“Gather my saints together unto me; those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice.” (Psalm 50:5 KJV)
“God’s kingdom isn’t a matter of what you put in your stomach . . . It’s what God does with your life as he sets it right, puts it together, and completes it with joy. Your task is to single-mindedly serve Christ.” (Romans 14, The Message)
Important Medical Exceptions: Anyone with a medical condition or under the treatment of a physician must consult their healthcare professional for advice before committing to any fast including the Daniel Fast. If you would like a list of the foods included and excluded in the Daniel Fast to show your doctor, just copy the contents of this page. For more information and FAQs, please check out the Daniel Fast Website.
Vitamins: It is advisable to take vitamin, mineral, and possibly protein supplements during the fast. You may also include various nuts to serve as a protein supplement.
Other Exceptions: Children, especially small children, will have special needs that must be considered. Under these conditions, find some sacrifice in the area of food that can be made without endangering health. Also, if you have extreme difficulty with the fast, such as impairment of your ability to work at your job, you will have to make adjustments. This is not a failure of will but is wisdom. Seek the Lord and discuss it with other Christians involved in the fast to find alternatives.
Side effects: You may experience moderate to severe headaches for the first day or two as your body rids itself of caffeine, salt, sugar, and various impurities. You may need to take Advil, aspirin, or a Goodies (smile).
Theme of the fast—fasting and prayer: Your goal in fasting is to become closer to God by voluntarily denying the demands of your flesh. Increase your prayer life during this time. Study the Scriptures with a new intensity. When the fast is over, you should have a new spiritual strength from overcoming the cravings that usually control your life and from dedicating yourself to God.
Biblical model: Do a personal study of fasting. In the book of Daniel, chapters 2 and 10, Daniel describes two examples of his personal fasting and the dramatic results. Isaiah described God’s chosen fast in Isaiah 58. Jesus fasted in the wilderness (Matthew 4, etc.) and spoke of the necessity of fasting for believers. It was a normal part of early church life. Fasting is one way we respond to the admonition throughout the Scriptures to die to our self-will and not to accommodate the desires of the flesh.
Overview of the fast: The Daniel fast drastically restricts normal food intake by cutting away many of the foods you commonly eat to satisfy your appetite. During the Daniel fast, there will be a sense of hunger much of the time and a sense of sacrifice even when we eat. We recommend that you restrict yourself to only one meal a day, leaving a small hunger.
Following your own conscience: The precise details of your fast are between you and God. In Romans 14, the apostle Paul describes how we should relate in love to one another in the matter of what we eat or choose not to eat. He says, “Each person is free to follow the convictions of his own conscience” (Romans 14, The Message). If you fast often, you may need to turn up your fasting another level during this time. If this is your first fast, you may not be able to endure as many restrictions as someone else who fasts frequently. In the future, live a “fasted lifestyle,” increasingly accommodating God and not the flesh.
Accountability and support groups. You will probably be most successful with this fast if you make yourself accountable to at least one other person during this fast. You may want to form a group of from five to seven people who meet occasionally or talk by phone. Encourage one another. If someone falls and eats the wrong foods, do not condemn them. Help them start again. Walk in love and mercy.
Restricting television and entertainment. It will be difficult for you to consecrate yourself if you feed yourself on television and movies during this time.
Special Note: Please make sure to READ THE LABEL when purchasing packaged, canned or bottled foods. They should be sugar-free and chemical-free. Keep this in mind as you review the list of acceptable foods.
FOODS YOU CAN EAT DURING THE DANIEL FAST
One of the great things about the Daniel Fast is that you are not limited to any specific amount of food, but rather to the kinds of food you can eat. The Daniel Fast is limited to vegetables (includes fruits) and water.
All fruits. These can be fresh, frozen, dried, juiced or canned. Fruits include but are not limited to apples, apricots, bananas, blackberries, blueberries, boysenberries, cantaloupe, cherries, cranberries, figs, grapefruit, grapes, guava, honeydew melon, kiwi, lemons, limes, mangoes, nectarines, oranges, papayas, peaches, pears, pineapples, plums, prunes, raisins, raspberries, strawberries, tangelos, tangerines, watermelon…
All vegetables. These can be fresh, frozen, dried, juiced or canned, preferably fresh or frozen vegetables. Vegetables such as potatoes, beans, and soybeans will help provide substance. Vegetables include but are not limited to artichokes, asparagus, beets, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, chili peppers, collard greens, corn, cucumbers, eggplant, garlic, ginger root, kale, leeks, lettuce, mushrooms, mustard greens, okra, onions, parsley, potatoes, radishes, rutabagas, scallions, spinach, sprouts, squashes, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, turnips, watercress, yams, zucchini, veggie burgers are an option if you are not allergic to soy.
All whole grains: Including but not limited to whole wheat, brown rice, millet, quinoa, oats, barley, grits, whole wheat pasta, whole wheat tortillas, rice cakes and popcorn.
All nuts and seeds: Including but not limited to sunflower seeds, cashews, peanuts, sesame. Also nut butters including peanut butter.
All legumes: These can be canned or dried. Legumes include but are not limited to dried beans, pinto beans, split peas, lentils, black eyed peas, kidney beans, black beans, cannellini beans, white beans.
All quality oils: Including but not limited to olive, canola, grape seed, peanut, and sesame.
Beverages: Spring water, distilled water or other pure waters. Pure fruit juices or fruit (no sweetened drinks or sweetened fruit): apple juice, orange juice, grapefruit juice, cranberry juice. Drink at least 8 glasses of water daily throughout the fast. This is very important.
Other: Tofu, soy products, vinegar, seasonings, salt, herbs and spices.
FOODS NOT TO EAT DURING THE DANIEL FAST
All meat and animal products: Including but not limited to beef, lamb, pork, poultry, and fish.
All dairy products: Including but not limited to milk, cheese, cream, butter, and eggs.
All sweeteners: Including but not limited to sugar, raw sugar, honey, syrups, molasses, and cane juice.
All leavened bread, grains and rice: Including Ezekiel Bread (it contains yeast and honey) and baked goods.
All refined and processed food products: Including but not limited to artificial flavorings, food additives, chemicals, white rice, white flour, and foods that contain artificial preservatives.
All deep fried foods: Including but not limited to potato chips, French fries, corn chips.
All solid fats: Including shortening, margarine, lard and foods high in fat.
Beverages: Including but not limited to caffeinated coffee, tea, herbal teas, carbonated beverages, energy drinks, and alcohol.
Sugar and sugar products : Including but not limited to desserts, soft drinks, candies, chocolates, etc.
Remember, READ THE LABELS!