By Sommer Hunke

Editor’s note: Inspired Woman magazine does not necessarily endorse the comments in this article and suggests you consult your physician to find out if fasting is appropriate for you.

“Hangry” is a term some people use when they are hungry and crabby — or as the word implies, angry. I have found a way to remove hangry from my vocabulary while at the same time improving my health: fasting.

No, I don’t mean just randomly not eating. When done properly, fasting is an incredible tool to reduce the hangry feeling, decrease blood sugar levels, improve hormone health, address insulin resistance, reduce or eliminate medication, increase mental clarity and energy, sleep better, smile more, reach a healthy weight, and so much more. Since implementing fasting over the last two years, I’ve noticed dramatic improvements in my overall health and understanding of food.

As a certified health and life coach, I’ve had the opportunity to help hundreds of clients learn how to implement a variety of fasting techniques in their lives to improve their health. When I talk to people about fasting, I get a lot of hesitation initially. It can seem scary or intimidating to not eat or eat sparingly, but I assure you, it’s worth giving it a try. I was also skeptical when introduced to fasting, but now I’m a believer and fascinated with the body’s healing power while it is in the fasted state.

There are many variations of fasting; one size does not fit all. Each person is unique, so what works for one person may not work for another; therefore, a customized approach may be needed to get the best results. It can take time for your body to adjust. The healthier your body becomes and the more fasting you practice, the easier it gets — a healthy body should be able to fast.

Fasting has been around for hundreds of years and is an integral part of most religious practices. Our ancestors’ DNA enabled them to go without food for days if needed, and your DNA has the same capability. The ability to fast is an indication of metabolic flexibility. If a person has lived their life consuming multiple snacks and meals and processed foods from sun up to sun down, their body only knows feasting — not fasting — and with that comes insulin resistance, inflammation, chronic disease, and weight gain.

Through my own personal journey with various fasting techniques and durations, I’ve experienced a mental clarity I had never witnessed at any other time in my life.  Over the past year, I’ve been thinking how to best harness that for breakthrough moments in my professional, personal, and spiritual life. I’ve found that when you take the focus off food, the mind and heart are open for a deeper connection. Whether you desire the next level in your faith (the Lenten season is just beginning — what a beautiful opportunity to give it a try), marriage, or career aspirations, fasting can help quiet the mind to help you fulfill life aspirations.

Sommer Hunke is a certified health and life coach. She loves all things health and believes health is more than just the food you eat and how you move your body –  it’s about creating experiences that fulfill us every day. Sommer is being trained by renowned industry experts about the various benefits of fasting, anti-aging, hormone optimization, healing strategies, and weight loss.