What comes to mind when we talk about fasting is a religious exercise. Nearly everyone is familiar with the term as fasting dates back to centuries ago. Many religions like Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Judaism, among others still adopt the practice of fasting at different periods.
So, what is fasting? Fasting refers to partial or total abstinence from food and or water for a certain period of time which in most cases is for a purpose. That being said, fasting not only has its spiritual benefits but also the benefits it offers our bodies.
Why fasting might be good for you
You might be a little sceptical after reading that big heading above. You might wonder how fasting can help you be healthier? Well, keep reading and see for yourself.
1. Weight Loss
Aside from religious purposes, the other major reason people fast is for weight loss. Intermittent fasting has become well-known for planned eating and safe weight control. In this instance, one’s body gets accustomed to a fixed eating pattern that could be from 9 am to 6 pm allowing the body to fast for fifteen hours.
Because there is no consumption of food, the body makes use of the reserved fats in sustaining and carrying out its daily routine.
2. Manages blood sugar level
Fasting reduces the risk of diabetes as a result of reduced insulin resistance which keeps blood sugar levels steady.
3. Possible elimination of toxins
The liver, kidney, and skin are responsible for ridding the body of toxins. When we fast, toxins stored in body fats are released as we burn the fats during daily activities.
4. Suppressed blood pressure level
Fasting reduces blood pressure level as research has associated intermittent fasting with a reduced level of coronary heart disease.
5. Longer life-span
Fasting promotes longevity as a result of slower metabolism as we age. Several animal studies have been conducted to test the lifespan-extending benefits of fasting. Two groups of rats were studied; the first group was placed on intermittent fasting while the other group was not. At the end of the experiment, the rats in the first group experienced a longer life-span than those in the second group.
6. Better brain performance
Research has proven that fasting helps in boosting brainpower. When fasting, the brain sort of goes into a survival mode. It is also believed to regulate stress and improve memory.
7. Improved skin condition
Fasting promotes a better skin condition that creams and soaps might not be able to give you. Because the body is channeling energy away from digestion, there is an improvement in organ and skin conditions. Many schools of thought believe that fasting carries a cleansing effect that allows the body to lose dead skin while wearing a renewed one.
Fasting- Yay or Nay?
With the above possible benefits of fasting, it would be best to consult a licensed medical practitioner before embarking on any kind of fast. There is still a lot of research that is required to truly understand how fasting affects our bodies.
With this in mind, it is worthy of note that not everyone should fast; children, pregnant women, nursing mothers, underweight and sick people should not consider fasting unless strictly advised by a doctor.