BENEFITS FOR YOUR SPIRITUAL, EMOTIONAL & PHYSICAL HEALTH
I want to introduce you to a secret healing therapy that can take your spiritual, physical and emotional health to a whole new level -- it's called the Daniel Fast, and it includes many Bible foods that support healing.
Fasting is a natural discipline that can bring supernatural results. I've seen fasting work when nothing else will. Moses, Elijah, Esther, Ezra, Job, David, Daniel, Peter, Paul, even Jesus...fasted.
In fact, they didn't just fast for a day or two, but both Jesus and Moses fasted for 40 days! The Bible is filled with more than 70 references to fasting, but over the last several decades fasting has disappeared from the church and is only beginning to make a resurgence today. (1)
WHAT IS A FAST?
Fasting is abstaining from something like food, drink or entertainment for a period of time to create some type of benefit in body, mind or spirit.
There are many types of fasts, which include:
- Standard Fast (water only)
- Absolute Fast (no water or food)
- Partial Fast (restrict certain food and drink categories)
- Intermittent Fast (only eating during a small daily window, for example: 1 p.m. - 6 p.m.)
There are many variations on these fasts, but they can all have spiritual benefits when we devote the time spent eating to focus on God and serving others.
If you are looking for a healing breakthrough in body, mind and/or spirit, then you may consider doing a Daniel Fast.
What Is a Daniel Fast?
Many people wonder what did Jesus eat? Did Jesus eat meat? The Daniel fast isn't based on what Jesus ate, but is based upon what one of Jesus' followers consumed and this follower ws not surprisingly Daniel.
The Daniel Fast or Daniel Diet is based upon the prophet Daniel's dietary and spiritual experiences as recorded in the Book of Daniel in the Bible. It's a partial fast that focuses very heavily on vegetables and other healthy whole foods, but leaves out any animal sources of protein. Many users of this biblically-based fasting method follow it for 21 consecutive days. (2)
The Daniel Fast is specifically referenced in the Bible in two sections of the Book of Daniel:
- Daniel 1:12, which states, "Please test your servants for ten days, and let them give us vegetables [pulses] to eat and water to drink." (3)
- Daniel 10:2-3, which says, "In those days I, Daniel, was mourning three full weeks. I ate no pleasant food, no meat or wine came into my mouth, nor did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled." (4)
You may be familiar with the Daniel Fast already if you've read The Maker's Diet Revolution by Jordan Rubin. The Daniel Fast only includes clean foods as described in Leviticus 11. (5) Unclean foods in the Bible include things like pork and shellfish.
So, does the Bible say not to eat shrimp? Actually, it does in Deuteronomy 14:10 where it states "And whatever does not have fins and scales you shall not eat; it is unclean for you,"  Shrimp is a type of shellfish and as such it does not contain fins or scales. There are also some fish, such as swordfish and shark, that should also be avoided if you're following a Bible diet because these sea creatures do not have both fins and scales.
Knowing clean and unclean animal proteins according dietary laws in the Bible is helpful to know, but while on the Daniel Fast you won't be consuming any protein from animal sources at all.
DANIEL FAST: FOOD LIST
According to our understanding of Hebrew definition of "pulse" that was used in the verse for vegetables can actually mean a range of foods. Here is the Daniel Fast food list of what you are allowed to eat:
- Water only -- it must be purified / filtered; spring or distilled water is best
- Homemade almond milk, coconut water, coconut kefir and vegetable juice
Vegetables (should form the basis of the diet)
- Fresh or cooked
- May be frozen and cooked but not canned
Fruits (consume in moderation 1-3 servings daily)
- Fresh and cooked
- Ideally low glycemic index fruits like stone fruits, apples, berries, cherries and citrus fruits
- May be dried but should not contain sulfites, added oils or sweeteners
- May be frozen but not canned
Whole grains (consume in moderation and ideally sprouted)
- Brown rice, oats, quinoa, millet, amaranth, buckwheat, barley cooked in water
Beans & Legumes (consume in moderation)
- Dried and cooked in water
- May be consumed from can as long as no salt or other additives are contained and the only ingredients are beans and water
Nuts & Seeds (sprouted are best)
- Raw, sprouted or dry roasted with no salt added
Common Foods for the Daniel Fast
Here is a list of some common foods you can consume while following a Daniel Diet plan:
Vegetables (preferably organic and fresh or frozen)
- Brussel sprouts
- Collard greens
- Green beans
- Mustard greens
- Sweet potatoes
Fruits (preferably organic and fresh or frozen)
- Honeydew melons
Legumes (preferably organic)
- Black beans
- Black-eyed peas
- Garbanzo beans
- Kidney beans
- Mung beans
- Pinto beans
- Split beans
Nuts & Seeds (preferably organic, raw, unsalted and soaked / sprouted)
- Chia seeds
- Flax seeds
- Pumpkin seeds
- Sesame seeds
- Sunflower seeds
Whole Grains (preferably organic)
- Brown rice
- Oats (groats soaked)
- Water (spring, distilled, filtered)
- Vegetable juice (fresh pressed)
- Coconut milk
- Coconut kefir
- Almond milk
Foods to Avoid
On the Daniel Fast, you should not consume any of the other foods or beverages listed below. And, I want to mention that on the Daniel Fast some allow sea salt or Himalayan salt and others do not. My recommendation is to only use a bit of sea salt when necessary in flavoring dishes. Here are foods you definitely want to refrain from eating:
- Iodized salt
- Dairy products
- Breads, pasta, flour, crackers (unless made from sprouted ancient grains)
- Cookies and other baked goods
- Energy drinks
NOTE: Nutritional supplements are optional. If any are taken while on the fast then they would preferably be in line with the accepted foods / ingredients that are listed.
There are numerous benefits to Daniel-type fasting, but it all starts with an inward, spiritual motivation. Below are just some of the incredible benefits of fasting.
"This is the fast that I have chosen...to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, to let the oppressed go free, and that you break every yoke. Then your light shall break forth like the morning. Your healing shall spring forth."
Spiritual Benefits of Fasting
Spiritual benefits are a top reason for fasting and may include:
- Fasting brings you closer to God
- Fasting makes you more sensitive to God's voice
- Fasting helps break bad habits or even addictions
- Fasting shows us our weakness and allows us to rely on God's strength
Mental & Emotional Benefits of Fasting
Fasting benefits are different from person to person, but the following have been known to occur: (8)
- Fasting relieves anxiety and nervousness
- Fasting can increase peace and shalom
- Fasting clears your mind of negative thoughts and feelings
- Fasting can help heal relationships in your life that have been stressful
- Fasting decreases brain fog
- Fasting helps increase your ability to trust God
- Fasting clears out toxins that can make you feel sluggish or depressed