What is intermittent fasting?Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern where the period of eating and the period of fasting trade off in shifts. It’s not a diet since it doesn’t change what you eat, but instead, it changes when you eat. Unlike diets, fasting is very natural for all living things, even human beings. People were fasting thousands of years ago since in the past, food wasn’t always readily available and wasn’t a guaranteed resource. That being the case, our bodies are actually very well adapted to fasting. And even today, many of the major religions practice fasting in different forms with many people following them and feeling great. Based on all of this information, we conclude that fasting is less stressful on our bodies than many diets are.
How does it work?To put it simply, when you eat, your body spends a few hours processing the food you’ve recently consumed, taking all the energy necessary from that food. When you fast for a certain amount of time, your body doesn’t have this source of energy and has nothing to do but use the fat you have stored. Our bodies’ reaction to eating causes the production of insulin. And the greater our sensitivity to insulin, the more efficiently we use the energy from our food. After a period of fasting we become the most sensitive to insulin. All these changes lead to weight loss and help to build muscles.
The benefits of intermittent fastingDifferent studies have proven that intermittent fasting not only helps you to stay in good shape, but it also can improve your health and prevent many diseases.
- It reduces the risk of cancer and makes its treatment easier, lessening the side effects of chemotherapy
- Normalizes blood pressure and protects you from heart diseases
- Reduces the blood sugar level and lowers the risk of type 2 diabetes
- Reduces inflammation in the body
- Increases the growth of new nerve cells and improves brain func
- Helps to prevent Alzheimer’s Disease or reduce its severity
- Helps you live longer