The human body needs sustenance from food. It’s easy to fall into the temptation of eating delicious food, but too much of it can lead to health complications, such as diabetes, obesity, and weight gain.
Consider fasting to obtain and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Note that fasting doesn’t mean you deprive yourself of food. Instead, you reduce your food intake to let you reap different advantages.
Here are six surprising health benefits of fasting that might just surprise you:
Autophagy is a physiological process at the cellular level. Instead of apoptosis, which is cell killing, autophagy replaces some of the cell parts. Think of it as replacing a battery that ran out of power.
As for cells, this process replaces components, like old cell membranes and organelles. The process happens by sending the parts to the lysosome, an organelle with degrading enzymes in a membrane, to become proteins.
Once the body achieves ketosis, which is the process of burning fat instead of carbohydrates, the body enters autophagy. In turn, your body removes damaged cell components to prevent neurodegenerative diseases.
In summary, skipping meals can help prevent neurodegenerative conditions, particularly those from aging.
Promotes Blood Sugar Control
Fasting also helps reduce insulin resistance, which can lead to better blood sugar or glucose control. Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas to transport glucose from the bloodstream to the cells. Decreasing insulin resistance helps increase the body’s efficiency in moving glucose from the blood to the cells more efficiently than usual.
In turn, the process may promote additional health advantages, including:
- Enhanced fat and weight loss
- Reduced sugar crashes
- Less food cravings
- Combats cognitive decline
- Reduced risk of diseases
Additionally, insulin resistance reduction may also enhance skin health. Hence, if you want to retain your skin’s youthful glow, consider implementing a fasting routine as part of your daily health regimen.
Speeds Up Metabolism
Metabolism may degrade as you age. You might enjoy your body’s quick metabolic rate during your twenties, which means that you can eat a lot of food and still retain a healthy physique. But, your metabolism may slow down once you hit 35 years old.
So, consuming the same amount of food when you were 20 at the age of 35 may result in fat and weight gain. Fasting may help increase your metabolism to aid your body in burning those additional calories more efficiently than average.
Fasting can regulate the digestive tract, thereby improving metabolic function. It’s because the body may look into converting fat stores for energy instead of carbohydrates. In turn, you may also experience a healthy bowel movement.
Failure to keep track of food intake while overweight can make you overweight or obese. If a person is obese, the health complication opens doors for other concerns, like increased cholesterol levels. An increase in cholesterol, specifically low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or the “bad” cholesterol, can raise the risk of stroke and heart disease.
Fasting can help prevent these health complications from happening by decreasing LDL cholesterol. As per a study from the Obesity publication, intermittent day fasting may help total cholesterol in the body with the help of endurance exercise. The researchers also noted that intermittent fasting (IF) reduces triglycerides (fat found in the blood), which decreases the risks of heart attack, heart disease, and stroke.
Inflammation is a standard physiological function. This process takes place to help combat harmful pathogens from invading the body. But, inflammation may also lead to discomfort and chronic conditions if it inflames a specific part more than it should.
Include fasting in your daily routine to help decrease inflammation levels in the body. Reducing food intake may help promote better health by reducing inflammatory markers.
An increase in metabolism, a reduction in LDL, and a decrease in insulin resistance may help promote longer life. Fasting can help boost these physiological procedures to slow down aging.
Additionally, fasting may also stimulate growth hormone release, leading to other health benefits, such as improved bone strength, increased muscle mass, and better protein synthesis.
These benefits happen because of the body treating fasting as a constant threat. In turn, your system prepares for dealing with this “threat”, triggering cellular defenses to protect the body against molecular damage. Moreover, the body triggers specific actions, such as damaged tissue repair, to slow down the aging rate.
Fasting may not harm the body if done correctly. This eating habit can help promote benefits, like stimulating autophagy, fighting inflammation, and promoting a longer life. Make sure that you consult the advice of a medical professional first before changing your eating habits. Follow the recommendation of the medical expert to reduce the risks of potential adverse effects.