There is ofcourse a lot of research done on the benefits of fasting, and with the internet, this information is easily available for all.
Fasting not only has tremendous physical, mental benefits but ofcourse spiritual as well
I just thought that i would post a few things that i found, whilst surfing. I apologize about the length of this post, however, even these various articles don't completely do justice about all the benefits of fasting.
From religious ground, fasting is not only islamic practice. Its also a essential tradition of Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish and Christian belief.
A beautiful quote on fasting by a Saint, "Let us love fasting exceedingly, for fasting cures diseases, casts out demons, drives away evil thoughts, renders the mind brighter, the heart pure, the body sanctified, and presents man to the throne of God."
-- St. Athanasios the Great
Fasting is prescribed in almost all religions. The Jews and Christians also fast. Jewish law order a yearly fast on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. Many Orthodox Jews require the bride and groom to fast on the day before their wedding. Many Christians fast during Lent, the period of 40 days that Jesus (as) spent fasting in the wilderness.
The Buddhists and Hindus also fast. Some religious thinkers, such as Zoroastrian religious leaders are against fasting from food, claiming that abstaining from food has no moral value, when compared with "fasting from evil" with eyes, hands, tongue, or feet. In some religions, people fast during times of mourning. Sometimes, personal or political goals are sought through fasting. M.K. Gandhi of India used fasting both as a penance and as a means of political protest
http://www.healingdaily.com/juicing-for ... asting.htm
"Fasting is, without any doubt, the most effective biological method of treatment... it is the 'operation without surgery'... it is a cure involving exudation, reattunement, redirection, loosening up and purified relaxation. While fasting, the patient improves her or his physical health and gains much. But he or she will have neglected the most important thing if the hunger for spiritual nourishment that manifests itself during fasting is not satisfied." said Otto Buchinger, Sr., M.D., Germany's great, self-described "fasting therapist," who founded the most famous of several renowned, European Buchinger Kliniks in 1952.
Prolonged, scientific fasting has proven itself, over several thousand years, as humanity's oldest, fastest and most effective weight-loss, detoxification, healing and longevity-enhancing modality known to mankind - both curative, as well as preventive.
Likewise, despite all 3 Fathers of Western Medicine having fasted and having prescribed fasting (Hippocrates, Galen and Paracelsus, who declared fasting "the greatest remedy, the physician within"), the fact remains that symptoms-oriented trained U.S. physicians are also equally in the dark.
http://members.tripod.com/worldupdates/ ... /id131.htm
Dr. Elson M. Haas, M.D., offers some very beneficial information about fasting, addressing preventive and integrated medicines, natural nutrition therapies and detoxification (fasting).
http://members.tripod.com/worldupdates/ ... /id136.htm
Fasting and your Biological Rythms is a beautiful article by Doctor E. Kazim where he describes how fasting release special types of tranquilizing natural chemicals that not only tranquil our mind but also elate the mind. Also how fasting positively affects our sleep is discussed from scientific research
Miracle of Fasting is a very religion independent investigation on the benefits of Fasting. It talsk about how fasting is necessary for the internal purification, how fasting conserves vital force and how it cleanses toxins out.
http://www.irfi.org/articles/articles_1 ... asting.htm
Healthier Living through Fasting is an article by Ibrahim B. Syed, Ph.D. who is a Clinical Professor of Medicine at University of Louisville School of Medicine. The article focuses on how Science Favors Fasting interms of longevity, effect on weight, lipid metabolism etc
Fasting enhances mental acuity
Not only internal digestive organs and others, fasting also enhances the mental faculty.
Perhaps the most instructive testimony as to the acuteness of mental powers during fasting comes from Dr. Herbert Shelton who supervised the fasting of more than 40,000 people over a period of fifty years. His message is that the freer the body is of toxic materials flowing through the blood and lymphatic system, the clearer is the ability to think. continue reading
http://www.yogamag.net/archives/1981/5m ... thea.shtml
Yoga magazine has an article by Swami Satyananda Saraswati that talks about not only spiritual but also physical development relating to fasting. Along with other issues it talks about fasting and its relation with Somo-psychic or psychosomatic, balancing of the hormones and concentration of mind.
http://www.buddhistchannel.tv/index.php ... 24,0,0,1,0
A Healthy Fast Is as Good as a Fresh Start
The article published in Buddhist Channel gives an outline how fasting can be seen as a healing treatment that purifies our bodies. Fasting restores the body’s innate self-healing ability that we have forgotten- mentions the article. “Hunger is perhaps the most intense discomfort people can feel. Our bodies recognize fasting as an emergency state. Autonomic nerves that were hibernating become alive, and react very sensitively and violently. They begin to throw away all the unnecessary things, leaving only the minimum needed for survival. In this process, all the waste and toxins are being eliminated,” say Prof. Shin Hyun-dae at Kyung Hee Medical Center