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Short-Term Intensive Fasting: Is it beneficial for health? Know details

It is important to remember that short-term intensive fasting may not be suitable for everyone and consulting a healthcare professional is recommended before starting this type of diet.

Written By : Health Desk Edited By : Kristina Das
New Delhi
Published on: January 11, 2024 14:54 IST
Short-Term Intensive Fasting:
Image Source : FREEPIK Know whether short-term intensive fasting beneficial for health or not.

Short-term Fasting has been shown to affect immune activities in a variety of ways by redistributing leukocytes and immune cells between the peripheral circulation and the bone marrow. It is currently unknown, nevertheless, how the immune system reacts to infections like invaders by producing fewer white blood cells.

According to Dnyaneshwari Barve Dietician at DPU Private Super Specialty Hospital, Pimpri, Pune, it is thought that having a population of stem cells with very long telomeres allows organisms like planarians to quickly respond to any injury even while fasting. It also allows them to mount a long-term proliferation response as soon as nutrients become available again.  Telomeres are thicker DNA endings. These have repetitive DNA sequences. The length of telomeres is considered a cellular marker of ageing. Telomeres protect chromosomes from DNA degradation and misguided repair mechanisms. Therefore, natural cycles of fasting and feeding promote the maintenance of a healthy and always-cycling stem cell population thus making planarians immortal. This process is thought to be similar in human beings as well. 

Short-term intensive fasting, also known as intermittent fasting, is a dietary practice that involves alternating between periods of eating and fasting. This type of fasting has gained popularity in recent years due to its potential health benefits, including weight loss, improved blood sugar control, and increased metabolic rate.

Short-term fasting for repeated cycles may be beneficial only if proper guided Re-feeding is initiated. Also, it might be beneficial only when Re-feeding is consistent with healthy eating practices. 

By profiling the cells from the STIF patients before and after 6 days of fasting and 6 days of gradual refeeding, the experts were able to assess the effects of short-term intensive fasting (STIF), also known as beego, on red blood cells using proteomic, biochemical, and flow cytometric techniques. They discovered that STIF, by inducing the complement system's activation through the red blood cell's complement receptor on the membrane, enhances the red blood cells' relatively sustainable function in immune responses near different pathogens, such as viruses, bacteria, and parasites, especially with the notable ability to defend against SARS-CoV-2, without compromising their viability or ability to deliver oxygen.

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