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The Truth About Fasting and Type 2 Diabetes

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Diabetes
Courtesy of Jose Camões Silva (Flickr CC0)

If fasting can cause high blood glucose, how does fasting affect diabetes? The truth is that fasting can have some positive effects. Although it will affect insulin doses, it can also benefit the organs responsible for causing diabetes. When the body doesn’t have a food supply, it stores excess glucose in the liver as glycogen. It takes at least 12 hours for glycogen to get used up. Therefore, fasting makes the body burn fat, which can help control diabetes. Moreover, it gives the pancreas and liver a break and improves weight loss.

The study results show intermittent fasting can reduce body weight and leptin levels. Although the study didn’t find a definitive link between intermittent fasting and type 2 diabetes, it did show that the low-carb diet can slow down the release of leptin.

Therefore, intermittent fasting for type 2 diabetes could potentially eliminate the disease. In addition, the low-carb diet is thought to reduce the release of leptin, a hormone responsible for regulating body weight and fat.

The Concept of Fasting

The concept of fasting has also been embraced by people suffering from prediabetes and diabetes. While some people are religious and follow a strict schedule, others are tempted by the thought of fasting to lose weight. But the truth is that it can seriously affect people with diabetes. Fasting for more than 24 hours can even cause kidney failure.

Diabetes
Courtesy of Joel Bombardier (Flickr CC0)

Regardless of the method used to fast, people should consult their doctor before deciding on whether or not fasting is right for them. A long-term daily diet regimen may cause complications and even harm some people. However, intermittent fasting can be a particular type 2 diabetes weight loss method. The truth about fasting and type 2 diabetes may be the better choice.

It is essential to understand the role of insulin in the body and how it affects sugar levels in the blood. The pancreas secretes insulin, which helps the cells to absorb glucose. Without this hormone, glucose stays in the blood and raises blood sugar levels. Once glucose levels go too high, the pancreas produces more insulin. This extra insulin can only keep blood sugar levels average for a short time. In the long run, this excess glucose stays in the bloodstream.

Intermittent fasting can help people lose weight by lowering their blood glucose levels. In addition to improving glucose levels, intermittent fasting can help lower chronic inflammation and improve several risk factors associated with type 2 diabetes. So, intermittent fasting could be a better option for those looking for a way to lose weight. But patients have to check with their doctor before starting.

Who Should Avoid Fasting

People with certain medical conditions, especially those that interfere with digestion, should avoid fasting. In particular, pregnant women and nursing women should avoid fasting. Fasting can also slow the body’s metabolism, which can cause uncomfortable symptoms. If anyone is considering fasting as a way to lose weight, be aware that it is not a safe practice for children. In addition, fasting is not recommended for those with an eating disorder, such as anorexia nervosa or anorexia.

Before embarking on a fasting program, discussing its risks and benefits with the healthcare provider is essential. It is not recommended for people with type 1 diabetes. However, those with type 2 diabetes may benefit from a time-restricted diet. A healthcare provider should supervise people who undergo fasting because fasting can distort body composition measurements.

Long fasts can be beneficial for some people. In addition to helping people reduce cravings, fasting can clean the system. Autophagy can trigger the body to eliminate unwanted calories. It may even have powerful cell regenerating properties. It also encourages mindful eating habits necessary to combat stress and disordered eating.

Written by Janet Grace Ortigas
Edited by Sheena Robertson

Sources:

TIME: The Truth About Fasting and Type 2 Diabetes
Everyday Health: Is Intermittent Fasting Safe for People With Diabetes?; by Julie Revelant
Medical News Today: Can intermittent fasting help treat or even reverse type 2 diabetes?

Featured and Top Image Courtesy of Jose Camões Silva’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image Courtesy of Joel Bombardier’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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