Daniel Diet – Biblical Fasting As Described in the Bible
The Daniel Diet is not simply a fad diet to lose weight. Instead, it is a spiritual commitment that may result in a drop in pounds. But, first and foremost, it is designed to improve your relationship with God.
The Daniel diet is based on a verse from the Bible. Daniel 1:18 says, “Daniel proposed in his heart that he would not defile himself.” At the time, the Hebrews were living in exile in Babylonia. Daniel was an advisor to the Babylonian king.
The Babylonian king ate all kinds of foods restricted to Jews. This included non kosher foods, wine, and foods and drinks that had been offered to idols.
The modern day Daniel diet popularized by author and pastor Rev. Elmer Townes does not require that you follow the same program that the Biblical Daniel did.
The Daniel fast is not a full fast. You are allowed to eat whole grains, legumes, fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, and water, fruit juices and vegetable juices.
You must specifically avoid all meat, white flour or white rice, fried foods, caffeine, carbonated beverages (including diet soda), alcohol, foods with any preservatives or additives, refined sugar, high fructose corn syrup, chemical sugar substitutes like equal, and margarine, shortening or any product with animal fats.
Before you begin the diet part of the Daniel fast, you need to prepare spiritually through prayer. Make a commitment to stay on the diet for a specified period and publicize it by writing it down and telling your family, friends and faith partners what you have promised God you will do.
You will also need to prepare yourself physically for the diet. If you are addicted to caffeine, it is a good idea to wean yourself off of coffee or soda for two weeks before starting the Daniel diet. Also, begin reducing meat consumption ahead of time so that this is not a shock to your system.
The length of time you stay on the Daniel Diet depends on you. Remember, this is not primarily a weight loss plan but a spiritual redemption. Some people make a commitment to stay on the fast for the rest of their lives. Many churches are doing a church-wide Daniel fast for 21 days encompassing 4 Sundays. This stems from a 21 day fast that Daniel recounted in Daniel chapter 10. Other people fast for the entire 40 days of Lent. However, you can do the Daniel fast for as little as 7 days and see results.
Some people report that they do a one day a week complete fast as a sacrifice to the Lord.
Here are some tips to help you be successful on the Daniel Diet.
1. Be specific about the amount of time you will spend on the diet.
2. Use the fasting as a spiritual commitment not a weight loss plan.
3. Use your external discipline to reflect your internal desire.
4. Pray and ask God to show you what sin’s role is in your physical problems.
5. Use your fast as a testimony to others.
6. Use your fast to learn the effects of the food you eat on your body.
7. Give praise to God for whatever successes you have on the Daniel Diet.