Intermittent fasting and mental health

One of the world’s most popular health and fitness trends is currently intermittent fasting. How does it affect your mental wellness is a question that deserves further investigation.

This study explains that in participants after 48-hours of fasting, “cognitive performance, activity, sleep, and mood are not adversely affected in healthy humans by two days of calorie-deprivation.”

Intermittent Fasting

What is intermittent fasting, and how does it work?

Intermittent fasting is something we do daily without realising. Simply put, intermittent fasting involves alternating cycles of not eating  and eating during the day. It’s not starving yourself. When we sleep we are experiencing a time of not eating. You can change the time of the fasting, and the duration,

Our body requires fuel or calories to burn, if we don’t feed our bodies, it burns calories already stored, typically in the form of fat. However, it’s a dietary preference for burning fat, and different things may work differently for different people. Here is the article in full

Mental Health & Fasting

Mood Management

Not eating can be stressful, however, fasting effect can benefit the control of mood changes. Instead of experiencing negative moods and anxiety, the lack of food will increase the presence of adaptive chemicals to protect the brain and body. Simply speaking, the restriction of food will enhance a positive mood and reduce the chance of mood swings. 

Increased Immune System

During the first few weeks of intermittent fasting the body is required to adapt to the starvation process. This adaptation procedure involves the release of various catecholamines in the body, including adrenaline and dopamine. The release of these chemicals, and the steroid hormone, contributes to stronger mood control and a boost in the immune system. Many individuals who use this intermittent fasting technique have shown more positive responses when faced with stressful situations.

Reducing Migraines And Chronic Headaches

Research has indicated that the intermittent fasting technique is associated with increased levels of serotonin in the brain. This raise in serotonin can be an explanation for the intermittent fasting strategies ability to reduce chronic headaches and migraines. It should be noted that while this method is beneficial to reduce headaches, it is not recommended for all individuals. Individuals who are suffering from pre-existing medical conditions and require the use of prescribed pharmaceuticals should definitely speak with their health care provider before undergoing this type of weight management strategy.


Overall, studies show there are various fasting techniques that can assist with both physical and mental difficulties. This ancient practice has been revered for ages as a health and spiritual tool. Clinicians have reported finding improvements in mood, mental clarity, vigilance, a sense of improved well-being, and sometimes euphoria. 

For more info, check out sites like Hardvard Health or the Intermittent fasting benefits

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