There are many benefits to intermittent fasting (IF). First, this eating pattern may help you lose weight, but it also has been found to improve sleep quality. Intermittent fasting reduces the risk of developing diabetes. There are many other benefits of intermittent fasting. There are different types of intermittent fasting diet plans to follow. By following intermittent fasting, one can experience numerous benefits.
1) Improved Brain Function
The health benefits of intermittent fasting are often thought to be related to improved brain function. Since intermittent fasting causes insulin levels to remain stable. Researchers think it might improve memory and slow down Alzheimer’s disease by preventing diabetes. Intermittent fasting controls diabetes which contributes to memory loss, depression, and general cognitive decline.
2) Weight Loss & Diabetes Prevention
There are many benefits to intermittent fasting. The most notable is its ability to help with weight loss and, as a result, prevent type 2 diabetes. There are numerous studies out there on intermittent fasting and its effects on health. One recent study published in Cell Metabolism compared animals. Mice that ate freely all day to those who ate only for an eight-hour. They found that mice who fasted for eight hours a day showed greater insulin sensitivity than those who ate whenever they wanted. The results were more striking in female mice than males.
3) Less Stress and Anxiety
By definition, intermittent fasting entails not eating for extended periods of time. This can be difficult for many people as it requires them to stay away from their typical food. By becoming more aware of your eating habits, you’ll be able to identify when you feel anxious or stressed out. And by remaining cognizant about what you’re consuming, you may notice that certain foods trigger your moodiness. Simply removing these specific foods from your diet can help reduce depression while also promoting weight loss.
5) A Stronger Immune System
Going 12 hours without eating can be a big shock to your system. It also gives your body an opportunity to reset. It’s almost like a reboot for your immune system, says Amanda Chantal Bacon, author of The PreMade Paleo Cookbook. Anytime you do something intense to your body like that, it will find any little crack and start working to heal. A recent study found that people who practiced intermittent fasting were less likely to get sick because they had a stronger immune response after eating.
6) Fewer Cravings
One common misconception about intermittent fasting is that you have to severely restrict your calorie intake to see results. In reality, you’ll probably consume less while intermittently fasting because it reduces overall food intake. When you add in better sleep and improved insulin sensitivity, your body will naturally drop pounds. Without these extra calories, getting that 6-pack becomes much easier!
7) Reduced Risk of Heart Disease
The benefits of intermittent fasting may include a reduced risk of heart disease. Thanks to its effect on blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Results from a 2016 study found that people who practiced IF had lower blood pressure overall, as well as lower levels of triglycerides—blood fats that can cause heart disease. On top of that, participants also saw an increase in HDL cholesterol (often called good cholesterol)—another important factor for maintaining good heart health. Overall, researchers observed that intermittent fasting was effective at reducing participants’ risk factors for cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.
8) More Energy
If you’re struggling to lose weight or break a plateau, intermittent fasting can help give you an extra boost. You’ll have higher energy levels because it decreases your body fat, increases muscle growth, and helps, and you maintain lean muscle tissue. More energy means you’ll have more fuel for working out. This is especially helpful if you exercise in order to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight.
9) Clearer Skin
Believe it or not, gut health has a pretty big impact on your skin. In fact, something called leaky gut syndrome is a condition in which undigested food particles escape from your intestines and into other parts of your body (such as your bloodstream), causing inflammation that can affect any organ—including your skin. The best way to improve digestion is by eating an anti-inflammatory diet rich in fiber, healthy fats, and fermented foods. That’s why intermittent fasting (which reduces inflammation) is one of my favorite ways to start my day for clear skin.
10) Reduces Signs of Aging
Getting enough sleep is important for everyone, but studies show that a lack of shut-eye can cause wrinkles. Researchers at Case Western Reserve University looked at skin samples from more than 500 women and found that how well they slept was directly correlated to their levels of elastin and collagen—two proteins that affect how your skin looks. Those who slept between seven and eight hours a night had higher levels of those proteins compared to those who slept less than six hours a night. According to researchers, it’s during deep sleep when our cells regenerate so it’s important to get enough shut-eye (7-8 hours) if you want your skin to be looking its best.