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My daughter is 12.  She’s had some gut issues, eczema and weight gain due to satiety hormone imbalance. She is FTO positive, which means her genetics don’t seem to allow her to feel as if she’s had enough to eat.

Recently, my husband and I did a 5-day mimicking fast called Prolon. It was not as rough as a real fast (water only), but I got to see first-hand what it is like for an emotional stress eater (my husband) to eat only what was absolutely necessary for 5 days. It was tough. After he survived that, he went right back to eating right away as he had before. That was fine because according to the data, the fast had already kicked off the good effects for the body.

I, personally, could not go back to normal eating for more than a week. I listened to my body, my hunger, and it took me longer to recover from the fast. My energy did not return very quickly. Normally, I am energetic and overly active, and I didn’t feel any of my energy or drive for exercise return until today. We did that fast from Dec. 11-Dec. 16, and it is now January 2.

I wanted a reset for my child’s body without the fatigue and effects I suffered. So, I decided to teach my girl how to eat well without fasting.

For 5 days, we ate only at meal times, no snacks in between, and avoided gluten, Dairy, corn, and soy. I made a big pot of veggie soup we could eat through the week for something fast to warm up and a cookie sheet with nutbars we could grab for breakfast. We ate olives and pickles for snacks if we needed them, and after the first 2 days, I don’t think we ate any snacks. We weren’t hungry. We cooked real dinners together out of my favorite cookbook, which was just as nourishing an experience as eating the food.

After just 3 days, my child’s inflamed tummy became soft and she lost noticeable inches every day which she would gladly show me. Her stretch marks faded (many were a result of the Lyme coinfections) and her mood elevated. She spent a night with her friends, and they supported her in her endeavor to stick to eating the food we agreed on, which she carted with her to the sleepover.

She has begun to care about her body enough to start exercising (planking) in her room when she feels like practicing and she even went to the gym with her dad, brother and I to see what working out is about. She was enthusiastic about the feeling of using her muscles and she made us show her how to use each implement. Her energy level has taken a tremendous jump up the scale.

I am hopeful that she will remember many things from this experience. Mostly the feeling of all we have gone through together, and that I would do anything to help her to know in the future how to live a healthy, happy life. I highly recommend this bonding experience to parents with teenagers.

Don’t just live. Live great!

Annie Morris, LMT and Mama Bear