10 Health benefits of fasting you probably didn’t know about
For some people, fasting is a religious obligation, but fasting also has health benefits that we can all gain from. Going without solid food for a short period of time can help to eliminate toxins from the blood, lower the blood sugar levels and boost the immune system. During the holy month of Ramadan, Muslims are prohibited from eating and drinking from dawn until sunset, every day, while other people fast for eight hours at a time, once every month, purely for the health benefits. You can survive perfectly well for short periods of time without food and here are ten of the benefits that people who fast can gain:
1. Fasting gives the digestive system a rest
Your digestive system is working pretty hard, day in and day out, to cope with all the food and drink that you pass through it. Fasting occasionally gives it a much needed rest and you will find that your digestive system will work much better after a short break.
2. Fasting can help you beat addictions
Many people have found that fasting can help them overcome bad habits and addictions. If you are trying to quit smoking or give up drinking, then you might find that fasting for a while will help.
3. It is a great way to start a healthy diet
If you are planning to switch over to a healthier lifestyle and diet, then starting with a period of fasting can be a great way to begin. It gives your body a chance to rid itself of all the toxins from your old unhealthy diet and it gives you great motivation for your new diet and way of life.
4. Fasting normalises insulin sensitivity
If you have been eating too much carbohydrates and sugar, your body can become insulin resistant, which can lead to diabetes. Regular fasting will stop this from happening and can prevent the onset of diabetes and other diseases, such as heart disease and some cancers.
5. Fasting can reduce your hunger levels
Going without food, for short periods of time, can reduce your hunger levels during the non-fasting periods. Fasting normalises the levels of ghrelin, which is the hunger hormone, which will make you feel less hungry overall.
6. It can slow down the ageing process
A period of fasting increases the production of the human growth hormone. The human growth hormone promotes the growth of new and healthy cells, a lack of which, leads to premature aging.
7. Fasting promotes the detoxification process
When you fast, your body begins to use your fat reserves for fuel and this, as well as helping you to lose weight, will also help to release the toxins that have become stored up in the excess fat in your body.
8. It whitens the eyes and clears the complexion
Taking a break from eating solid food can also have some amazing effects on your skin and your eyes. Often, you will find that your skin becomes clearer, breakouts will reduce and even the whites of your eyes will appear whiter and clearer.
9. Fasting can reduce high blood pressure
For many people, a period of fasting can help to reduce high blood pressure without the need for medication. If you do take medication for high blood pressure, it is not advisable to try fasting before consulting with your doctor first though.
10. It can boost the immune system
A period of fasting can also boost your immune system. The best way to end a fast to gain this effect is not to return immediately to a binge on all those unhealthy foods though! Take it as an opportunity to change your diet for the better and celebrate the end of your fasting with a hearty meal of fruit and all those vitamins and minerals will get straight to work on your newly cleansed body.
Do you know some other benefits of fasting?
Stay happy and healthy!