A lot of people think that the best way to stay/get healthy is to eat often. What if I told you that eating less is actually the answer?
By eating less you can improve your body’s functioning (and lose weight) in a number of ways. In this article I am going to take you through 4 health benefits of intermittent fasting.
Improves gut health.
Your gut’s health is very important in maintaining good health in the body.
The gut is very closely linked to your mental state. What you eat literally affects how you mentally function. This is why its incredibly crucial for people who suffer from mental illnesses to give your digestive system time to clean itself out and repair what it needs to repair.
By allowing your gut to ‘rest’ it has time to deal with any bad areas in the gut that might not be functioning properly, any bacteria or infections that might be present or generally repair any problems within the gut.
The body knows what areas need to be rebuilt and repaired but just needs time to do this. Intermittent fasting allows this.
Helps you lose weight.
This is my favorite thing about Intermittent fasting. Before whenever I wanted to lose weight I would go online and see what diets out there seemed to work.
I didn’t want a diet that was going to do damage to my body, but I also didn’t want to do traditional ‘eat less and move more’ because whenever I did this I would have no energy, and would be constantly hungry and cold. Then, when I finally couldn’t keep it up and binged, I would pile on all the weight PLUS more.
When I found out about Intermittent Fasting, I thought there was some catch; how could this possibly be healthy? I started looking at Jason Fung and Dr. Eric Berg on YouTube and other sources online and slowly I started to see that fasting was very necessary for the body. It is the most healthy and most natural way for a human to lose weight.
There has been extensive research on why cutting down on calories is much worse for you, and particularly harmful for your basal metabolic rate (BMR). Fasting does NOT lower your metabolism, in fact many studies have shown it can actually increase it!
Fasting has actually been proven to be one of the most effective ways to lose weight, and in my opinion, it definitely is one of the safest ways. It uses up the body’s natural fat stores and does not harm your muscles (contrary to many beliefs).
for more information on this topic see “How to Lose Weight Quickly“.
I am writing this article in a fasted state because, like many of us who know this benefit of fasting, I work best when my stomach is empty because my head is clearer.
When my body doesn’t have to focus on digesting and absorbing nutrients, my brain can work more efficiently.
Fasting can actually help promote growth of cells in your brain and even help in repairing the brain. As a result you can get increased mental clarity and can even mentally perform better than if you were eating.
Allows the body to repair itself (autophagy).
Autophagy is essentially when our bodies ‘eat up’ any ill functioning cells, any disease-inducing cells, or any cells that are of no benefit to the body. The word ‘autophagy’ means ‘self-eating’.
Yoshinori Ohsumi was awarded a Nobel Prize in Medicine for his discoveries of mechanisms for autophagy. He discovered that this method was the body’s preferred way to detoxify itself. Many people have praised fasting (because of how it allows for autophagy) for completely ridding them of any tumors or anything cancerous.
Autophagy can help heal absolutely everything within the body – heart health, cholesterol, obesity, diabetes, cancers, and any type of sickness even normal run-of-the-mill colds and flu.
How to start:
- Choose which type of fasting works for you – see here for more.
- Ease into fasting – fast for a chosen length of time that you feel comfortable with and then slowly start to lengthen that time.
- Have an open mind – for me who used to think fasting was starvation and therefore bad for the body, I have done a complete 360. It is important to view fasting with an open mind. It is still very new to the nutrition world (as there is virtually no money to be made from it).
- Have a look at all the wonderful stories posted everywhere online about what fasting has done for them spiritually, emotionally, mentally and physically.
Thanks so much for reading and please leave any questions and comments you have down below so I can help you out 🙂