Glowing, healthy, radiant skin. We all want it, and are willing to do pretty much anything (well, almost anything) to get it. While a huge aspect of healthy skin is of course topical treatments such as cleansers, serums, creams and moisturisers, diet and lifestyle also play integral roles. Intermittent fasting, an eating pattern that shortens our fed state while prolonging our fasted state, is gaining a lot of popularity for its effective weight loss results. But did you know it can actually improve the health and look of your skin, too?
Intermittent fasting 101
So, what is intermittent fasting and how can a pattern of eating affect your skin? There are three types: alternate day fasting, whole-day fasting, and time-restricted feeding. The first option involves fasting for 24-hours, following by 24-hours of non-fasting. The second is the reduction of overall caloric intake on pre-established fast days, and the third is when the hours of the “fed state” are shortened, with the hours of the “fasted state” prolonged. All have one common denominator: fasting.
Fasting has been proven to effectively reduce markers of both oxidative stress and inflammation. For many people suffering from constant breakouts or skin conditions such as acne (cystic, hormonal, etc.), rosacea or eczema, you know the significant role inflammation plays in exacerbating the situation. By decreasing indicators of inflammation, your skin – from head to toe, is more likely to become calmer, while looking and feeling its best.
Increased immunity and anti-aging
Fasting has been shown to trigger stem cell regeneration, resulting in stem cells shifting from a “dormant” state to that of one of self-renewal. This means a heightened immune system, which will interconnectedly affect skin health as well. Fasting has also been shown to lower levels of growth-factor hormone IGF-1, which has been linked to signs of aging.
Giving your liver a chance to purify
Your liver has over 500 functions in the body, from aiding in digestion to detoxification processes. Fasting enables this important organ to take a much-needed break from focusing on food ingested, and to instead focus on its natural ability to transfer and eliminate harmful toxins from the body, many of which may be reflected through your skin through lines, marks, acne, blemishes or even premature aging.
While intermittent fasting is being hailed for its effective weight loss results and overall good health, the benefits also extend to your skin, keeping it youthful-looking, nourished, and absolutely radiant!