Did you know that ten percent of our population struggles with Healing Diabetes? That’s 30 million people! While we once believed the disease to be irreversible, studies now shed light on an alternative treatment option-intermittent fasting.
What is Intermittent Fasting?
What do we mean by intermittent fasting? It is a period of hours during which you don’t eat anything. There are many ways to do it, and they all have effectiveness. I used to be against fasting for the most part because I thought it was too hard when people have very stressful lives. Jimmy Kimmel – late night show host, has talked about following a fasting schedule of not eating two days a week, for the last two years. Others fast for 12 hours a day, from dinner time till they get up in the morning.
How Intermittent Fasting Works AGAINST Diabetes
Animal studies carried out on mice showed remarkable results when the mice were put on a fasting schedule. Numerous stories have been reported of diabetics attributing the reversal of their disease to this seemingly extreme way of dieting. One such testimonial comes from one of my own patients! She saw Jimmy Kimmel talk about his fasting schedule and decided to try it herself. She has struggled with her sugars for years! After she began intermittent fasting, her blood glucose readings became ideal!
For many years, science has dictated that the best way to manage blood sugar is to eat 6 small meals a day. And it’s often difficult to determine the best diet to follow for healing diabetes. The most recent science shows that giving your pancreas a rest periodically actually helps it heal and begin to respond to insulin again.
Interestingly intermittent fasting has been compared to weight loss surgery in it’s effectiveness at healing diabetes. How can that be? Both greatly reduce caloric intake and both stimulate the hormone that keeps you feeling full longer. These effects cause you to not only lose weight, but they also kick your body into a sort of super-human repair mode, halting degeneration and regenerating damaged cells. This repairs the pancreas, among other huge health benefits, so it can begin producing adequate insulin levels, thus reversing diabetes! If intermittent fasting and stomach surgery have the potential of producing the same results, which would you prefer to try first? The least invasive one, of course!
So your next question is probably, How can I start intermittent fasting? AFTER checking with your health care provider to make sure it is safe for you.
The answer is simple!
7 Days to Reversal Success!
Grab a pen and your calendar and let’s create your 7 day plan to healing diabetes with intermittent fasting.
For your body to shift gears and begin repairing the damaged cells of your pancreas, you need to fast for 12 -18 hours a day. Whoa! Sounds extreme, I know. Don’t worry, you’ll comfortably work your way to the 18 hours over a week’s time! The best and easiest way to do this is to begin fasting after your last meal of the day, dinner. Aim to eat dinner every day this week no later than 6pm. Do not snack or drink anything other than water throughout the night. This should be easy since you’re sleeping! If you’re used to having a bedtime snack, start to cut that out. One thing you’ll need to do with this plan is make sure that you eat a hearty enough dinner to sustain your blood sugar until bed. A good balance of protein, fat, and high quality carbohydrates is required.
Let’s say you normally wake at 6am and eat breakfast. Stretch the time a little and wait to eat breakfast until 6:30 am. (Or 30 minutes later than your usual breakfast time). Not too bad, right? Congrats! You made it a little over 12 hours in your first day and you’ve given your body it’s first signal that things are about to change.
You will be shooting for consuming all of your calories between noon and 6pm, but for now, eat light between breakfast and lunch. Then, choose healthy meals and snacks the rest of the day. No need to only eat lunch and dinner either, if you feel hungry, eat! Just be sure to stop eating by 6pm.
On day two, wait to eat breakfast until 7:30am. (Or one hour later than usual).Day three, 8:30am. Day four, 9:30. Day five, 10am. Day six, 11am. By day seven it will be easier than you think to wait until noon to eat! And you’ll begin feeling the results of a healthier mind and body right away! (This pace may vary and you may have to wait days before increasing your fasting time.) AND, even if you only fast 12 hours, it’s going to help your blood sugar.
One individual who began intermittent fasting said she found it pretty easy to wait until noon to eat. She also became more conscious of what she chose to eat between noon and 6pm because she knew that was her only window to eat. She noticed that when she ate she became “full” quicker than usual. In the first three days, she was down four pounds and her brain fog seemed to clear!
It’s important to consult with your primary care provider to be sure fasting is a safe choice for you. It’s also a good idea to monitor your blood sugar frequently when you begin intermittent fasting as you wouldn’t want your levels to dip below 70. Your 7 day plan may differ a bit depending on when you typically wake in the mornings and you can adjust your climb to that 18 hour goal however feels comfortable for you! You can even make it a two week plan if you think that will work better for you.
If you decide to give intermittent fasting a shot at healing diabetes remember to celebrate each day as you work your way to 18 hours of fasting. Once you’re there, your body will begin healing itself and you should notice your glucose readings getting better and better! No meds or surgery required!