Fasting is a conscious abstinence from or cut-down on food, drinks or both for a period of time.
Apart from its religious benefits, the health benefits of fasting has gotten the attention of lots of people. Infact, these health benefits has been known since the time of Hippocrates, Father of Western Medicine. The benefits cover stuff like weight management, cardiovascular health, cell recycling and lots more. Although researches have not been carried out extensively on humans concerning fasting, more and more health experts believe that the amazing results from carrying out researches on animals mean that there’s more promise for human health.
Different kinds of fasts yield different results. One thing though remains certain, fasting is a great way to detoxify the body and get the system reset for improved health.
We know that fasting is not at all easy for a lot of people (especially the food lovers). How does one stay away from sweet sweet food? Maybe it will take a little convincing to get you to fast. So we’re going to look at some health benefits of fasting. Hopefully, they convince you. You could find friends who have fasted and ask Then how them about their experiences after it. Almost undoubtedly, they’ll tell you how great the experience was and even convince you to try it out.
Health Benefits of Fasting
Helps With Weight Loss
Fasting is a safe way to shed some pounds as the body is able to burn fat cells a lot more effectively than it would with just good ol’ dieting. Instead of letting the body use sugar as a source of energy, fat is used instead, thus getting rid of them. Athletes hit their low body fat percentages with fasting, especially for competitions.
Fasting Promotes Longevity
Eat less, live longer. This statement is a funny one, laughable. However, according to studies, people in certain kinds of cultures had longer lifespans as a result of their diets. You too can get a hold of the longevity benefit if you would just cut down on your eating a bit. With aging comes a metabolism that is slow. Metabolism is much faster and a lot more efficient in a younger body. Thus, fasting will reduce aging’s toll on your digestive system.
As research has gone on with animals, there is promise as regards getting to excavate and maximize the longevity benefit of fasting for humans.
Improves Your Immune System
Fasting has the ability to boost your immune system by reducing free radical damage, getting the formation of cancer cells starved and regulating inflammation in the body. Did you know that naturally when animals get sick, they cease to eat and try to focus on getting rest. It’s an important instinct they possess which helps reduce the stress on the internal system so that their body is able to combat infection.
Clears The Skin and Takes Care of Acne
Did you fasting could help your skin get clearer? This is as a result of the body taking a break from having to deal with digestion. That way, it focuses on its ability to regenerate and gets to work on parts of the body that need regeneration like the skin. If you skip a meal for at least one day, the body is able to clean up toxic substances in the body and help regulate the functions of organs like the kidneys, lungs and others.
Fasting Improves Brain Function
Weird right? It’s true that the brain needs food to function. However, according to studies, when you fast, a protein, BDNF (Brain-derived neurotrophic factor) is produced. This protein causes the activation of the stem cells in the brain to get converted into new neurons and help in the stimulation of other chemicals that promote the health of the brain. The BDNF protein also keeps the brain protected from effects that are associated with Parkinson’s disease or Alzheimer’s.
There are a lot of reasons why inflammations occur. One of the major reasons for this is unhealthy diet as it is consistently supplying free radicals to the body do cause damage and lead to inflammation. These foods include : alcohol, dairy, meat, refined sugar, fried or roasted foods and refined carbohydrates. These foods spike inflammation tendencies and occurrences. There are other causes of inflammation like metabolic reactions which also generate free radicals that cause damage. The free radicals generated by metabolic reactions include : hydrogen peroxide and superoxides. If you’ll forego a few meals, inflammations that are related to or caused by food are prevented. Apart from preventing inflammation from foods, hormonal balance is also a way that fasting is able to decrease inflammation. According to lots of studies, an improved insulin sensitivity and lower insulin levels reduce oxidative stress which is caused by free radicals.
Helps Recovery From Injury
Contrary to the normal thought pattern that the presence of an injury means a need for more food, especially when this injury is associated with or is an injury to the brain, fasting actually aids recovery. While studying with animals, it was found that after injuries like a stroke or any other brain injuries, fasting improved functions and helped the brain heal. Clear explanations have not been made as to why this is so and there is still a lot of research going on as regards this.
Improves Cardiovascular Health
Fasting has a lot of cardiovascular benefits especially for people who have health concerns related to a metabolic syndrome. Fasting has significant effects on the composition of the blood, cardiovascular function. People with type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol will also find that it is useful in helping with their health conditions.
Reduces Blood Pressure
During fasting, it’s been found that lots of people have their blood pressures lowered, especially during the 1st week. It could be that it is not fasting in itself that causes this decrease but a significant reduction in the intake of salt and a higher salt loss through the urine.
Reduces Blood Sugar
According to studies, blood sugar could drop to above 30% after just a few days of fasting. This is good news for people with glycemic. At first, your energy could be quite low and you’ll feel tired, this is because the sugar levels are getting balanced. After sometime mix does get stabilized while you fast.