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Fasting is a healing strategy that has been used since ancient times. Intermittent fasting lifestyle approaches that have helped many people achieve their health goals. Intermittent fasting is a form of fasting where someone is fasting 12 to 16 hours or more per day. During this fasting window, you may not be consuming anything except for water or perhaps herbal tea. During the rest of the day, you would be eating a normal, healthy diet.
Intermittent fasting is a form of fasting that can have incredible benefits, including lowering inflammation, weight loss and fat burning, improved energy, better digestion, improved relationship with food, better mental and spiritual health, and a lower risk of chronic disease.
However, male and female bodies react to fasting differently. Women may face increased challenges when fasting, including hormonal problems, sensitivity to calorie restriction, and insulin resistance. However, women can still benefit from intermittent fasting, but they may need to modify their approach.
There have been studies that support fasting as an excellent tool for weight loss. During your fast, your body begins to use alternative fuel. After burning up stored sugar called glycogen, it starts burning fat producing ketones, which means that it develops metabolic flexibility to shift from burning sugar to fat. As a result, fasting can actually stimulate fat burning hormones and help fat and weight loss. If you want to lose weight and lose belly fat, fasting even irregularly could be the key.
Fasting increases the human growth hormone HGH) which stimulates fat burning, supports muscle and bone development, improves cellular healing, and reduces inflammation. It also acts as an anti-aging serum.
Ketones are a clean and energy efficient fuel. Fasting helps your body to become keto-adapted and produce more energy with less oxidative stress and helps to improve metabolic flexibility and energy efficiency. Fasting can effectively shed excess fat, while optimizing muscle growth. Fasting has been found to have positive effects on body mass as well as other health markers in professional athletes.
Insulin is an important hormone in your body that allows sugar molecules making their way into your cells. Insulin stimulates glycolysis and lipogenesis to help your body burn sugar for fuel and increase fat storage.
However, high inflammatory levels from high carbohydrate foods and frequent feeding can result in inflammation. Fasting can improve insulin sensitivity, lower inflammation, improves nutrient delivery, and lead to less fat storage in your body. If you’re struggling with pre-diabetes or insulin sensitivity, intermittent fasting can help normalize things.
Fasting can reduce the activity of inflammation-inducing pathways and inflammatory cytokines produced in your body. As a result, it may reduce brain inflammation and reduce the risk of neurodegenerative conditions, such as dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease.
It may also reduce the risk of stroke. Fasting can further help you have better mental sharpness, focus, and memory.
Digestion requires a lot of energy from your body. During fasting, your body is able to divert the energy normally used for digestion and uses it for repairing tissues, brain cells, your immune system, and other areas.
Fasting also offers a break to your digestion, enhances intestinal stem cell production, and helps repair intestinal permeability, also known as leaky gut syndrome.
Autophagy is part of your innate immune system. It refers to a process of ‘self-eating’ when your cells destroy and recycle their own parts. Fasting can help the process of mitophagy. Mitophagy is a key element of autophagy where your body metabolizes old and damaged mitochondria, hence allowing space for healthier new mitochondria.
With the help of better-functioning, new mitochondria, your body becomes more resilient to chronic stress, inflammation, chronic disease, and aging.
Fasting can increase stem cell activity. It can be particularly effective when it comes to increasing stem cells in your intestinal lining during short periods of fasts throughout intermittent fasting.
Most chronic diseases are the result of chronic inflammation. Since fasting can reduce inflammatory levels in your body, it can lower the risk of chronic disease as well.
For example, fasting may reduce the risk of diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and metabolic problems, slow aging, and reduce chronic pain and symptoms of disease.
Most people have struggled with sugar and carbohydrate cravings, overeating, mindless and emotional eating, and other unhealthy eating habits in their lives. While many people are afraid that fasting may lead them to feel deprived, it can actually do the opposite.
If you’ve been using food as a drug to boost your mood, to provide you with short-lived quick energy, to take your mind off of stressful events, or to avoid boredom, then fasting may be a fantastic solution for you. Fasting can help you reset your neurochemistry, break mental and emotional addictions to food, and develop a healthier relationship with food and eating.