Thursday, June 28, 2012

My Thirty Day Water Fast - The Eve

The Last Meal

I know, I know, it sounds crazy and I am not sure I will not change my mind, say, about one hour after I consume that last disgusting meal (pictured left). I have done a ten day fast once in my life....that would be nearly forty years ago, and I have fasted a day here and two days there, but never anything prolonged.

A thirty day water fast is called Maaskhaman by the Jains, a fast done for purely spiritual reasons. My reasons are a bit more all over the map: spiritual, health, weight, curiosity, but, most of all, I have a desire to get off a pattern of careless behaviors, to institute mindful choices and to learn to accept some suffering and not always  gratified myself instantly.

I will attempt to blog about this journey, what I am learning from it on a daily basis, how I deal with not celebrating with food on the Fourth of July and my birthday on July 23 (if I am still fasting), and, if I break the fast along the way, what caused me to throw in the towel.

Off to my final Diet Pepsi and my two Red Velvet Whoopie Pies.

Criminal Profiler Pat Brown

June 28, 2012


Dawn Dix said...

How can one SURVIVE on just water for 30 whole days?! Damn Pat, I give you props!

Pat Brown said...

It is very physically possible, Dawn, but the breakdown is usually mental. We shall see how I do....I haven't made it past ten days before and last time I tried for ten I fell apart at four.

cathi said...

Good are a brave (or foolish) woman. Ten days is a major feat if you ask me, I am impressed...I doubt I could do 2 days. Ok, I lie, I know I could not do one day. I wish you well, look forward to hearing about your results.

Llcoolsa said...

Isn't that starving yourself though? Surely that's not good for you. Your body will go into starvation mode and will only store fat more efficiently when you do start eating again.

Pat Brown said...

Actually, Lleoolsa, the concept that fasting equals starvation is, in my opinion, incorrect. Your body doesn't starve until all your fat is gone and the body has nothing to live off of. Also, when you eat again, you don't pile fat on unless you eat like a pig. Sometimes that happens simply because one is so happy to eat again, one returns to past patterns.

Pat Brown said...

Thanks, Cathi! I am not sure how it is all going to go, but we shall see!

Llcoolsa said...

I don't want to be negative about your endeavor, but along with losing fat you will also lose muscle. You don't want to lose muscle because the more muscle mass you have, the higher your metabolism. Less muscle equals slower metabolism and you don't want that. Good luck though. I will look forward to your blogging about it.

amie said...

Are you at least taking vitamins to replenish any nutrients you are losing from not eating?

Pat Brown said...

No, Amie, vitamins are not recommended during a water fast. I have never taken them anyway. I get my nutrients from food. During a fast, vitamins will not process properly and make you sick due to an empty stomach. One point of any fast (if not entirely religious) is to rest the digestive system and to allow it to flush out toxins. A water fast is a water fast; hence, one only has water.

Anonymous said...

You have toxins stored in your body fat mass. They will be released into your system ... "Survival of the fattest" was a true saying for agriculture workers to survive at a time when the most horrible pesticides were still used in high doses :-(

My second father-in-law went on a [rather strange] diet of lemon-juice, maple sirup and pepper for detox and weight loss. He died.

Please don't get me wrong. I admire your ability to make/take drastic changes/actions. However, please promise yourself to rethink when you start feeling "strange"?

Best wishes, Châtelaine

Pat Brown said...


I am sure there is more to th story than your father-in-law went on that fast and died. How old was he, what were his health issues, how long did he do this, and what actually caused his death?

Anonymous said...

Mrs. Pat,

Of course, there's always more to a story - to yours probably too ;-)

He was 64, overweight, I guess but cannot be sure [we were 800 km apart] he was on it for 2-3 weeks and then died of cardiac arrest.

I am serious, though, about a crash diet. Your body [I'm not talking toxins now] may favour fat over muscle. Your brain won't get sugar, which may make you hallucinate and
your muscles may weaken [heart?].

Still, again, I do admire your determination in this and many other things and do hope you will allow us to follow the course of things.

Cordialement, Châtelaine

Anonymous said...

Please post everyday. Tell us everything. Are you under someone's care who has experience with fasting for a month? What made you select a month as your time frame? Don't hesitate to quit if you get in any trouble. We don't want to lose you.

Pat Brown said...

Ah, Joan, funny that we are so afraid of not eating but not afraid of eating to excess which is what is killing most of us before we should be dying!

I WILL try to post every day, Joan, and let everyone know how it is going and what my experience with long fasting is like. I picked thirty days because this is the Jain choice of longer fasting and, from what I hear, that length is necessary for more of the full experience. However, if I run into issues that do concern me, I will shorten the fast as needed (or if I just bail which is more likely the case!). I am under no one's care because I don't see physician's (at least not in twenty years). I have normal blood pressure and no diseases that I know of, so I am considered healthy if overweight at the moment.

Anonymous said...

Overweight? Excuse me... You've been posting photos from x-years ago ...?
Dear Mrs. Pat, if you do not have an underlying condition, do make the experiment an experiment and nothing more than that. I don't know exactly why I care so much. It may be seeing an independent, headstrong, willful, witty, outspoken and CARING human beingl that struck a chord :-)

Anonymous said...

Dear mrs Pat Brown

With all respect, have you thought about your body?
You are punishing your body now and bodies are a bit like people, if punished unjustly, performance does not improve:-)
Perhaps you did nourish and exercise your body as well as you could have, that is reason to abuse your body like this.
Your body brought you this far and you have to be gentle with it for the next forty years;-)
Please don't hurt your body, it's like a child depending on you!
There must be a better, more elegant way for your body and you to achieve what you want to.

With love

Pat Brown said...

Dear Imakimou,

Fasting is not punishing the body but I have definitely punished it by poor eating habits. Fasting is giving the body a rest from abuse, allowing it to heal and cleanse itself. Fasting also allows the mind to focus on other things besides eating and to correct improper thinking. This is why fasting is practiced by Buddhists, Hindus, Christians, Jains, and others who wish to be healthy in body and mind.

Thank you for your concern! It is much appreciated.


Anonymous said...

Thnx for replying
Don't forget that Buddha got up and away from under that tree and from fasting.
Because it did not work.
I do believe that you'll be wise enough to stop when needed.
In my own way praying for you and relying on
your wisdom
love imakimou

karen said...

Pat you always seem to reasonable and logical on TV-- I won't go on and on saying the water fast seems unsafe but u haven't seen a Dr in 20 years? Also concerning ... You should have a yearly physical, a yearly checkup w/ an ob/gyn, routine checks of your blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol , thyroid, bone density, breast exams, etc always seemed so intelligent but hearing you don't see dr's makes me say wtf Pat?!

Pat Brown said...

Karen, not every intelligent person thinks that the AMA system is a positive thing. Personally, I think there is a lack of understanding of natural health among doctors just as so many obstetricians seem to know little about natural birth. We will have to agree to disagree that what you suggest is a necessity for all people.

Karen said...

Pat my mother-in-law died of colon cancer a few yrs ago because she didn't get her screenings like she was supposed to. Colon cancer is one of those cancers that if caught early is usually treatable. It shouldn't have happened and now my husband is w/o his mom. You can be into natural things and still keep up w/ preventive health. I think ur awesome - but I think I'll have to unlike ur page for a month cuz I can't read about you starving yourself
!! See u next month maybe they'll find baby Lisa by then.