Research Confirms Missing A Meal Helps You Drop Pounds and Reverse Signs of Aging

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Research Confirms Missing A Meal Helps You Drop Pounds and Reverse Signs of Aging
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Do you consider the practice of fasting abnormal or even bizarre? If so, you’ll be surprised to know that our bodies have actually evolved to use the “downtime” for renewal, cleansing, and resting – it’s much like what happens when you sleep.

This makes sense when you take a step back and remember that we did not always live in times of superabundant food. Supermarkets did not exist before the 20th century and refrigeration prior to the age of electricity was primitive at best. We evolved eating less overall than we did now, therefore it is not unreasonable to assume that we are evolutionarily adapted to less food. Evolutionary changes are slow and many argue that our bodies not even “caught up” with the advent of agriculture!

More and more compelling research is emerging on the potential health benefits of fasting, including dropping some pounds and reversing the signs of aging. Yes, that right – missing a meal may make you look healthier and younger. In particular, a 2019 study [1] appearing in the Journal of Scientific Reports found that fasting helps increase metabolites that are associated with longevity, antioxidant activity, and maintenance of muscle.

Scientific Study Into Effects Of Fasting

The study by researchers affiliated to the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST) and Kyoto University analyzed human blood from fasting respondents and monitored changes in metabolites. (Metabolites are the product of chemical processes that allow organisms to grow.) Some metabolites such as ophthalmic acid, isoleucine, and leucine are essential for antioxidant activity, but they are known to decrease as we age.

In as little as 58 hours after fasting, the results showed that metabolites shot up 1.5 to 60-fold. Even more fascinating, the scientists discovered 30 unreported metabolites. Based on the finding of Dr. Takayuki Teruya and his team of researchers, you stand to gain the following health benefits by fasting:

1. Dropping Some Pounds: When you fast, you’re depriving your body of carbohydrates – forcing your body to source energy elsewhere. During fasting, markers of energy substitution accumulate in your cells as you release energy stored in lipids, proteins, and carbohydrates. This throws your cells into overdrive and helps reduce weight.

2. Reversing the Signs of Aging: The analysis showed that fasting enhances the production of pyrimidine and purine. The substances boost the production of antioxidants, improve protein synthesis, and gene expression. These functions help protect cells from oxidative damage by free radicals, promote balance in cells, and improve the response to environmental influences, respectively. In case you didn’t notice, all these benefits lead to one path: reversing the clocks of time and rejuvenating your body.

Other Health Benefits of Fasting

Keep in mind that the findings of this study are far from an isolated case. There are numerous studies that highlight the therapeutic benefits of missing a meal. For example, fasting is touted to reduce symptoms of autoimmune diseases [2], lower blood sugar [3], reduce inflammation [4], weaken cancer cells [5], reduce asthma attacks [6], and even prevent progressive nervous system disorders [7] such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.

With so many potential health benefits, why isn’t fasting on your dietary schedule already? But as with any major lifestyle change, you need to plan or prepare yourself mentally and physically. Getting started might seem like a challenge, but with the right practices, your body will adjust with time. So, do you want to drop some pounds and reverse the signs of aging?

References:

[1] Teruya, T., Chaleckis, R., Takada, J., Yanagida, M., & Kondoh, H. (2019). Diverse metabolic reactions activated during 58-hr fasting are revealed by non-targeted metabolomic analysis of human blood. Scientific reports, 9(1), 854. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-36674-9

[2] Choi, I. Y., Lee, C., & Longo, V. D. (2017). Nutrition and fasting mimicking diets in the prevention and treatment of autoimmune diseases and immunosenescence. Molecular and cellular endocrinology, 455, 4-12. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28137612/

[3] Anson, R. M., Guo, Z., De Cabo, R., Iyun, T., Rios, M., Hagepanos, A., … & Mattson, M. P. (2003). Intermittent fasting dissociates beneficial effects of dietary restriction on glucose metabolism and neuronal resistance to injury from calorie intake. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 100(10), 6216-6220. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12724520/

[4] Youm, Y. H., Nguyen, K. Y., Grant, R. W., Goldberg, E. L., Bodogai, M., Kim, D., … & Kang, S. (2015). The ketone metabolite β-hydroxybutyrate blocks NLRP3 inflammasome–mediated inflammatory disease. Nature medicine, 21(3), 263. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4352123/

[5] Lee, C., Raffaghello, L., Brandhorst, S., Safdie, F. M., Bianchi, G., Martin-Montalvo, A., … & Emionite, L. (2012). Fasting cycles retard growth of tumors and sensitize a range of cancer cell types to chemotherapy. Science translational medicine, 4(124), 124ra27-124ra27. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3608686/

[6] Longo, V. D., & Mattson, M. P. (2014). Fasting: molecular mechanisms and clinical applications. Cell metabolism, 19(2), 181-192. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3946160/

[7] Anft, M. (2012). Don’t feed your head. https://hub.jhu.edu/magazine/2012/summer/dont-feed-your-head/

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