A small column in the The Daily Telegraph yesterday caught my eye – new research suggests that intermittent fasting or the 5/2 diet may indeed protect against diseases such as cancer and Alzheimer’s and increase longevity.
Although the 5/2 has not been around long enough for thorough studies to be carried out, this style of eating has been around years – literally since stone age times.
Our Stone age forbears only had the opportunity to eat when they could hunt or gather available food so they rarely had the opportunity to over eat. In fact if food was plentiful, our bodies evolved a system of ‘storage’ so we had fat reserves to burn when we were unable to eat regularly – of course this protective mechanism has turned out to be a our problem today. In developed countries we are lucky enough to live in a permanent state of ‘feast’ but our unregulated appetites are leading to all sorts of debilitating conditions.
One of the benefits of intermittent fasting I have found with my clients, is that food consumption is easier to control on the days when they are not fasting – it becomes easier to make healthier choices and eat less to feel satisfied.
If we were all able to just reduce the amount of food we consume on a daily basis it would have enormous health benefits including weight loss, reduced blood pressure, lower blood sugar levels and a reduction in cellular ageing – improving cognitive function as we get older.
I think this is a timely reminder to consider what we will be consuming over the next few weeks when the holiday season is in full swing and we are tempted by the huge amount of food and drink on offer. It’s all very well to promise yourself to diet in January but it may be more sensible to ease ourselves into that by not stuffing ourselves over Christmas.
Take a look at my blog on how to swop some of your favourite calorific foods for equally tasty ones that are not so likely to contribute to weight gain: