Fasting: What you should know

Many people think that Ash Wednesday is the ideal opportunity to begin a fasting cure. However, there are a number of things to consider before and during the cure in order to avoid damaging your health.

Be it for religious reasons, for finally reaching the desired weight, or for increasing your sense of wellbeing, there are many reasons for going on a fast. The following recommendations will help you during the cure.


Who may fast and who may not?

As a rule, anyone who is healthy may go on a fast. However, children, pregnant women, nursing mothers and the elderly should abstain. Other indicators that speak against fasting include liver and kidney damage, heart disease and diabetes, as well as regular consumption of medication. We recommend that you get your doctor’s opinion before going on a fast.


The key basic rules

  • Good health is a basic requirement.
  • Do not fast longer than a week.
  • Prepare the body a few days in advance by staying away from indulgences and minimising your consumption of meat.
  • Increase your food intake only gradually after you have fasted so that your body can get used to solid foods again. Start taking in foods that are easy to digest, such as zwieback, honey, rice and lean meat.


Five tips while fasting

The following dos and don’ts will make it easier for you to complete the cure:

  1. Keep drinking: Drink lots of fluids in order to prevent dehydration. Besides tea and water, you can also drink fruit and vegetable juice. It's advisable to take in fluids regularly, even when you're not thirsty.
  2. Abstain fully: Do not strain your system additionally by consuming nicotine, medication, coffee, black tea or green tea and other stimulants, and sweets.
  3. Listen to your body: Do activities you find enjoyable. For example, you may find walking outdoors or taking a nap to be very relaxing. The important thing is to eliminate all compulsive behaviours during this time.
  4. Remove yourself from daily life: Switch off your mobile phone and PC. In addition, try to disengage from your usual commitments and to consciously make time for yourself.
  5. Facilitate excretion: Empty your intestines regularly by drinking sauerkraut juice, whey or warm water with epsom salt, and thoroughly flush out your kidneys by taking in lots of water.


In the event of further health-related questions, SWICA customers can contact the santé24 telemedicine service free of charge on +41 44 404 86 86. A telemedicine practice licence allows santé24 physicians to provide additional medical services in cases that are suited to a telemedicine approach. SWICA customers can also use the BENECURA medical app to carry out a digital SymptomCheck and receive recommendations about what to do next. During a subsequent phone call with santé24, customers can decide for themselves whether to release their information from SymptomCheck to santé24.