How Does Intermittent Fasting Work
There are several different ways to do intermittent fasting, but they are all based on choosing regular time periods to eat and fast. For instance, you might try eating only during an eight-hour period each day and fast for the remainder. Or you might choose to eat only one meal a day two days a week. There are many different intermittent fasting schedules.
Mattson says that after hours without food, the body exhausts its sugar stores and starts burning fat. He refers to this as metabolic switching.
Intermittent fasting contrasts with the normal eating pattern for most Americans, who eat throughout their waking hours, Mattson says. If someone is eating three meals a day, plus snacks, and theyre not exercising, then every time they eat, theyre running on those calories and not burning their fat stores.
Intermittent fasting works by prolonging the period when your body has burned through the calories consumed during your last meal and begins burning fat.
Intermittent Fasting And Insulin Resistance Diabetes And Prediabetes
There are several proposed mechanisms regarding the development of insulin resistance. One prominent theory relates to associations between increased adiposity and subsequent chronic inflammation, leading to the development of insulin resistance in tissues . Intermittent fasting can decrease adiposity and related insulin resistance through reduced caloric intake and metabolic reprogramming. Another hypothesis is that decreased energy intake, such as that achieved through intermittent fasting, will cause a prolonged decrease in insulin production and increased levels of AMPK, which likely plays a role in the improvements in insulin sensitivity and glucose homeostasis .
Glucose infusion rate and glucose level during hyperinsulinemic clamp before and after 20 days of intermittent fasting. Participants were eight healthy males who had a hyperinsulinemic clamp performed before and after 20 days of alternating-day fasting for 20 h. Left axis shows the glucose infusion rate necessary to maintain euglycemia during both clamps. Right axis shows the plasma glucose concentrations. Black bars and dots represent data from the clamp before the fasting intervention gray bars and dots are data from after the fasting intervention. Following fasting, the insulin-mediated glucose update increased from 6.3 ± 0.6 to 7.3 ± 0.3 mg/kg/min. * p< 0.05 for comparing after fasting values to before fasting values. From Halberg et al. J Appl Phys 2005: 99:21282136 used by permission .
Intermittent Fasting May Benefit In Metabolic Syndrome
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Patients with metabolic syndrome who limited their eating to a 10-hour window in addition to statin and antihypertensive medications had reductions in weight, BP, HbA1c and atherogenic lipids, according to a study published in Cell Metabolism.
As the concept of time-restricted eating, also known as intermittent fasting, grows in popularity, more research must be conducted to learn more about its benefits, particularly regarding CV health. This research conducted by Pam R. Taub, MD, FACC, director of the Step Family Cardiac Wellness and Rehabilitation Center and associate professor of medicine at University California, San Diego, and colleagues serves as a jumping point.
Healio spoke with Taub about what was learned through the study, how patients and cardiologists should approach time-restricted eating and the potential mechanisms behind the approach.
Question: What are some of the major takeaways from this study?
Answer: One of the big issues with this concept of intermittent fasting is there is a lot of uncertainty about what is the right approach. There are some people that want to do a week of fasting or 2 days of fasting. There are a lot of crazy regimens out there.
Q: What is the potential mechanism behind these improvements seen in patients with metabolic syndrome?
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Intermittent Fasting For Your Dosha Type
Daily fasting for about 14-18 hours per day is becoming a commonly practiced routine among many clients seen at our practice. As it becomes popularized through various new media and social media sources, its individualized application is neither discussed, nor studied. However, Ayurveda is all about individualization for safe and effective application of this powerful technique.
Keto Diets And Metabolic Syndrome
Some people wonder if the trending keto diet can help treat metabolic syndrome. The answer? It depends.
The keto diet is a low-carb diet that focuses on eating fats at every meal. But research about its weight-loss effectiveness is mixed. Matteo says a big drawback is that most people find it hard to keep up this way of eating for the long haul.
Do you see yourself still eating this way in a year, five or 10? If the answer is no, I dont encourage this method, she says. If you do plan to eat this way for the rest of your life, Id still recommend avoiding saturated fats and cured meats.
Intermittent Fasting Vs Caloric Restriction
Pursuing an intermittent fasting diet pattern of eating has been gaining popularity in this realm. Fasting is known to be one of the most ancient traditions in the world, and has been practiced among various communities for either cultural or religious reasons. Interestingly, it has also been used as a healing method for diseases in the past. Hippocrates, who is considered the father of modern medicine once wrote, To eat when you are sick, is to feed your illness. The ancient Greeks believed that fasting improves cognitive abilities. Plutarch, an ancient Greek writer wrote, Instead of using medicine, better fast today. Other intellectual figures were also strong proponents of fasting. Philip Paracelsus, the founder of toxicology and one of three fathers of modern Western medicine wrote, Fasting is the greatest remedythe physician within. Benjamin Franklin , a founding father of the United States wrote of fasting, The best of all medicines is resting and fasting. Finally, fasting is widely practiced for spiritual purposes and remains a part of virtually every major religion .
Physiology Of Intermittent Fasting
When talking about intermittent fasting and its effect on health, it is important to understand the basic physiology of glucose and lipid metabolism and the concept of metabolic switching that occurs during the fasting state.
To further understand the concept of metabolic switching, let us review graphical examples of the profiles of circulating glucose and ketone levels over 48 h in individuals with a typical American eating pattern or two different intermittent fasting patterns of eating . Figure 1A shows that when individuals consume three meals plus snacks every day, the metabolic switch is never initiated and their ketones remain low and the total utilization of glucose is much higher than among individuals on an intermittent fasting eating pattern. In Figure 1B, we see an example of a person who fasted completely on one day then had three separate meals on the subsequent day. On the day involving fasting, ketones are progressively elevated and glucose levels are consistently low, while on the day with food consumption, ketones remain low and glucose levels are elevated around meal consumption. Finally, Figure 1C highlights an example of a person who consumes all of their food within a 6-h time window each day. In this case, the metabolic switch is flipped during the following 12 h of fasting and remains on for approximately six hours each day, until food is consumed after approximately 18 h of fasting .
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Articles On Metabolic Syndrome
Metabolic syndrome is a group of risk factors that include abdominal fat, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, and unhealthy cholesterol levels. Treatment is focused on tackling each of these conditions. The goal is to cut your odds of blood vessel disease and heart disease, as well as diabetes.
In most cases, the best treatment for metabolic syndrome rests with you. Changes to your behavior — such as eating healthier and getting more exercise — are the first things your doctor will suggest. By adopting some healthy habits, you may be able to eliminate your risk factors completely.
A Diet Plan For Metabolic Syndrome
Once youve deep-sixed the processed stuff, you can start building meals around heart-healthy alternatives. Theres no specific metabolic syndrome diet, Matteo says. Focus on whole, plant-based foods.
She suggests checking out the Mediterranean diet, which is rich in fruits, vegetables, seafood and olive oil. Research has linked this eating style to weight loss and a lower risk of heart attacks, strokes and Type 2 diabetes.
A healthy balanced diet should include:
Add more veggies especially non-starchy vegetables like salad greens, broccoli and peppers, Matteo says. When you do choose starchy vegetables, opt for those that are higher in fiber, such as beans, lentils and chickpeas.
Fruits are a good source of vitamins and minerals. Yes, they also have sugar, but those natural sugars are offset by the fiber found in whole fresh or frozen fruit. Because of the fiber, you digest the sugars in fruit more slowly, Matteo says. Tasty high-fiber fruits include raspberries, blackberries and pears.
Unlike processed grains that have been stripped of nutrients, whole grains are good for heart health. Foods like whole-wheat breads, barley and oats can help you avoid weight gain and lower the risk of Type 2 diabetes.
Omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 fatty acids can help increase HDL and lower LDL , Matteo says. Youll find them in nuts, seeds and fatty fish like salmon and mackerel.
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How To Reverse Metabolic Syndrome
Metabolic Syndrome Diet
With symptoms like those, theres no doubt the top of the list will be your diet. But if youre already fit, how big of a role does your diet play? Surprisingly, a big part. Dr. Peter Attia of Stanford University was genetically linked to metabolic syndrome. But he managed to beat the odds by putting himself on a ketogenic diet experiment for 10 years. After 10 years he noticed improvement in many areas of his health. Of course, a high-fat ketogenic diet isnt for everyone. Another thing you can do is make sure you consume veggies low on the glycemic index like white beans and spinach.
Sometimes long workdays arent avoidable but if its every night youre going to have to do some re-prioritizing. Poor sleep has been linked to overeating and obesity leading to insulin resistance. Research has found that one sleepless night can cause insulin resistance in healthy people.
Linked to your diet, mineral deficiencies can be responsible for problems with your metabolism. If you want to optimize your metabolism, magnesium is essential. Aside from magnesium, omega-3s, vitamin D3, and chromium are great at preventing insulin resistance.
Herbs like cinnamon, bitter melon, and black cumin seeds can have a positive effect on your blood sugar. When paired with the above lifestyle changes, they can help promote wellness.
Effects Of Intermittent Fasting On Glucose And Lipid Metabolism
Published online by Cambridge University Press: 16 January 2017
- Department of Nutritional Sciences, University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey, UK
- Kelly L. Johnston
- Department of Nutrition, LighterLife UK Ltd, Harlow, Essex, UK
- Adam L. Collins
- Department of Nutritional Sciences, University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey, UK
- M. Denise Robertson
- Department of Nutritional Sciences, University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey, UK
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What Is Metabolic Syndrome
When too much insulin is present in your body and these cells fail to work, metabolic syndrome occurs. Metabolic syndrome or insulin resistance is an imbalance that is widespread in our society. High levels of blood sugar from metabolic syndrome can lead to heart disease and certain kinds of cancers. But there are some more telling signs to watch out for.
Intermittent Fasting Can Help Ease Metabolic Syndrome
For those with metabolic syndrome, the necessary lifestyle and weight changes can be challenging. Now, a study has shown that eating within a certain time window can help tackle that.
This is no small issue in the United States, where of adults have metabolic syndrome. In fact, the condition affects around 50% of people aged 60 and over.
Obesity is also prevalent, affecting around closely linked to metabolic syndrome.
Receiving a diagnosis of metabolic syndrome offers a critical window of opportunity for making committed lifestyle changes before conditions such as diabetes set in.
However, making the necessary long-term lifestyle changes to improve ones health outlook is not always easy. Such changes include losing weight, managing stress, being as active as possible, and quitting smoking.
For the first time, a new study has looked into time-restricted eating, or intermittent fasting, as a means of losing weight and managing blood sugar and blood pressure for people with metabolic syndrome.
This new study, which appears in the journal Cell Metabolism , is set apart from previous studies that looked at the health and weight loss benefits of time-restricted eating in mice and healthy people.
These are at a crucial tipping point, where their disease process can be reversed.
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Role Of Meal Timing In Metabolic Regulation
Because of the tight interaction between the circadian clock and metabolism, timing of eating is an important parameter for modulating body weight and metabolic state. First evidence was obtained in mouse studies showing that animal feeding in the light phase leads to a desynchronization between peripheral tissues and the central clock and induces weight gain and metabolic disturbances .
Studies involving humans provide similar results. Shift work or chronic jetlag and, as a result, consuming meals at the wrong or unusual time increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and obesity . This could be, at least in part, due to a lifestyle-induced discrepancy between sleep/wake, as well as fasting/feeding phase and internal circadian cycles, which may result in disruption of the fatty acid metabolism, glucose intolerance, and dysregulation of the body clock transcriptome as confirmed by experimental human studies on circadian misalignment . To note, other confounding factors, like sleep deprivation, decreased physical activity, or an unhealthy diet, may also negatively influence metabolism in case of shift work.
Taken together, most published studies suggest that early eating is in alignment with our metabolic clock and therefore might be beneficial for metabolic health.
Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting :
Metabolic benefits: During the initial hours after eating, energy is primarily being made from the carbohydrate and protein sources in our diet. As these sources run low, the body switches to ketogenic energy production. Thus, intermittent fasting helps to with improving fatty metabolism for energy production.
Cellular benefits: On a cellular level, fasting has been shown to improve production of antioxidants, improve DNA repair, protein quality control, stimulate mitochondrial health, and reduce inflammation. Thus, it has protective effect on the cellular level.
Overall health and anti-aging benefits: During the fasting period, the bodies organs are found to improve communication, integration, and coordinate function.
Cognitive benefits: Fasting has been shown to improve spatial memory, associative memory, and working memory, as well as learning capacity.
Figure 1: Intermittent fasting improves health in patients with metabolic imbalances.
Figure one highlights clinical benefits for individuals with metabolism syndrome
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Blood Pressure Biochemical Markers
Systolic and diastolic blood pressures were measured two times with four minute intervals in each time by an automatic oscillometric device after participants had rested in a seated position for 5 min. Blood pressures was evaluated at baseline and the 12th week in diet interviews. All participants visited their clinicians before the dietary intervention and after 12 weeks. Biochemical test results were obtained from participants clinicians at baseline and week 12. All samples were collected by trained personnel using standard operating procedures and analyzed in the same laboratory. Biochemical markers, including blood lipids , low-density lipoprotein ), fasting plasma glucose, and Haemoglobin A1c were obtained by standard methods. Serum concentrations of insulin were measured by immunonephelometric methods. Insulin resistance was estimated with the homeostasis model assessment and calculated as HOMA-IR = /405 .
Talk To Your Doctor About Medication
You may need medicine to help with metabolic syndrome, if lifestyle changes aren’t enough to reduce your risks. Some drugs you might use are:
- High blood pressure medicines, which include ACE inhibitors , angiotensin II receptor blockers , diuretics, beta-blockers, and other drugs.
- Cholesterol medicines, which include statins , niacin , bile acid resins , Zetia, and other drugs.
- Diabetes medicines, which may be necessary if you have glucose intolerance. Drugs include metformin , pioglitazone , and rosiglitazone .
- Low-dose aspirin, which can reduce the risks of heart attacks and strokes. It may be especially important for people who are “prothrombotic,” or prone to blood clots.
Keep in mind that all medicines can have side effects and risks. Talk with your doctor about the pros and cons.
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Approaches To Intermittent Fasting
There have been several proposed protocols/methods of intermittent fasting that are in practice nowadays. Some of the common ones include alternate day fasting that involves fasting for 24 h every other day, and the 5:2 method that involves a fast of 24 h twice a week and a very low-calorie diet consumed 2 other days of the week. Fasting could be on consecutive or nonconsecutive days in this method. Time restricted feed is another popular approach in which fasting occurs every day with variable hours, but usually the feeding occurs during a 6-h period with breakfast in the morning and dinner prior to 3 p.m., allowing for the duration of the fast to be 1418 h . These approaches and other less popular fasting approaches are shown in Table 1.