The Benefits of a 24-Hour Fast
People decide to fast for various reasons but the religious and medical ones prevail.
Perhaps their religion prohibits them to eat meat or they are getting ready for surgery so they have to cleanse their organism. Whatever the reason may be, you don’t have to be a believer or ill in order to fast. IN fact, there are numerous health benefits to fast over the span of a single day that everyone should try it at least once in their lifetime.
If you are having doubts about going on a 24-hour fast, then be sure to read the following 7 reasons why fasting is beneficial to your health.
1) Not all fasting is the same
For most people, fasting means actively restraining themselves from eating meat products.
However, this is only one type of fasting, as there are other foods you can stay clear of. Because you are only fasting for 24 hours, all of the following types of fasting are plausible.
Water fasting involves drinking only water for a period of one day. It is a scientific fact that humans can last longer without food than without water, so H20 is the only thing we really need. Apart from water fasting, another type of liquid fasting is juice fasting. This involves drinking only fruit and vegetable juices but not any solid food. Finally, there is calorie fasting that involved strictly restricting your calories intake over a certain period or in our case, 24 hours.
2) Smart fasting for the brain
If you thought that only your stomach is affected by fasting, you were wrong.
Your brain will also experience changes if you fast for 24 hours. The most well-known benefits of fasting include improved cognitive functions, alternating the very structure of the brain, and slowing down the aging process. In fact, fasting can help fight Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease alike and decrease the chances of the patient developing them in the first place.
3) Coping with inflammation
Acute inflammation is a fairly normal occurrence in terms of metabolism. However, chronic inflammation is much harder to deal with. Fasting or a short period can help decrease the negative effects of inflammatory conditions such as cancer, heart disease, and arthritis. Some studies show that it is as little as one day of fasting per months to tap into the anti-inflammatory benefits of fasting.
4) Metabolism and weight loss
It doesn’t take to be a rocket scientist to reach the conclusion that fasting decreases the amount of food you intake. In fact, fasting is all about the food you don’t need, as different fasts are determined by different foods you stay clear of, as we have seen in the first paragraph. However, short-term fasts have the potential to boost metabolism and cleanse our body.
This is because a fast, strangely enough, resembles, a training session. It is good for us but it does require a certain amount of effort to put in. Although a 24-hour fast won’t jeopardize your general health, you are still going to have to prepare for the post-fasting period. This is where various techniques for improving recovery after a workout or a match can be quite useful.
5) Regulating your blood sugar levels with a fast
If you’re genetically at risk of diabetes, then you will happy to know that fasting can help regulate the blood sugar level.
A recent study showed that type 2 diabetes’ health markers show a decrease in blood sugar levels after short-term fasting. If you repeat one-day fasting several times, then you can even actively combat diabetes. Furthermore, a fast can help reduce insulin resistance which means that your body’s sensitivity to insulin increases.
6) Healthy at heart after a fast
Nearly a third of all people who die due to an ailment across the globe pass because of a heart condition. A 24-hour fast can help your heart as well by improving blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and triglycerides. If you fast several times during the course of eight weeks, the levels of the “bad” LDL cholesterol should experience a drop of some 25%, which is not a small number. Besides the decreased risk of developing diabetes, fasting is associated with a lower risk of coronary artery disease.
7) Staying safe during your fasting experience
As we have stated earlier, fasting is a bit of a shock for the organism but the long-term benefits are greater than the temporary discomfort. A 24-hours can be carried out on your own but if you plan to fast longer than that or too often, then get a physician’s opinion on the matter.
Furthermore, if you have a medical condition that requires supervision or therapy, then fasting might aggregate your health. Like we have stated earlier, whatever type of fasting you choose, you will always need to drink water and plenty of it! Staying well-hydrated is the key factor in a successful fast.
From your heart to your brain, a 24-hour fast will improve your metabolism in general. Short-term fasting helps the organism get rid of toxins, thus reducing the risk of many diseases. It couldn’t hurt giving fasting a try, could it?
Curious to learn more about fasting check out our podcast episode about The Official Coffee Diet – Ep. 258
About the Author – Claire Morgan
Claire Morgan is a fitness consultant and health writer who has, thanks to her integrated approach to work, helped many clients reach their personal and professional goals. She enjoys travelling and passionately blogs about the latest industry trends.