Keto fasting, or keto intermittent fasting, combines the anti-aging benefits of two popular ways of eating: the ketogenic diet and intermittent fasting. Keep reading to learn more!
In this article:
- Promotes Weight Loss
- Reduces Oxidative Stress
- Enhances Mitochondrial Function
- Reduces Sugar Levels
- Reduces Triglycerides
Stay Youthful with Keto Fasting | 5 Benefits
What is the ketogenic diet? It is a diet that encourages the intake of fat and eliminates or minimizes the intake of carbohydrates to encourage ketosis. Ketosis occurs when the body uses fat as a source of energy instead of the sugar from carbohydrates.
What is intermittent fasting? It’s a way of eating which involves a regular and scheduled period of calorie restriction and food consumption. There are different forms of intermittent fasting, but the most popular one is the 16/8 method where you fast for 16 hours straight every day and only consume food within the remaining 8 hours.
What is keto fasting? It’s a diet that combines the principles and practices of the ketogenic diet and intermittent fasting. During the allowable eating periods, the meals should follow ketogenic guidelines of high fat and low carbs.
1. Promotes Weight Loss
Unfortunately, weight gain is associated with aging. Specifically, as you age, you tend to lose muscle mass and gain fat mass.
Excessive weight gain is a risk factor as you age and contributes to frailty. So, it’s important to keep your weight in check to promote healthy aging.
Both the ketogenic diet and intermittent fasting promotes weight loss. So, when you practice these two together, you may be able to lose more weight.
Remember, the primary weight loss mechanism in the ketogenic diet is ketosis. Apart from limiting the intake of carbohydrates, fasting may contribute to ketosis as well.
When you fast, your sugar levels decrease, so your body will compensate for this by using your fat stores for energy. So fasting may actually make your body reach a state of ketosis quicker, which may lead to more weight loss.
2. Reduces Oxidative Stress
The Free Radical Theory of Aging points to oxidative stress as one of the main sources of premature aging. Oxidative stress occurs when there aren’t enough antioxidants to fight off the free radicals in our bodies.
Free radicals are molecules that are missing electrons, so they’re looking to “steal” electrons from other molecules which has a ripple effect that leads to cellular damage. So it’s important for our bodies to have antioxidants to prevent this.
With keto fasting, you get both of these benefits! How great is that?
3. Enhances Mitochondrial Function
Mitochondrion plays an important role in each cell. It’s responsible for producing energy and regulating cellular metabolism.
As we age, there’s a decline in the quality and activity of the mitochondrion. That’s because they regulate key aspects of aging such as:
- DNA mutations-mutations in genes can lead to cellular damage which can contribute to aging
- Inflammation-inflammation may cause tissue damage or injury which can contribute to aging
- Stem cell function-stem cells are special cells which can become any kind of cell in the body
- Cellular senescence-mechanism which prevents the cells from dividing and proliferating
- Proteolysis-process which breaks down proteins into polypeptides or amino acids
- Unfolded protein response-a response activated to respond to cellular stress
So, mitochondrial health plays an important role in preventing premature aging. Keto and intermittent fasting may help promote mitochondria health.
One study shows that the ketogenic diet increases mitochondrial glutathione levels. The mitochondrial glutathione is one of the few antioxidants that can make it into the cell’s mitochondria.
On the other hand, fasting can help improve mitochondrial networks. These networks activate certain pathways to respond to mitochondrial distress.
So, with keto fasting, you’re protecting your mitochondria in more than one way!
4. Reduces Sugar Levels
Blood sugar is known to be an “aging accelerator.” High glucose levels may put you at greater risk for diabetes and cardiovascular disease—both of which have a negative effect on the lifespan.
On top of that, one study demonstrates that people who have higher glucose levels tend to look older compared to those with lower glucose levels.
So in order to feel and look young, it’s important to maintain healthy glucose levels. The keto diet and intermittent fasting can help lower sugar levels.
Eliminating or minimizing the intake of carbohydrates directly impacts glucose levels because the body primarily uses it to make glucose. In fact, even in the absence of other forms of treatment, the keto diet has been found to improve blood sugar levels in people with type-2 diabetes!
On the other hand, fasting affects glucose levels in a different way. Short term fasting helps increase insulin among diabetics.
Insulin is a hormone that helps control the body’s glucose levels. Doctors often prescribe synthetic insulin as a means of controlling blood sugar levels among diabetics.
5. Reduces Triglycerides
Triglycerides are a form of fat in the body. High levels of triglycerides increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases like coronary heart disease and stroke.
Triglycerides may also have a negative effect on cognitive functioning as you age. Research shows that older adults with higher levels of triglycerides have poorer executive function skills.
So, triglycerides may not only have an impact on physical health but also on neurological health as well. In order to prevent this, it’s important to keep your triglycerides level within the normal range.
Keto fasting can help you lower your level of triglycerides. The keto diet is essentially a low carbohydrate diet, and low carb diets can help decrease triglyceride levels.
Top it off by adding intermittent fasting to the mix! The caloric restriction associated with fasting helps decrease triglyceride levels even if you don’t exercise!
It’s very important to consult your doctor before you make any drastic changes in your diet. In the meantime, there are anti-aging supplements you can try.
Once you get the go signal from your doctor, go ahead and try keto fasting! Hopefully, you will be able to experience a few of its anti-aging benefits.
Have you tried keto fasting? What benefits did you experience? Let us know in the comments section below.