Updated: Mar 7, 2020
Modern times have modified many age old traditions. Fasting included. What used to be a hallmark of religious efforts, now holds its own among health practices. It is used now in variations such as juice fasting and simplified diets. The results, as some studies are starting to reveal, show evidence that it’s not all hype.
A part-time fast does not automatically mean calorie restriction. Typically, a person will eat only during a specific window of time during the day. For example, they won’t “break their fast” until after 11am, and then stop eating after 4pm. This dramatically reduces the digestive demands placed on our bodies. Since digestion is a highly prioritized function, it uses a lot of energy. By reducing this energy demand from 14 hours a day to 6 or 8, our bodies can put more resources into fighting disease. Part-time fasting will take time to adjust to, and can be achieved by gradually reducing the window of time in which we eat.
Fasting may not feel very good!
Compare this to a strict water fast. A water fast can pose risks that can actually harm our health. By not eating any food, the body begins to break down proteins and then fats, in order to release energy for our everyday needs. Unfortunately, the result is that the stored chemicals in fats and other tissues are released. If this occurs to rapidly, then the body is flooded with harmful substances, and it can make you sick. Where do these harmful chemicals come from? They are the additives, preservatives and artificial flavors that are in prepackaged foods.
A gradual release of these unnecessary additives, through a part-time fast, is a smarter way to go! Part-time fasting can also be a long-term strategy to eating in general. It is not imperative to reduce calories, but rather to reduce the amount of time your body spends digesting food. You may experience weight loss, better lab numbers and more energy.
What does science say?
According to the 2013 article by the National Institute of Health, there is a “large body of evidence” supporting health benefits of fasting, but this has only been proven in animals.
A 2003 Washington University School of Medicine study on calorie restriction, was shown to have a profound influence on reducing plaque in the veins (atherosclerosis), favorably impact cholesterol levels, as well as to “provide evidence for a decrease in inflammation”. A trifecta! This was accomplished without medications.
Wow! I don’t know about you, but I am inspired!
Remember, Health is Wealth!
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