Health & Wellness

Benefits Of Fasting: What Happens to your Body When you Fast?

Benefits Of Fasting: Is fasting good for health? Fasting is the new fitness trends in modern society. Though in every religion there is a rule of fasting as we believe that fasting encourages us with the power to pray more accurately and consciously to God. We develop the capability to focus on God through the sacrifice of fasting, and thus we experience a profound spiritual insight.

But the modern concept of fasting shows us that from other than spiritual reasons, fasting can be helpful to gain some health goal as well.

Controlled fasting can enrich our lifestyle and our health from a different perspective. Not many people incorporate the process of fasting in their lifestyle other than a spiritual reason, but it is high to do so.

So the young and the old generation are incorporating the habit of fasting in their lifestyle to stay more fit and active. Let us check the benefits Of Fasting that may surprise you a lot.

What is Fasting?

Fasting is compulsory in each religion. Such as in Islam during Ramdan month and in many religious communities like Buddhist monk and nuns who follow Vinaya rules and do partial fasting. It is the process by which individual willingly restrict his/her food or drink consumption.

According to medical science, fasting means staying in empty stomach for a couple of hours or after complete digestion of one meal or for a whole day. Commonly an absolute fast in which water or any liquid is not taken for performing any religious rituals.

However, fasting is the method of going without food which includes religious rites, detoxification, stomach cleaning etc.

Types of fasting:

So based on the various reasons we can divide fasting into the following categories:

• Religious fast.
• Partial fast.
• Water fast.
• Fast for the medical cause.
• Juice fast.
• Full fast.
• Fast to detoxify.
• Fast following weight loss regime.

Benefits Of Fasting:

Each form of fasting has an overall beneficial impact on our physical as well as mental condition. Modern Generation is more health conscious and so fasting has gained worldwide popularity among all the classes.

So we do not confine the act of fasting only as an act of religious beliefs. Let us clarify the benefits of fasting.

1. Fasting Improves Brain Activity:

Anyone may think it little strange, but it is true that fasting accelerates brain function. Studies have shown that in case of human brain fasting increase the energy as it changes specific cell functions and at the same time it increases the production of the protein which is responsible for activating the stem cell of the brain to activate new neurons.

It also guards the brain cells to go through the changes that occur during Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases.

2. Increase Mental Peace and Spiritualism:

When we talk about human well-being, we cover not only physical health but also mental health because a healthy body and a healthy mind are the two prime assets of any individual to monitor the overall function of life.

Fasting for religious rituals leads us to experience joy and mental satisfaction as it helps to get closer to the almighty.

In order to reach him, we surrender our basic comfort which brings clarity to our thoughts. So fasting is necessary to purify our soul.

3. Helps to Regularise Eating Habits:

Modern lifestyle has changed every sphere of life, especially our eating habit. Our Gen Y members are addicted to fast food that is readily available everywhere and due to this reason they are facing problems in the stomach and digestion.

Fasting is an age-old practice that helps to grow a healthy eating habit in all. A five to six hours fasting in between meals or intermittent fasting reduces the intake of junk food and indirectly helps the digestive system to work efficiently.

4. Helps to Detoxify:

The term detoxification means a lot as far as our well-being is concerned. It is perhaps one of the most surprising benefits of fasting that directly improve our system.

During fasting, the absence of food for an extended period indulges the glycogen that had been stored by the liver in glucose form. But it does not work or last after 24 hours.

Our body begins to break down the fat and release the stored harmful chemicals from the fats into the system and thus eliminated with the help of the kidney, lungs, lymph nodes, and skin.

5. Aids in Weight Loss:

It’s sure that with fasting anyone can lose weight naturally without spending hours for exercise. An intermittent fasting or occasional fasting for a couple of hours in a day indulge the fat cells to burn to produce energy.

However those who are overweight, follows a strict diet rule ignoring delicious food for a long time means to deprive is the earliest solution.

Individuals can take food at a regular interval of 5-6 hours and they will follow fasting for the remaining hours. A few low-calorie foods will prove more effective.

6. Enhance Life Span:

How can fasting enhance our lifespan while we all take food for living? Though strange enough yet true, that recent researchers found that fasting can strengthen lifespan, reduce stress and slow down the aging process.

There are so many evidences. Such as monks, who eat minimum food once in a day, but live a long life. Thus fasting encourages the mitochondrial activities inside the cell to reorganise the old cell.

As we know mitochondria is the power plant inside our body so to keep the power cells in a youthful stage, restriction in diet is necessary.

7. Improves Skin Texture:

The glow of our skin completely depends on our diet. We often thought that taking healthy and nutritious food is enough to make skin shiner, but fasting also play a vital role in his case.

Fasting improves the collagen tissues which are responsible to held skin elasticity and glow.

Especially type II diabetes patient lost the radiance of their skin very quickly as high blood sugar destroy the collagen structure. With fasting at a regular basis we can control our sugar level and as a result protect our skin.

8. Boost up Immunity:

While fasting of our body tends to use the deposited glucose, fat, and ketones to produce energy and at the same time it breaks a major portion of WBC.

If we fast for a long time our body needs to organise immune system and to regenerate the immunity stem cell began to rejuvenate and create new WBC and thus boost up the immunity power.

9. Reduce Inflammation:

During fasting our body reduces oxidative stress by damaging free radicals. Free radicals are the key factor of premature ageing and several chronic disorders. The unstable molecules react with protein and DNA and ruin them.

There is scientific evidence that occasional fasting can build up a resistant power to oxidative stress. Apart from this, intermittent fasting helps to reduce inflammation and thus save our body from many chronic disorders.

10. Keeps Heart Healthy:

Fasting at regular interval and in a moderate way can keep our heart healthy as it controls bad cholesterol and blood sugar, both of which are responsible for the weak cardiovascular system.

Heart disease is the most killer in the modern lifestyle, and it gives us no chance to escape. Through fasting and a balanced diet, we can reduce the risk to a great extent.

So, friends, there are many more to say about the benefits of fasting. But above all, fasting enhances the urge for the right eating habits at the right time. While our system gets toxic due to overeating and irregular eating patterns, only fasting for a whole day or a few hours can make us feel hungry.

You may take few days or a few months to get accustomed to doing fasting regularly, but once you get the benefits, you will enjoy it from the core of your heart.

Dr Maria

MD. Board Certified physician. Fellowship In Family Medicine UK. 8 years of medical experience in Lifestyle-related health disorders. Graduated from AIIMS – All India Institute Of Medical Science, INDIA

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