Three days of fasting can regenerate the entire human immunity. This claim comes from the researchers at the University of Southern California. Fasting may be a path for very healthy living. This study is remarkable and makes a breakthrough in finding natural methods for boosting the human immunity. The discovery is particularly beneficial for people that suffer from damaged resistance like cancer patients on chemotherapy.
However, this new study concludes that starving our body kick-starts stem cells into creating new white blood cells. As we are growing, our immunity becomes weak, making it harder for them to fight off even some common diseases. As per this study, fasting could also help us get our immunities back on track.
Fasting for about 72 hours protects cancer patients against the toxic impact of chemotherapy. Chemotherapy can save lives, but it can also cause significant collateral damage to the immunity. The results from the study also suggest that fasting may mitigate some of the harmful effects of the chemotherapy.
Detailing the study, the researchers said fasting “flips a regenerative switch” which prompts stem cells to produce brand new white blood cells, primarily regenerating the complete immunity. Professor Valter Longo, who is the lead researcher of the study said that the study proved that fasting could indeed help the human body to produce a new immunity.
Professor Longo said:
“It gives the ‘OK’ for stem cells to go ahead, as well as start proliferating and rebuild the entire system. The big news is that the body got rid of the parts of the system which might be hurt or old, the inefficient parts, during the fasting. Now, if you just start with a system which is heavily damaged by chemotherapy or aging, fasting cycles can generate a new immunity.”
During the experiment, people were fasting between two and four days over a period of about six months. The results showed that the fasting helped to create a new immunity. The regeneration was due to reducing the enzyme PKA. PKA or Protein Kinase A has several functions in the cell, including regulation of glycogen, sugar, and lipid metabolism.
Professor Longo also expressed how the research team became surprised when realizing the outcome of their experiment:
“When we were working with both humans and animals, we started noticing that the white blood cell count goes down with prolonged fasting. Then, when you re-feed, the blood cells come back. So, we started thinking – well, where does it come from?”
The study also said that prolonged fasting not just forces the body to use stores of glucose, as well as fat, but it also breaks down a significant portion of white blood cells. During each of the cycles of fasting, this depletion of white blood cells also includes some changes which trigger stem cell-based regeneration of new immune system cells.
Professor Longo also said:
“We could not predict that prolonged fasting would have such a remarkable effect in promoting stem cell-based regeneration of the hematopoietic system. When we starve, our system tries to save some energy. One of the things which it can do to maintain energy is to recycle a lot of immune cells which are not needed, especially the ones that may be damaged.”
With this study having experimented already, more clinical trials will have the ability to determine additional factors. If that happens, we can see a physician for an appropriate fasting recommendation.
Image Credit: Shutterstock (licensed)/By Giovanni Cancem
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