Caution fasting cure: When food deprivation becomes dangerous – Encyclopedia for Medicine & Health

Beware of fasting: when starvation becomes dangerous

In principle, fasting cures are suitable for improving physical well-being. However, since the process is a significant burden on the metabolism, such a project should only be done in consultation with a doctor. Because if done incorrectly, the deprivation of food can do more harm than it should actually do.

Why fasting can also be harmful

During fasting , the body has to do without vitamins , proteins , proteins and fats. Minerals are also hardly absorbed. Muscle loss , hyperacidity and deficiency symptoms are common risks during a fasting cure.

Anyone who already suffers from underlying diseases must speak to their doctor before starting a planned cure. This determines to what extent fasting is possible and accompanies the entire fasting period attentively. Children are a special risk group. They need a lot of vitamins and nutrients. Otherwise, growth disorders and sudden deficiency diseases can be the result of an ill-considered fasting cure.

cold or a chronic disease of the immune system are also exclusion criteria for fasting. Because in times of such diseases, the body needs all its strength and therefore nutrients for recovery or to defend against immune disorders. Otherwise, the clinical picture can rapidly deteriorate.

The damage of an ill-considered fasting cure can lead to a life-threatening condition. The lack of minerals is a great danger for an unhealthy heart, for example. Possible risks are then cardiovascular problems up to a heart attack . People suffering from depression or battling cancer must also avoid fasting.

Because only with a balanced diet can the medication administered be effective in a way that is vital for healing. If nutritional building blocks are missing, irreparable damage can result from existing weaknesses in the body. The risk groups mentioned here as examples can discuss gentler alternatives with the treating doctor instead of a fasting cure. A special diet with sufficient nutrient intake can have a long-term cleansing and detoxifying effect similar to that of fasting.

Beware of liver and kidney diseases, pregnancy and eating disorders

Those who suffer from liver and kidney diseases do not necessarily have to do without a fasting cure. With the therapeutic fasting method, a doctor constantly monitors the functionality of both organs. However, it depends on which organ diseases are present, because some stresses caused by fasting would not have the desired effect of relief and cleansing.Patients who are not accompanied by a doctor endanger their lives and risk organ failure , at least impaired liver and kidney function. Pregnant women harm themselves and the child with a fasting cure. Malformations and growth disorders in the embryo are possible risks.

Even after giving birth, fasting is taboo for breastfeeding women. Because now the body has to change hormones again and at the same time produce food for the baby. Anyone fasting now, perhaps out of misunderstood health and body awareness, risks new illnesses or old illnesses flaring up again. The baby would also hardly be fed a balanced diet if the breastfeeding woman did not eat during this physically highly productive time.

An eating disorder causes a permanent imbalance in the supply of nutrients. Anyone who now also fasts strictly risks their life, or at least an increase in the eating disorder . Patients with eating disorders are primarily interested in fasting because of the desired weight loss. However, the effect will not occur or will promote a yo-yo effect after the end of the fasting cure. This could only aggravate the mental suffering of those affected.

The influence of fasting on medication

The dosage of medication is precisely tailored to body weight, the degree of illness and other personal characteristics. The prescribing physician assumes a normal diet. However, if the body does not get this normal supply of food through fasting, an overdose of certain medications is to be feared.

The stomach and intestines are also extremely stressed by the active ingredients of the medication at such a time. It is not without reason that there are recommendations for taking tablets, when and what food should be taken with the medicine. These recommended foods and liquids ensure optimal effects given the other body characteristics present.

If you only need to take medication temporarily, you can discuss starting a fast after the end of administration with your doctor. If, on the other hand, it is medicine for chronic diseases, then fasting is out of the question for the sake of health. Depending on the type of chronic disease, however, there are homeopathic alternatives in a few cases .

With these, the otherwise drastic overdose can be avoided during the fasting period. However, even now it is important to realize that fasting is not a diet . So if the only goal of the cure is to lose weight, there are gentler and more sustainable ways in which those affected do not have to do without food and can still lose weight.

Fasting increases blood pressure and diabetes

Under favorable circumstances, fasting can have a positive effect on people’s blood pressure. However, here, too, the supervision of the doctor treating you is an absolute prerequisite. Before starting a fasting cure, it must also be clarified exactly what causes the high blood pressure . Because some of the triggers of this mostly chronic disease are favored by food deprivation.

A very fluctuating blood pressure with dangerous high pressure peaks could then be the risky consequence of fasting. The assumption that high blood pressure can be combated by weight loss is a misconception. The overall physical condition is more important, and in hypertensive patients, proper medication improves it rather than fasting. Fasting with diabetes is also excluded. There are no exceptions based on diabetes type.

Rather, the body is permanently dependent on regular food intake with a balanced ratio of nutrients. If the diet in diabetes is to be changed at all, intermittent fasting can be discussed with the doctor treating you . This isn’t a complete diet, it’s just more than the normal hours between meals. But even then, the risk of life-threatening hypoglycaemia cannot be ruled out.

When it makes sense to break off a fasting cure

Anyone who starts a fasting cure thoughtlessly and without consulting a doctor can promote the development of some of the diseases mentioned. That is not the point of fasting. At the latest when previously unknown symptoms such as changes in heart rhythm , low blood pressure or stomach pains occur , a visit to the doctor is essential. If such symptoms persist for two days, the treatment must be stopped immediately and the body rebuilt. Here, too, medical support is a safe method to avoid consequential damage.Discontinuation of the fasting cure must also be considered in completely healthy people as soon as symptoms such as constant tiredness , tachycardia or an inexplicable weakness appear. This is rare during accompanied fasting and is always a sign that the body is currently overwhelmed by the lack of food. Any form of fasting requires a longer learning process. If this is done sensibly and together with the doctor, many of the risks of fasting can be avoided.

Fasting should not be confused with a strict diet. Other methods are therefore better suited to achieving permanent weight loss. The numerous risks of a fasting cure can only be avoided if accompanied by a doctor. Very often, you should not fast at all and if symptoms occur, the treatment should be stopped immediately.

Lisa Newlon
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Hello! I am Lisa Newlon, and I am a medical writer and researcher with over 10 years of experience in the healthcare industry. I have a Master’s degree in Medicine, and my deep understanding of medical terminology, practices, and procedures has made me a trusted source of information in the medical world.