A Look at the Benefits of Fasting
- Author Andrew Lang
- Published March 14, 2021
- Word count 424
Fasting is a process in which the body goes without food for a period of time. It has been practiced for centuries by various cultures throughout the world, but it has recently gained popularity as a dieting strategy - people have found it effective as a way to lose weight.
There are several other benefits of fasting. One of the most well-known is that it can be used to increase your energy levels. During the fasting period, your immune system functions normally. Fasting encourages a process called autophagy. This process helps clear away dead cells an encourages cellular and tissue rejuvenation. Fasting also gives your digestive system a break - this helps it rest and recover for the next meal.
Another good reason to consider fasting is the fact that it could help you reduce the risk of certain diseases. Some of the known diseases that are believed to be reduced by prolonged fasting include Alzheimer's disease, asthma, diabetes, obesity, and cancer. Although the truth behind some of these claims is not fully established, it is common sense that extended fasting would have positive effects on your body and mind.
The body's mechanism of sensing food is disrupted during a fasting period. When you eat a snack, your body is reminded of food and it "awakens" the senses that provoke the pangs of hunger soon after the food is digested. For this reason, many doctors recommend the use of fasting or dieting in order to control unhealthy eating habits.
Many people are put off by the idea of fasting. It seems like we're going to lose our energy and motivation during the fasting period. Some people lead busy lives and can't afford to lose their energy. Well, that's where intermittent fasting can help. Many people choose a period of 12 to 16 hours each day to fast. This period includes sleep, so it's not as long as it sounds. Quite often it could be an 8 hour sleep bookended by 2 hours of not eating before bed, and 2 hours of not eating after awaking. Not so hard, right? My advice is to take baby steps with fasting. Do not jump straight into something extreme - try intermittent fasting first, even if it's just a case of not eating two or three hours before sleep.
As you can see, fasting can have a number of benefits. While the mere act of fasting alone may not be enough to completely aid you in your quest to achieve optimal health, it is a good thing to practice from time to time.
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