7 Day Water-Only Fasting - Good Idea or Absolute Craziness?

Call me a conspiracy theorist, but I have some sources saying that Australia will go into full lock-down (only allowed to go supermarket and back home) starting Monday, with announcement to be made this Sunday's evening.

So if we will be 2 weeks in quarantine and without jobs, I am thinking to do a 7 day water fast, where for 7 days I will drink only water and eat nothing.
I have no medical conditions and take no medications, not overweight, no dietary limitations or allergies etc. and I am doing this purely in an attempt to get rid of my acne that has been plaguing me ever since I was 14 years old.

We will be at home, so I can stay in bed the whole time I am fasting to avoid problems doing physical activities.

I have tried many fad, non-fad and weird diets before for weeks (for health and skin reasons, some helped, some didn't) so I am not worried that I won't have enough willpower to pull this through.

Just wondering, has anyone tried this before and can give some advice? Maybe some GPs here that want to call me retarded and convince otherwise?

Poll Options

  • 258
    Do it and see what happens.
  • 147
    Do NOT do it, you will not get any benefits from it at all!


  • I'll give you until the 1st evening.

  • Maybe some GPs here that want to call me retarded and convince otherwise?

    I'm a GP*, and yes you are

    May or may not actually be a GP

  • … and then you pass out, call an ambulance and be a burden on a potentially over accommodated hospital.

    Once coronavirus has passed, see a GP about getting something like doxycycline or whatever is causing your acne.

    • and then you pass out, call an ambulance and be a burden on a potentially over accommodated hospital.

      Good point, I certainly don't want to be throw around a hospital full of coronavirus patients!

      • If you have a sickness, or potentially, then don't do it.
        I've done this out of necessity before. Sometimes its no food for 1 day, my max was just over 1 week. At the end of the week, I was pretty good…. but not in a mood to do any strength, cardio, deep thinking, or latency tests. Heck, I actually noticed my vision deteriorated. And that's with me not having to do exercise through the week, having some winter fat, in the nice Autumn weather, plenty of fluids.

        Humans can live surprisingly decently without clean air, brushing teeth, showering, clothes washing, and eating for prolonged periods. However, you will suffer very quickly if you don't have good intake of fluids, and good shelter/warmth. It really is the basics when surviving in the wild. But "decently" is definitely not the same as "living well". And there are no health benefits from doing this. You're better off doing a proper diet if you are concerned about weightloss.

        My recommendation?
        You can do intermittent fasting. You can increase your fluid intake, and mix it up with fruit juice, herbal tea, milk, etc etc. When you feel "too hungry" you can eat something light, like a peeled carrot, celery sticks, salad, popcorn, etc etc.

        Just know that magic does not exist. No amount of praying (or crystals) can change reality. So don't fight truth (facts/knowledge/science) your body is a "Machine in Motion". If the motion stops, you die. If the machine breaks, you die. You can slow the machine. You can remove a few parts. Sometimes you can do a bit of both. But you have to understand that the universe has forces trying to pull you apart, and you are losing millions of cells, billions of bacteria, and even more proteins, fats, compounds, and water EVERY DAY, so you have to keep the engine fed so it doesn't stall. Simplest note: if you run out of oxygen, you will die. It's not about "wanting" oxygen. And that principle applies to other consumable and replenishable elements.

  • you may not have a medical condition now. you might just get one after

  • Its not a bad idea to reduce your food intake somewhat but reducing it to zero is a pretty dumb idea that could cause you lasting issues. Your body needs more than just fat to survive and weakening at this time is pretty damned stupid.

    • Science disagrees

      • Halo375 makes a damn good point.

        At a time like this, you need to make sure your immunity is at its peak. Without necessary nutrients from food, I don't see how you can maintain your immune system if you starve your body.

        Probably the most dumbest idea, OP.

  • Intermittent fasting is fine, I know a person who does 5 day no-food fasting / once per month. He is super healthy regularly and is disciplined AF.

    Personally I have gone up to three day fast, you need to gradually build yourself up to it though because your mind loves playing tricks on you Try eating once per day (choose your food properly) and having 20 hour fast, then gradually increase it.

    I truly believe 'fasting' will improve your health in the long term. Just google the benefits.

    • On one of my diets I have survived 10 days with only one meal a day - 1kg beef for dinner, and drink water anytime during the day, so I am not a stranger to mind tricks, not worried about that.

      • be fine if you get to 48 hours. just be ready for purging at ~36. if you're normally healthy and considering experimenting with fasting, this is a great time to do it

      • +11 votes

        1kg beef for dinner

        Mate… I'm sorry, but what in the (profanity) kind of fad diets have you been going for?

        Anecdotally, having had eczema (not acne I know)issues since I was a teen, I find the biggest thing that affects it for me (and apparently a lot of people) is dairy intake. If you haven't already tried it, I would try eating dairy-free for maybe a month or two. I rarely consume dairy now and when I do my skin flares up.

        • Mate… I'm sorry, but what in the (profanity) kind of fad diets have you been going for?

          My friend was a skeptic until Joe Rogan did the carnivore diet for a month.

          • @ozhunter: Good to see people making life decisions based on such massive data sets.

            • @banana365: A lot of conflicting information about dieting/fasting and the like. Gotta live life on the edge sometimes :D

              It sounds like some here think if you skip a meal or two that the human body would wither away and die.

              Anecdotal evidence is more than enough for me to try something as harmless as not eating for a day or two. Look up Dr. Jason Fung or Dr. Ken Berry videos on youtube.

          • @ozhunter: Ah yes, anecdotal evidence from Joe Rogan, well known scientists and dietician.

            Come on dude, this isn't even fad dieting at this point it's just listening to psuedo science

            • @jrowls: I did find it funny how that was the thing to make him try intermittent fasting, not necessarily carnivore, though he wouldn't have objections to trying it. His reasoning was something like "Why would he lie? What does he have to gain?"

      • 1kg beef for dinner…thats like our family dinner portion.

      • 1kg beef for dinner

        OK, I see what we're dealing with here.

      • I hope you’re just bored and trolling people with your weird diets of 1kg of beef and 3 pizzas + 4 litres of daily milk. Otherwise this is quite unhealthy (not just physically but mentally) Your reasoning is also quite flawed.

      • You survived on one meal a day and that meal was basically a day's worth of food intake for 2 people…

    • -3 votes

      Intermittent fasting is fine, I know a person who does 5 day no-food fasting / once per month. He is super healthy regularly and is disciplined AF.

      I know an ex-ozbargainer who was into those 5-day cleanse fad diet. she developed anorexia and passed away from cardiac arrhythmia last year.

      • What is with you and dead people? >_<

      • It's likely the other way around tho. People develop anorexia typically already have the psychological make up for it, the trigger is quite secondary. You can have addictions for food, gaming, tv shows, gambling, sex, gym, shopping, etc, or the lack thereof, same underlying issue, different symptoms.

        • +6 votes

          People develop anorexia typically already have the psychological make up for it, the trigger is quite secondary.

          And what makes you think this is not the case for Op? If you read his past posts, you will notice that he has an unhealthy relationship with food.

          Two weeks ago i started my "pizza diet", which consists of 3 frozen cheese pizzas and 2 star beef mince, both from Aldi. At this time my weight was 75kg.
          In a day I would eat 900g of cheese pizza (2304 calories) plus 500g of 2 star beef mince (1430 calories) which would amount to 3734 calories per day NOT INCLUDING my breakfast and lunch.
          So today I checked my weight and I was shocked - 74kg!!! All this effort and money was barely enough to keep my weight and not gain a single kilogram, but also lose one!

          I will continue my pizza diet for another 2 weeks and see what happens for now.
          I got a friend on my case who was also skinny but he is now no more. I haven't seen him for 2 years but he has changed a lot. He told me he went on a GOMAD diet, where he drank 4 liters of milk everyday. After pizzas I am going to try that!

          • @DisabledUser102420: Oh apologies, I haven't come across Op's posts yet.

            Now that truly looks worrying, because I don't even know where to start on pizza diet, except just no. Guess we'll find out if he made it to your list…

  • I've done this for longer periods many times (2 weeks) and I still seem to be able to function at work (office job). It's fine. Just stay hydrated and don't suddenly eat a humongous meal at the end of it.

    • You've gone 2 full weeks without food? Or do you mean intermittent fasting for 2 weeks… I think OP is suggesting water only for 7 days straight.

      • I've actually done 30 days straight as my longest without food. It's just been water. But I do 2 weeks every few months. The first three days are the hardest, but when you get past that, the hunger feeling seems to be gone.

        • Yeh i've just made it further down the page and seen frugalftw's response too. I can't comprehend not eating food for that amount of time… incredible.

          • @chriise: It's tremendously beneficial for your body, but you have to be educated and understand what you are doing, that's why a lot of people recommend supervision. This forum again isn't sufficient for that kind of information.

            1-3 days are fine for normal people if they can withstand the hunger and other things, depending on how fat-adapted/metabolically flexible their bodies are. This is where people go if they wanted to hack their metabolism and a bunch of other things.

            4-7 days you are entering into a slow decline of non-essential body functions, which includes the immune system. It starts to make you wonder how you were ever able to live without winer jackets, if you hadn't already been wanting them on day 2 lol

            8+ days you probably really start to appreciate the time you have now. So much extra time! The days are just a number now.

            Essentials: sun light, filtered water, clean air.
            Nice to have: short walks, meditation, daily enema with electrolytes, spring water, plans on how to break the fast.
            Contraindication: environments where the immune system is challenged.

            • @frugalftw: Well, I'm definitely curious now. Might try 1 day just to see ho…

              daily enema

              hold up..

              • @chriise: Hahaha you'd have to hold up.

                It's for those doing it for alternative treatment for an extended period. Your digestive system shuts down after a few days, which includes the bowel movement. When autophagy kicks in, and in a systemic way, it'd be great if all your waste disposals are working to help rid of the toxins, except

                • the intestines aren't pushing anything out.
                • you aren't likely to be kicking up your heart rate or core temperature (kudos if you are not hunching over the heater at this stage), so your lungs aren't pushing stuff out via the skin (sweat).
                • kidneys are still working, but it's not able to handle the stuff piling up elsewhere and they have their own crap to deal with.

                For those that aren't healthy or just want to move the process along faster, enema is great. Being someone who still can't come to terms with using a bidet myself, I can definitely understand your concern tho :)

                Again, fasting requires a bit of research to go on for longer than 3 days. OZB shouldn't be where you are getting all your information from.

        • are you a talking skeleton….

  • How old are you now?

    Acne sucks but it goes away eventually.

    Not eating for a week won't get rid of it.

    • Too privacy-conscious to tell my age, but I will just tell it does not look like it's going away and just keeps slowly getting worse through the years.

      • Too privacy-conscious to tell my age

        You've mentioned it previously on here ;)

      • Ok. Well I had it BAD at 14, went away at 19.


        • At 14 I have been told it will go away at 16, at 16 I've been told it will go away at 18 etc.
          Lucky you!

      • Have you tried Roaccutane?

        • I have not, but on purpose. Don't need the side effects and don't want to screw up my body as my immune system, blood and skin in other areas is in very good condition and I want to keep it that way.

          • @Blue Cat: Roaccutane was a life saver for me. Cleared me up in a few months and I've been clear skinned for 10 years now. Best thing I did as a teen and have no regrets. No long term side effects for me.

          • @Blue Cat: I was on it for 6 months and it cleared up my skin perfectly. No on-going side effects. You'll hear loads of people complaining about side affects because pubescent people are like that.

            I have a friend who took it when he was older (early 20's) and his only complaint was that he couldn't drink while he was on it.

          • @Blue Cat: Mateine went away around mid 20s!
            I'd also tried eliminating different foods, which sometimes seemed to help, but not consistently. I now eat whatever, and my face is clear.

          • @Blue Cat: I was also worried about the side effects but after dealing with acne for most of my teen years, I decided to just give it a go. It cleared me up within months. I'm in my late twenties now and the past 5 years have been acne free with no side effects at all. I get an odd pimple every now and then but no acne at all.

            Everybody reacts differently I guess. Most of my friends had dry skin and chapped lips. I don't know anybody that has worse effects than that.

          • @Blue Cat:

            I have not, but on purpose. Don't need the side effects and don't want to screw up my body as my immune system, blood and skin in other areas is in very good condition and I want to keep it that way.

            The scare-mongering around Roaccutane has existed for decades and if any of it were close to being true, then millions of people would not be taking it each year and successfully treating their acne for life.

            This is the only reason your acne is not going away.

            You're trying every old wive's tale remedy you can come across on the Internet, meanwhile, you've convinced yourself that the only proven treatment for severe, cystic-type acne or other forms of severe acne, is a dangerous and potentially life-threatening drug with scary side-effects.

            Roaccutane has a 75% success rate with the first treatment alone (usually a 6-month program), meaning 75% of people who take it never have acne again in their lifetime, with only a quarter of acne sufferers need a second treatment to permanently cure their acne.

            Seriously, if you have severe cystic acne that is not going to remission past puberty, take Roaccutane now and avoid the severe scarring that can result which is much, much harder to treat, even with laser resurfacing and other kinds of dermatological treatments, and can cause lasting scars that will be with you for the rest of your life.

            Your food intake has zero correlation with your acne, which is overwhelmingly genetically-inherited and is caused by the ducts between the sebum (oil) glands in your skin and the hair follicles next to them being blocked with dead cells that are unable to be cleared out of those ducts, which then cause the sebum glands to swell and expand as they continue to produce sebum that doesn't end up excreting onto the skin but instead remains trapped under the epidermis and forms a painful swelling known as a pimple, which eventually stretches the epidermis to the point of tearing.

            Any link you see between your food intake and a reduction in your acne is purely coincidental and probably a placebo more than anything else.

            Stop being afraid, take Roaccutane, have some mild side-effects like dry skin and lips for 6 months and be done with acne for the rest of your life.

    • It doesn't

  • I have it on good authority a full lock down will be announced this weekend.
    You aint seen nothin yet with this current crap

  • If you'd never fasted before, take it easy and start with the popular 16-hour IF, especially if you are currently on a normal carb-rich diet. You will experience low-carb flu at the least, which can be countered with electrolytes. Once your body gets a good handle on it (switching to the fat pathway), then make your way to 3 day fasts. Do it at least a couple times before attempting longer fasts. It's very important that you get the sun and plenty of water during a water fast. Equally important is how you break the fast, but 3 days is not a big deal.

    My longest was 34 days :) I did it out of curiosity, and broke it out of boredom.

    • 34 days with no food? despite dramatic fast and muscle loss, what other side effects did you experience?

      • Yes to strengths loss as I train for strengths. Hairy tongue is real lol Water melon was the most beautiful food I ever had (broke the fast with it). I was on 40:40:20 for about 8 months, then keto and IF for about 5 months, then I went for the water fast. No other side effects. Just boredom. You don't realise how much time you spend on food until you remove it. Seriously. It doesn't take much to get the strengths back tho, but I'm distracted by other things then. Curiosity keeps sending me to weird places.

    • My longest was 34 days

      Is that IF or water-only fast???

      • Water fast. I was on IF for a long time tho, pretty adapted psychologically I'd say. I remember people at work staring at me eating fat hahaha

        Another thing, your system will start to shut down for fasts longer than 3 days, if you don't want to gamble with the virus going, don't go above 3 days. If you had to, there are supplements you'll need to take.

  • I've done it before but with a few barley sugars per day. Doing at home where you can rest and don't have to be physically active should be easy. Doubt it'll have any effect on your acne though but who knows.

    BTW, basically zero chance they announce a lockdown Sun night that comes into effect Mon. They'll give 48 hours notice IMO if they do it.

    • They'll give 48 hours notice IMO if they do it.

      And give 48 hours for all those braindead panic-shoppers to cause even more chaos? I think gubmnet would know better now.

    • That's not how governments overseas have done it.

      Doesn't mean ours won't, but as the other replies have suggested, it doesn't make a lot of sense.

  • I don’t think it’s a good idea. I don’t think it would be healthy, and I don’t think it would improve your acne. I think you would be putting your body under stress, during a time of heightened psychological stress.

  • +5 votes

    Bad , bad idea..

    Without food, the body must find another way to maintain glucose levels. At first, it breaks down glycogen. Then, it turns to proteins and fats. The liver turns fatty acids into by-products called ketone bodies.

    The problem with this is that your brain can't use these long-chain fatty acids, so it also switches mode and uses ketone molecules for energy instead of glucose. But this can only provide 75% of its energy requirements, so while your body is happily burning fat and fueling the rest of your organs during ketosis, your cognitive function becomes impaired.

    After about 72 hours, your brain decides it needs more than just ketones to survive. This is when your body starts to break down its own proteins so that it can use their amino acids to form glucose. At this point, your body is literally cannibalising itself and is eating away at your muscle tissue just to stay alive.

    If you still don't eat , the break-down of your body will continue, and death can occur in as little as three weeks after you stop eating - that is, if you don't get sick from a lack of immune system-essential vitamins and minerals first.

    Now if you factor in that we are in the middle of a pandemic …

    Like I said, bad idea. How about seeing a dermatologist instead?