For February 2016, we are doing a Modified Daniel Fast. I believe that this fast can really help with food addictions and emotional eating. How? When you simplify your daily diet and remove the foods you are addicted to or using for medication, you can focus on your emotional health and life issues. You’ll find the sign up information and eating guidelines below.
This month we are going to acknowledge that weight gain is not just about eating and exercise and we are going to face our issues. We are going to simplify our eating habits so that we can refocus and dig deep.
Take the time to do some internal and emotional work during this modified fast. That means that it’s time to really dig deep and figure out what is causing you to eat/overeat, what is hindering your motivation and what is hindering you from finding time to workout.
This internal work could be traditional religious practice or whatever practices are spiritual for you. It could mean that this is the month that you sign up to speak with a therapist or psychologist. It could mean that it’s time to relax at the spa or start writing in a journal daily. You may need to reach out to friends for support or work on forgiving people who have wronged you. It could also mean that it’s time to start doing research and buying books about depression, addiction, stress, self help strategies, etc. Only you know where to start the healing process that led to greater emotional wellness.
Giveaway – #BWLWFeb
Sign up and participate in some social sharing and you will be eligible for this month’s giveaway. We will be giving away two $25 Amazon gift cards each week. One will go to someone who has signed up for this month’s challenge and one to someone who is posting, Feb 3-27th, about their weight loss journey using our hashtag: #BWLWFeb on social media (Instagram, Facebook or Twitter). We will announce the winners chosen at random on Feb 8, 15, 22, 29, 2016 via email. (8 winner total, 2 each week) Your social media profile must be public for us to be able to consider it for the contest.
ARE YOU READY?!? How do you sign-up? Click on this button to sign up and receive lessons that will help you stay on track with this month’s goals.
Click Here to Join Us
After you’ve signed up, you’ll be directed back to this page. We want you to leave a comment below and let us know what you are going to do in terms of emotional/spiritual/internal work.
February GOAL: Avoiding the “Food for Pleasure and Comfort” Mindset. We will work to discover our food triggers and stop medicating ourselves with food.
We will eat a limited group of foods and let go of the need to have a lot of variety and choices.
We will commit to stop using food for pleasure or as medicine for our emotions.
We will commit to this modified fast for 14-21 days. It’s up to you how long you follow this plan, but 14 days is the minimum time frame that I suggest to see real benefits. For the group, I’m suggesting Feb 3rd as the start date but you can pick any 14 day period in Feb. (Eating Guidelines Below).
- I want US to really understand how much food many be controlling us.
- I want US to analyze our reactions to cutting back on the foods we’ve been self medicating with.
- I want US to challenge ourselves and look within.
- I want us to be forced to turn to something else, something fulfilling, instead of food in February. Take action! Write in your journal, pray, meet with a supportive group, make a vision board, take a calming walk or start meditating. It’s up to you how you connect mind, body and soul, but my hope is that you will be able to see food more as nourishment and fuel and less like an addictive agent or something “bad”.
The number one way to take action this month: Track your food intake and your emotions daily! – Buy a paper journal or use an app like myfitnesspal.com to track your meals during this 14 day journey. Be very honest about what you eat, good or bad. Along with the food record your mood and how you felt at the time you ate. Trust me, you will learn a lot about whether you are responding to hunger or feelings when it comes to eating.
Disclaimer Health: As with all of our food related challenges, I don’t suggest a drastic diet change like this for people who are chronically ill, have kidney/liver/pancreas issues, have diabetes or are pregnant. If you have issues or allergies related to fruit, veggies or digesting vegetables, this may not be the challenge for you. Fasting is not for everyone, even a modified fast. If you have any medical issues, you should always seek out a doctor or medical professional before participating in a fast or changing your diet drastically.
Daniel Fast Guides
What is a Daniel Fast? A Daniel fast is a biblically-based, vegetarian-centered fast that has been around for years. You may have participated in one with your church family and it is commonly done at the beginning of the year as a congregational fast. Over the years, it has become a very popular fasting program for all people, regardless of faith or tradition. You don’t have to be a religious person and prescribe to a faith tradition to take part. It’s usually focused on plant-based eating. However, we will add more protein sources for our modified fast.
Traditionally with a Daniel Fast you…
- Eat Any Vegetables (canned, frozen, fresh, dried, etc) – cooked how ever you like.
- Eat Any Fruits (canned, frozen, fresh, dried, etc) – cooked how ever you like.
- Eat Any Nuts and Seeds (including nut milks like almond milk)
- Eat Any Beans
- Drink only WATER.
For our Modified Daniel Fast we are going to add a few things so that the plan works better for those who are working out.
- Take a quality multivitamin – This will help ensure that you are getting all the nutrients you need.
- Lean Meat twice a day, like Chicken, Fish, Turkey, Bison, Pork, Lamb etc. (This is for those who eat meat. If you are vegan or vegetarian, you would of course continue with that lifestyle)
- Vegetarian protein sources: Tofu, Seitan, etc.
- Protein Powder of your choice (the most natural brand you can find)
- Cottage Cheese
- Greek Yogurt (unsweetened preferred. sweeten with fruit)
- Agave Nectar or Honey for sweeteners
- Whole Grain Cereal/Low Sugar Granola
- Whole Grains – Quinoa, Barley, Oatmeal, whole grain brown rice
- Quality Oils – olive oil, coconut oil and other healthy vegetable oils like grape seed, etc.
- Natural Seasonings, Herbs and Condiments (vinegar, pepper, garlic, Ms. Dash, sea salt, fresh herbs, various seasonings, etc.)
- Herbal Tea made at home (drink without sweeteners)
If you want to stick with the more simplified, traditional vegan Daniel Fast, that’s good too. It’s up to you how much you cut out of your eating plan, but PLEASE cut out the foods that you are truly addicted to.
The NO List: No bread, No crackers, No processed sugar (candy, ice cream, cookies, cake, etc), No white flour, No dairy cheese, No fried food, No alcohol and No soda. Limit your dairy to just cottage cheese, greek yogurt and whey protein powder. Cut way down on sweeteners during this challenge, as much as possible.
To Do List
- Create a grocery list before you shop so that you have a plan going into the land of temptation.
- Check out our free 4 week meal plans for recipe ideas.
- If you are bored, emotional or stressed, reach for veggies or fruit instead of your usual comfort foods.
- Before you eat, take 60 seconds to ask yourself, “Am I hungry or am I eating to fill a void/soothe my nerves?”
- Don’t go to the grocery store hungry or while emotional. That can affect your purchases.
- For this challenge you will need to create a list of meals that you can have for breakfast, lunch, dinner and meals/snacks in between. YOU SHOULD REPEAT THE SAME CLEAN MEALS to help you to stay on track! Believe me, it will make this fast much simpler.
- Here are some ideas.
- Buy lunch box ice packs and an insulated lunch bag. You will likely need to prepare your meals at home and take them on the go
- Buy a water bottle so that you carry water at all times. Sometimes we mistake thirst for hunger.
- Buy glass mason jars or wide mouth bottles so that you can carry smoothies with you to work and on the go. Smoothies can help with your sweet tooth.
- Look at menus online before going out to eat so that you know what foods are available that work with this plan. When in doubt, have a salad.
BTW…here are scriptures the fast is based on: Daniel 1
8 But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself this way. 9 Now God had caused the official to show favor and compassion to Daniel, 10 but the official told Daniel, “I am afraid of my lord the king, who has assigned your food and drink. Why should he see you looking worse than the other young men your age? The king would then have my head because of you.”
11 Daniel then said to the guard whom the chief official had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah, 12 “Please test your servants for ten days: Give us nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink. 13 Then compare our appearance with that of the young men who eat the royal food, and treat your servants in accordance with what you see.” 14 So he agreed to this and tested them for ten days.
15 At the end of the ten days they looked healthier and better nourished than any of the young men who ate the royal food. 16 So the guard took away their choice food and the wine they were to drink and gave them vegetables instead.