Fasting Diets

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Fasting diets introduction

Fasting in some form has long been part of many spiritual practices. For example, during the month of Ramadan, Muslims fast from dawn to dusk. In Jewish, Christian, Buddhist, and Mormon religions, followers fast on certain days of the week or month. Fasting for health and to lose weight is also nothing new, but a new crop of trendy diets has brought the practice back into the spotlight.

Diets like the 5:2 Diet, Lemonade Diet, and others claim to help people lose weight fast and detoxify the body. There are different types of fasting diets that vary in intensity and duration. There are water-only fasts (typically done under medical supervision in residential facilities). Intermittent fasting involves fasting for one to two days per week or for 12-14 hours each day. Modified fasts include liquid-only diets (such as before a colonoscopy), caloric restriction (typically 20%-40% less), and ketogenic diets (a high-fat diet that induces the same metabolic changes as fasting).

Research demonstrates that there is a role for fasting for weight loss, longevity, and some specific health conditions. Much of the data comes from animal research, but high-quality human research has demonstrated benefits, including lower rates of cardiovascular disease and diabetesweight loss, and improvements in lab markers of metabolic health and aging.

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