Boost your immune system and guard against cancer with intermittent fasting
(NaturalHealth365) Our ancient ancestors grew up in a world of stress and scarcity. Food was often not available, and intermittent fasting was common. This form of life left a genetic blueprint with key information about our health and well-being.
Intermittent fasting helps eliminate fatigue, calm inflammatory conditions in the body, and starves off cancer cell formation. It is by no mistake that when animals get sick, they stop eating and instead focus on resting. This is a primal instinct to reduce stress on their internal system so their body can fight infection. This natural mechanism allows the animal to concentrate all their internal energy systems toward immunity.
Humans are the only species that often look for more food during illness.
The importance of “energy conservation” within the body
The body has a certain amount of available energy that it diverts into essential functions such as digestion, physical movement (kinetics), immunity, cognition, etc. The continual need to digest food diverts energy away from these other factors, while fasting conserves energy for use with these other systems. In addition, the digestive process redirects vast amounts of blood and is considered energy expensive.
When we eat food, the immune system gets activated to increase inflammatory conditions to ward off any unwanted microorganisms within the food. This happens whether the food is raw or cooked, as nothing is truly sterile. When the immune system activates to attack newly ingested pathogens, it uses energy reserves that could be used for other activities.
Fasting frees these white blood cells to destroy dormant infections and other problematic areas.
How can fasting increase immune regulation?
The practice of fasting allows the body to put more energy and focus into the process of effective immune regulation. Fasting while drinking water and other cleansing beverages will flush out the digestive system and reduces the number of natural microorganisms in the gut. The immune system typically regulates the microorganism count.
So this allows the immune system to divert energy to other, more important areas.
Intermittent fasting is a terrific regulator of the immune system as it controls the number of inflammatory cytokines that are released in the body. Two major cytokines, Interleukin-6 and Tumor Necrosis Factor Alpha, promote an inflammatory response in the body. Studies have shown that fasting reduces the release of these inflammatory mediators.
The immune system modulation that intermittent fasting provides may also be helpful if you have moderate to severe allergies.
The key to having a robust immune system and protecting yourself from cancer
Fasting also stimulates the process of autophagy, where the body breaks down old, damaged cells and abnormally developing cells to recycle for energy. The process of autophagy is part of the innate immune system and utilizes pattern recognition receptors to identify viral cell invaders. Intermittent fasting stimulates autophagy processes which restrict viral infections and the replication of intracellular parasites.
This catabolic process helps the body rid itself of intracellular pathogens and abnormal cancer cell development. It is also important in protecting the brain and tissue cells from abnormal growth, toxicity, and chronic inflammation.
The connection between intermittent fasting and autoimmune disease
Individuals with autoimmune diseases such as systemic lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, colitis, and Crohn’s disease have seen a tremendous improvement in symptoms with the incorporation of intermittent fasting. This process reduces these individuals’ hyperinflammatory processes and allows for more normalized immune function.
Cancer cells are known to have anywhere from ten to thirty times more insulin receptors than normal cells and depend upon the anaerobic metabolism of sugar for fuel. Intermittent fasting starves cancer cells and leaves them vulnerable to free radical damage and ultimate destruction.
Keep in mind, a “true” fast is 24 hours or more, but intermittent fasting certainly has many health benefits to explore.
About the author: Dr. David Jockers is the creator of the website: DrJockers.com. He is the author of “Super Charge Your Brain.” He is also a featured speaker in many of Jonathan Landsman’s online health programs, including the Fatty Liver Docu-Class and the Stop Cancer Docu-Class.
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