Intermittent fasting is a unique eating pattern where a person cycles between eating and fasting for specific periods. Numerous research studies have shown that intermittent fasting can have excellent benefits for your body — and people are becoming more aware of the eating pattern as a good dietary strategy for weight loss. However, other health benefits offered by intermittent fasting have been often overlooked.
With that in mind, here are the health benefits of intermittent fasting.
It Improves Dental Health
Intermittent fasting has been proven to restore the body’s natural rhythm, crucial for dental health. When the body loses its natural rhythm, the spread of bacteria will lead to tooth decay, gum disease, and bleeding gums. Plus, a lack of rhythm is responsible for releasing compounds that cause bad breath. Intermittent fasting can also help by healing and protecting your teeth and gums since you’re eating less — and less often.
Eating less often limits the amount of damaging sugar from different foods that stay in your mouth and stay in contact with your teeth and gums, which are known to attract bacteria, causing plaque, gum inflammation, and gum disease.
Alternatively, if you’re looking to ensure your teeth stay in top condition, besides intermittent fasting, getting implants is a great way to maintain great teeth. Getting natural dental implants from a specialist can help preserve the tooth-supporting bone that gradually deteriorates when you lose a tooth or as time passes.
It Helps with Weight Loss
The body breaks down carbs into glucose, which cells use to directly energize themselves or turn into fat and store for later use. Insulin is a hormone that enables cells to take in glucose, and its levels drop whenever a person isn’t consuming food. When fasting, it’s possible that lowering insulin levels can cause cells to release their glucose stored as energy. Regularly doing this as with intermittent fasting can lead to faster weight loss.
Additionally, since this unique eating pattern requires less food consumption, you should be consuming fewer calories than usual — contributing to weight loss.
It’s Beneficial to Heart Health
Heart disease is one of the world’s leading causes of death. It’s known that different health markers are linked with increased or decreased risks of heart disease. Intermittent fasting has been proven to enhance various risk factors, such as total cholesterol, LDL, inflammatory markers, blood sugar levels, and blood pressure.
It Lowers Your Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
In recent years, type 2 diabetes is a chronic medical condition that has become incredibly common. Anything that can help reduce a person’s insulin resistance should lower their blood sugar levels, protecting them against this chronic disease. Intermittent fasting has been proven several times to be beneficial for insulin resistance, leading to a considerable reduction in blood sugar levels.
It Reduces Oxidative Stress and Inflammation in the Body
Oxidative stress is an indicator of aging and multiple chronic diseases involving unstable molecules called free radicals. These toxic molecules react with other ‘important’ molecules, such as protein and DNA, damaging them in the process. Luckily, several studies have proven that intermittent fasting can improve a body’s resistance to oxidative stress. Plus, the eating pattern may help reduce inflammation, which is a significant driver of many common diseases.
It Reduces Your Risk of Getting Cancer
Cancer is characterized by uncontrolled and rapid cell growth. Surprisingly, fasting has been known to boast numerous benefits on metabolism that may lead to reduced risks of different types of cancer. When people fast, the cells in the body trigger cell ‘waste removal’ processes called ‘autophagy.’ It involves breaking down dysfunctional proteins, gradually building up inside cells in the long run.
Although further investigations are needed, there’s evidence on cancer patients that show fasting reduced several adverse side effects of chemotherapy — making the treatment more effective and safer.
It’s Good for Your Brain
Remember that what’s good for your body is usually good for your brain too, and intermittent fasting is known to be good for both. It improves different metabolic features, which are crucial for brain health. These include reducing oxidative stress, inflammation, and blood sugar level. Studies have also shown the eating pattern can increase the growth of nerve cells, which are beneficial for brain function.
Remember, intermittent fasting can do more than merely help you lose weight, and the benefits mentioned are just a few of the many things that the practice can offer you over time. The best part is, since intermittent fasting is flexible, you can practically do it anywhere, at any time — ensuring better health in the long run.