Ward Off Disease by Fasting
Fasting may not only help you live longer, but be healthier as well. It's very difficult to live long if you're relatively unhealthy, so fasting also makes sense to ward off illness. As a matter of fact, fasting is perhaps the world's oldest cure-all and the most potent natural remedy for whatever ails you. Everyone actually has a natural inclination to resist food when they're ill.
Fasting restores proper pH balance in the blood. When the body's pH balance gets out of whack, misery is certain. Too much acidity in the blood can lead to acidosis, which often leads to many debilitating ailments like arthritis. Fasting works to clear acidosis from the bloodstream and to restore the proper alkaline-acidity environment needed for the body to thrive.
None of this discussion on fasting stuff is new. Upton Sinclair wrote a book called The Fasting Cure in 1911, and, at the time, it was a bestseller. The only difference from then and now: People have the technology and the science to validate what has always been know — fasting is very good for you.
Keeping insulin levels in check
Fasting helps to ward off the odds of disease by fixing the root problem of almost all diseases — too much insulin brought about by too much food. Fasting controls insulin levels, and, in turn, improves insulin sensitivity. And you also know that unchecked insulin levels lead to insulin resistance. Here are just a few diseases linked to insulin resistance:
So you can reasonably assume that any measured aim at controlling insulin levels is a measured aim at combatting disease.
Decreasing chronic inflammation
Fasting also helps to reduce chronic inflammation, which many doctors say is the true number-one killer in the United States. In fact, fasting, as well as calorie restriction with a healthy, low-glycemic diet, such as the Paleo Diet or Mediterranean Diet, can control chronic inflammation.
Inflammation is the body's natural response to any harmful stimuli, ranging from a bacterial infection to a bump on the head. Inflammation not only serves as a protective-casting mechanism (such as when you stub your toe and the toe reddens), so that you don't reinjure yourself, but also has the job of hunting down pathogens and breaking down tissue.
When it comes to eating, everything you put into your body matters. It either serves to better you or injure you. Your health is largely the accumulation of all the food decisions you've ever made.
Inflammation can be either acute or chronic.
Dealing with illness and injury: Acute inflammation
Acute, or short-lived, inflammation is necessary to handle and correct injury and illness. Here are a few instances that can bring about acute inflammation:
Allergies and other irritants
Bacterial or viral infection
Burns or frostbite
Cuts, scrapes, and lacerations
Physical injuries (falling off a bike, stubbing your toe, and so on)
And here are the classic signs of acute inflammation:
Inhibited or loss of function
Lasting long-term: Chronic inflammation
The problem though is more with chronic inflammation where the inflammation doesn't turn off, but instead becomes a constant low-level and systemic occurrence. Chronic inflammation is when your own defense mechanism turns against you.
Here are some of the diseases linked to chronic inflammation:
Various forms of cancer
Inflammation obviously is a complicated matter and one that scientists don't fully understand. But as more and more evidence emerges, it's becoming abundantly clear that chronic inflammation plays a very significant role in the progression of illness and disease.
And you probably aren't surprised to hear that chronic inflammation is closely tied to overeating and obesity. Once again unchecked insulin levels are largely to blame. Here are some of the other causes of inflammation:
Poor food choices, including eating too much and eating low-quality and toxic foods
High amounts of stress
Lack of sleep
Lack of exercise/movement
As you can see, most of the causes of chronic inflammation are prolonged activities in and of themselves. What really brings about chronic inflammation is a prolonged series of poor decisions that a person makes.