Intermittent fasting (IF) is a unique dietary approach that focuses not on what you eat but on when you eat. This eating plan involves alternating between fasting and regular eating periods. Intermittent fasting encompasses various approaches based on personal preferences regarding fasting and eating windows.
For instance, the 16/8 method involves consuming meals between 8:00 AM and 4:00 PM, followed by a fasting period of 16 hours with the allowance of water, coffee, or tea. Alternatively, the 5:2 approach entails eating regularly for five days but restricting calorie intake to a single 500–600 calorie meal on the remaining two days.
Benefits of intermittent fasting on the skin
Research has indicated that intermittent fasting offers significant advantages beyond its effects on weight management, including potential benefits for the skin.
Here are the reasons why this dietary plan is essential for your skin's health:
Reduction of skin inflammation:
Studies have revealed that fasting can decrease the presence of inflammatory markers in the body. By regulating insulin levels, intermittent fasting helps alleviate inflammation, improving skin conditions like acne, psoriasis, and eczema caused by inflammation.
Stimulation of collagen production:
Fasting has been found to stimulate collagen production, a crucial protein responsible for maintaining the skin's structure, firmness, and elasticity. Collagen production diminishes as we age, resulting in the appearance of wrinkles and sagging skin. However, intermittent fasting can promote collagen synthesis, promoting healthier and more youthful-looking skin.
Promotion of cellular repair and regeneration:
During fasting, the body enters autophagy, where damaged cells break down and rejuvenate. This process aids in eliminating toxins and facilitating the growth of new, healthy cells. By promoting cellular repair and regeneration, intermittent fasting contributes to clearer, more radiant skin.
Boost serotonin and melatonin production:
Intermittent fasting triggers the secretion of serotonin, a hormone known to enhance mood, sleep, digestion, wound healing, bone health, and sexual desires. Additionally, it increases the production of melatonin, often referred to as the hormone of youth. Melatonin helps bolster the production of antioxidants like vitamins C, E, and beta-carotene, effectively combating the signs of skin ageing.
While intermittent fasting can positively impact skin health, ensuring sufficient nutrient intake during non-fasting periods is crucial. Dr. Ann Flora, the renowned dermatologist from Apollo Cosmetics Clinic, advises maintaining a balanced diet with vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. Dr. Flora cautions against high-calorie diets, such as those high in sweets and oily foods, as they can trigger skin breakouts. Additionally, staying adequately hydrated during fasting is vital, as dehydration can negatively affect the skin.
In conclusion, intermittent fasting improves your skin's health and appearance. By incorporating this dietary plan wisely alongside a well-rounded, nutrient-rich diet and proper hydration, you can harness the advantages of intermittent fasting to support healthy, vibrant skin.