Last Updated on November 12, 2023 by Otuebo Harrison
Modern-day lifestyle is wreaking havoc on our work-life balance, greatly impacting our health and well-being. Where technological advancement has greatly improved our living standards, it has also meant that we are increasingly living according to the fast-paced constantly changing demands of the society, now determined by the changes afforded by technology.
These working and living lifestyle changes have created a culture of fast food, binge eating and drinking, with little time for exercise and relaxation. This lifestyle has drastically impacted our health, our relationships and working practices.
Fasting could be the answer to the influences of this lifestyle mayhem. Fasting has seen to have numerous health benefits. In this blog, we explore the benefits of fasting on our health. Fasting is a personal phenomenon which can be undertaken by anyone no matter their lifestyle. Fasting has been proven to be very beneficial to our health and well-being.
Fasting Improves the Functioning and Health of the Brain
Fasting has been scientifically proven to have a profound effect on brain health and functioning. Fasting has been associated with promoting the growth of new neurone cells in the brain creating greater neural pathways which allow for speedier neurotransmission. This improves the function and performance of the brain.
During fasting, the brain performs in a state of heightened awareness. As it goes into survival mode, it pays extra attention to everything in and around its surroundings. This improves our level of concentration and helps us to remain on task for longer.
Fasting decreases inflammation in our bodies this helps in the prevention of neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer diseases. In cases of stroke, fasting has helped in the recovery of the brain through the regrowth of new neurone cells.
Fasting Improves the Functioning and Health of the Heart
Fasting has been linked to the improved functioning and health of the heart. In today’s age, the leading cause of death is heart disease. High blood pressure, high blood sugar and cholesterol levels in our bodies increase the risk of heart disease.
Fasting has the ability to reduce the levels of triglycerides and cholesterol in our body by burning the low-density lipoproteins (LDL). High LDLs in our bloodstream reduces the body’s sensitivity to regulate insulin, by reducing LDLs, our body is able to regulate the blood sugar levels through the regulation of insulin. This decreases the chances of developing diabetes.
Fasting Improves the Functioning and Health of the Metabolic System
Fasting has been associated with weight loss and weight maintenance. Fasting has been found to boost metabolism by increasing the production of the neurotransmitters norepinephrine and serotonin in the brain. These neurotransmitters play an important role in regulating the energy balance in our bodies. An increased level of norepinephrine helps in boosting the metabolic rate which helps in the weight loss.
These neurotransmitters have also been found to reduce depression. Fasting therefore not only helps in weight loss but also in the regulation of our mental health and well-being.
Fasting has been found to have additional benefits for our physiological system. During fasting, the body diverts its attention from the digestive system to other systems of the body, repairing and building the systems to optimise the body’s functioning.
Fasting Promotes Detoxification
Fasting has been linked to detoxification of the body through the process of autophagy. Autophagy is the self-cleansing system in our body. Through this process our body cells identify dead, damaged or diseased cells; they encircle and break them down these cells. This process helps our body to perform optimally.
During fasting, our body pays heightened attention to toxins stored in our body, they treat these as a threat, thereby activating an adaptive stress response to eliminate these toxins from the body. These toxins are removed from in and around our organs such as the liver and kidneys, rendering them toxin-free. Through this process, our body is detoxified leading to a healthier body and mind.
Fasting Delays Ageing
Fasting has been found to help in delaying the process of ageing and increasing longevity. This occurs through the production of a water-soluble ketone molecule, called β-Hydroxybutyrate. This chemical has been seen to decrease the ageing of our vascular system. It has been discovered that ageing occurs due to the ageing of the blood and vascular systems.
The delay in the ageing of the lymphatic system and the blood system helps in their improved functioning. This helps the body to protect itself against infections and disease, maintaining a healthy body and mind.
β-Hydroxybutyrate is produced during exercise and times of reduced food intake. It is therefore highly beneficial for us to fast and exercise regularly so that β-Hydroxybutyrate production could be increased leading to a healthier vascular system. This helps us to look younger and live longer.
Fasting is an avenue which we could incorporate in our daily lives to live healthier and happier lives. We can improve the health and functioning of our body’s organ systems through fasting, thereby increasing life expectancy and reducing susceptibility to infections and diseases. Fasting, therefore, is a very easy way of losing weight, staying fitter and healthier no matter our lifestyle.