In a study from Baylor College of Medicine, scientists found more evidence that dry fasting (fasting without food or liquid intake) from dawn to dusk can play an important role in overall health.
They found that fasting from dawn to dusk for four weeks may prevent tumors, inflammation, and artery problem. The effects are on the proteins in a type of immune cell PBMC.
After fasting, the participants lost weight, and their blood pressure and insulin resistance improved.
The team says disruptions of the circadian rhythm (the body clock) are linked to cancer and metabolic syndrome. This type of fasting can potentially act as a reset to normal circadian rhythm.
The researchers previously found similar results in blood serum. The current study used samples from the previous study examining 14 people with metabolic syndrome.
This is a group of conditions including obesity, insulin resistance, elevated blood pressure, high triglycerides (a type of blood fat), and low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (good cholesterol).
The participants were observing the month of Ramadan, which consists of fasting for four consecutive weeks without eating or drinking from dawn to sunset.
Outside of fasting, the participants were allowed to eat whatever they preferred and were not required to follow any exercise regimen or weight loss measures.
The researchers found that proteins linked to atherosclerosis, heart disease, and cancer promotion were decreased, while proteins associated with cancer and inflammation suppression were increased.
They found that apolipoprotein B, which is a more accurate risk predictor for developing atherosclerotic heart disease than low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, was strongly decreased at the end of four-week dawn-to-dusk dry fasting.
Its decrease persisted even one week after the fasting period.
The findings confirm the favorable effect of dawn-to-dusk dry fasting at the cellular level.
If you care about nutrition, please read studies about how the Mediterranean diet could protect your brain health and the best time to take vitamins to prevent heart disease.
For more information about nutrition, please see recent studies that olive oil may help you live longer, and vitamin D could help lower the risk of autoimmune diseases.
The study was conducted by Dr. Ayse Leyla Mindikoglu et al and published in Metabolism Open.
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