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Scientists have known for some time that a low-calorie diet is a recipe for longer life. Rats and mice reared on restricted amounts of food increase their lifespan by up to 40%. A similar effect has been noted in humans. But Mattson and his team have taken this notion further. They argue that starving yourself occasionally can stave off not just ill-health and early death but delay the onset of conditions affecting the brain, including strokes. "Our animal experiments clearly suggest this," said Mattson.

He and his colleagues have also worked out a specific mechanism by which the growth of neurones in the brain could be affected by reduced energy intakes. Amounts of two cellular messaging chemicals are boosted when calorie intake is sharply reduced, said Mattson. These chemical messengers play an important role in boosting the growth of neurones in the brain, a process that would counteract the impact of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.
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In India, it is very common for people to fast all day on occasion, sometimes as often as once a week (particularly elderly people). On those days, they restrict their diet to a bit of fruit and milk/water. There are hundreds of variations and special "fasts". In general, many older people I know (particularly in my family) just cut back on dietary intake. I've always wondered if there was a specific health benefit to this, other than keeping them from getting overweight of course. Alzheimers and neurodegenerative diseases appear to be low in India (unfortunately, heart disease gets them!).
Fascinating study, thanks for the post!
One would have to fast a long time to make one's body resemble an anorexic's. Besides, anorexia is a psychological condition where the person simply cannot stand to is involuntary fasting in a way; these people who fast do so voluntarily for a specific reason. Another way to think about it: modern diets provide far too many calories for our actual needs.
I would like to thank my mom for giving me the genes which make it impossible for me to eat more than two to three small meals a day and have a dislike for sweet things :)
It reminds me of this clever experiment:

Science. 2006 Nov 3;314(5800):825-8.

Transgenic mice with a reduced core body temperature have an increased life span.

Conti B, Sanchez-Alavez M, Winsky-Sommerer R, Morale MC, Lucero J, Brownell S, Fabre V, Huitron-Resendiz S, Henriksen S, Zorrilla EP, de Lecea L, Bartfai T.

Harold L. Dorris Neurological Research Center, Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA.

Reduction of core body temperature has been proposed to contribute to the increased life span and the antiaging effects conferred by calorie restriction (CR). Validation of this hypothesis has been difficult in homeotherms, primarily due to a lack of experimental models. We report that transgenic mice engineered to overexpress the uncoupling protein 2 in hypocretin neurons (Hcrt-UCP2) have elevated hypothalamic temperature. The effects of local temperature elevation on the central thermostat resulted in a 0.3 degrees to 0.5 degrees C reduction of the core body temperature. Fed ad libitum, Hcrt-UCP2 transgenic mice had the same caloric intake as their wild-type littermates but had increased energy efficiency and a greater median life span (12% increase in males; 20% increase in females). Thus, modest, sustained reduction of core body temperature prolonged life span independent of altered diet or CR.

Comment in
Science. 2006 Nov 3;314(5800):773-4.
PMID: 17082459 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
ha ha - every day is it's something new. coffee's bad, coffee's good; fat is bad, fat is good, liquor is bad, liquor is good, eggs are bad (but now good) food, itself, is bad? roflmao!
Do more, live shorter? :D

Or going out with a bang, as they say ;)
Eric Yu
It is a crazy idea for college students,I suppose.
+Sara Piazza "food itself is bad" is scientifically termed caloric restriction and has been known for a long time to prolong lifespan in every model organism tested, beginning with tiny yeast cells (hopefully, now humans). It's not a new fad :)
+Maya Posch , you may enjoy the phrase "successful ageing" which is the opening sentence of Mark Mattson's latest review on this topic: "Successful ageing is determined in part by genetic background, but also by experiential factors associated with lifestyle and culture. Dietary, behavioural and pharmacological interventions have been identified as potential means to slow brain ageing and forestall neurodegenerative disease."
hmmmm, going without will make us live longer...or will it just seem that way....the logic of a well fed, wined gentleman...
Ah well, there is opinion and then there is scientific fact.
Until it's dis-proven by the next scientific study that comes along.
Interesting if they test this theory among individuals that fast due to religious beliefs.
+Rajini Rao I like that phrase, yes :)

The whole act of processing 'food' is a big negative, as it causes oxidation, which damages the cell structures, which speeds up cell-replacement and risks cancer and other diseases.

I'm still working on my polymer synthesis system to counteract this issue :D
oh 4 gods sake die early.. we dnt want over population.!
Is there any positive effect on those who have already contracted Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disorder?
Honestly, I'd rather enjoy a little bit more food and die a little bit earlier.
fasting keeps people healthy. its a known fact in India. i cant comment on brain diseases thou
I think we can relate it to a moderated life in general.
Wait so not eating good foods and eating healthy protects against diseases wow what a world....
in islam we fast for 1 whole month and break fast wid a date.! it is scientifically proven as one of the best remedies for these diseases..! islam rox!!
+Norbu Tsering I wouldn't be surprised if part of it is that when you eat less, you eat less sugar, so the insulin-degrading enzyme now has time to degrade beta-amyloid, like it is supposed to do too.

Case in point, there are people who successfully use medium chain triglyceride oils with alzheimer patients (coconut oil, mct oil) that are easily converted into ketones by the body, an alternative fuel for your brain (and well, your other cells). Effectively freeing the insulin-degrading enzyme and giving more energy to the brain at the same time.
I wonder what different religions that demands or encourage fasting says about that
A 99 year old man I know attributes his good health to the very large amounts of sugar he consumes, three or four in a cup of tea and sugar on all his puddings
I can't bear to fast. I know I'm supposed to, but I hardly last a day without eating at all.
fasts can actually make u thin..hehehe
discussed this post with 1 person in a hangout.
+Ken Dixon Others say that the smoking of cigars helped them get 100+ years old. They're all wrong :P
When I miss a meal, my blood sugar goes all haywire, and I get very existentialist. So, no, thanks. I'll keep my substantial protein breakfasts.
I go up to a week or two of fasting a month. No im still fat (size 14) and when i eat its two meals a day if that. Example, a sandwich or a bowl of soup. A plate of spagetti, or a chef or ceasar salad. Im rarely hungry so fasting never bothers me.
Hmmm. Don't really know what to say about this!
I don't understand why people want to live longer as an old person so much they give up doing things they enjoy while young enough to enjoy them
+Ken Dixon EGCG in tea blocks the Insulin-like Growth Factor 1 Receptor (IGF-1R) which is known the drive aging. Intermittently blocking it, or being born with a less effective receptor can give ~25% healthspan extension. If he would just drink the tea without the sugar it should work better.
+Keith Laws What's odd about Americans is, we want to live longer, but we don't save money for it.
Wow. Great info people. It's good to know all this stuff. I like learning new things.
Staying healthy is a better quality of life, but I'm not going to starve myself so I can be taken care of for another five years. LIVE FAST DIE YOUNG
Keith Laws statement does not make sense.

Being diabetic fasting causes problems with my blood sugar.
I am older and doing MORE than I did when I was younger.
who knew... if you have to hunt down a meal for a day or two you will keep your wits about you....
I respond with a line from a great movie of the 80s, and a great song from Queen: Who wants to live forever?
Perhaps feeling hungry just makes it feel longer and feeling comfortable makes time pass faster?
Increased life-spans and birth rates are the root causes of why we are ruining this planet we live on.
+Travis Spealman For people like myself it's eating which makes me only feel better for a little bit. Eating a full plate of food makes me feel unhappy and lethargic, so I tend to avoid that.

Listening to your body is important while applying the knowledge of what you know is healthy. Only eat when you feel hungry, never when you're bored. Eat healthy foods.

Nothing new in there, but just by taking some basic measures you can eat a lot less and more healthy than you'd otherwise :)
So, if i don't eat... I'll live forever!!!
When I was 6-7 (1966), my parents were working in northern Nigeria. Like a lot of kids there at that time, I got malnutrition. Unlike them, I had parents who had enough money to get me what I (and my little brother) needed.

This has left me with an inability to leave any food on my plate (or a good excuse anyway). I know people who were told by their parents to remember the children in Africa. I went to school with those kids.

Hunger does affect your brain and it can affect you for the rest of your life and not always in a good way.
The difference between humans and mice is that humans decide themselves how much they eat.
So they can force themselves to not eat for a day but I doubt the can control themselves on a long term basis.
I have seen people skipping a meal, and be unable to control themselves for the next meal and eat double then.
Also I read about an experiment with soldiers.
They put them on a diet for a few weeks, and they noticed that afterwards they had some boulimic problems and ate huge amounts of foods at once every now and then for some time.
I believe that keeping a balanced lifestyle and eat regularly is more healthy for us humans who luckily don't live in a cage fed by a scientist.
+Scott Watson On the other hand it is likely to cause changes to one's DNA which will be carried on to one's offspring. There have been studies on the offspring of people exposed to starvation, including the people of the Netherlands who experienced the last Winter of the German occupation during WW2 when there was a massive shortage of food, and verified the efficiency of their digestive system.

Turns out that the mechanisms employed by the parents exposed to starvation to survive affect their DNA and are carried on to their offspring as well as their offspring.

Evolution is fun :)
"Fasting in Islam begins everywhere at the first appearance of dawn, and ends with sunset. During this period one is expected to abstain from all food and drink completely.
During the day, apart from restraining from food and water, all is Muslims are particularly exhorted from vain talk, quarrels and fights, or from any such occupation as is below the dignity of a true believer. No indulgence in carnal pleasure is allowed; even husband and wife during the day lead separate lives, except for the formal human relationship common to all people."
What the he'll does rap music have to do with any of this? Lol, anyway. I hate these studies. I'm sure there's another that says eat what you want as long as it makes you happy and you don't do it in excess.
Wow! Why Muslim religion is so complicated?
...that is what I always said! :{()
Thank you +Dan Wagner for quoting Queen! It's not quite so simple is it? People do live longer (because they no longer die of infectious diseases and have better nutrition and health care in general), and it's the quality of life that's worth maintaining. Nobody wants to get Alzheimers but many do, some at relatively young ages. Research like this makes a whole lot of sense in that regard.
I keep finding more and more info on the benefits of fasting. I need to incorporate fasting into my life. 
Lets see what a reasonable fast can do for your body,
when a person starts its fast, first of all he decide it mentally, brain the super computer made by Almighty creator of all universe, begins its work immediately after think about fast, it calculates all needs of different organs and systems for the time of fast, and then send order to every part of the body with accurate planning, for example brain calculate how much energy and chemicals required for heart to perform its duties during fast, or how much water required for blood moving in the body, or how much energy utilized by other organs and physical works. brain calculate reserved energy and requirements and manage whole body very actively because of information provided that there is no supply of water and chemicals and energy for a certain period, so brain manages and hold active and adjust supplies and wastage in the body. this will led a human to work, while consuming less provisions and actively. now see what happens after starting fast physically, your stomach digest your last food very carefully because it is guided by brain don't pick junks, as they make more wastage and use extra energy, your intestine understand that there is no water supply so it keeps water for more time, and it dissolve garbage from the intestine walls, your kidneys work slow and might be take rest for a certain time because they control water under your brain control, after sometime your heartbeat comes down with your low blood pressure, it will release extra heat and broaden your vain to keep more blood, every single cell of your body understand that he will provided limited amount of chemicals and water, so he manage carefully for its own survival, while your body processes slowing down, your brain and central nervous system acts more actively in compare of daily food routine, your lungs inhale slowly and absorb oxygen deeply, because they commanded by brain to do so for saving energy, these are examples, there is much more and more complicated processes a fast can do for your LIFE

benefits of fast are uncountable, especially if you understand food and its effects on your body.
A whole month of fast every year is compulsory for every Muslim same as to other religions, while it benefices a human, fast can also save stocks and provide many benefits on community or national basis.
Just eat heaLthy with baLance diet. Not too much and don't starve yourseLf to death either.
Are subjects fasting for two consecutive days in a week or something like tuesday and friday?
Fascinating, seems like such an act would create more stress on the body and bring on illness then prevent it?
I need to eat alot of carb's for dancing although I do watch my calorie intake. Exercise is also a good way to keep healthy :)
+Jason Parks , good point..indeed short term fasting causes mild cellular stress (there are biological markers for stress proteins that can be monitored), and as Mattson says in a review this "recruits adaptive cellular stress responses to strengthen neuronal networks and enhance plasticity."
Odd, everyone in my family eats habitually and live to be in their 90s, so in theory if I reduce my caloric intake, I could live to be 125? Yes sir, I like that.
I think that fasting has been mentioned in some old book, what was it called? Oh ya, the Bible.
+Kay Georgina yes, people have been eating for a long time already. Even religious people eat ;). Somone else taking control of things you need is a common mindcontrol trick.
Oh well we all have to die someday I die eating and drinking. I only want to live until i can go to the restroom by mi self lol
whts soo cool in that
+Uzma Haqqani I think you were being insulted, FYI ;). Birthrate among foreigners who follow the islam is about 2-3x higher than the natives in my country. You were being called a rabbit. going hungry will make me smarter not sure it's worth it...LOL
+Jason Parks It's always a balance between the benefits (nutrients etc.) and negative effects (oxidation) of nutrition. As a whole the mild cellular stresses +Rajini Rao referred to are quite insignificant compared to the massively harmful effects of oxidation.

The only truly negative effect of fasting would be a severe shortage of particular substances required to maintain cellular functions.
I'm calling BS - my grandpa was a poor farmer and missed many meals. He got Parkinson's
Rule of 3s - 3 minutes without oxygen, 3 days without water, 3 weeks no food. Death follows shorty after.
+Corey Lapka well, there's not much you can do against genetics for example. Some people just have "rolled unlucky dice". Certain APOE4 mutations wildly increase your chance for Alzheimer's disease.
I don't care how much longer I'll live, I'm not starving myself once or twice a week!
This stinks like a conspiracy to keep me away from cake
I've been on a low calorie diet for a while now, and also a restricted food diet too in that I'm only eating fruit, vegetables, and yoghurt. It's fun :)
Wow. Very Scientific. LOL.
Zach M
+Corey Lapka - how much sooner might the onset of symptoms have possibly started if he ate 3 square meals a day? You might have missed the part "delay the onset of conditions affecting the brain". Just saying.
In Russia the fact has been known for decades...
Believe me or not. It's not bragging. It's just strange...
+Zach Morgan The problem with humans and science is that too many of the former think in absolutes to properly approach the latter.

Correlation does not imply causality, and all that.
Leo T
^ stupid
+Ruben Orduz Not really. This study is based upon a whole body of previous studies which all show the same correlation, supported by biochemical processes.
+Corey Lapka , an anecdote is not the same as a controlled scientific study. Your grandad probably had a genetic predisposition to Parkinsons that outweighed dietary influences. There are several genes linked to the disease now. +Shcmitsver Reaction , I can't tell if your comment was in jest? :) Surely there is a difference between severe starvation ("starving children in Africa") and mild cellular stress resulting from a day of low caloric intake in an otherwise well fed individual. I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and smile at your comment. :)
+Rajini Rao Smiling and laughing has shown to be very beneficial to an increased and healthy lifespan too ;)

Keep smiling :D
As opposed to what I regularly am told. Good breakfast, middle sized lunch and small evening meal? It's medical fashion change again.
Yeah, but why would you want to live longer, but starving? It's like an old Russian joke.
Two men:
- I heard that castrated cats live longer.
- Yeah, but what's the purpose? LOL
I've fasted before and to me it make you feel better period. Hard part is not eating. Lol. This is def great info!!
Sorry this is so long but I wanted to respond to all those who's posts moved me.

+Rajini Rao there are many benefits to occasional fasting not only documented by science but also noted in many religious texts as well. Anorexia does not come about by occassional fasting. It takes many weeks of continual deprivation but those who fast generally don't do it for vanity they do it for health. Improved health ultimately makes you look and feel better than any diet or pill ever could.

+Maya Posch - I'm curious if that is really a genetic link or more of a lifestyle in that is how you were raised so that's what you and your body know to be normal. Consider those who are raised in homes where food is the center of every activity and you will find everyone generally overweight. I was raised with an emotional eater for a mom, learned her behaviors as normal and have had to deal with my own demons when I realized that my body and mind cannot handle that environment. There are many aspects to the nature vs nurture debate.

+Matteo Cerri - Maybe I'm misunderstanding your post, but I'm not sure that temp alone is the key. For many many years as a result of chronic iron deficiency anemia my core body temp was consistently more than 2 degrees F below the normal 98.6 I think there has to be more to the food/temp combination than they realize. In 2011 for more than 6 months I was on a calorie restriction regime of between 15-1800 calories a day with light exercise. I'm probably not a good example due to the anemia affecting other bodily functions, but there did not seem to be any correlation to the amount of weight I lost or ease of maintenance with respect to the lower body temp.

+Sara Piazza - MODERATION is the key! The notion that this is a FAD is just crazy. Something that is documented thousands of years ago and proven by today's scientific standards and knowledge has long surpassed the "FAD" phase. The problem is that people have become dependent on instant gratification and a world of excess at their fingertips. They'd rather spend money to take a pill (which is often worse than what they're treating) to treat a symptom rather than make the necessary lifestyle adjustments which are free and often will save them money in the long run.

+Maya Posch - re:slowing down the disease - how likely is is that you can have someone suffering from dimentia fast and not feel like they're not being cared for? I think that's a fine line to walk unless it's early in the onset and the person still has most of their faculties about them where they can make a conscious decision in the matter. Calorie restriction would seem more easily managed in the case of someone already suffering but ultimately, prevention is what we should seek.

+Viper Allan - You are still young and believe you are invinceable but I feel sorry for you if you think food is of more value than life. Especially if the excess food will compromise the quality of your life, no matter how long it ends up being. Trust me. I live with chronic pain every day for more than 20 years and every year it gets worse. If I knew that food was the cause and I could go back and do it all over I wouldn't make the same choices. There is nothing I could eat to make up for the inability to pick up and hold my daughter when she was 2 because my back hurt, or to run and play and enjoy my kids youth or even now in their teens to be able to just walk around the mall with them for an hour or two. It really sucks to be dependent on children to carry things, lift things, and take care of me and have to be grown up and miss out on so much because I cannot be alone when they should be enjoying their youth.

+Uzma Haqqani - I have regained control of my blood glucose level, cleansed my liver and just overall improved my health by fasting during Ramadan last year. I have learned a lot about Islam in the past few years thanks to some very good friends and wanted to actually experience Ramadan by doing rather than watching. It was actually easier than I thought it would be and really made a difference. I still fast on occasion when I need to adjust my glucose and give my liver a boost.

I don't think there's much proof to lasting weight loss from fasting. Most of it will be water weight which will come right back when you resume eating the same type of processed foods. As previously mentioned the key is moderation.

+Andrew Dennyson - the mind is a powerful thing. You would be surprised what you can do when you really give yourself an honest chance ;)

+Norbu Tsering - are you serious? maybe PROLONGED fasting - 24 hours everyday well that's not fasting, that's starvation.

+Rick Wolff - high protein does go a long way in keeping BG level but it's not just about proteins. You should consider that you may be insulin resistant and that is why your sugar still goes haywire from simply fasting or prolonging your meal times. I was the same way - couldn't go 3-4 hours without needing to eat to keep sugar level until I fasted for Ramadan last year. It's not a one day fix. You didn't get your body into that mode overnight so it won't come out of it overnight either. Also you miss the point of how fasts are done. Take Ramadan for example. They do not go 24 hours without eating. Before the daily fast begins they eat a balanced meal. If you know you are going to fast the next day, you should prepare yourself the night before or a few hours before by topping off the tank. What you eat certainly makes a difference as well and when and how much. You should seriously consider the insulin resistance though.

+Araya Knight - It sounds like you're not actually eating enough or the right things for your body type and therefore it holds onto every calorie it gets.

+Celeste Sanders - there is a lot more than just having high blood sugar. Insulin production and effecient use goes a long way to maintenance. Only you know your body and have to do accordingly. No religion wants you to fast to your own detriment and no doctor should either. Many people have been able to control their sugar and get off meds by diet alone but it's not for everyone. It may be something you can build up to by slowly extending time between meals, of course while monitoring your sugar levels. You can retrain your body but it does take time. I agree that todays "older" population is more active than say 20 or 30 years ago and a lot of that has to do with the overall health improvements implemented at a younger age. There is no miracle cure so people should stop looking for one and just do the work to have a more enjoyable life for as long as they are here.

+Scott Watson - I would beg to differ. While fasting during Ramadan I did not notice any change in time perception but I suppose it is a mind of matter experience for each person. When you have to do things you don't like they can never be over fast enough but when you're having fun time surely flies away!

+Scott Watson - there is a big difference between fasting for a day and suffing from malnutrition. I too remember being told to eat everything on my plate because there were starving children in the world. It never made sense to me how my eating more food than I wanted or needed was going to stop them from starving. The lesson was really to not waste food or we could end up starving too. However, the lesson was wasted on the kids and should have had more effect on the one doing the cooking to not cook so much food or to just save it for antoher meal or snack when we were hungry.

+Basam Esac - it's not complicated at all it only seems that way because you do not know what it is truly about. The point is that for Muslims fasting during Ramadan is not only about food. You need to clean your mind, clean your heart and clean your body to come closer to God. And consider the ultimate benefit - people are not fighting and spreading hate so there is more peace. It just makes you see what's truly important. If you have the blessing of knowing any Muslims, I suggest you educate yourself. I'm not saying it's for everyone or trying to convert anyone, but how can you really decide if you don't have all the facts? Don't listen to only one source (especially if that source is the media outlets). Talk to people who were raised Muslim, talk to those who have recently converted, talk to the IMAM's who are educated in not only Islam but all religions and are willing and able to answer your questions. Life is only as hard as we make it.
Thanks to allah giving us the month of holy ramdan .we know these all things before 1400 years .
Thanks to allah giving us the month of holy ramdan .we know these all things before 1400 years .
this is an important news about our life.thanks for sharing
+April Chabot Lifestyle and environmental factors have a measurable effect on the subscription of DNA into RNA and thus directly affect the organism. This effect has been verified in the offspring of those organisms too.

Of course the way one is raised will also have an effect, but you can do DNA analysis to verify those changes in the production of certain proteins and related.
I hav almost starved myself 2 death...i Wont die naa???Strange theories.....
Wow! This is amazing! Does this mean that Christian Bale got really smart when he was starving himself for his role in The Machinist?
+Zahoor Ahmad maybe you should write it a few more times. (there is a delete option to the right of your post)
You guys are just figuring this out now? I live off a diet of uncooked white rice and chick peas and im 142 years old :)
That's why the only reason Steve Jobs died was because if cancer!
Self-fasting every week can benefit everyone who fasts. In my opinion and having been in the alternative health field for the last 35 yrs, fasting to give your body a break from digesting and to help the body focus on cleansing is mandatory for a productive lifestyle. We all have pre-disposed diseases of some sort from our ancestors. Most of us are affected from diets and the environment we live in and so were our relatives. Quinine for example that was used in the medical field long ago effected the people who took it and the effect was past down as weaknesses through the generations. Those weaknesses can be protected through lifestyle and diet. And fasting helps to clean the toxins out of the weaknesses and on a weekly basis will help to live a quality of life into your old ages. Fasting can be done several ways. One does not just have to stop eating right away. Work up to a water fast only day. It is difficult at first. Boy, I could go on, but email me if you want to know more. I am an Iridologist. Taught directly from Bernard Jensen in 1997 and have been following his alternative health practices since 1977.
The human body evolved in an environment which involved lots of extended and intense physical activity, limited and varied food intake, periods of forced fasting, an all natural food diet, and lots of other very simple and obvious conditions of living in a natural environment.

I always wonder why people are so surprised when they dicover that that's how the body works best.
It's not about fasting for two days straight, it simply reducing your calories for the day. Just eat less. The lighter you are the less calories you need and as you reduce your weight you need to reduce the calories or you hit a plateau. One you are light enough you can get by on far less calories.
Yeah thanks to allah the muslims have known this for hundreds of years, that is why their life expectancy is so high in muslim countries. Lolz
+Tony Caduto I'd also advise just lowering one's daily calorie intake and focusing on making the calories one does ingest as healthy as possible. This means cutting out most or all meat, replacing it with seafood (although the mercury is bad) and/or soy, cutting out refined sugar and ensuring a balanced intake of vitamins and minerals.

Fasting is alright, but not a requirement.
I so agree with this theory. I have practiced the reduced calorie diet most of my life along with short periods of sleep. I have found that the aging process has slowed as well. People always guess me at 10-15 years younger than I really am. I hope someday all my journaling and life style practices can be an example of what works over a lifetime. Thank you for the info!
辟谷.I think chinese old priest already knew the secret of longevity for hundreds of years .It seems today's technology proved they did right thing .
+Pam Peterson sounds like you practiced Quantified Self before the term even existed.
That's because there is a link between Alzheimer's and Aluminium intake. What do we cook in now-a-days? Aluminium.
One again i dont get it!
I don't care about living until a very old age but I don't want to get a brain disease, it would take such a huge toll on my beloved ones. Therefore fasting a bit might be ok.
As +Andrey Pavlov's old joke suggests, there's a big difference between a healthy being and a healthy body. They are connected but not equivalent.
An old native told me to go on a blueberry diet for 1 week to clean your system.I ask him who told him this an he told me a BEAR,He said he does it every year and it works.Nature at it's best!
الحمد لله على نعمة الاسلام

Thank GOD I am muslim
The problem with studies like this is that most have become politicized. Now that so many of are citizens are going hungry, hunger is good for us. I wonder.
Even if my body was holding onto the calories, id still be losing weight. Ive been doing this for 15 years now.
We Muslims Fast for a whole month every year. Some Muslims Fast once a week in addition to the one month's Fasting..
+Rajini Rao , +Keith Laws , and +Rick Wolff good points. Avoiding or minimizing Alzheimers is something to consider, but preparing for a long old age doesn't seem a worthwhile goal, even if you have saved for it. "Old age is not for sissies," I believe Bette Davis said.
Thanks for the links, +Alvin Stearns and +Matteo Cerri.

+Sara Piazza- there's a big difference between science and fads. The fact that an idea can be overturned is a strength, not a weakness, of science, and as +Rajini Rao pointed out, caloric restriction is very well accepted in the scientific community.

+Technogran- Please don't stop eating. We would love to see you stick around. :-)

+Elena Ivanova- Please clarify your point. Are you saying that Russians have known for years that fasting for one or two days a week could protect the brain against some of the worst effects of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and other ailments?
Is fasting being promoted an alternative way to exercise the brain, to counteract impact of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's?
From the article...
"The cells of the brain are put under mild stress that is analogous to the effects of exercise on muscle cells," said Mattson. "The overall effect is beneficial."
boo Jay
Not sure how true this is. I used to have an insanely good memory, but over the past few years I've noticed my memory isn't as dependable as it used to be. Before I could remember pages, names of people I've only met once, crazy formulae, but now my memory is starting to become very average.

The only lifestyle change I can think of has been my diet. I've actually been fasting a lot, not on purpose, and I'm wondering if that's the case. I usually starve myself and then compensate by having a large meal afterwards. I'm sure they have scientific evidence to support this, but I've found in my case, fasting hasn't helped improve my mental faculties. Maybe I'm just losing my mind?
Saad M
+boo Jay Scientifically, the purpose of Fasting is to clean out your system and limit your urge/intake for food. The idea behind fasting is NOT to eat LARGE meals right after them, because that destroys the healthy concept of fasting. Scientifically, eating large meals are already unhealthy, let alone eating large meals right after fasting. This is why some Muslims go fat in Ramadan because they munch too much after fasting. To keep your memory sharp, you need to fast and eat as little as you need, not to fill your hunger. In Islamic history, we have thousands of great scholars who used to read a book once and have it memorized, and fasting was a norm. Though other factors are involved, they did used to fast either every other day or a few times a week and keep their consumption low.
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