Is Water Fasting Safe?

Is Water Fasting Safe?

Water fasting is popular in the wellness world. You should approach it with caution. It may help you lose weight but it is not sustainable to health or weight loss. It may put you at risk of health complications, especially in recovery. Know more about it before you consider starting one and speak to a treating physician overseeing your care prior to starting any type of fast.


Fasting has been around a very long time. It is an integral part of many religious communities for centuries. Fasting diets have been popular since the early 1900s. One of them ost popular liquid diets, the Master Cleanse, was created in the 1940s by a self-taught alternative medicine practitioner. Long before fasting became popular, fasting was practiced for regligious or spiritual reasons. Fasting rituals can serve as periods of spiritual renewal and reflection, as well. Many paleo proponents forget times are different and there is no easy way to compare eating habits of now to then. Detox diets promise body cleansing but they are often not grounded in science.

Water Fasting

A water fast is true to its name. It is a fast during which time everything but water is restricted. That means no coffee, no tea, no other food. Water fasts typically last one to three days. If you fast longer than that, you may put yourself at risk. Many popular cleanses like lemon detox cleanse are about health benefits. Water fasting is just drinking water, up to 2 liters per day, maybe more with caution. Too much water can lead to over hydration. If you engage in doing it, you have to resist eating big meals straight away after. If you become malnourished, you can do damage to your body trying to eat too much too quickcly following a fast.


The benefits of this type of fast vary but it is impotrant to note there is no research on thise. Some people believe they lose weight and keep it off. It helps to burn glycogen and glucose. It may also:

  • Lower blood pressure
  • Balance emotions
  • Promote cell recycling


The risk of water fasting is myriad. One of the dangers is nutrient deficiencies. If you are already deficient in recovery, this may not be a good idea. By restricting calories, you are also restricting vitamins, minerals, and amino acids your body needs to function. You also risk dehydration from not eating enough food that naturally has water. Some medical conditions may worsen, like chronic kidney disease, heartburn, diabetes, and eating disorders. It may also turn into a type of eating disorder wherein a person believes they have to fast to keep weight off or to look a certain way, among other things. The risk of crossover addiction is high as well. Eating healthy foods in a healthy way is preferred to fasting for most people looking to make changes in their diet. It is always necessary to speak to a doctor prior to starting any fasting diets.

The Palmetto Center helps you get grounded in your recovery with a focus on overall health and wellness. Our community support provides structure while trained counselors offer life skills training and therapeutic techniques to help you move past addiction. Our program provides special focus for professionals including chiropractors, nurses, doctors, lawyers, and more who need help with addiction recovery. Call us to find out more: 866-848-3001.