To understand the science behind fasting, you must first develop an understanding of the science that’s behind eating. “The main source of energy in our body is glucose. When a person eats, glucose is released into the bloodstream.”
Consequently, this process leads to an inevitable increase in the blood sugar levels in the body, which releases the hormone insulin that is charged with the role of removing the extra sugar from the body. Insulin does this by “stocking the sugar in the liver in the form of glycogen.”
when you eat carbohydrates, sugar, and to some extinct protein, your insulin levels suddenly start to rise. Thus, the conversion of fats to energy stops. However, the conversion from glucose to fats start.
“The best of all medicines is resting and fasting.” -Benjamin Franklin
The ultimate goal of fasting is to target and decrease these high levels of insulin. “As long as insulin is high in the body, the fats cannot be burned as insulin is highly anabolic (taking chemical energy from food and transferring it into fasts). This greatly helps in weight loss.”
In contrast, when insulin levels are lowered during the fast, the body is forced to use the stored fats for the productions of energy. During a fast, the glycogen reserves are being used up, and the blood sugar level decreases. Because of the low blood sugar levels, the insulin level is lowered in the body.
Additionally, “a hormone known as hormone-sensitive leptin (HSL) is released during fasting. This hormone is beneficial for the body in the sense that it uses the calories from the stored body fats.”
Basically, your body begins taping into your body fat storage in order to use it as a fuel source. This, in turn, results in fat loss.
Fat loss isn’t the only health benefit observed during the fast, but it is one benefit that is highly regarded and sought after. A multitude of studies has also found that fasting also increases the production of the human growth hormone.
When released in the fasting period, this hormone results in the burning of fats, too. The human growth hormone (HGH) is credited with the repairing of body tissues and the building of muscles, as well.
- Davidson, John, and Muhammad Usman. Amazing Health Benefits of Intermittent Fasting. JD-Biz Corp Publishing, 2013. Print.
- Fredricks, Randi. Fasting: an exceptional human experience. AuthorHouse, 2013. Print.