– another fad or is there reasonable evidence?
So many diets, detox and other health-related fads have come and gone. Many turn out to do more harm than good. Lately Intermittent Fasting has been “In the Vogue”.
What’s going on with Intermittent Fasting?
What is Intermittent Fasting? Intermittent fasting uses a schedule of short fasting periods, such as skipping a meal on certain days of the week or fasting for a day or two every week or every few weeks. The 16/8 intermittent fasting approach means you fast for 16 hours and eat only in an 8 hour window.
What does Intermittent Fasting do?
The goal of intermittent fasting is to mimic starvation in order to induce detoxification or clean-up INSIDE of each cell in our bodies. Remember, we are made up of 100 trillion living, vibrant, busy cells, which need to be cleaned-up constantly. Dirty cells spell disease - and there are hundreds of those. Intermittent Fasting allows for the orderly degradation and recycling of cellular components/debris. Let’s call it metabolic waste.
Intermittent fasting increases sensitivity to insulin, which can lower the risk of diabetes.
In the brain, certain genes are slowed as a result of intermittent fasting, which increases the degradation and recycling of cellular waste and has the potential to protect against neurodegenerative disease. Yes, the brain must detoxify and clean-up constantly as well just like the rest of the body.
Many studies show, that Intermittent Fasting can help you lose weight, improve health and perhaps even live longer.
Intermittent Fasting is not a diet, it is more of a lifestyle choice. It’s skipping a meal or two here and there in a conscious and planned fashion, without binging later, because you feel starved. When you don’t eat any food for a set period of time on a given day, you do your body and your brain a whole lot of good. It makes sense from an evolutionary standpoint. For most of human history – and history is reflected in our genetics -, people weren’t eating three square meals a day, plus grazing on snacks. Instead, humans evolved in situations where there wasn’t much food, and they learned to thrive when fasting. So, Intermittent Fasting turns on some very beneficial genes and turns off certain bad genes.
A word of caution about fasting: Do Not stop ingesting completely. The minimum one needs to maintain any day is hydration. So always drink at least water. When doing intermittent fasting, it’s ok to drink some fluids (water) with a small amount of honey, lemon or other nourishing nutrient. To get the beneficial effects of Intermittent Fasting, you want to avoid solid foods and all animal sourced foods. The most important ingredient to avoid for this type of fasting is protein.
So, go ahead and try it, at your own comfort level. I have done it, a few episodes over the years, usually 4 Sundays in a row (usually in the dead of winter). Because on Sundays I could rest and make my fasting day conform with my activity level.
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