The Effects of Intermittent Fasting on Brain Health
January 12, 2023
Hey Brainiac! Are you looking to boost your brain health?
Whether you're looking to empower your productivity, prevent long-term problems or simply feel a little more focused day-to-day, intermittent fasting may be the answer!
At Fastic, we believe that intermittent fasting is more than just weight loss. As a result, we have supported thousands of users from across the globe in pursuing their holistic health goals from head to toe!
In this blog, we'll explore the science behind intermittent fasting and its effect on brain health, helping you to make informed decisions about your health journey.
What is Intermittent Fasting?
Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern that involves setting specific periods of eating and fasting. With a long and rich history of religious and cultural significance, its rise in popularity over the years has come to the forefront of the modern health industry, basing much of its power predominantly on weight loss. However, intermittent fasting offers a wide range of health benefits, from healing digestive health to managing autoimmune diseases. (1)
While there are many ways to include intermittent fasting into your lifestyle, the most common approaches to fasting are 16:8, where you would fast for 16 hours and eat within an 8-hour window, or 5:2, where you would fast for two days a week and normally eat the other five days.
Is Intermittent Fasting Healthy?
Intermittent fasting has been associated with many health benefits;
- Fat loss
- Increased metabolic rate
- Improved digestive health
- Lowered risk of Type 2 Diabetes
- Cellular cleanse/repair
- Reduced inflammation
- Increased energy levels
However, intermittent fasting does not only promote improved physical health. Recent studies have also shown that it can improve mental clarity, enhance cognitive function, and reduce oxidative stress (2) on the brain. Subsequently, committed fasters often report a decrease in depression and anxiety (3), an improved relationship with food and regulated moods, highlighting this lifestyle's mental and emotional effects.
Intermittent Fasting and Brain Health
Research suggests that intermittent fasting positively affects long-term brain health. Impressive results from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester have shown that fasting helps to assist in mitochondria function (4) as well as protecting our all-important dopamine-producing neurons! (Wanna learn more about the magic of mitochondria? Meet Fastic's resident doctor and all-round-clever-clogs, Dr. Mario Ost)
Another study discovered that fasting can improve cognitive performance and reduce the risk of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.
While intermittent fasting has been shown to reduce the risk of many brain-related diseases, it's also important to value the often immediate effects that it can have upon alleviating the symptoms of mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety.
Prevention and Progress
Not only a present-day powerhouse, but intermittent fasting can also be incredibly valuable as a preventative measure for future disease. Studies (5) have found that fasting can reduce the risk of developing neurological conditions such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. Additionally, intermittent fasting has been shown to slow the aging process and protect the brain from age-related decline.
Is There Anyone Who Shouldn't Fast?
While generally safe and beneficial for most people, it is not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women, children, or those with a history of eating disorders.
Likewise, those with medical conditions or any concerns should consult their doctor before trying intermittent fasting.
If you're looking for a healthy body and a happy brain, intermittent fasting is a powerful next step on your health journey. When utilized well, intermittent fasting brings both physical and mental benefits, aiding in long and short-term well-being.
Whether your goal is to improve your productivity for work or studies, or you'd like to reduce your risk of age-related illnesses, there's a fasting plan for you.
Come brain or shine, Fastic is here to help you! With a global community of like-minded fasters, accompanied by an expertly supported app, Fastic is your go-to for intermittent fasting.
Download the app for free today to get started!
Daily Eating Patterns and Their Impact on Health and Disease
The Effects of Intermittent Fasting on Brain and Cognitive Function
Fasting Interventions for Stress, Anxiety and Depressive Symptoms: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
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