The basic mechanism for thirst in the body is that it activates a cascade of cells, which then releases a neurotransmitter called water, which ultimately enters the brain. This is why the human brain is so well-developed at sensing thirst, since the body has adapted to detect this chemical and react.
The human brain is particularly good at sensing blood loss, because the arteries are especially narrow and dense in the center of the brain; so when the brain loses a certain amount of water, it will experience an increase in blood pressure and the heart may start beating faster. This makes water fasting a very effective method for a healthy, active brain: it reduces any thirst-related brain inflammation and can help to treat various diseases like Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s.
What’s the opposite of water fasting?
A water fast can also lead to dehydration because of the fact that the body’s sodium levels decline. However, the reverse is not true: a water fast, such as a one hour period with only water, allows the body to adjust how much sodium it takes in through drinking, which allows for a more balanced diet.
There are a few commonalities between water fasting and the diet that it replaces. First, it does require a certain amount of fluid in order to prevent dehydrating the body. Secondly, it uses a specific type of calorie-rich food to replace the water lost in food, since the brain relies heavily on the stomach to absorb water and this is why it needs a small amount of water in food to compensate.
What the experts tell you to expect
Water fasting is not for everyone. For some, it may feel hard and uncomfortable or it may even cause a loss of sleep. However, as a condition that can be easily managed with diet and lifestyle changes, it’s very beneficial.
It’s also important to note that the benefits of a water fast for those suffering from epilepsy have been known for a long time (see here, here and here).
So, in conclusion, it’s recommended to consider water fasting after you eat healthy, calorie-rich food, because of the way that the body processes water and how well it can adjust when the fluid has been replaced.
And this really is a very important part of a healthy, active lifestyle that your body is capable of functioning.
For more weight loss advice, watch the exclusive FITNESS TV interview with the famous fitness author Daniel Coyle.
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