Water bottle? Check.
Yoga mat? Check.
Tooth brush? Check.
Tooth powder? Check.
Change of clothes? Check.
Cold-Pressed Sesame Oil? Check.
Teddy bear? Check. (Not mine! A friend’s!)
Our bags were packed and we were on the way to college, ready to begin our ten-day therapeutic fast. We were to stay at the college itself for ten days, so we had to take everything we needed with us. You may wondering what the oil is for – it’s for oil pulling, an ancient Ayurvedic ritual that is essential for dental hygiene, especially while on the fast.
Once we reached, we were each given a glass of lemon juice with honey, measured out to be exactly 300 ml (600 calories each – this is important as we are also subjects of a CCRYN-funded study that is going on at SDMCNYS. Dr. Geetha was taking care of the arrangements for the study, and had arranged for the juice and other things)
After the juice, we were told that we were free till 12 noon. We went up to the terrace, and spent a good two hours just sitting there, doing nothing. Bliss it was to do nothing in college! We don’t get many opportunities away from classes like this one – especially to spend time on the terrace, soaking in the view of the green-coated hills all around us!
A trip to the OPD (attached to the college) followed, where we got our weight and blood pressure measured. A group of us has decided to keep a diary and record every change that happens to our body during the fast, to understand and remember everything in detail and be better equipped to use fasting therapy to heal the patients who come to us in the future.
Lunch was served at 12 noon. Some of us took up the task of serving food to the others, and we finally finished our lunch by 1:45 pm. The first day was a little hectic, because arrangements were going on to prepare ourselves for the next nine days, physically and mentally.
Soon after lunch, at 3 pm, we were served lemon juice again, after which we quickly went to the lawn in front of our college, kicked off our sandals and indulged in the wet grass. We really enjoyed walking on the grass – but did not enjoy getting bitten by the huge jungle mosquitoes that went buzzing about, refusing to get discouraged when we shooed them away.
The mosquitoes finally had their way, and we retreated to the terrace. Not so many mosquitoes there. It was silent, nobody was making any noise nearby. We had a peaceful time, sitting for a few minutes and relaxing at the end of the day.
After dinner at 7 pm, the whole class sat in the college’s yoga hall to play a game of truth or dare. Bonding time! My classmates made me stand in the centre of the hall and shout like a devil. My friends say it came naturally for me.
Well, 9 pm is closing time, and we’re going to sleep now. We had a nice day, filled with some funny incidents and plenty of relaxation. Our seniors and teachers have told us about many wonderful experiences that they had during their third year, on the fast. We’re yet to start experiencing any of these, but I guess that’s because we’re yet to actually begin the fast itself!
Since it was the first day of easing into the fast, we did eat quite a bit of food. Tomorrow, we’re on raw diet. They say we have a lot of fruits and vegetables that we’re going to be eating tomorrow. We’re really looking forward to that! Hope there are mangoes! Yum!
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This article was written Anusha Rao, third year BNYS student, SDMCNYS. Anusha is a budding Naturopath, and is on a ten-day therapeutic fast with her classmates as part of their BNYS syllabus. Anusha can be contacted at email@example.com.