Researchers Might Have Overestimated the Benefits of Intermittent Fasting

Researchers Might Have Overestimated the Benefits of Intermittent Fasting
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Intermittent fasting is a type of dieting strategy that involves periods of eating followed by periods of fasting. It’s kind of like a really intense game of “feast or famine” where you’re constantly switching between the two. It’s not for the faint of heart (or stomach), but some people swear by it as a way to lose weight, improve their health, and increase their lifespan.

So, if you’re feeling adventurous and want to give your digestive system a bit of a challenge, then intermittent fasting might be for you! Just be prepared for some intense hunger pangs and a lot of self-control. 

Intermittent fasting was linked to disordered eating habits

Well, it looks like that trendy dieting strategy known as intermittent fasting might not be as great as we thought. According to a recent study published in the journal Eating Behaviors and that SciTechDaily writes about, intermittent fasting (where people abstain from eating for more than 8 hours at a time) has been linked to disordered eating behaviors in the case of women. That include binge eating, vomiting and compulsive exercise. Men were also targetted, however, as those who practiced intermittent fasting also had higher chances to report compulsive exercise. 

Kyle T. Ganson, who is a Ph.D., MSW, and assistant professor at the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work from the University of Toronto, explained, as SciTechDaily quotes:

We need more education in healthcare settings and greater awareness in popular culture, including social media, of the potential harms of intermittent fasting,

At this point, the proposed benefits are still unclear and unsupported by research, and the potential harms are becoming clearer.

The study analyzed data from over 2,700 adolescents and young adults in Canada and found that a worrying 38% of men, 47% of women, and 52% of transgender or gender non-conforming individuals revealed that they had been applying intermittent fasting in the past 12 months. These findings provide a warning about recommending intermittent fasting for weight loss, as it may facilitate eating disorder attitudes and behaviors. 


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Cristian Antonescu

Even since he was a child, Cristian was staring curiously at the stars, wondering about the Universe and our place in it. Today he's seeing his dream come true by writing about the latest news in astronomy. Cristian is also glad to be covering health and other science topics, having significant experience in writing about such fields.

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