Dopamine fasting – an out-of-the-box method to clear the brain and boost performance

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It takes approx. 3 minutes to read this article

A restrictive practice straight out of Silicon Valley is gaining popularity around the world. What is dopamine fasting all about?

Main assumptions of fasting

The purpose of fasting is to cut off the body’s supply of dopamine, the so-called happy hormone. According to the authors of the principles of fasting, the chemical compound can be as addictive as nicotine, alcohol or food. Trying to reduce the potency of dopamine on the body’s daily functioning is supposed to improve the body’s psychophysical condition, brain function and protect people from addiction to the feeling caused by the increase in dopamine

Dopamine fasting should be done once a week, two days a month and one week a year. Increasing the load is supposed to improve the body’s endurance and improve its ability to self-control. Abstaining from many pleasures is not that easy, already removing one of them from your life requires a lot of self-denial, let alone all of them at once. The demands that dopamine fasting places on the participant are high, but according to experts, they are proportional to its benefits.

Strict rules

The creators of dopamine fasting have prepared a whole list of classes, activities, pleasures, products and stimuli that are prohibited during dopamine fasting. At the top of the list, you can use your computer or phone to watch TV series, movies, pornography, YouTube videos, television, reading news articles or social media activity

The developers also forbid reading books, even for educational purposes, communicating through instant messaging, and listening to music. Among the activities not allowed are extreme sports, gambling, shopping, sex or fantasizing. Fasters are also not allowed to drink coffee, tea, alcohol or sweetened beverages, or eat fast food or sweets. Drug use and smoking are also prohibited

Depending on their level, participants may talk on the phone and contact friends or family. According to dopamine fasting enthusiasts, the most effective method of introducing new habits, even for a short period of time, is to give up each and every pleasure one by one, as cutting oneself off from the entire world one has known so far can be too drastic, and for some, psychologically difficult to bear.

Advantages of dopamine fasting

This type of reset from everyday reality allows you to focus on yourself and pay more attention to, for example, physical activity and relationships with loved ones. According to experts, fasting helps to regenerate a tired body, work on mental and physical well-being, calm down, gain distance from everyday problems, and also work on manual skills

In the case of physically active women, such a detox can prove to be a very quick and effective way to rest during the week. Studies conducted show that too low of dopamine in the body leads to depression, while too high leads to paranoia. For this reason, cleansing the brain and reducing the work of the entire nervous system in the head can help regulate its proper functioning.

Among the benefits of fasting, researchers also cite the exercise of concentration and mindfulness, breaking the daily routine, boosting creativity and changing deeply ingrained habits.

Main photo: Szilvia Basso/unsplash.com

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