Daniel Fast FAQ
Are you new to spiritual fasting? Are you considering this powerful spiritual discipline for your faith walk?
I’ve used spiritual fasting several times over my 30+ years as a Christian, including several times of partial fasting using the Daniel Fast. I started writing about the benefits of fasting back in December 2007. What I didn’t know is that thousands of other followers of Jesus Christ are now entering into the powerful discipline of prayer and fasting. Moreover, many have chosen the Daniel Fast for an extended fasting method. However, now, they needed to know what to do. What foods are okay, and which ones must eliminate during the Daniel Fast?
A partial list of foods for the Daniel Fast had published in Elmer L. Town’s book titled Fasting for Spiritual Breakthrough. However, while the list was helpful, it wasn’t complete. Consequently, those who wanted to do the Daniel Fast with integrity had lots of questions. The new Daniel Fast blog seemed the natural place to get their answers.
After answering hundreds and hundreds of questions, I decided to rewrite the food list to make it more complete. It didn’t change the practice at all. It just was more thorough and eliminated almost all the questions on people’s minds about what they could and could not eat during the Daniel Fast.
So if you have questions now, I encourage you to check out the Daniel Fast Blog (see the link at the end of this article), and I guess that most of your questions will answer. If you still have a question, feel free to ask by leaving a comment.
However, some questions still seem to leave people scratching their heads! So I will list the five most frequently asked questions about the Daniel Fast.
- Honey is a natural food, so can I use it as a sweetener on the Daniel Fast? No, all sweeteners are not allowed on the Daniel Fast. In Daniel 10, the prophet notes that “he ate no precious food, ate no meat, and drank no wine.” Honey would have been considered precious during that time. Also, going without sweet foods is part of the fasting experience of withholding food for spiritual purposes.
- Can I drink tea on the Daniel Fast? No, tea and coffee (including any substitutes) are not allowed on the Daniel Fast. For the purists, water is the only acceptable beverage, while some people drink 100% fruit and vegetable juice. It’s most likely that Daniel drank only water.
- What about people with special dietary needs. How do they do the Daniel Fast? Teens, women who are pregnant, diabetics, athletes, and others who may need special diets should check with their health providers before starting any fast, including the Daniel Fast. However, most health providers will find the Daniel Fast an excellent way to eat since it includes all vegetables, all fruits, all whole grains, no sugar, no alcohol, no caffeine, and no animal products. You might be instructed to add chicken or fish into the mix, which would be fine for a special needs diet. Remember, there is no power in the foods themselves, but rather fasting is consecrating yourself to the Lord so that you can focus on Him in a more specific and real way. So if your health provider wants you to add animal protein into the diet, then you can still have a successful fast.
- How about corn chips and tortillas? When you read through the blog, you will find that I am always encouraging people to READ THE LABEL so they can see the ingredients in the prepared foods. I was amazed the first time I read the list of chemicals in prepared tortillas! Corn chips are usually deep-fried, and all deep-fried and processed foods are not allowed during the Daniel Fast. However, there is a recipe on the blog for natural tortillas, and it’s easy to use this same recipe to make your chips — the tortillas made from whole wheat flour, olive oil, salt, and water. You can easily substitute finely ground cornmeal. The tortillas are then “fried” in a dry pan with little or no oil.
- What about cramping in my legs and my stomach? If cramping persists and you sense a concern, be sure to contact your health professional. The cramping is most likely a symptom of your body detoxing! The typical diet packed with sugar, caffeine, and chemicals. So when these eliminated, the body is a little confused and responds with cramps. The best remedy is to drink lots of water (the best detox there is), increase your vitamin C, and eat extra bananas and cantaloupe until the cramping subsides. This usually ends in a few days. Headaches are also prevalent, typically a symptom of caffeine withdrawal.