Five Facts for Fantastic Fasting
With so many types of fasting and diets to choose from, including keto, paleo, low carb and intermittent fasting, fasting is a key component of eating restrictions. But fasting has so many health benefits that it’s more than just a dieting trend.
Cell biologist and Nobel Prize winner Dr Yoshinori Ohsumi’s research into autophagy – a process for cell regeneration – reveals our bodies are great at doing this, especially when we’re fasting.
Fasting can trigger autophagy for our bodies to degrade and regenerate cellular components. It helps our bodies throw out old cellular parts and reproduce healthy and robust ones to boost our overall health.
Without further adieu, here are five important facts about fasting:
1. Fasting boosts your immune system
Our lives are rife with contamination, pollution, viruses and stress. Fasting gives our body a chance to boost our immune system.
Restricting calorie intake or going into ketosis through fasting can improve our immune system down to a cellular level and help us get in shape.
What’s more, fasting is known to lower insulin levels and increase immune response. As long as we allow our bodies to adapt, lower insulin also means lesser fat storage. Fasting also helps lower inflammation levels and decreases the chance of diseases, including heart diseases, stroke and autoimmune diseases.
2. Fasting is free
Fasting is a major lifestyle adjustment that requires minimal financial investment. Just like taking a cold shower (again another hack for improved immune boosting), fasting cleanses and detoxes our body internally. And guess what? It’s free-of-charge!
Even though there are products out there to enhance the process, we can also achieve effective results from just drinking water for one day. So let’s save on the groceries and capitalise on your health!
3. Fasting saves time
Unless we use a healthy food delivery company, such as Boss Kitchen, we can easily spend 20 to 25% of our day buying, cooking, eating and planning around food.
Eating with people is a fun and sociable thing to do. However, when we’re fasting, we also free up more time to be productive at work or the gym. Staying active is important during fasting. Even if you’re chained to the desk all day, aim to hit 10k of steps every day. We have so many apps to keep us on track. There’s no time for excuses.
4. Fasting requires discipline and consistency
Similar to exercising, fasting requires discipline and consistency to achieve results. Any good trainer will tell you that success doesn’t come from the training program or the fad diet of counting calories and macros.
There is no one-size-fits-all diet that works for everyone. But persevering in our fasting program will pay off in the long run. Besides, skipping dinner for three days a week is more effortless than trying to count calories and eat 40/ 30/ 30 macros over five home-cooked meals.
5. Fasting is all about the essentials
These days, we have access to too many food options from the tap of a button. But our health and immunity suffer. Fasting can help us cut down the excess and focus on what’s important for our bodies.
Could it be that, by design, some of us are meant to eat less than 3 times a day all year round? Early research on fasting would have participants go without food for 40 days. And the record for the longest fast under supervision was 382 days held by Angus Barbieri!
I’m not recommending long fasting durations as it’s not for everyone. But this shows what our bodies are capable of even when we’re living on minimal or zero food intake! So take care and consider your current stress levels and your relationship with food. Consult your doctor before embarking on any radical lifestyle or nutrition changes.