Please test your servants for ten days: Give us nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink. Then compare our appearance with that of the young men who eat the royal food, and treat your servants in accordance with what you see.” So he agreed to this and tested them for ten days. At the end of the ten days they looked healthier and better nourished than any of the young men who ate the royal food. So the guard took away their choice food and the wine they were to drink and gave them vegetables instead. – Daniel 1:12–16, NIV
As we’ve been going through the book of Daniel on Sunday mornings, the topic of fasting has come up. Fasting is a spiritual discipline that temporarily limits intake of food for spiritual focus. It was practiced by Jesus (Matthew 4:2) and was said to be a practice of his future disciples (Luke 5:35). We thought this might be a great time to have a community wide fast and focus on God.
One of the great things about the Daniel Fast is that you are not limited to any specific amount of food, but rather to the kinds of food you can eat. The Daniel Fast is limited to vegetables (includes fruits) and water. The best way to follow the fast is to prepare. Begin to limit “foods to avoid” a few days prior to the day of fasting. This will help “withdraw” symptoms from sugars and caffeine. Remember that fasting without prayer is simply a diet. This exercise is intended for spiritual growth, not weigh loss. If you have any questions please ask.
Special Note: if you have health issues, please be sure to contact your health professional for advice before committing to any fast including the Daniel Fast.
We plan to fast for 10 days from Wed. Oct. 20th – Friday Oct. 29th.
Foods to include in your diet during the Daniel Fast
– All fruits. These can be fresh, frozen, dried, juiced or canned. Fruits include but are not limited to apples, apricots, bananas, blackberries, blueberries, boysenberries, cantaloupe, cherries, cranberries, figs, grapefruit, grapes, guava, honeydew melon, kiwi, lemons, limes, mangoes, nectarines, oranges, papayas, peaches, pears, pineapples, plums, prunes, raisins, raspberries, strawberries, tangelos, tangerines, watermelon.
– All vegetables. These can be fresh, frozen, dried, juiced or canned. Vegetables include but are not limited to artichokes, asparagus, beets, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, chili peppers, collard greens, corn, cucumbers, eggplant, garlic, ginger root, kale, leeks, lettuce, mushrooms, mustard greens, okra, onions, parsley, potatoes, radishes, rutabagas, scallions, spinach, sprouts, squashes, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, turnips, watercress, yams, zucchini, veggie burgers are an option if you are not allergic to soy.
– All whole grains, including but not limited to whole wheat, brown rice, millet, quinoa, oats, barley, grits, whole wheat pasta, whole wheat tortillas, rice cakes and popcorn.
– All nuts and seeds, including but not limited to sunflower seeds, cashews, peanuts, sesame. Also nut butters including peanut butter.
– All legumes. These can be canned or dried. Legumes include but are not limited to dried beans, pinto beans, French beans, split peas, lentils, black eyed peas, kidney beans, black beans, cannellini beans, white beans.
– All quality oils including but not limited to olive, canola, grape seed, peanut, and sesame.
– Beverages: spring water, distilled water or other pure waters.
– Other: tofu, soy products, vinegar, seasonings, salt, herbs and spices.
Foods to avoid or limit on the Daniel Fast
– All meat and animal products including but not limited to beef, lamb, pork, poultry, and fish.
– All refined and processed food products including but not limited to artificial flavorings, food additives, chemicals, white rice, white flour, and foods that contain artificial preservatives.
– All deep fried foods including but not limited to potato chips, French fries, corn chips.
– All solid fats including shortening, margarine, lard and foods high in fat.
– Beverages including but not limited to coffee, tea, herbal teas, carbonated beverages, energy drinks, and alcohol.