The conscious fasting diet: how it works and why it helps you lose weight

Practicing a day of fasting can have various health benefits, as long as the lack of food does not turn into famine.

Practiced for millennia in many cultures of the world, fasting is a food choice that, if carried out with awareness, is able to bring great benefits to our body, already structured by nature to overcome the absence of food.

One of the greatest experts to recommend this method is prof. Pier Luigi Rossi, medical specialist in nutrition sciences and preventive medicine in Arezzo and author of numerous books, including “Intestine: the sixth sense of our body” (Aboca), in which he also dedicated a chapter to this topic.

“Conscious fasting – explains the doctor – is a choice to stay healthy, to control body weight and to prevent chronic degenerative diseases. It can also help improve mood because it activates the production of serotonin by the intestinal enterochromaffin cells. As long as we avoid the transition from fasting to famine ”.

Index

  • What happens to our body during fasting
  • Alimony granted
  • The benefits of conscious fasting
  • The typical day

What happens to our body during fasting

The brain draws energy from the introduction of molecules contained in food, especially from carbohydrates (contained in cereals, potatoes, fruit, vegetables, legumes …), which the liver transforms and stores in the form of glycogen and then glucose, a substance of which greedy the organ.

When no food is introduced and fasting is entered, the brain receives glucose from the liver. But if the liver does not have glycogen in storage and cannot supply glucose to the brain, it can run into a deficiency and find itself lacking in energy, a condition incompatible with life.

“In this condition of cerebral energy emergency – says prof. Pier Luigi Rossi – the liver responds with the production of ketone bodies which temporarily replace glucose as the brain's energy substrate. These ketone bodies are obtained from fatty acids released from fat deposits. That is why you lose weight during fasting. However, it is important to know that not all of the brain can use ketone bodies to obtain life energy. A quota of glucose must always arrive and for this reason fasting should be controlled ”.

Alimony granted

It is therefore possible to eat something even during fasting. Yes to vegetable drinks: “Ideal for breakfast – advises prof. Pier Luigi Rossi – what are commonly called "vegetable milks" (such as rice, soy, oats …) provide a good dose of proteins, which alternatively can also be provided by white yogurt without sugar or kefir, both milk and water.

Whole grains are also good, but without the addition of sugar or chocolate.

Fruit and vegetables, useful for the hygiene and well-being of the intestine, can be brought to the table for lunch and dinner and eaten in snacks, even better if in the form of extracts or centrifuged, drinks that – if made for 80% from vegetables and 20% from fruit – allow you not to go into ketosis and stimulate the hormone glucagon, which releases fatty acids from the adipocytes which are then eliminated, reducing excess body weight. It also flushes the liver of its glycogen. Good condition to further contribute to the reduction of fatty fat mass. Furthermore, through the use of an extractor or a centrifuge, it is possible to obtain juices from almost all varieties of fruit and vegetables, allowing the raw consumption of vegetables that are usually eaten only cooked, as in the case of broccoli.

Go ahead, then, to oilseeds, recommended in all meals as they provide vegetable proteins, omega 3, prebiotic dietary fiber (useful for managing the intestinal microbiota) and minerals. They are to be considered real natural supplements useful in temporary fasting. Obviously they must not be salty or toasted.

Finally, it is important to drink at least one liter of water during the day with a dry residue of more than 500 mg / liter for a better introduction of minerals and green tea at breakfast and in snacks ", explains the expert.

The benefits of conscious fasting

Practiced regularly, from time to time, or after days in which more abundant meals have been consumed, there are several advantages that can be obtained through temporary fasting.

"First of all, a change in the hormonal profile with a clear reduction in insulin (the hormone responsible for the accumulation of fat and the sensation of continuous hunger)", says prof. Rossi.

"The reduction of insulin also allows the activation of the fasting hormone: glucagon, which releases the glucose reserve stored in the hepatocytes. Glucagon therefore performs a primary action for weight loss: it "discharges" the liver from excess carbohydrates to ensure an adequate and continuous supply of glucose to the brain, but without falling into ketosis, famine. Glucagon also releases fatty acids from inside the adipocytes, cells of the fat mass, emptying them. So you lose weight ".

The advantages are also felt on that swelling sensation that often, with the arrival of the first heat, affects some anatomical areas of the body and, especially, the legs. "The reduction of insulin – continues the expert – cancels the effect of sodium on water retention. Therefore, diuresis increases, which contributes to the removal of extracellular water retention ”.

Not to mention – concludes prof. Pier Luigi Rossi – that fasting has a positive effect on intestinal enterochromaffin cells, with a better production of serotonin, capable of recovering a good mood ".

A healthy choice for healthy living.

The typical day

BREAKFAST: 1 cup of green tea; glass of vegetable milk (rice, soy, oat or other cereal) or 1 yogurt; whole grains without added sugar or chocolate; 1 serving of fruit; oil seeds such as almonds, walnuts or hazelnuts.

MORNING SNACK: 1 fruit or centrifuged or extracts composed of 80% raw vegetables and 20% fresh seasonal fruit; 1 kefir of milk or water

LUNCH: 1 portion of raw vegetables and 1 portion of cooked vegetables to taste, free dose, seasoned

with extra virgin olive oil, vinegar and some walnut kernels (or almonds, pine nuts or pumpkin seeds); 1 serving of rye bread (40 g).

AFTERNOON SNACK: 1 fruit or centrifuged or extracts composed of 80% raw vegetables and 20% fresh seasonal fruit; 1 kefir of milk or water

DINNER: 1 portion of raw vegetables and 1 portion of cooked vegetables to taste, free dose, seasoned with extra virgin olive oil, vinegar and some walnut kernels (or almonds, pine nuts or pumpkin seeds); 1 serving of rye bread (40 g).

Tag: Fasting Diets

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