Fasting and Cheat Days Could Help in Type 2 Diabetes

Fasting could potentially help in reversing the effects of diabetes. A recent study that was published to the scientific journal Cell Metabolism. In the study, the researchers put mice on a fast and then followed the fast by feeding the mice junk food. The results of the study indicated that not only did fasting assist with balancing the bacteria in the gut, but the cheat days also helped their metabolism to stay in check and prevent it from slowing down too much.


The study was lead by Dr. Satchidananda Panda, of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. Furthermore, the study also showed that animals that were fed within 8 to 12 hours received more health benefits than the mice that were allowed to eat at any time that they preferred.


The team selected two different approaches in order to examine how starve and binge diets work in mice. The researchers used only mice that were obese and diabetic for this study. The mice were then allowed to eat foods that were high in fat and sugar on weekends while during the week the were starved. The mice displayed the benefits even though they were eating junk foods.


Scientists then performed a second study in which they looked at the gut bacteria that is responsible for regulating the metabolism. When the mice became obese, this sparked a change in their gut bacteria. However, when the mice were forced to fast, then the healthy bacteria was restored to the gut.


This study does not prove whether or not a similar approach could be helpful for diabetic and obese human patients. The reason is that humans that hormones such as leptin and ghrelin that can control whether or not a person feels hungry. The mice were unable to predict when they would be fed next while humans would be able to in such as study. This could have an impact on whether or not the results would be reproducible. However, the researchers have suggested that this study could be a start into looking into the ways that eating patterns can affect gut bacteria.

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