Go! Drink Some Water (and Have a Nice Lie Down)

Posted on May 16th, 2009 by Mark in Peru

glass-of-waterGreetings from Peru for the final time.

After 2 ½ years here in the jungle healing my body through the participation in ayahuasca ceremonies I recently realized that it is time to move on and do something different. Ayahuasca has helped me tremendously (it is not an exaggeration to say that it saved my life), but it has taken me as far as it can, for now at least.

In a few days I will be leaving the jungle and heading out on the next stage of my journey. I am going to the US to do a water fast at Dr Scott’s Natural Health Institute. Dr Scott is 85 and has supervised over 20,000 people during almost 60 years of practice.

The theory behind this unconventional approach is that complete rest allows the body to use all of its resources to fight illness and disease.

The digestion of food is the biggest strain on the system, and going without food for a period of time frees up huge amounts of energy reserves in the body  

Given the right conditions the body is a self-healing organism. Guests are expected to do as little as possible during the fast, and are not even allowed to watch TV. Lying in bed all day long is very much the order of the day, am I am reliably informed that the boredom is worse than the hunger, which only lasts a couple of days.

Dr Scott says “We don’t treat your disease. Your body must heal itself. Therapeutic fasting empowers the body with tremendously enhanced natural immunity. This enhanced natural immunity repairs and rebalances the body through its own regenerative healing processes. There are few diseases where (fasting) is not applicable. The quality of experienced, well trained professional supervision however, remains of paramount importance.”

Extensive lab tests are carried out on for all fasters on a weekly basis to protect individuals’ safety. The longest fast he has supervised is 55 days, and the oldest person 93. I am planning on fasting for 4 weeks, maybe longer if it is really working and I am able to safely continue.

Dr Scott has seen countless people recover quickly from even the most serious diseases, including:

·         Allergies

·         Asthma

·         Diabetes

·         Heart Disease

·         Hypertension (High Blood Pressure)

·         Multiple Sclerosis


Have you ever fasted and if so, what were the results?

Do you think the body really can heal itself in this manner, or is this nothing more than a rather clever way to sell a very expensive glass of water?

Right, I’m off for a big fat steak while I still can, but I’d love to hear all comments on the matter.



15 Responses to “Go! Drink Some Water (and Have a Nice Lie Down)”

  1. Jim says:

    Alright Mark,

    The next chapter eh! Seems like you’re 100% ready to move on and get cracking…

    Fasting wise I’ve doen a couple fo 8 day sessions at the Spa samui and felt wonderful for it -complete with full colonics, twice a day – will that be part of your regimen?

  2. Loren says:

    Hi Mark,

    Right on! You are about to embark on the single most powerful, effective and efficient way to allow the body to cleanse and heal itself, and the body is the Only thing that can cleanse and heal the body.

    Dave Scott knows a ton about fasting, but the place is pretty dreary and on a busy street corner. You might want to look at some alternatives if you’re not already committed. I run the Tanglewood Wellness Center where we have been guiding people through this amazing process for the last 13+ years and see equally amazing results without the need for expensive and invasive lab tests. For about half of what you’ll pay Dr Scott, you can spend the same amount of time in a spectacular tropical paradise here in the mountains of Panama. With temps of 80-85 every day, pure air, beautiful gardens, fountains, views, etc., this is a much nicer place to spend 4-6 weeks then downtown Strongville Ohio, and when it is time to eat, your food will be just-picked, ripe organic fruit.

    All the best to you whatever you choose to do, and let us know if we can assist you in any way.


  3. auntie bets garden furniture row says:

    Nice spam pitch

    Good luck mark but I think the science or lack of it is worrying

  4. Jim says:

    Science apart if your give the major organs a break then isn’t that enough logic?

    • O'DB says:

      ‘Science apart’? You’re suggesting putting centuries of observation based empirical science to one side on the whim of intuition & gut-feeling that you consider ‘logic’.

      I’m amazed people will consider this. It would be funny if it wasn’t so tragic – the potential damage, your health, is vast & yet you’re more than happy to advocate for something based on whim.

      The possibility of it working is a huge draw – particularly when life threatening diseases such as diabetes, heart disease & MS are bandied about – but propagating such claims on the back of some highly subjective case histories is wrong, & possibly very dangerous. If this had been through objective, rigorous clinical study & collected valid empirical data that shows statistically significant & relevant effects I’d be willing to investigate this further but individual, subjective testimonies & reports don’t cut it.

      Why do you consider the major organs need a ‘break’? They’ve evolved over thousands/millions of years to perform very specific tasks like digestion, toxin removal & clearance & you genuinely think that shutting them down through water fasting will be healthy? There are plenty of examples where organs are shut down, potentially rested in your parlance, such as kidney failure & stroke – extreme examples, but you get the idea.

      I seriously suggest reading some solid science writing sites like Ben Goldacre’s Bad Science http://www.badscience.net/ & David Colquhoun’s Improbable Science http://www.dcscience.net/ . Putting detox into the search box will give you a number of links & articles on the lack of objective science behind similar dangerous claims about detoxing & detox products. Also there’s some good writing here: http://www.senseaboutscience.org.uk/index.php/site/project/14/

      I know this site is supposed to be open minded & alternative but I think until serious & objective science has been performed on these claims you’re playing Russian roulette with your health based on a whim.

      Jim: there’s a big difference between open minded enquiry & investigation & advocating potentially health threatening processes based on intuition. I think advertising & advocating highly dubious health claims is extremely dangerous & should be reviewed & reconsidered.

      • Jim says:

        Ok thanks for the background O’Db – why did I feel so clear and healthy after my fasts at the Spa in Thailand?

        From personal experience?

        • O'DB says:

          I don’t know – that’s the whole point.

          You’re relating a personal, highly subjective experience. It has no controls & is a single person’s feelings & testimony. There could be a million & one environmental factors that may have contributed – you’re on holiday, in Thailand, doing something different … who knows maybe you increased your FGF2 levels (amongst many other possible factors & effects) as reported in kathleenblanchardrn’s post. Without rigorous study, with correct controls & measures, the number of explanations & possibilities are endless. Also, what works for you may not work for all. The duration too is yet another variable: a day, a week, a month, months who knows what is good, optimal & where the benefits outweigh the detriments. Maybe, as you personally report, there is a temporary psychological boost or benefit but who knows whether that masks a physical detrimental effect?

          The point is that without solid data we don’t know. But advocating such practices based on cock-eyed logic like ‘resting organs’ is highly flawed & potentially dangerous.

          • Fertile Fish says:

            First class odb, could not agree more.

            But then you have to admit, anyone who has spent any time on this blog previously will know that Jimberly has always been one of those who advocates solutions based on unsubstantiated information.

            Ain’t that right there Jimmy James?

            Or is that another question from the Fish you’ll ignore?

            Snigger snigger snigger

        • uncle cyril says:


          you were on a relaxing holiday in a lovely part of the world surrounded by people suggesting how great such and such will make you feel.

          so environment, auto suggestion, peer pressure, and your own desire that the money you have spent will reap benefits will have been the key reasons.

    • frederica says:

      i think maybe you need to desintoxicate your liver right?if you are not sick why fasting that long?fasting has also a spiritual side that is important to consider.
      i once participated in a religious group that used ayahuasca during the singing/praying in a certain rythm, called Santo Daime here in Brazil. it is a very powerful substance ….that in this case was to connect with the unconscious and grow because more united to its contents…for me it was a drug that provoques alucinations.
      it has to be done in a secure surrounding, with a group of experienced professionals or people of the nation that uses it wisely and ritually dosed etc.
      good next experience for u Mark!

  5. Mark in Peru says:

    ODB, I think you make a very good point about the lack of empirical scientific research. It would make a very interesting area of study.

    The reason that I am going to this centre is precisely so that I am not playing Russian Roulette with my health. I want to make sure that I am not doing any long term damage to my body and am confident that the continuous extensive medical test will provide this. If they indicate that there is any complication and that the body is not reacting well to the fast then it can be discontinued immediately.

    Science and Western medicine has done amazing this for people’s health and quality of life, but it does not have all the answers. I used to believe that all alternative therapies were bullshit until I got seriously sick and the doctors could do nothing to help.

    Through my own search for health I have seen that there are many amazing things out there (and many wacky and downright dangerous ones) that science can not explain, yet help people to heal conditions seen by doctors an untreatable.

    Will fasting work for me? I believe that it will, but have absolutely no idea. I am, though, open to the idea and more than willing to give it a go. I feel that doing it at this centre my health will not be compromised (I would not consider doing a water fast at home on my own) and I am excited about the experience.

    I will report back here in a couple of month how it all went. Cheers.

  6. Mark in Peru says:

    Fasting does not actually rest organs, quite the opposite. Stopping food intake takes the strain off the organs as they do not have to process and filter incoming food and toxins. Then are then able to use their energy to work on removing the existing toxins in the body and to work on the regeneration of damaged cells and thus physical healing.

    The body has plenty of stored nutrients that it can use for fuel during the fast and so that the lack of food is not a problem during this relatively short period. It will, though, take some time to put back on the weight lost and regain full strength in the body, but if chronic disease can be reversed and possibly eliminated, that seems like a small price to pay to me.

    • O'DB says:

      MiP – the fact that you are doing it in a clinic which (w/out doing extensive background research – it’s in the US, & based on their litiginous health-care are usually good, even if only to avoid huge malpractice bills) would seem to be the best place to perform such a potentially damaging & dangerous treatment.

      4 weeks still seems a very long duration. As you mention the body does store some nutrients & energy, but these will soon be used (2-4 days) after which your body will try to maintain all but the most critical systems & organs via the progressive breakdown of your musculo-skeletal system (eg. mainly in the form of protein). There must be medical studies on the long term effects of fasting, even if from dark periods in UK history e.g. studying political prisoners during the Irish Troubles who have fasted to emaciation & death? You do allude to the fact that your body will obviously be emaciated & will require time to build up muscle etc., & perhaps as you suggest it will help with a serious chronic disease. Maybe – but maybe your immune system will be so depleted & weakened by the fast that chronic disease actually progresses & leads to more harm & ultimnately death.

      However, you’ve obviously investigated & thought on this a lot more than me & the fact that you’re performing this under the supervision of medical staff at a clinic means you’ve taken the potential problems & harm seriously. Personally, I still disagree with your logic, conclusion & choice, but wish you all the best & sincerely hope that you can report back on your experience.

      • Mark in Peru says:

        Cheers. I will indeed report back, honestly, on my experience. I truly believe it will be very beneficial(I have spoken to numerous people who have done long fasts and every single one of them highly recommended doing it), but am open to the fact that I could be wrong.

  7. auntie bets garden furniture row says:


    As ever a great post no doubt it will be ignored though shame really as ever you make more sense than the. Vast majority on here

    In short its nonsense

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