10 Facts On The Health Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting
- 10 Facts On The Health Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting
- Intermittent Fasting Is Becoming An Increasingly Popular, But Does It Improve You Health?
What Is Intermittent Fasting?
Fasting is defined as abstaining from all or some kinds of food or drink for long periods of time.
So whats the difference with fasting and intermittent fasting? Intermittent fasting is more concerned about the timings of your daily meals.
With intermittent fasting you typically have a daily eating pattern where you cycle between periods of eating and fasting.
Whether its the 16/8 or 5:2 methods a number of studies have shown that there are benefits to restricting the times at which you eat.
Lets take a look at some of them.
1Changes The Role Of Hormones, Cells And Genes In Your Body
When you abstain from food for a number of hours your body starts to make adjustments in order to cope with the lack of intake.
Your body will start to change the hormone levels in order to make any stored body fat more accessible.
Insulin levels in your body drop significantly which is associated with burning fat as energy.
2Helps To Lose Weight And Visceral Fat
Those who try intermittent fasting typically start because they want to lose weight.
By limiting the times at which you can eat during the day, generally speaking you will be eating less calories per day and therefore losing weight.
But it's not just the fewer calories from a intermittent fasting protocol that helps with weight loss.
3Helps Reduce Insulin Resistance And Lowers Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is becoming more and more prevalent in society in recent times and in the US an incredible 32.2% of the population may have it.
The main feature of this condition is the high blood sugar levels present in the body.
One of the reasons for this is the high levels of insulin resistance, which is where your cells stop responding to the amounts of insulin in your body.
4Helps Reduce Inflammation And Slows Down The Aging Process
Oxidative stress involves the process of unstable molecules present in the body disrupting and damaging other important molecules such as protein and DNA.
This is obviously a bad thing and detrimental to your health as it is a step towards aging and many chronic diseases.
5May Be Beneficial For Heart Health
Heart disease is the number one cause of death in the world.
So if there is anything that can potentially improve your heart health you should be taking note.
There are a number of health markers that are associated with your overall heart health which intermittent fasting has been shown to improve.
6Induces Various Cellular Repair Process
Autophagy is the process where the body starts to clean up any cellular waste.
This complex process involves the cells breaking down and metabolizing broken and dysfunctional proteins that build up inside over time.
7May Help Prevent Cancer
Cancer is caused by an uncontrolled division of abnormal cells in a part of the body.
Studies have been carried out that have shown encouraging signs that intermittent fasting may help prevent cancer or reduce the effects of it.
8Beneficial For Your Brain
Not only may intermittent fasting be beneficial to your heart but it can also be good for your brain.
Some of the most important health markers for good brain health are improved with intermittent fasting.
These markers include a reduction in in oxidative stress (less free radicals), inflammation, blood sugar levels and insulin resistance.
9May Help Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimer’s disease is the world's most common neurodegenerative disease.
It is a disease that causes the brain to shrink in size (atrophy) and for brain cells to die. This results in the decline of cognitive function including thinking and the ability to function independently.
Unfortunately there is no cure to this disease which is why prevention plays a huge role.
10May Extend Your Lifespan And Live Longer
Whilst we have shown some of the potential benefits from intermittent fasting, undoubtedly one of the most profound impacts is that it could extend your lifespan and help you to live longer.
Studies have demonstrated that rodents on an intermittent fasting protocol extending their lifespan in the same way that a calorie restricted diet also does.
The results in these rats were quite dramatic with those which fasted every other day living 83% longer than their non fasting counterparts.
Final Thoughts On Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting has become one of the most popular weight loss methods is recent years.
Whilst most forms of calorie restricted diets will help you lose weight, very few will have the same impact on your body as intermittent fasting.
There are many ways to start intermittent fasting but as is the case with a number of diets always consult your doctor before starting and ease yourself gently into it whilst your body becomes adapted.
Intermittent fasting is not for everyone but for a number of people its impact has been profound.