Maintaining a good diet is vital to your health. It’s one of the reasons why so many different types of diets are developed and popularized every year. If you’re looking to improve your health, one thing that you can do is to practice intermittent fasting.
A lot of people scoff at the idea of fasting; they see it as a form of starving yourself. Fasting does not have to be extreme and it can actually provide a number of health benefits. The following are four things you should know about intermittent fasting:
1. What is Intermittent Fasting?
Intermittent fasting is the practice of not eating anything for an extended period of time. This period of time can be as little as 12 hours, although some people even fast for as many as 24 hours.
2. Is Intermittent Fasting Beneficial to Your Health?
Numerous studies have found that intermittent fasting can be beneficial. For example, the way you eat can affect your sleep-wake cycle (also known as your circadian rhythm). This means that intermittent fasting could potentially help to improve your sleep cycles. Getting good sleep is essential for both your physical and mental health.
3. How Does Fasting Affect Your Body?
Although most Americans aren’t starving, humans (and animals in general) don’t always have access to food, especially in times of hardship. The body naturally adapts to a lack of food through certain metabolic changes. For example, if you’re not consuming enough glucose, your liver will create ketones from fatty acids that your body will use as an emergency energy source.
4. How Can Fasting Promote Your Physical Health?
One of the ways that intermittent fasting can help improve your health is through a process called autophagy. When practicing intermittent fasting, your body will begin a self-detoxification process in which old and damaged cells are broken down and recycled. This helps to promote cellular replenishment in tissues, such as your skeletal muscle.
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