Intermittent fasting improves survival in heart patients

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(Anicka Slachta/ Cardiovascular Business) — A study presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions in Philadelphia this November found that heart patients who practiced routine intermittent fasting over a period of four and a half years were ultimately healthier than those who didn’t.

Benjamin Horne, PhD, the study’s principal investigator and the director of cardiovascular and genetic epidemiology at the Intermountain Healthcare Heart Institute in Salt Lake City, said in a release that his team’s study helps answer some of researchers’ questions about the benefits of fasting—but not nearly all of them. Studies, including a handful led by Horne himself, have proven long-term intermittent fasting as a solid predictor of better health outcomes, but fasting hasn’t been established as a causal agent for better survival.

“While many rapid weight loss fasting diets exist today, the different purposes of fasting in those diets and in this study should not be confused with the act of fasting,” Horne said. “All proposed biological mechanisms of health benefits from fasting arise from effects that occur during the fasting period or are consequences of fasting.” (…)

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