There’s been a great deal of back and forth among health experts on the topic of fasting, with some saying that giving your organs a break from digesting food can be beneficial, and others claiming there’s a little benefit to not eating for a period of time. However a new breakthrough—one that’s being described as “remarkable” might we add—has found that fasting for as little as three days can regenerate the entire immune system
According to Business Insdier, Scientists at the University of Southern California claim that fasting “flips a regenerative switch” which prompts stem cells to create brand new white blood cells which fight off infection, giving your whole immune system a reboot—especially for patients with weakened systems, such as those undergoing chemo, or the elderly.
“[Fasting] gives the ‘OK’ for stem cells to go ahead and begin proliferating and rebuild the entire system,” said Prof Valter Longo, Professor of Gerontology and the Biological Sciences at the University of California. “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.
So, how does fasting rebuild your immune system? Periods of not eating forces the body to use stores of glucose and fat but also breaks down a significant portion of white blood cells. During each cycle of fasting, this depletion of white blood cells induces changes that trigger stem cell-based regeneration of new immune system cells.
“More clinical studies are needed, and any such dietary intervention should be undertaken only under the guidance of a physician,” said co-author Tanya Dorff. Still, this information makes sense, and sounds promising.
To read the entire study, head over to Business Insider now.