Many alternative health experts recommend occasional fasting, whether it’s a water-only fast, a juice fast, a Master Cleanse (‘lemonade fast’) or a fast where certain foods are restricted. Fasting can be an effective way to cleanse your body of toxins. It’s an attractive remedy for people with joint pain, insomnia or excessive weight. However, it’s important to know your own body’s limitations. By taking a few precautions and consulting with your doctor, you can make sure that you will avoid complications while fasting. Follow these steps to find out how.

Things You'll Need

Find Out If Fasting Is Right for You

Consult with your doctor before beginning any fast. Some medical conditions like diabetes and hypoglycemia can create complications while fasting.

Experiment by taking several short fasts before embarking on a longer one to see if your body reacts accordingly. A short fast would last 24 hours. A long fast will generally extend for more than 10 days.

Read more about proper fasting methods from Web sites like Dr. Ben Kim’s (see Resources below).

Avoid Complications While Fasting

Exercise consistently while fasting. The activity will help circulate your blood. Remember to never overexert yourself.

Drink at least 7 to 10 glasses, each 8 oz., of water per day. Your body’s need for water will increase without food.

Consider whether or not you should take a multi-vitamin while fasting. Keep in mind that some multi-vitamins can actually increase hunger pangs, dizziness and nausea.

Rest whenever you feel tired or run-down. Nap if and when you need to.

Get plenty of fresh air and sunshine during your fast. The body can absorb energy and vitamins from sunlight and the environment. Remember to wear your sunscreen!

End Your Fast the Correct Way

Avoid having a large feast for your first meal after a fast. The foods during your first meal should have a laxative effect to remove all of the mucus and toxins that have accumulated during the fast. Many people recommend drinking only watered down fruit juices and thin vegetable broth in the days after a fast is concluded.

Wait for a few hours after your first meal to see if you experience any discomfort before eating more food.


  • Fasting is generally inexpensive. In fact, for people who are in the habit of eating out at restaurants, performing a fast actually saves them money. Depending on the type of fast performed, however, you may need to purchase a juicer, herbal supplements or other reasonably priced paraphernalia.