Fasting regimens have gained public and scientific interest in recent years, and it is more than a fad.
In a recent study, researchers found that fasting reduces inflammation and improves chronic inflammatory disease without affecting the immune system’s response to acute infections, which is real good news for those who are suffering from the diseases.
Acute inflammation is a general pattern of immune response fighting off infections that starts rapidly and becomes severe in a short time. Signs and symptoms of acute inflammation are normally only present for a few days but may persist for a few weeks in some cases.
Chronic inflammation refers to long-term inflammation and can last for several months and even years. Chronic inflammation can have serious consequences for health, including heart disease, diabetes, cancer, multiple sclerosis, and inflammatory bowel diseases.
Harmful bacteria or tissue injury
Pathogens that the body cannot break down, including some types of virus, foreign bodies that remain in the system, or overactive immune responses
A few days
From months to years
Inflammation improves, turns into an abscess, or becomes chronic
Tissue death and the thickening and scarring of connective tissue
(Table from MedicalNewsToday.com)
Why fasting is related to inflammation
Caloric restriction is known to improve inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, but the mechanisms by which reduced caloric intake controls inflammation have been poorly understood," said Miriam Merad, MD, Ph.D.
Dr. Merad and colleagues found the mechanism behind the relationship by studying mouse immune cells.
Intermittent fasting is proved to help reduce the release of monosytes, a kind of pro-inflammatory cells in blood circulation. The cells were found going into “sleep mode” during periods of fasting in further investigation.
"Monocytes are highly inflammatory immune cells that can cause serious tissue damage, and the population has seen an increasing amount in their blood circulation as a result of eating habits that humans have acquired in recent centuries," said Dr. Merad.
The study significantly revealed an enormous potential in investigating the anti-inflammatory effects of fasting, giving the amount of diseases that can be caused by chronic inflammation.
Researchers are continuing deciphering the molecular mechanisms, which could lead to therapeutic strategies for the treatment of many human diseases.
Apply intermittent fasting
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