What if you could extend your life and youth by minimizing calories 2 days a week? Would you do it?
The good news is, it does and it can! I do it (but then again, I will do anything to stay looking youthful and young :).
Intermittent fasting is on trend right now. By restricting your caloric intake, cell autophagy occurs. Cell autophagy is your body’s way of ridding itself of damaged and potentially harmful cells by recycling them and allowing the body to regenerate healthy cells in their place.
The science behind intermittent fasting
A nobel prize was won in 2016 by Japanese Doctor Yoshinori Ohsumi. His work with cell autophagy is quite ground breaking.
Autophagy originates from the Greek words auto “self” and phagein, meaning “to eat”. It was first discovered in the 1960s when researches observed that the cell could destroy its own contents by enclosing it in membranes for degradation. Little more was known until the 1990s when Dr Ohsumi used baker’s yeast and showed similar sophisticated machinery is used in our bodies’ cells.
This discovery led to a new understanding of how our cells recycle its content. In response to starvation (come in intermittent fasting), our cells can rid themselves of mutations that cause disease including cancer and neurological disease (Alzheimer’s).
The human body is remarkable. When faced with starvation, cell autophagy occurs and provides fuel for energy and building blocks of cellular components. After infection, autophagy can eliminate invading bacteria and viruses. Cells also use autophagy to eliminate damaged proteins — a quality control mechanism that is critical for counteracting the negative consequences of aging. WHAT??? That’s right! Calorie restriction is proven for life-extension. Scientists have been studying this for years.
Disrupted cell autophagy is linked to type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and other disorders that appear in the elderly population. These disruptions can also cause genetic disease and cancer.
How to start with intermittent fasting
Intermittent fasting can be achieved by restricting calorie intake to 6-12 hours daily. Say you do an 18 hour fast. You would not injest any calories before noon. Between noon and 6pm, you can eat normally. But once it’s 6 o’clock, you’re done eating for the day. This is a rapid way to promote cell autophagy. This can be too intensive for some people. It can be done with moderation as well, say a 12 hour fast from 8pm to 8am with normal eating between those hours only.
Intermittent fasting can also be done by limiting caloric intake to under 500 calories for 2 days per week.
The good news is that once you get into the groove of intermittent fasting, hunger wanes and it becomes much easier than it sounds! If you’d like to rid your body of disease or just promote life extension and youth, give intermittent fasting a try!
Please only try intermittent fasting after consulting with your physician. If you need to see someone in Hampton Roads, VA, the awesome doctors at In and Out Express Care are always there to help! You can talk with them and see if intermittent fasting is for you!