The Meadows Blog

Tuesday, 11 September 2018 14:18

Here’s Why Fueling Less Could Mean Living More

The Meadows appreciates and understands the connection between lifestyle choices such as diet, exercise and stress management, and their role in recovery. We also take a holistic approach to our patient care, focusing on all aspects of wellness. Fasting has been shown in multiple studies to help with weight loss, prevention, and management of metabolic diseases, longevity and even cognitive function. There are many opportunities to improve health through diet – fasting may be a good option for many of our patients seeking to improve overall health.

If you take the time to review statistics on American’s food habits, weight, and disease status, you probably would be alarmed. That’s because when it comes to healthy living as a whole, we are failing at doing it right. Part of the problem lies beyond what we are eating and instead has a lot to do with the frequency in which we are eating. The typical American spends 12 plus hours a day on meals, snacks, and the occasional hand in the candy bowl moment. This habit ensures a steady stream of insulin and metabolism of nutrients all day long. That steady stream, as it turns out stimulates pro-aging pathways that can lead you down the road to disease.  So how do we give our body a break? The answer, as growing interest and especially strong science are showing – is fasting. If you take the time to review statistics on American’s food habits, weight, and disease status, you probably would be alarmed. That’s because when it comes to healthy living as a whole, we are failing at doing it right. Part of the problem lies beyond what we are eating and instead has a lot to do with the frequency in which we are eating. The typical American spends 12 plus hours a day on meals, snacks, and the occasional hand in the candy bowl moment. This habit ensures a steady stream of insulin and metabolism of nutrients all day long. That steady stream, as it turns out stimulates pro-aging pathways that can lead you down the road to disease.  So how do we give our body a break? The answer, as growing interest and especially strong science are showing – is fasting.

 
The old thinking on fasting was that you stop eating for a few days (during which you are miserable, irritable, and perhaps even putting your body at risk) and then go right back to normal habits afterward.  New studies, however, point to various forms of fasting that are not only easy but don’t put your body at risk for electrolyte imbalances or malnutrition along the way.  Here are three of the most popular you should consider

 

  • Intermittent fasting – Intermittent fasting (IF) involves eating very little calories 2-3 non-consecutive days per week. For women, this means about 500 calories split up between two meals while men can have up to 600 calories.  Normal (preferably healthy) eating resumes on days you are not fasting. IF has been shown in studies https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3680567/ to help fight against obesity by controlling hunger, cravings and increased fat loss, and could help in the management of cardiovascular disease and symptoms of multiple sclerosis (MS). 

 

  • Prolonged fasting (done 5 days every month) – prolonged fasting is where we have the strongest science on longevity. Fasting for 5 days each month puts the body in a stage of autophagy (see links) which is when cells are made more efficient or replaced to ensure longer survival and less disease. The diet is usually lower in carbohydrates and proteins (especially animal proteins) and follows about 1000 calories on day one followed by about 700-800 calories on days 2-5. The best way to start a prolonged fasting regimen is to work with an expert on fasting who can guide you through the process.

Who should not fast?  Fasting is not for everyone. Individuals with type 1 diabetes (or type 2 diabetes and on multiple medications); pregnant, younger than 18, underweight, or with a past or current eating disorder should not try fasting. For individuals on medications, or over 70, it’s best to check with your physician first to obtain guidance and support. 

Next month, check out The Meadows Fuel blog to learn how you can control your cravings, health, and weight this holiday season!

Written by:  https://www.kristinkirkpatrick.com

Read 318 times Last modified on Tuesday, 11 September 2018 14:29

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