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Fasting during Lent

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#1 Taylor



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Posted 24 January 2012 - 01:35 PM

Hi everyone,

I am thinking about fasting during Lent.  This would consist of the traditional one regular sized meal a day and two smaller meals (about 1/2 size); no fasting on Sundays.  I did this a couple years ago, pre-CML, and it went pretty well for me after a couple of weeks.

I am a little concerned if anything should be different today.  My main concern I suppose are the electrolytes, so I was thinking I would supplement with a coconut water or something for potassium and magnesium, and make sure my other meals have a good source of calcium.

Has anyone ever done this, or have any thoughts about it?  I plan to talk to my oncologist and pastor about this as well.  Thanks,


#2 GerryL


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Posted 24 January 2012 - 06:00 PM

Hi Taylor,

If you're concerned perhaps you could try to include the following foods in your meals.

  • Foods Rich In Calcium

    •   Foods such as milk, cheese and yogurt contain calcium. So do dark leafy vegetables. Kale, turnip greens, broccoli, brussel sprouts and cabbage are rich sources of calcium. Canned fish (with bones), such as salmon, sardines and mackerel are also good choices.

    Foods Containing Potassium

  Fruits rich in potassium include bananas, apricots, prunes, dates, cantaloupe, watermelon and strawberries. Foods such as salmon, beans, turkey and fish also contain potassium as do peas, greens, spinach and tomatoes. If you are consuming three of these items a day, you are probably getting enough potassium.

    Foods High In Magnesium

  It is more difficult to get the proper daily amounts of magnesium through foods alone because fewer foods have high levels of magnesium. Almonds, cashews, pumpkin seeds and brazil nuts are some good choices. Barley, quinoa and whole wheat flour are others. Swiss chard, spinach and white and black beans are also important sources of magnesium.

    Foods Fortified With Calcium

  Foods such as almond milk, rice milk, soy milk, various kinds of juices, breads and cereals are often fortified with calcium and can easily be added to your daily diet.

    Other Sources Of Magnesium

  It may be important to find other sources of magnesium, as calcium competes for magnesium in the body. Too much calcium means even less magnesium. Taking a daily supplement can be wise, or you can relax in a hot bath and get your magnesium too. Simply add 1 to 2 cups of Epsom salts to your bath at night and enjoy a restful night's sleep. Proper magnesium is essential to restful and restorative sleep.

    • ?

#3 Happycat


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Posted 24 January 2012 - 07:38 PM


Okay, dumb question, but I'm not RC so bear with me.  I thought fasting was "no food at all" during the set time period.  So fast one day, means go one day without food. 

Or, for those who celebrate ramadan, it's fast during day, then eat at night.

Can fasting be "eat lighter meals"?  Makes me wonder, because I used to be so impressed by dear old Mrs. Francis, who would fast once a week to help cleanse her soul.  (She was my Bible study buddy at church, sorta a way for elders to mentor the young.)  Did she not eat at all, as I had always thought, or did she do some modified version?  Can't ask her, as she is long gone from this world.

Regarding your intended meal plan, that pretty much sounds like my normal eating plan.  If you get enough fluids, you should be okay.  If you are worried about Ca, Mg or K, couldn't you just take a supplement for those?  Citrical or magox or other combo?  Then just water to stay hydrated as needed.


#4 Taylor



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Posted 24 January 2012 - 08:20 PM

Hi Happy,

Not a dumb question at all.  Rules have been different throughout different time periods but the one that I follow (around 1962 or before) is 1 full meal plus two smaller meals.  Believe me, it still makes a difference, I couldn't imagine doing it harsher like they used to!

Thank you both for the advice!  I'll look into all that and keep it in mind.

#5 felursus


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Posted 24 January 2012 - 11:50 PM

Frankly, I would consult with your MD before doing anything like that.  As a sideline: I once worked with a devout Muslim woman who had some health issues.  Once day (during Ramadan) she fainted at work.  When she recovered she commented that she was trying to fast for Ramadan even though her Imam had told her she shouldn't because of her health condition.  I know that religious Jews who have some health issues are not supposed to fast on Yom Kippur (and other fast days) - they don't eat at all for a bit more than 24 hours - the idea is that maintaining life (and health) is more important.  You could always "sacrifice" by giving up something you really like - I know people who give up coffee and chocolate.  Greek/Russian Orthodox people give up meat - but do eat fish.  There are some other rules, but I don't know about them.

#6 Trey


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Posted 25 January 2012 - 12:07 AM

Among the "wine, women and song", you could give up singing for a while.  Glad I could help.  You're welcome in advance.

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