What Intermittent Fasting Does to Your Brain
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A lot of you know that intermittent fasting can provide some amazing physical benefits for your body.
It can help you burn fat and keep it off while enjoying the foods you love in a sustainable nonrestrictive way.
And that’s exactly what I want to go over today, the benefits of fasting on your brain and you mind.
We’ve been taught that eating at least three square meals a day is necessary to have a healthy body and mind.
Instead of relying on our natural hunger signals many of us have become accustomed to eating out of routine and for entertainment and enjoyment rather than out of true hunger.
Ironically thanks to this, fasting has emerged as a practical, and sustainable solution for weight loss,
but fasting has been practiced for centuries before weight gain and obesity became a problem due to the fact that it has
so many other benefits especially within the realm of cleansing and healing. One of these benefits is known as autophaghy which is when your body destroys old or damaged cells.
When you constantly eat your body stays in a building mode and it has no reason to enter this natural, regulated process of autophagy were unnecessary and dysfunctional components of your cells are destroyed and cleared out.
It’s activated when you stop eating for a period of time and that doesn’t mean that you have to fast for a long extended time frame.
Fasting for more than 6 hours begins this cleansing phase, so you can experience the benefits with a simple intermittent fasting approach, where you fast for only 16 hours a day.
Autophagy is essentially a way for the body to repair and cleanse itself and we definitely want to allow our bodies to undergo this process because If old or damaged cells stay in your body,
they create inflammation and other problems. This natural process of destroying the old allows our bodies to bring in the new.
Which leads to many benefits for your brain. Dr. Mark Mattson has been studying the brain for well over 20 years.
He’s a professor of Neurology at John Hopkins University, and he claims that fasting has been shown to increase rates of neurogenesis in the brain.
This has been tested in studies that have confirmed that intermittent fasting stimulates the production of new brain cells.
According to Mattson fasting only twice a week could significantly lower the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease or Parkinson’s and it can help you develop protective measures against damage from a stroke.
The shock of fasting stresses the brain in a good way, much like stressing your muscles when you workout.
This stress leads your brain to create new cells. The benefits of exercise and fasting on the brain are linked closer than most people think.
Both increase the production of protein in the brain, which in turn promotes the growth of neurons, it promotes the connection between neurons
and the strength of synapses which are the junctions that connect your nerves to other nerves and allow them to send signals and communicate with each other.
One of these proteins that get boosted from fasting is an important protein called BDNF. BDNF has been called “Miracle Grow For Your Brain.”
It makes your brain more resilient to stress and more adaptable to change helping with the production of new brain cells
and protecting your current brain cells while boosting memory, improving mood, and learning. On the
other hands, low levels of BDNF are linked to dementia, Alzheimer’s, memory loss and other brain processing problems.
One particular study showed that intermittent fasting could increase BDNF by fifty to 400 percent.
Intermittent fasting from 16 to 18 hours has been shown to boost bdnf levels by fifty to a hundred percent and fasting up to 36 hours has been shown to boost BDNF levels by up to four hundred percent,
which is obviously a significant amount. Another thing that fasting does is it boosts the production of HGH in your body.
Human growth hormone doesn’t only help us burn more fat while sparing the break down of lean muscle tissue, but it also has incredible anti aging and longevity benefits and it helps your brain in many ways.
Hgh has been shown to improve cognition, provide neuroprotection, and it once again increases neurogenesis.
Fasting will allow your body to run off ketones for energy rather than glycogen. When you eat throughout the day your blood sugar will rise and fall all day long.
When your blood sugar falls you feel tired, sleepy, and it becomes difficult to focus. You experience a sort of brain fog.
On the other hand, when you fast your brain receives a natural boost giving you amazing mental clarity.
It allows you to focus on whatever task is at hand and it allows you to avoid that mid day drowsiness that kills your productivity.
I’ve personally never been as productive in my life until I started fasting, once you get used to it you’ll be amazed at how focused you are.
This is once again largely due to your brain running off of ketones when fasting and ketones provide a more efficient fuel for your brain.
When your brain consistently runs off of ketones it increases the number of mitochondria, or so called “energy factories” within brain cells.
This gives your brain more so called brain power, similar to a drill running on full power rather than half charged.
Before modern agriculture and refrigeration food wasn’t as plentiful as it is now. So we had to go for long stretches of time without any food.
For survival reasons more energy has to be allocated to the brain when we experience food scarcity.
Dr. Mattson says it’s important that the brain functions well – perhaps even optimally – when we haven’t been able to eat for an extended time period.
It makes a lot of sense, without the brain working optimally while fasting, our ancestors wouldn’t be very good at competing with other individuals or animals to obtain food and survive and ultimately pass their genes on.
Now look, I totally understand that a lot of this goes against the grain of what a lot of us have been taught growing up.
I mean after all, as a kid I was told to always have a big breakfast to do better in school. This big breakfast that we were encouraged to eat would ideally be a bowl of cereal.
Or some scrambled eggs washed down with some orange juice. Now we know that the simple sugars in Orange juice
and cereal aren’t only bad for your body composition, but they’re also pretty awful for your brain function.
By the time the school bus would drop you off school you would already experience a blood sugar crash after that huge intial spike that was caused by consuming those simple sugars.
This would affect your ability to stay awake, to focus, to concentrate, to retain, and to learn in general.
And that’s not even mentioning the fact that digestion requires a lot of energy. Look all I’m saying is don’t get stuck in old school myths that prevent you from trying new things with your diet.
I promise you if you try fasting you’ll be able to experience the cognitive benefits for yourself.
If I do eat in the morning I make sure I stick mostly to green veggies, fat, and some protein to avoid the spike in blood sugar that you get from eating a high carb breakfast.
As soon as you spike your blood sugar the energy pathway in your body changes and you lose all that mental clarity.
You can try fasting with the simple lean gains approach where you would fast for 16 hours and eat for only an 8-hour feeding window.
Then you can progressively increase the fasting length over time to experience the full mental benefits of fasting.
That’s it guys I really hope this tip has helped you out and it’s helped encourage you to at least try fasting even if it’s not for weight loss or fat loss.
If you are looking to start fasting, but you’re not exactly sure how to easily incorporate it into your daily routine no worries.
I know I gave you a lot of information today, so if you’d like to learn how to burn fat fast with a fasting protocol then visit my website where I’m running a 6-week challenge right now that on average have my clients losing 20 pounds or 5 percent body fat in only 42 days.
It’ll teach you how to structure your diet in a number of different ways including fasting protocols. Along with a done for you customized diet plan,
You’ll actually hear from your coach every single week to ensure that you’re making progress and hitting your goals.
For a limited time, you can get all the challenge materials for free. But there is a catch. Here’s the big catch you only get it for free if you stick to the plan.
We do this to incentivize you to follow through. Because without invoking that major follow through on your part we can’t produce the results for you.
According to studies people follow through more often when they have something to lose rather than just something to gain.
So if you’re serious about making a real transformation we can definitely help.
My passion for fitness began when I was 14 years old. I naturally fell in love with training and haven’t stopped since. At 18 years I acquired my first personal training certification from ACE after which I opened my first of 3 transformation studios in 2011. I love to share my knowledge through personal training, my online courses, and youtube channel now with over 3,000,000 subscribers! I can happily say that we've helped over 15,000 people get in great shape over the years. I'm always here for my customers so if you need help don't hesitate to send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
Study showing intermittent fasting increase Nuerogenesis:
A study showing the benefits of boosting BDNF:
A study showing that IF can boost BDNF by 50 – 400%:
Fasting helps improve Synaptic Enhancement study:
Fasting for 24 hours boosted HGH 2000% in men and 1500% in women:
Fasting can be like exercise for the brain: