is used to make that happen. Fasting gives relief to the body from these tasks and that energy is used by the body for other constructive purposes. This can result in things like faster healing of internal injuries, better digestion system, and better liver health, to name a few. However, since its difficult to convince people to leave food :) , the ancient saint's who apart from being good souls, were very clever human beings too, connected fasting to various religious beliefs also. People can do things in the name of / fear of God which they otherwise resist. I know its a strong statement, but this is what I feel and I think they have done nothing wrong. :)
    1. Akanksha
      well explained! Thanks for reading and commenting :)
    2. abhasklal
      I agree with you Sumit, not just fasting all religious rituals suggested by religious leaders/saints were meant to good for the public. People follow them in the name of religion but otherwise would have resisted.
  6. Anita Vegana
    I enjoyed reading this. I may just take the time to do a fast! I voted.
    1. Akanksha
      Thanks for reading Anita! I am fasting (just no grains and salt) since 2 days now and feeling great :)
  7. SnakeWitch
    I've done fasts before and agree! After the first initial two or three days, I feel fine. I drank only juice on two of them and only water on one of them - but for less time, of course - and would recommend it wholeheartedly! I'm sure some of you might even remember that I wrote an article about it, How to do a Proper Juicing Fast. If anyone wants to read it, by all means do so! I voted! Don't forget to stop by my new article when you have a chance: Peanut Butter Energy Bombs!
    1. Akanksha
      Yes I remember your post about fasting with juices. It must be harder and definitely more beneficial. I will check out your post.. Thanks for reading :-)
  8. parneesha211
    Vote #11...sometimes people go overboard while fasting during navratras by eating all sorts of deep fried dishes. The key to healthy fasting is maintaining balance.
    1. Akanksha
      You raise a very interesting point here parneesha211. I personally keep a balance between fruits, nuts and flours and very limted dairy, if at all. Thanks for reading :-)
  9. abhasklal
    Specially useful for house-wives who have habit of 'popping up' every now and then. :). They practice control over what they are eating during the fast.


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