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Benefits of Liquid Fasting #1

It really can be fantastic


                  Paavo Airola, Ph.D.,D.D.

FOREWORD: Airola was one of the greatest experts on food and
health in the last 50 years. I produce here his two chapters
from one of his books on the great benefits of liquid fasting
- Keith Hunt


Fasting is the oldest therapeutic method known to man. Even
before the advent of the "medicine man" and the healing arts, man
instinctively stopped eating when feeling ill and abstained from
food until his health was restored. Or perhaps he learned this,
the most efficient means of correcting any disease, from animals,
which always fast when not feeling well. Certainly, nature
provided man with a definite protective and health-restoring
alarm signal, which suggests to him to abstain from eating by
taking away his appetite for food.
Throughout the long medical history fasting has been regarded as
one of the most dependable curative and rejuvenative measures,
Hippocrates, "the Father of Medicine", prescribed it. So did
Galen, Paracelsus, and all the other great physicians of old.
Paracelsus called fasting "the greatest remedy; the physician
within". Fasting was practiced by many great thinkers and
philosophers, such as Plato and Socrates, to "attain mental and
physical efficiency". Most Eastern philosophers and super-yogis,
known for their long life, mental efficiency and spiritual aware-
ness, fast regularly, along with their meditation, to attain long
life and a high level of spirituality.

With the advent of modern, drug-oriented medicine, fasting has
fallen into disregard in the eyes of the orthodox practitioners.
We are living in the age of "diets", when almost half of the
population is constantly trying to "reduce" by way of countless
restricted diets of every imaginable description. But the
classic, and the best form of reducing - the total abstinence
from food, or fasting - is seldom tried. Those who employ
fasting, either for healing or reducing, are still looked upon as
crackpots, quacks, and health-nuts, to say the least.


Happily all this has been rapidly changing. Doctors have stopped
laughing and started investigating. Many scientific studies and
clinical tests are being made, particularly in Europe, to
determine the prophylactic, therapeutic, and rejuvenating
properties of fasting. The Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, the
world-famous medical research institution, has made clinical
studies and experiments with fasting under the direction of Drs.
P.Reizenstein and J.Kellberg. They employed fasts up to 55 days
in their studies.

Perhaps these studies were inspired by the famous Swedish fast
marches of 1954 and 1964 which are described in detail in my book
HEALTH SECRETS FROM EUROPE (published by Parker Publishing Co.,
Inc., West Nyack, N.Y. 1970). In these experimental fast marches,
which made headlines in the world press, first 11 and then 19 men
walked from Gothenburg to Stockholm, a distance of over 325
miles, in 10 days. Throughout each march the participants fasted
- didn't eat any food at all! Dr.Lennart Edren, D.D.S., who
directed the fast marches, said after the 1954 fast march:
"This fast was the first in the series of experiments to de-
termine the effects of total fasting under severe conditions of
stress. If we find out that fasting will not cause any damage to
the body, but will, on the other hand, exert a beneficial,
revitalizing, cleansing and rejuvenating effect on bodily
functions, it will supply invaluable information for healthy as
well as for sick people. The healthy will be encouraged to fast
in order to rejuvenate and increase vitality, and the sick to
cure their ills. This experiment proved to the world the
preventive and the therapeutic potentials of fasting."

Dr.Karl-Otto Aly, M.D., one of the leading biologicallyoriented
doctors in Sweden, and one of the participants of the fast
marches, said:

"The march clearly showed that man can live for an extended
period of time without food, even accomplish a hard physical
effort while fasting. The general expressed feeling among
participants was that they felt stronger and had more vigor and
vitality after the fast than before it .... The prime goal of
these experiments was to stimulate scientific institutions to
engage in a thorough and objective scientific study of fasting
and its prophylactic and therapeutic potentials, so that fasting
will be generally incorporated into the growing arsenal of
medical practices for the benefit and blessing of a
disease-ridden mankind."

Dr.Ragnar Berg, one of the greatest nutrition experts in the
world and Nobel Prize winner, said after the Swedish fasts of
1954 that the successful completion of this unprecedented fast
was no surprise to him. He had fasted himself many times and also
had supervised many fasts, including one of over one hundred
days. He called the Swedish fast marches a "great scientific

Are Waerland is another great Swedish health pioneer who
practiced and advocated fasting. Fasting is a standard initial
cleansing method in the world-famous Waerland Healing System.
(Incidentally, I have been extremely fortunate to have had both
Dr.Ragnar Berg and Are Waerland as my teachers and close

In Germany, there are hundreds of clinics, operated by medical
doctors, where fasting is now employed on a grand scale. For
example, at the Buchinger Sanatorium in Bad Pyrmont fasting is
used initially in almost every condition of ill health. Well over
80,000 fasts were supervised by Dr.Otto H.F.Buchinger and his
father, both medical doctors, during their 50 years of practice.
Another great fasting specialist in Germany is Dr.Werner Zabel.

"Together with fever and optimal nutrition, fasting is man's
oldest and best healing method"; said Professor Zabel.


At the Stobhill General Hospital in Glasgow, Scotland, fasting
was clinically tested with remarkable results. One 54-year-old
woman with a painful arthritic condition and grossly overweight,
was put on a liquid fast for 249 days and lost 74 of her 262
pounds. Her arthritis cleared up completely, too!


The therapeutic effect of fasting is very well documented by the
actual clinical experience both in Europe and in the United
States. The records of the numerous American and European fasting
clinics prove the truthfulness of the statement by Dr.Adolph
Mayor, that "fasting is the most efficient means of correcting
any disease". Fasting is, indeed, in the words of Dr.Otto H.F.
Buchinger,Jr.,M.D., a "Royal Road to Healing".

Fasting has been used throughout history, and is used quite
extensively now, not only for the therapeutic purpose of healing
disease, but also for its obvious rejuvenating and revitalizing
effect. Thousands of people throughout the world fast regularly
not to cure any particular disease, but because they consider
fasting to be an effective way to cleanse the body from
accumulated wastes, build up the physical stamina and the
resistance against diseases, and revitalize and rejuvenate the
functions of all their vital organs. Particularly in Sweden
fasting has become a new national sport. This is done in groups
and individually, mostly without medical supervision, but
sometimes at the numerous health spas. The objective of these
fasts is the periodic body cleansing and total rejuvenation of
all the functions of the body. Contrary to the popular notion,
you don't get weakened or depleted by fasting; the opposite is
true. After fasting you will  feel stronger and revitalized; your
health condition will be markedly improved, your physical and
mental working capacity greatly increased. You not only will feel
revitalized but also will look younger than before fasting. And
this is not only because of lost pounds, but mostly because
fasting has such a profound rejuvenating effect on the functions
of all the vital organs, including the functions of the
all-important endocrine glands, which are so decidedly
responsible for how young or how old you feel and look.     


I have supervised hundreds of fasts, and have fasted many times
myself. I have seen many remarkable cases of the dramatic effect
of fasting upon patients who were ill, as well as upon those who
fasted primarily for the purpose of rejuvenating and revitalizing
themselves. Here is one recent case to illustrate the point.
Miss A.L. came to our Spa in a rather desperate condition. She
had been working most of her life in the field of health and
beauty. She had operated a figure control salon in Los Angeles
and helped countless women and men to better health and better
figures through proper exercises, plus a gym-type program of
steam baths, swimming and workouts. For years she had been a
wonderful advertisement for the effectiveness of her methods.
But, as a conventional saying goes, all good things must come to
an end. Time caught up with her. When she reached 45 her health
and her looks started to deteriorate. She began putting on weight
and, in spite of her rigid program of exercises, didn't seem to
be able to control it. The signs of premature aging appeared
suddenly. Her hair started to turn grey. Wrinkles appeared on her
face. In addition, she felt stiffness and pain in her fingers,
elbows and shoulders, which was diagnosed by her doctor as early
symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. Also, her complexion began to
deteriorate rapidly. Her skin was dry and lifeless, and patches
of psoriasis appeared behind her ears. She felt exhausted most of
the time and lost interest in her work. She sold her business and
tried to find new interests - without success.
In the meantime she developed an uncontrollable appetite and was
putting on pounds each week. She had always wanted to work with
young people and tried to get a job as a health, beauty and
personality counsellor in a home for young girls, but was turned
down because of her "age and overweight". This incident was a
great shock to her and a turning point in her life. She suddenly
realized that she had to do something, and do it fast, if she
didn't want to live the rest of her life in her words "as a fat,
old, sick blob."

She had noticed with a horror that people started to feel sorry
for her and that some of her former friends started to avoid her.
Her personality had changed. Her outlook on life was negative.
She had grown critical of everyone and everything, and her temper
was getting worse and worse. No wonder her circle of friends was
steadily diminishing.

There are hundreds of thousands of women who are in a similar
situation. They blame their "condition" on the "change of life"
and usually become resigned to the idea that they are becoming
old and that nothing can be done about it. But Miss L. was not
ready to give up. She decided to pull herself out of her dismal
condition. Although working most of her life in a figure control
and beauty field, she never thought much about nutrition and what
role it plays in health. However, when some friends showed her my
books and the advertisement for our health spa, she decided to
make a visit and give it a try.

Miss L. was 54 when she came under my care, weighed 184 pounds
and looked like 60. She told me frankly, that she didn't care
much about arthritis, but that she had to improve her looks and
her figure in order to "get that job" they refused her in Los
Angeles. She was ready to do anything!

I outlined a three-month program for Miss L. First, one month    
of fasting on juices. Then a controlled raw food diet with
special vitamins and mineral supplements for four weeks. After
that two more weeks of fasting and two weeks of dieting. I
promised that she would lose 50 pounds and look more like 40 than

Miss L. followed my program religiously. 

She received two glasses of diluted fruit juice, one glass of
vegetable juice, one glass of vegetable broth, and two cups of
herb tea each day.* (See next chapter for detailed program and
recipe for vegetable broth). In addition, she could drink any
amount of plain water she wanted. She took long walks, up to five
miles a day. She was advised to take enemas twice a day. For
arthritis, she followed a special program of biological
treatments with dry brush massage, hot and cold showers, special
exercises, castor oil packs, and thermal baths. All symptoms of
her arthritis disappeared completely by the end of the first 30
day fast. And she had lost 28 pounds.

She lost an additional 12 pounds during the 30 days of raw food
diet. She ate three meals of the most delicious raw vegetables
and tropical fruits each day in addition to the regular juices...

During an additional two weeks of fasting Miss A.L. lost 12 more
pounds. By the end of three months, she had a total weight loss
of 52 pounds.

When she left the spa, Miss A.L. weighted 132 pounds. From size
20, she had reduced to size 12, and had to shop for some new
clothes before she could return to Los Angeles. She could neither
feel nor see any traces of arthritis whatsoever. And the
psoriasis patches behind her ears had vanished, too.
But you should have seen the change in her looks and her
personality! From being an old, tired, apathetic, discouraged and
disillusioned woman three months earlier, Miss L. now looked like
a young woman of 40, filled with energy and enthusiasm, full of
exciting plans for the future, determined to "get that job" she
had been refused. Her vitality and enthusiasm were limitless and
the change in her appearance was nothing but miraculous.

When she first began fasting, she was worried that if she lost
all of that fat, her skin would be looser and flabbier, and she
would look even more wrinkled. I assured her that with this kind
of scientific juice fasting and the intermittent diet of vital
foods and vitamin supplements, in conjunction with special
exercises and dry brush massage, her system would be supplied
with all the elements necessary for the effective regeneration
and revitalization of her glandular activity and skin activity.
Her collagen* (intercellular substance that holds cells together,
even the cells of the skin) - the deterioration of which is
mainly responsible for premature wrinkles - would be strengthened
and its elasticity restored; her new-cell building and cell
repair accelerated; her muscle tone improved; her complexion
receive new life. She was amazed at the fact that although she
had lost so much weight in such a short time, her skin was
tighter than before, her wrinkles were less noticeable and her
previously muddy and grey complexion had acquired a fresh,
radiant look.


As I suggested before, the main causes of disease and aging are
to be found in the processes of cell metabolism and cell

FIRST, as the famous Canadian "stress doctor" Hans Selye, said,
"Life, the biological chain that holds our parts together. is
only as strong as its weakest vital link." **You are as young or
as old as your smallest vital links - the cells. The aging begins
when your normal process of cell regeneration and rebuilding
slows down. This slowdown is caused mainly by the accumulation of
waste products in the tissues which interferes with the
nourishment of the cells. 

Each cell of your body is a complete living entity with its own
metabolism - it needs a constant supply of oxygen and sufficient
nourishment in the form of all the known nutritive substances.
When due to nutritional deficiencies, sluggish metabolism,
sedentary life, overeating and consequent poor digestion and
assimilation of food, lack of fresh air and sufficient exercise
and rest, our cells are deprived of the nourishment they need,
they start to degenerate and break down, the normal process of
cell replacement and rebuilding slows down and your body starts
to grow old, its resistance to diseases will diminish and various
ills will start to appear. This may happen at any age. Sluggish
metabolism, constipation, and consequent inefficient elimination
causes retention and accumulation of toxic wastes in the tissues
which interfere with the nourishment of the cells, causing
disease and premature aging.

(This is basically what the famous Charles Atlas "Health and
Strength" course explained and taught and gave the keys in diet
and exercise to keep your cells young and being replaced with
healthy cells that would retard the aging process - Keith Hunt).
SECONDLY, only about half of your cells are in the peak of
development, vitality, and working condition. One fourth are
usually in the process of development and growth and the other
fourth in the process of dying and replacement. The healthy vital
life-processes and perpetual youth are maintained when there is
perfect balance in this process of cell break-down and
replacement. If the cells are breaking down and dying at a faster
rate than the new cells are built, the process of aging will
begin to set in. Also, it is of vital importance that the aging
and the dying cells are decomposed and eliminated from the system
as efficiently as possible. Quick and effective elimination of
dead cells stimulates the building and growth of new cells.

Here's where fasting comes in as the most effective way to
restore your health and rejuvenate your body. During the fast the
process of elimination of the dead and dying cells is speeded up,
the new-building of cells is accelerated and stimulated. At the
same time the toxic waste products that interfere with the
nourishment of the cells are effectively eliminated and the
normal metabolic rate and cell oxygenation are restored.
How can the mere abstinence from food accomplish such remarkable
results? Here's how:

1. During a prolonged fast (after the first three days), your
body will live on its own substance. When it is deprived of the
needed nutrition, your body will burn and digest its own tissues
by the process of autolysis, or self-digestion. But your body
will not do it indiscriminately! In its wisdom - and here lies
the secret of the extraordinary effectiveness of fasting as
curative and rejuvenating therapy! - your body will first
decompose and burn those cells and tissues which are diseased,
damaged, aging or dead. In fasting, your body feeds itself on the
most impure and inferior materials, such as dead cells and morbid
accumulations, tumors, abscesses, damaged tissues, fat deposits,
etc. Dr.Buchinger Sr., one of the greatest fasting authorities in
the world, calls fasting - very pertinently - a "refuse
disposal", a "burning of rubbish". These dead cells and inferior
tissues are consumed and utilized first. The essential tissues
and vital organs, the glands, the nervous system and the brain,
are spared.

2. During fasting, while the old cells and diseased tissues are
decomposed and burned, the building of new, healthy cells is
stimulated and speeded up. This may seem unbelievable, since no
nourishment, or only a limited amount of nourishment (during a
juice fast), is supplied. But it is nevertheless a physiological
fact. During the famous Swedish fast marches it was observed that
the protein level of the blood (serum albumin reading) of fasting
people remained constant and normal throughout the fasting
period, in spite of the fact that no protein was consumed. The
reason for this is that proteins in your body are in the so-
called dynamic state; that is, they are changed from one stage to
another, being decomposed and resynthesized constantly and
re-used for various needs within the body. Amino acids, the
building blocks of proteins, are not wasted, but are released
from the decomposed cells and used again in the new-building of
young, vital cells. As you know, your cells are made mostly of
proteins and the complete set of all the essential amino acids is
needed for the effective building of cells. During fasting the
proteins needed for new cell building are resynthesized from the
decomposed cells. Thus the body is using and re-using the same
proteins and other nutrients over and over where they are needed.

3. During a fast, the eliminative and cleansing capacity of the
eliminative organs - lungs, liver, kidneys, and skin - is greatly
increased, and masses of accumulated metabolic wastes and toxins
are quickly expelled. For example, during fasting the
concentration of toxins in the urine can be ten times higher than
normal. This is due to the fact that the eliminative organs are
relieved from the usual burden of digesting foods and eliminating
the resultant wastes, and can concentrate on the cleansing of
old, accumulated wastes and toxins such as uric acid, purines,
etc. from the tissues.

This eliminative process is evidenced by the following typical
symptoms of fasting: offensive breath, dark urine, continuous and
generous discharge from the colon with enema, skin eruptions,
perspiration, catarrhal elimination of mucus, etc. Keep in mind
that the activity of the human bowel system is not limited to the
absorption of nutrients from the foods and the elimination of the
indigestible food residues. Bowels are also one of your
eliminative and detoxifying organs in a general sense: through
the intestinal walls the toxins and metabolic wastes from the
blood and tissues are discharged into the intestinal canal to be
excreted from the body. This internal excretion is accelerated
during fasting.

4. A fast affords a physiological rest to the digestive,
assimilative and protective organs of the body. After fasting,
the digestion of food and the utilization of nutrients is greatly
improved, and sluggishness and further waste retention is
prevented. The rejuvenated cells are thus supplied with nutrients
and oxygen more effectively.

5. Finally, the fast exerts a normalizing, stabilizing and
rejuvenating effect on all the vital physiological, nervous and
mental functions. The nervous system is rejuvenated; mental
powers are improved; glandular chemistry and hormonal secretions
are stimulated; biochemical and mineral balance in the tissues is

It is easy to see from the above why fasting is such an effective
health-restoring and rejuvenating measure.

A few actual cases of successful fasting:



I can certainly give my Amen to all this information on LIQUID
fasting (and please remember this is LIQUID fasting being taught
here, NOT "no food and no liquid" fasting). I have "milk" (but
natural raw milk) or Soya milk fasted for 5 to 7 days, a number
of times in my life, and indeed, starting about the third day,
you feel bright and sharp of mind and energized in body. I
personally did not experience any of the above negative things
mentioned, probably because I have from about age 13 followed the
Charles Atlas course in eating and exercise, and kept my body
weight in the middle of my range for my height and bone structure
- Keith Hunt.

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