Fasting for as little as three days can regenerate the entire immune system,
even in the elderly,Scientists have found in a breakthrough described as "remarkable".
This ancient practice of abstaining from eating for a day, or sometimes even a week or more has a history of curing a whole host of health problems, but even a brief fast can completely re-boot your immune system.
According to a study done by USC scientists at the University of Southern California, fasting for three days can have a significant improvement in your body’s health fasting could be particularly beneficial for people suffering from damaged immune systems, such as cancer patients on chemotherapy, or people with auto-immune disorders. Fasting even triggers stem cells to regenerate!
Valter Longo has conducted a body of scientific research about fasting which is absolutely astounding, as well.
He published a fascinating paper in the Journal of Cell Biology based on work he did on yeast cells. The results were considered so unlikely he almost didn’t get
his paper published. What Longo discovered was that when he starved a colony of yeast cells, about 95% of the cells would commit suicide, using the controlled death mechanism of apoptosis. They would disassemble their proteins, dissolve the cell membranes, and turn themselves into food for the remaining 5%.
Longo’s work suggests that if the fasting body is able to rejuvenate and multiply the bone marrow cells that are responsible for blood and immunity (hematopoietic stem cells), then it is obvious that the body could do this as well or better when it has plenty to eat. Moreover, in Ayurvedic and Traditional Chinese Medicine, it is understood that our body’s metabolism and digestion are often under strain from the foods. we put into our bodies on a daily basis.
We eat when we are stressed. We eat on the run, and we eat things that we know the body doesn’t really want. Other times we skip meals, causing a drop in our blood-glucose levels, or we eat bad food combinations. Our poor digestive system has barely had a chance to fully digest the last meal we’ve eaten before we put the next one in!.
Basically, when you fast for a prolonged amount of time, your body uses the stored glucose, fats and produce ketone bodies that are especially good for your brain, to keep you going and you flush out anything that your body doesn’t need, like damaged cells and toxins. When your eating regularly harmful toxins in the body can attach themselves to these fats and live on but when you fast, your body is forced to lighten itself. It’s like the survival of the fittest, only the strong survive. “PKA is the key gene that needs to shut down in order for these stem cells to switch into a regenerative mode. It gives the OK for stem cells to go ahead and begin proliferating and rebuild the entire system,” explained Longo, noting the potential of clinical applications that mimic the effects of prolonged fasting to rejuvenate the immune system. “And the good news is that the body got rid of the parts of the system that might be damaged or old, the inefficient parts, during the fasting. Now, if you start with a system heavily damaged by chemotherapy or aging, fasting cycles can generate, literally, a new immune system.”
Further research is needed to discover how the rest of the organs in the body are affected beyond stem cell regeneration, and any such dietary intervention should be undertaken only under the guidance of a physician.”