Raven-Symone fasts for three days or more: ‘I have a goal in mind’

Raven-Symone posted an Instagram live video a couple of weeks ago with her wife of almost a year, Miranda Pearman-Maday, revealing that she’d lost 28 pounds. She said she had “a whole different face going on” and that she had been on a “journey” of “doing a 48 hour fast.” Miranda added they’d started a “transformative” “exercise journey” together that they were going to put on YouTube. They recorded it while driving somewhere after going on a walk, which made me wonder why they didn’t just wait until they got home. It was all very performative but that seems to be their vibe. It also made me concerned about Raven, because I don’t think fasting for more than a day or two is healthy unless you’re working with a physician. In a new interview with Good Morning America, Raven said she had been fasting three days at that point and that she was drinking bone broth and electrolytes to stay hydrated. She added that she didn’t want to be a “twig” though.

On her diet
I am low-carb as much as I can be. I do very minimal exercise and I am an avid faster. I make sure I have a minimum of 14-hour fast between dinner and break-fast.

I’m not over here trying to be a little twig. Every time I lost weight in the past, it was about size.

She lost 70 pounds in 2011
The way people were treating me while I was bigger was emotionally damaging. When I lost weight, I remember the moment I went on the red carpet and in my head I was cussing everyone out. I’m like, ‘Wow, now you want to look at me because I’m skinny, thanks.’

She was on a three day fast during her GMA interview
[To sustain myself while fasting] I drink a lot of water, and I drink a lot of electrolytes. I have some bone broth now and then. I have a goal in mind, that’s what keeps me sustained. I want to make sure that my body is healthy and prepared to deal with old age.

[From Good Morning America via People]

I know people are going to tell me I’m wrong about fasting (I’m talking about several days-long fasting, not intermittent fasting, which she also does), but along with not seeming healthy, that kind of weight loss just isn’t as sustainable. Gradual changes over time are more successful for long term weight loss. I’m not saying you can’t keep the weight off after losing it quickly, plenty of people do, but it seems punishing. Plus you can’t just go back to the way you were eating before. It’s like you have to do two adjustments, once to the extreme diet and again to a more reasonable one.

Also I hate when celebrities say they’re fasting for days or that they gave up entire food groups. It gives the impression that the only way to lose weight is through massive dietary changes. You can lose weight by eating the same things you usually do in smaller portion sizes. I’d love to get down to the size I was before lockdown, but you couldn’t pay me to go without food for more than a day. I understand fasting before surgery or colonoscopy prep, but otherwise why do that to yourself?

Here’s that interview

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46 Responses to “Raven-Symone fasts for three days or more: ‘I have a goal in mind’”

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  1. Sue Denim says:

    thanks for highlighting the concerns here celebitchy — this truly sounds like the beginnings of an eating disorder… I’ve recently realized that someone I looked up to as a style icon has acknowledged a long battle w anorexia, so it’s sobering…

    • Arpeggi says:

      It’s not the beginning, she’s deep into an eating disorder. To have set weight goals, to starve yourself for an interview, to try to trick yourself that drinking stock is enough to sustain you for days screams ED. I hope she has loved ones that’ll say something to her

  2. goofpuff says:

    I do intermittent fasting (my natural eating rhythm) but several days? That sounds rather extreme outside of meditation and it’s definitely to be done with care. Especially when it’s about weight loss and not meditation. Sliding into an eating disorder is too easy.

    • IMUCU says:

      I fasted 5 days under the direction of one of my doctors. I tried to do intermittent fasting, but find I am so hungry during my eating hours, that I want to eat more than I normally would, which then negates the time I wasn’t eating. I found the fasting 5 days easier than the IF bc of that. Portion control though is the way to go for me and listening to hunger cues and when my stomach says “I’m full enough.”

  3. Paperclip says:

    Agreed, CB. Good on you for stating the case rationally!

  4. Lala11_7 says:

    It looks like she’s cutting calories because she does very little exercise…which is unhealthy AF and will have a horrible long-term effect..I just see her courting a SERIOUS eating disorder


  5. OriginalLala says:

    The diet industry is in full post-pandemic swing – trying to tell us the weight we’ve gained during this pandemic needs to come off ASAP and frankly, I hope we unanimously tell them to F*ck Right Off. I’m done with this crap – we survived a pandemic, millions of people didn’t, the pandemic isn’t over. We’re all anxious AF and dealing with our own demons, we don’t need this added pressure.

    • Tom says:


      Because of digestive illness, I fasted from a Wednesday to a Sunday. Part of medical treatment withh very close medical supervision. Saturday they needed to give me potassium. I would not fool around solo with fasting.

      That said, it does give you a mental high, or at least the perception of seeing things more clearly.

    • tealily says:

      Thanks for saying that. I went to the doctor for an unrelated health problem in the fall and he commented on my weight and suggested I lose some. I’m supposed to go back for a 6 month recheck and have gained another 5-10 pounds. I feel sh–ty about it, but things are really hard right now and eating perfectly is not my #1 priority. I know I’m only hurting myself, but I resent the emphasis he put on it when I was seeing him about something else. Yeah, I know it’s not good, but can we address this other thing first?

  6. Lauren says:

    I’ve learned the hard way that if I try to eliminate a food group I’m just going to crave it, pig out on it, and later feel guilty over it. That is not healthy or a mindset that you want to have regarding nutrition. Her combo does sound like an eating disorder waiting to happen.

    • Dr Chi says:

      That’s right!! I went from a size 4 to a size 10 during the pandemic due to antidepressants and inactivity. I have gradually started losing weight to go a healthy size 6 which is my preference but i am doing it gradually. It might take a year. I tried cutting food groups but only ended up binge eating it. The best way is to train your tummy to accept moderation. Portion control should be the best way to go about it so you don’t go back to eating without self control.

  7. SusanRagain says:

    Three days fasting? Not a healthy way to lose weight.
    Portion control, and a bit of walking everyday has been my way.
    As I have a sweet tooth, I no longer keep cookie, cake, pie or ice cream of any kind in my house.
    No sweets for me takes about 2–3 weeks before the cravings stop.

    Fastest way to lose weight? Doing chores like painting and gardening, works great for me.
    Lots of movement but not boring.
    I’m the kind of eater that if I’m bored, I eat.

    Raven should be able to afford a gym membership/coach, or bike riding/walking.
    Rescue a dog = fun, and sweet and lots of play/exercise.

  8. lucy2 says:

    Really GMA, a whole headline story about an actress losing weight? Would have been far better to focus more on her new show and her directing, rather than coming off like one of those supermarket “women’s magazines” OMG 30 lbs in 3 months!
    There is no way I could go three days, nor would I want to.

  9. Piratewench says:

    I’m an advocate for intermittent fasting, it helps me with extreme cravings and mindless eating impulses, especially as I’ve had to change medications recently and my appetite is a supercharged mess.
    Fasting also helps reduce pain for me (allows inflammation in the body to settle). So while intermittent fasting (I’m talking no eating from 7pm until 11am, nothing drastic and nothing that you wouldn’t naturally do from time to time anyway if you just weren’t very hungry that day) is clearly a benefit to many, three day fasts seem like a whole different ball game! Raven seems like an extreme personality, part of her allure as a child really, but extreme eating practices are never a good thing!

    • Lucy says:

      Yes! Intermittent fasting fixed my hormones when they were waaaay out of whack (I couldn’t sleep) and after three years, my seasonal allergies almost completely disappeared. It is, however, really easy to slide past healthy and into extreme/ED territory. Towards the end of 2020, I realized I was fasting too long (18-20 hour daily) out of anxiety and have since moved to more of a roughly 16 hour daily fast.
      Anyway, for Raven, I hope she has an actual health practitioner working with her, this seems…. Extreme. I’ve heard of some people doing longer fasts, but they were under doctor supervision and for specific health reasons – getting off insulin, that kind of thing. Not to lose a few pounds.

    • Nicole says:

      How does your body not revolt? Maybe it’s just mine. Mine will hang on to every calorie I have when I fast and it will readjust to the lower calories to maintain. I never lose weight on intermittent fasting.

  10. Joanna says:

    STARVING is unhealthy. Let’s call it what it is. And I don’t believe short term starving otherwise known as intermittent fasting is healthy. Ask your doctor if starving yourself aka intermittent fasting is healthy. IT’S NOT!

    • Jo73c says:

      Actually, intermittent fasting is considered one of the healthier ways to manage eating. It helps to reset the body’s recognition of hunger and fullness without being restrictive of particular food groups, or relying on calorie counting.
      Fasting for days on end to starve yourself thin is a whole other ballgame.

    • FancyPants says:

      Everybody does some form of intermittent fasting- we all fast while we sleep. I’ve been doing intermittent fasting as at least 12hrs overnight to keep ulcerative colitis in check for more than a decade now, the theory being that your gut needs time to “rest” and not just have food barreling down the chute 24hrs a day. However, I do think that now that the phrase “intermittent fasting” has entered the mainstream lexicon in the last couple of years, it is increasingly becoming a euphemism for anorexia.

    • goofpuff says:

      I’m a natural intermittent fasting person. I really don’t get hungry until 10:30 at the earliest and I am done eating anything by 8pm at the latest. If I eat past 8pm I get horrible acid reflux. If I eat when I’m not hungry before 10:30, I feel really sluggish the rest of the day. there are times I am hungry at 8:30am or 9pm and I will eat then – it usually involves a day where I am doing alot of cardio in the morning or evening. But on rest days, I just don’t get hungry that early and I’m trying to listen to my body cues about eating when hungry and stopping when full.

      I have emotional eating issues so listening to my body is a task that I have to be good about and not follow an arbitrary rule about when you’re supposed to eat.

  11. Lawcatb says:

    How could anyone with a job go for several days without eating? I would have no energy and I’d hate to think how my brain would be functioning at that point . . . Ignoring the fact that this just generally sounds like extremely disordered eating.

    • Size Does Matter says:

      One Meal A Day (OMAD) is an intermittent fasting “program” for lack of a better word. I’ve done it and let me tell you, I was a shaky, forgetful mess for the first 2-3 days of only eating dinner. Then your body gets kind of used to it and the hunger weirdly goes away. She says she’s drinking bone broth so maybe that’s high enough in calories that she can function. But I can’t see any doctor endorsing 3 days of fasting as a good idea.

  12. The Hench says:

    To steal a phrase from another Celebitch a while ago – this has more red flags than a ski race.

  13. Livethelifeaquatic says:

    Her wife looks very very thin. In the video she seems to be hovering over her…I find it odd

  14. EnormousCoat says:

    Certainly body fat levels and overall health are correlated. But I bristle at the idea that losing weight by any means necessary (and dressing it up in a new fad) has anything to do with health. The fact that she says “I’m not over here trying to be a little twig” to me, suggests she does sense/is aware of the danger, right? It’s like a ‘Don’t get all worried, I won’t take this too far’. But when we are already starting to justify things to ourselves and others, we may already be in a danger zone.
    For her personally, I hope she can achieve the harmony she wants in her life. My struggles also show up in my body size and I know how good it feels to exercise discipline over that. But we should never punish ourselves or put our health at risk.
    Okay, I’m done preaching. She’s a young woman and I hope she acquires the tools she needs/wants to navigate life successfully.

    • Lemon says:

      I think body weight/BMI is starting to be recognized as overstated in terms of health. There is a whole constellation of risk factors that probably should be taken together, instead. Supportive social connections, activity, good sleep, mood, stress, mental health are pretty important too for long term outcomes outside of weight and diet.

      If you’re miserable, chronically stressed, lonely or stigmatized socially, not sleeping well, it’s pretty hard on your body. Poverty, illness, trauma, depression, can lead to overeating because of hormone signalling. Bodies want calories in case it needs to fight or flee.

      Some people are pretty traumatized by a lifetime of dieting, it’s one of those things where the cure is probably worse than the disease.

  15. Plaidsheets says:

    I’ve done week long fasts before. Here’s the issue- they’re awful for maintaining weight-loss. Unless you’re super careful, you’re going to bounce right back to your previous weight. The first couple of days are rough, then your body adjusts.

    • Arpeggi says:

      Of course you are going to bounce back at your initial weight and gain more! Fasting for days is stressing the body: you lose water and muscles (digesting yourself, basically), you go into survival mode. The moment you start eating again, your body will try to pack up as much as it can in case you encounter famine again, it’ll also try to adapt surviving with this lower calorie intake so any normal portion of food will lead to weight gains. If done multiple times, you’re basically screwing up your metabolism for the rest of your life. It’s not something you should ever do if you have access to food.

  16. KNy says:

    Oh goodness, this just sounds dangerous and reeks of disordered eating. The Pioneer Woman recently lost more weight than Raven and wrote about it. While I am not a huge fan of hers, she did it in such a systematic and thoughtful way – portion control (even weighing her food at first so she could get an idea of what she was eating), counting calories, upping the protein, and daily exercise. I have two big family weddings at the end of the year and so starting in April I began writing down what I eat, and have been trying to stick to normal portions. I am someone who can go without breakfast and lunch and then I will come home after work and just eat a ton, and that was not healthy for me. I find having an appropriate breakfast, lunch, and dinner can fill me up. I NEVER would have thought that previously. I got one of those s’well bottles and am trying to drink about 100 ounces of water per day, too. I also started walking more and doing daily yoga (I use Yoga with Adriene on YouTube – she’s great!) and one of the dresses I ordered for one of the weddings coming up has to be taken in now because it’s so loose. This is all manageable stuff I hope I can continue until I am an old lady. No one can starve themselves long-term.

  17. Case says:

    It’s irresponsible for Raven and GMA for be promoting fasting for multiple days. Intermittent fasting works great for a lot of people (myself included) but this is just dangerous.

  18. BusyLizzy says:

    I have so many problems with this interview :

    – Week-long fasts sound unhealthy and not a sustainable way to maintain weight loss as pointed by several comments above.
    – Carbs are not your enemy
    – The words used are worrying, I don’t want to read too much into it but that’s coming reaaaal close to an eating disorder

    I gained 22 pounds between February 2020 – April 2021 with the 3 lockdowns we had in France (and gyms were closed for over 9 months). I’ve decided to get back on track in May by exercising more and tracking my food intake with MyFitnessPal. I’ve already lost 7 pounds but no way Jose I’ll fast for days or cut food groups to speed the process. Slow and steady for me!

  19. smee says:

    Daily intermittent fasting is awesome. I do a minimum of 14 hours daily. Helped me lose weight and helps me maintain my weight and balance my hormones. The main diet change was doing healthy keto (meaning carbs from vegetables and protein), so now I’m not starving in the a.m. I do a 24 hour fast easily, I’ve never tried three days, but I’m curious….

    It sounds outrageous and starvationy, but it’s not IF you’re eating quality food when you do eat.

  20. questions says:

    Will you develop loose skin if you do this kind of diet? Just wondering, because she says she doesn’t exercise. (Which I understand because I don’t know how it’s possible to exercise and fast at the same time).

    3 days of fasting — I could never handle that.

  21. Darla says:

    Honestly I have to go for a blood test at noon and I’m having a REALLY hard time fasting until then.

  22. Amanda says:

    Fasting for more than 16-18 hours seems really unhealthy imo.

  23. Miss b says:

    Not eating for 3 days is disordered eating. Period.

  24. Ann says:

    She could lose weight by doing intermittent fasting and exercising. I can see a brief period of fairly strict dieting to jump-start weight loss, but it should be monitored, or based on a program I think. And I would think that would include something besides bone broth, like some protein and vegetables/fiber?

    I don’t know, not exercising just isn’t healthy IMO, regardless of whether you are trying to lose weight or not. I don’t exercise that vigorously but I have a jump-rope routine I do every other day or so. But when she says she doesn’t exercise, I’m not sure what that means. Is she a couch potato or does she just not do intense work-outs?

  25. Chaine says:

    Intermittent fasting is fine as long as you are getting a healthy number of calories for the meals you do eat each day. but eating for two or three days except for bone broth sounds like a full blown eating disorder to me.

  26. nicegirl says:

    I have a digestive problem and I use fasting also, but nowhere near to this level, and I’m also supervised/in close contact w my doctors. I’ve had to go on specialized liquid nutritional diets and fasting allows for me to eat solid foods. I can veer into disordered eating patterns when stressed and I don’t want the fasting to get me into a bad situation. I hope Raven will be ok, this kind of ‘goal’ in mind thing would send me into chaos. I can’t even do an at home scale, I only get weighed at the dr & try to ‘measure’ by how my clothing fits.

  27. Robin says:

    There has just been a report in the UK that found this on/off fasting approach, which came in a few years ago, is actually not beneficial in terms of losing weight. The researchers found the successful way to lose weight is daily calorie control, ie the old idea of dieting. As someone who takes medication, and also someone who needs a continual healthy diet, I have long viewed the idea of fasting for dieting as hugely dangerous.

  28. Jules says:

    As usual— just because a celebrity says it, preaches it, shows off about it, instagrams it— doesn’t mean it is true, healthy, a good thing, or something to copy.

  29. Lea Ann Macrery says:

    I do intermittent fasting overnight from 7pm to noon the next day. I am able to focus much better before I eat and I have high productivity during the morning hours. Stopping eating at night instead of continuing to eat all the way til bedtime has been a game changer for me. Better sleep, better gut health and I naturally eat smaller portions due to my stomach not being stretched all the time. Each to their own. Not eating for 3 days is dangerous. Not eating overnight is perfectly fine, especially since we require and expend so much less energy overnight. 🤷🏽‍♀️

  30. Valerie says:

    I think anything over 24 hours is too much. You’re not really losing weight that way. I don’t think there’s anything really wrong with intermittent fasting, especially if your schedule allows for it and you’re not the type who can eat every 3-4 hours as recommended. Letting go of that rigidity freed me mentally. I used to worry too much about when I ate, but once I relaxed a bit and ate more or less whenever I was hungry, I felt a lot better. I’m more of a three-square-meals person, so I think not being much of a snacker helps too. It’s really individual.

  31. BC says:

    Just adding my two cents with everyone else. I’ve been doing intermittent fasting since 2017 and it has immensely helped my reactive hypoglycemia. I’ve kept the weight off without real difficulty and it allows me to eat what I want in certain periods (like vacations or weekends). It’s not an all-or-nothing proposition, and I have fasted for 48+ hours with no issues–if anything I feel amazing. I don’t go longer because I genuinely love food and the act of eating. When I do IF I find that I am so much more in tune with what it needs and things like garbage/junk food is less appealing right off the bat.