6 Surprising Brain Power Benefits of Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent Fasting can be an incredibly effective method of losing weight, reducing inflammation, and supercharging your brain. If you’ve been staying up to date on the latest health and wellness trends, no doubt intermittent fasting has popped up on your feed more than a couple times.
Intermittent fasting is not a new concept, in fact fasting has been utilized for health and longevity for centuries. The health benefits of fasting are numerous and extensive, especially as more research has validated the benefits of intermittent fasting for not only weight loss but for many other aspects of our health. [R] [R]
I was a HUGE skeptic of intermittent fasting at first. I thought to myself:
“How could fasting that often be good for you?”
“I can’t go that long without food, especially breakfast.”
“I was told skipping breakfast was bad.”
“I won’t be able to workout if I do that.”
I had all the excuses, but after trying it for myself and experiencing the weight loss benefits + focus, memory, and brain benefits, I haven’t stopped for almost 2 years now.
Some of the most surprising & exciting benefits of intermittent fasting is for our brains. Let’s talk about our top 5 favorite benefits of intermittent fasting for your brain.
1. Reduces Inflammation
Intermittent fasting has been shown to significantly reduce inflammation. [R] Excessive inflammation is the cause of many chronic diseases that we face today including Alzheimers, dementia, obesity diabetes, and more. There’s many methods for how intermittent fasting reduces inflammation.
- Autophagy — Autophagy is when the body destroys old or damaged cells. Think of it like cleaning off the rust and cleansing itself. It’s a way of the body repairing itself. If old or damaged cells remain in the body, they create inflammation. Intermittent fasting stimulates autophagy, helping the body to cleanse itself, thereby reducing inflammation
- Ketones — During fasting, the body uses up all of it’s sugar stores and has to turn to fat for fuel. When fats get broken down it creates ketones. One of the most abundant ketones, β-hydroxybutrate, actually blocks part of the immune system responsible for regulating inflammatory disorders like arthritis and even Alzheimers. [R]
- Insulin Sensitivity — Fasting has been shown to help resolve insulin resistance. When the body becomes resistant to insulin, insulin and glucose build up in the blood and create inflammation. Intermittent fasting allows your body to take a break. Since there is no food to digest and your body uses up all it’s sugar stores, insulin levels begin to drop, allowing the body to re-sensitize to insulin again.
2. Create More Brain Cells
Seriously! You can create more brain cells and therefore improve your brain POWER. According to Dr Mark Mattson, a professor of Neurology at John Hopkins University, fasting has been shown to increase rates of neurogenesis in the brain. Neurogenesis is the growth and development of new brain cells and nerve tissues.
Higher rates of neurogenesis are linked increase brain performance, memory, mood, and focus. One particular study showed that intermittent fasting (the researchers used a 16:8 schedule in the study) stimulated the production of new brain cells. [R]
3. Boost “Miracle Grow” In Your Brain
Not only does fasting increase your rate of neurogenesis, it also boosts production of an important protein called BDNF. BDNF has been hailed as “Miracle Grow For Your Brain.”
BDNF has been shown to play a role in neuroplasticity, which allows the brain to continue to change and adapt. It makes your brain more resilient to stress and more adaptable to change.
BDNF helps to produce new brain cells, protect your brain cells, stimulate new connections and synapses while also boosting memory, improving mood, and learning. [R]
Intermittent fasting has been shown to boost BDNF by 50–400%! [R]
4. Burns Fat for Fuel Instead Of Sugar
This may came as a shock, but fat is actually a better and cleaner source of fuel than carbohydrates. Not only does fat produce more energy per gram than carbohydrates do, but it actually produces less free radicals, which cause inflammation. When your mitochondria, your cells batteries, use fat (ketones) or carbohydrates to make energy, there is waste that gets produces in the form of free radicals.
Free radicals cause oxidative stress to the body and are thought to be the cause of many chronic diseases we face today, including many neurodegenerative diseases.
Intermittent fasting forces your brain to use ketones, rather than sugar, which is cleaner and more efficient fuel for your brain.
5. Boosts Human Growth Hormone
Upon first hearing human growth hormone (HGH), you may have a picture of a bodybuilder using it to get huge muscles. HGH from an exogenous source (from the outside) is not recommended for a wide variety of reasons and isn’t the best for your body. [R]
Actually HGH has been discovered to have incredibly powerful anti-aging and longevity benefits, but in particular HGH can improve cognition, provide neuroprotection, and increase neurogenesis.
One study in particular showed that HGH had a neuroprotective effect, preserving your brain health and brain performance.
6. Supercharges Your Energy
Intermittent Fasting has been show to boost mitochondrial biogenesis, the creation of new mitochondria. As we’ve mentioned earlier, mitochondria are the batteries for your cells. Each one of your cells is filled with hundreds of mitochondria that power your cells to do their job. Their job is to take the food you eat and turn it into energy.
Get Our Free Intermittent Fasting Starter Guide at www.FreeFastingGuide.com
This guide will show you how to make fasting simple and easy. Learn what you shoud and shouldn’t eat and drink to make intermittent fasting effortless. Also learn the secret upgrades and strategies that can be applied to intermittent fasting that helped me lose 50 pounds of fat while also radically improving my energy, focus, and productivity!