(Markham Heid/ Time) — Sustainable weight loss. Protection from diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Improved brain health. Enhanced physical fitness and strength. It seems like every week, researchers turn up some new and profound benefit associated with intermittent fasting: eating schedules that incorporate regular periods of low or no food consumption.
By eating normally for several days a week and eating much less on the others, a person may be able to shift her body’s cellular and metabolic processes in ways that promote optimal health. And experts who study intermittent fasting say that while many blanks still need to be filled in, some of the positive health effects of intermittent fasting are no longer in doubt.
“There continues to be good evidence that intermittent fasting is producing weight-loss benefits, and we also have some evidence that these diets can reduce inflammation, they can reduce blood pressure and resting heart rate, and they seem to have beneficial effects on the cardiovascular system,” says Benjamin Horne, director of cardiovascular and genetic epidemiology at Utah’s non-profit Intermountain Healthcare system, who has published research on the effects of intermittent fasting.
“[Intermittent fasting] is something that is moving into practice in the medical field, and it’s a reasonable approach for people who don’t like daily restriction of their calories.” (…)