Fasting has been used since the dawn of humanity as a means to treat the body and soul. The fathers of modern medicine used it to treat patients, while the great spiritual masters used it to access higher levels of consciousness.
That’s how amazingly transformative fasting can be.
transformation through fasting
Years ago, I started using the practice of intermittent fasting—eating within a small window of time during the day—for exercise reasons. It was becoming a trend and I wanted to see what all the fuss was about.
Immediately, my body took to the practice. It became my normal routine to eat only from 1:00pm-8:00pm and fasting for 17 hours straight.
Years later, as I was going through a tremendous life change, I began to feel a calling to fast more. But this time it wasn’t for health or fitness reasons but rather for my own inner transformation. I began to make major adjustments to my regular intermittent fasting routine by decreasing my eating window even more so and also drawing down on food slowly.
How Are You Eating?
Fasting exposed my pattern of using food to nourish my soul. I began to evaluate my past relationship with food and how I ate, as opposed to just reviewing what I ate. Food was used as a means to fill internal voids that I wasn’t prepared to look at. And then it dawned on me just how common this is in our world today. Emotional eating not only leads to unhealthy bodies, it also prevents us from evolving our consciousness. If we try to use food as a means to nourish our souls, we will inevitably fail.
The soul’s “food” is not actual food, but rather, an array of experiences, emotions, and connections. You can eat a whole pint of Ben & Jerry’s but in the end, if your soul is starving, you won’t feel any better after eating the ice cream.
If we keep using food as a “pill” to sooth uncomfortable internal feelings, we can become stagnant in our evolution. The “pill” (in this case, food) will just keep temporarily masking the internal patterns, habits, and pain that we have accumulated in our lives. So what do we do? How do we find out if we have a toxic relationship with food? How do we know if we are using food as “medicine” for our starving souls? Well, aside from fasting, I have come to rely on intense awareness as a great tool for helping me decipher soul hunger from actual physical hunger.
- Notice when you become hungry. Soul hunger may manifest itself as a sudden, intense urge to eat. And it’s not a hunger for veggies or fruit! It’s a hunger for a whole box of donuts!
- Notice when you get these intense urges and ask yourself at that moment:
“What is my soul hungry for?”
- Notice if the hunger comes when you are balanced or unbalanced. If you get a craving when you are anxious, nervous, upset…you can be sure this isn’t physical hunger. Take a deep breath at this moment and bring yourself back to balance. Then notice if your hunger goes away.
Become aware of what you are craving. A healthy, balanced body naturally feels hungry for wholesome food. Our bodies have a profound wisdom in them. If you are centered and at peace on all levels (mind, body, and soul), then your hunger will manifest as a slow craving for real food. Fresh vegetables and fruit with an array of colors. You know, real food. We all understand what “real” food is on a deeper level. So if you find yourself craving a Twinky, it’s time to sit silently and uncover the root of that craving.
Once we uncover our emotional and mental patterns around food and learn to listen to the inherent wisdom of the physical body, words like “diet,” “restriction” and “calorie counting” disappear from our vocabularies altogether.
About Christina Lopes, PT, DPT, MPH:
Christina is an energy healer, life coach, author, and experienced clinician. She dedicates her life to helping people connect with the infinite power of their hearts. To connect with Christina, please visit her website.
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