Fasting

Could Intermittent Energy Restriction and Intermittent Fasting Reduce Rates of Cancer in Obese, Overweight, and Normal-Weight Subjects? A Summary of Evidence.

Animal studies and human observational data link energy restriction (ER) to reduced rates of carcinogenesis. Most of these studies have involved continuous energy restriction (CER), but there is increasing public and scientific interest in the potential health and anticancer effects of intermittent energy restriction (IER) or intermittent fasting (IF), which comprise periods of marked ER or total fasting interspersed with periods of normal eating. This review summarizes animal studies that assessed tumor rates with IER and IF compared with CER or ad libitum feed consumption.

Medically supervised water-only fasting in the treatment of borderline hypertension.

BACKGROUND: Hypertension-related diseases are the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in industrially developed societies. Surprisingly, 68% of all mortality attributed to high blood pressure (BP) occurs with systolic BP between 120 and 140 mm Hg and diastolic BP below 90 mm Hg. Dietary and lifestyle modifications are effective in the treatment of borderline hypertension. One such lifestyle intervention is the use of medically supervised water-only fasting as a safe and effective means of normalizing BP and initiating health-promoting behavioral changes.

Vegetarian fasting of obese patients: a clinical and biochemical evaluation.

The effects of vegetarian fasting were evaluated in 14 grossly obese patients who participated in a program comprising 5 weeks' fasting in a lactovegetarian health center. Before and after the fasting period the patients were hospitalized and put on a standardized weight-maintaining diet; at the health center they consumed vegetable juices containing less than 1 MJ and 3 g of protein per day. The weight reduction (mean +/- S.D.) was 13.4 +/- 5.0 kg (from 132.0 +/- 27.2 to 118.6 +/- 16.1 kg). Except for the first few days the patients had no severe hunger sensations.

A fasting and vegetarian diet treatment trial on chronic inflammatory disorders.

Twenty patients with arthritis and various skin diseases were studied on a metabolic ward during a 2-week period of modified fast followed by a 3-week period of vegetarian diet. During fasting, arthralgia was less intense in many subjects. In some types of skin diseases (pustulosis palmaris et plantaris and atopic eczema) an improvement could be demonstrated during the fast. During the vegan diet, both signs and symptoms returned in most patients, with the exception of some patients with psoriasis who experienced an improvement.

Changes in metabolism during a fasting period and a subsequent vegetarian diet with particular reference to glucose metabolism.

During an investigation on the effect of fasting and a vegetarian diet on the symptoms and signs in chronic cutaneous and arthritic diseases studies were made of glucose metabolism, liver function and the plasma concentration and urine excretion of some minerals. The study was performed on 27 patients who stayed as in-patients on a metabolic ward for five weeks. After the fasting period the blood glucose and serum insulin concentrations were lower (p less than 0.01) than before the fast.

Changes in lipoprotein metabolism during a supplemented fast and an ensuing vegetarian diet period.

The effect on lipoprotein metabolism of a 2-week modified fast and an immediately ensuing 3-week period on a vegetarian diet was studied under metabolic ward conditions in 21 non-obese female and 6 male patients. The very low calorie diet induced reductions of the cholesterol concentration in all serum lipoprotein classes. In the female patients, who were all normolipoproteinaemic, the triglycerides in serum showed a slight increase during the fast, reflecting small changes in very low (VLDL) and low density lipoprotein triglycerides.

Controlled trial of fasting and one-year vegetarian diet in rheumatoid arthritis

Fasting is an effective treatment for rheumatoid arthritis, but most patients relapse on reintroduction of food. The effect of fasting followed by one year of a vegetarian diet was assessed in a randomised, single-blind controlled trial. 27 patients were allocated to a four-week stay at a health farm. After an initial 7-10 day subtotal fast, they were put on an individually adjusted gluten-free vegan diet for 3.5 months. The food was then gradually changed to a lactovegetarian diet for the remainder of the study.

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