Intermittent fasting is a way of eating that designates a period for eating and fasting. It has become the trendiest way of losing weight nowadays. IF has been effective for people who don’t have time to devote to meal planning and follow a restricted diet. There is even intermittent fasting for women over 50 proving that IF is the go-to weightloss for everyone regardless of age.
Always keep in mind that intermittent fasting may have different effects on different people. Consult your doctor if you feel unusual symptoms such as anxiety, headaches, and nausea. The following are the potential benefits of intermittent fasting:
Promotes Weight Loss
Many people try intermittent fasting to lose weight and belly fat. In general, fasting will make you eat fewer meals in the day hence you will end up taking fewer calories. Intermittent works by enhancing hormone function to facilitate weight loss. The metabolic rate is increased by 3.6-14%, which helps you burn more calories.
The insulin levels are also lowered and increased amounts of norepinephrine increase the breakdown of body fat and facilitate its use for energy. According to a scientific review, intermittent fasting can cause weight loss of 3-8% over 3-24 weeks.
Reduces High Blood Pressure
The link between IF and low blood pressure has been shown in both animal and human studies. In a study, it was found that there was decreased systolic blood pressure among 23 participants.
The research however showed that the blood pressure benefits only lasted while intermittent fasting was practiced. Once the diet wasn’t followed and people went back to eating normally, the blood pressure reading returned to the initial levels.
Changes the Function of the Cells, Genes, and Hormones
When you don’t eat, your body initiates important cellular repair processes that change the hormone levels to make fat stored in the body more available. The insulin levels drop which aid in the burning of fat. The blood levels of growth hormone might also increase. This also facilitates fat burning and other functions.
The body is involved in important cellular repair processes like removing waste products from the cell, a process known as autophagy. It also reverses the aging process by getting rid of old cellular junk and replacing it with new parts. Intermittent fasting causes gene expression which changes the genes and molecules related to longevity and protection against diseases.
Reduces Oxidative Stress and Inflammation
Oxidative stress involves unstable molecules which react with other important molecules such as DNA and protein and damages them. Oxidative stress mainly occurs when aging and in people with chronic diseases.
In several studies, it shows that intermittent fasting can enhance the body’s ability to resist oxidative stress. Also, IF can also help fight inflammation which is the key factor in most common diseases.