Intermittent fasting has been growing in popularity in recent times not only as merely a way to lose weight but for the overall general health of the
body and mind. It has been found by over 200 studies that fasting induces eight major repair processes in the body that greatly protect and improve the health of the body.
Number 1- Fasting induces autophagy
Damage within the cell to proteins, mitochondria, DNA, and other cell components accounts for many age-related diseases. Autophagy is an ancient cell repair process used by all living organisms to maintain health.
Normally cells do automatic autophagy during the night to clean up damaged cell components and keep cells
functioning efficiently. Researchers found that as you age, autophagy declines. However, they also found that you can always force autophagy by fasting.
Autophagy is a hot research area. Researchers are busy giving mice
diseases by changing their genes and then fasting them to cure
their disease through autophagy. Researchers have had good success
in their experiments. Unfortunately, only autophagy in animals has been studied so we don’t know how long humans have to fast to force autophagy. During an experimental prolonged fast, it was tried to determine when autophagy occurs during the fasting process. Based on improvements in skin and overall feeling of strength it was concluded that autophagy probably starts after four days of fasting.
Number 2 Protein Scavenging
Proteins are essential for life even during fasting. Fasting induces protein scavenging to feed the body. Research has shown that the body is amazingly intelligent in searching out protein that is not needed.
Examples of unnecessary proteins are skin blemishes, cysts, damaged muscle fibers, and tumors. All of these protein scavenge are sent
to the digestive system to be reused.
Fasting animal studies have shown that muscle fiber count remains the same as long as you exercise. The muscle fiber is basically hollowed out for protein but that’s as done as a last resort
When you refeed the muscle fibers automatically filled in without exercise.
Your muscles are restored to the state they were in before fasting
minus the damaged muscle fibers and cells. This makes evolutionary sense in a hunter who has gone a long period without food, and needs to recover fast.
Number 3- Resetting of Appetite Hormone Receptor and Transmitter
If a cell has a message to send it uses a transmitter if the cell has an
action to perform it uses a receptor. Hormones are messengers. There are appetite-stimulating hormones but they are not a problem. There are three appetite suppression hormones insulin leptin and GLP1. Your body can lose your sensitivity to these appetite suppressors if you overeat. That loss of sensitivity is called resistance and will cause you to overeat even more.
The good news is a fast resets your sensitivity to these appetite suppressors. Your transmitters and receptors become highly sensitive.
Number 4- Glucose Deprivation
Cancer cells need lots of blood glucose to flourish. Based upon his treatment of brain cancer patients Dr. Seyfried has concluded that if you get your blood sugar below 70 the tumors start to shrink and free-floating cancer cells die.
In an experimental prolonged fast, it was found that the blood sugar fell from 90 to below 70 on the fourth day of fasting and remained so throughout the fast.
Number 5- Fasting increases BDNF
Brain-derived neurotrophic factor or BDNF increases during fasting. BDNF is necessary for proper functioning in the brain including building new memory synapses. Lack of BDNF can cause all kinds of brain-related diseases including depression, dementia, poor
memory and poor cognition.
Number 6- Increase in SIRT Proteins
SIRT proteins create enzymes that maintain a healthy cell structure. Seven SIRT proteins have been discovered but it is still a very new area of research. If you are younger than 60, SIRT proteins can be stimulated by a low-carb diet.
If you are over 60 it will probably take fasting to stimulate SIRT production. SIRT proteins have been found to suppress tumours, prevent DNA from change, repair cell damage, cell DNA and telomeres, maintain the integrity of cell DNA and help in gene expression.
Number 7- Visceral Fat Reduction
Several scientific studies exist that throw light on the dangers of visceral fat. Visceral fat may be the major cause of aging diseases. Cytokines are probably best known for their key role as mediators and regulators of inflammatory responses. They are actually able to stimulate the movement of cells toward sites of infection, trauma, and inflammation. Although cytokines are absolutely essential to immune function, excessive amounts can actually become dangerous. A cytokine storm, also known as hypercytokinemia or cytokine release syndrome, is a condition caused by a surge in the production of inflammatory proteins. However, excess visceral fat generates large quantities of unhealthy cytokines. Those cytokines create a dangerous amount of inflammation in our bodies.
Here’s a list of cytokines that visceral fat creates.
IL-6 and TNF- alpha appear to be the most
dangerous in excess quantities. It is a significant evolutionary defect that visceral fat creates cytokines in quantities that can kill us. Our visceral fat never evolved because it’s only within the last 70 years has visceral fat, become a major problem, due to overnutrition in modern times. There are many research papers that show how cytokines cause diseases of aging. Most of these papers come from Japan starting in 1990 japan seems to be a hotbed of visceral fat research. There’s a high correlation between cytokine inflammation and diseases like type 2 diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease, cancer, and brain disease. Another cause of many diseases is that visceral fat can physically fill up our trunk cavities creating organ compression. This causes kidney disease, high blood pressure, GERD, sleep apnea, reduction of heart-pumping action, and heart AFIB. For people over 40 perhaps the greatest benefit of prolonged fasting is visceral fat reduction. It appears that you cannot lose visceral fat without human growth hormone. We start losing our ability to produce HGH at age 40 and it drops to very low levels by age 60.
That is why our waist and hips expand as we age. However, a study showed that fasting over 24 hours increased HGH by 1440 percent and HGH remains high for 17 fasting days no matter what your age.
Number 8- Increase in Adiponectin
Adiponectin is a protein produced by external body fat. Unfortunately, the cytokines in visceral fat suppress the production of adiponectin.
Adiponectin is almost the exact opposite of cytokines. Adiponectin reduces inflammation. Adiponectin reverses all the problems caused by visceral fat plus it improves almost all of the blood values we measure. It is the greatest anti-aging drug in existence and is all naturally produced but is produced only if you do not have excess visceral fat. This slide shows that too much visceral fat causes inflammatory cytokines but as visceral fat decreases anti-inflammatory adiponectin is produced by our external fat and continues to increase as visceral fat disappears. It appears that when your HDL is 55 or above you are producing more adiponectin than cytokines. Thus it is important to lead a lifestyle that minimizes the production of visceral fat or do occasional fasting to get rid of it.
Some of the most important statistics on the subject of fasting come from Dr. James McEachen, who applied fasting in the treatment of 715 cases of disease during the period from August, 1952 to March, 1958. All fasts were carefully supervised under ideal conditions in McEachen’s sanatorium near Escondido, California. The only limitation in the efficiency of treatment was that many patients did not have time to fast long enough or often enough to obtain maximum benefit. Yet, in 294 of these cases, there was very great improvement or complete recovery; in 360 cases there was moderate benefit, and for the remaining 61 cases, no improvement at all was noted. Thus the average percentage of improved or remedied cases was 88.4 percent.
Dr. McEachen achieved the fasting cure rate that he did on certain diseases and here’s why it happened. Hormone receptor and transmitter reset improved insulin resistance and metabolic performance. Autophagy increases the performance of the pancreas and the liver. Reduction of inflammatory cytokines and increases of APN reduces blood sugar overproduction and insulin underproduction. Reduction of visceral fat compression improves the performance of the pancreas and the liver.
High Blood Pressure- 141 cases 141 cured or improved
Kidney Disease- 41 cases 36 cured or improved.
Here’s the reason that happened – autophagy improves kidney performance. Reduction of inflammatory cytokines and increases in APN reduces blood pressure.
Reduction of visceral fat compression improves the performance of the kidney.
Heart Disease 33 cases 29 cured or improved. Here’s the reason for
that – autophagy improves heart performance and reduces arterial plaque. Reduction of blood pressure from improved kidney performance. Cytokine
reduction stops production and growth of arterial lesions which reduces
plaque formation. Cytokine inflammation reduction reduces AFIB
and blood clots. Increases in adiponectin suppress plaque formation. Reduction of visceral fat compression around the heart improves its mechanical pumping action and reduces afib. Reduction in cytokines reduces ferritin retention which reduces the body’s inflammatory load.
Increases in adiponectin reduce small dense LDL particles. Increases in
adiponectin increase hdl3 and hdl2 particles which prevent LDL oxidation and excess LDL.
Cancer- five cases five cured or improved.
autophagy and SIRT proteins repair defective cells and prevent them from becoming
cancerous. Prolonged glucose deprivation kills cancer cells. Protein scavenging removes free-floating cancer cells and small tumors.
Diabetes cure reduces blood glucose levels which feed cancer cells, reduces cytokine formation that causes cell damage and tumor growth.
In summary, the eight major repair processes stimulated by fasting work together to cure many diseases.