Nutrition and Wellness

Intermittent Fasting, Cortisol and Blood Sugar | Science Chiropractor

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There’s been a lot of discussion about the advantages of intermittent fasting (IF) in the community lately. Paul Jaminet mentions its role in the function of the metabolism as well as it’s role in boosting the immune system. In his novel, Health Diet, he discusses how IF may be helpful for those attempting to shed weight, among other benefits.

 

Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern where you cycle between times of fasting and eating. It does not state anything about which foods to eat, but instead when they should be eaten by you. There are numerous different fasting methods, all of that which split the days and weeks to eating intervals and fasting intervals.

 

Most people fast; daily, while they sleep. Fasting is often as easy as stretching that. You can drink water, coffee, tea and other non-caloric drinks, although no food is permitted during the fasting period. Some forms of intermittent fasting allow small amounts of low-calorie foods . Taking supplements is generally allowed while fasting, as long as there are no calories in them.

 

From an evolutionary perspective, intermittent fasting has been likely the ordinary state of affairs. There were no restaurants, no grocery stores or convenience stores, and food was not nearly as readily accessible or easy to come by as it is today. Nor were there watches, lunch breaks, programs or the sort of construction and routine we have in today’s world. This means it is very likely that our paleo ancestors had days when they ate lightly or did not eat, and possibly did move 12-16 hours between meals on a regular basis.

 

Therefore, while intermittent fasting is a part of our legacy, and that it can be useful in certain situations, Its not believed to be a suitable strategy for everyone. Why? Because cortisol levels can be elevated due to fasting. One of cortisol’s effects is that it raises blood glucose. In someone with blood glucose regulation difficulties, fasting can make them worse.

 

This has been seen again and again with many patients. Many patients have blood sugar imbalances. And it is usually not as straightforward as “high blood sugar” or “low blood sugar”. They frequently have a combination of both (reactive hypoglycemia), or strange blood sugar patterns which, on the outside, do not make much sense. These folks are not currently eating a Standard American Diet. Most of them are on a paleo-type or low-carb dietplan. Yet they have blood sugar issues.

 

In these cases, cortisol dysregulation is almost always the culprit. Whenever these patients try fasting, their blood sugar management gets worse. Its been frequently observed that blood sugar readings in the 90s and even low 100s are recorded from fasting, in spite of the fact that they are eating a low-carb, paleo-type diet.

 

That’s why intermittent fasting is often not recommended for those who have blood sugar regulation issues. Instead, its suggested that they eat every 2-3 hours. This helps to maintain stable blood sugar during the day and prevents cortisol and other stress hormones like epinephrine and norepinephrine from becoming involved. When patients that have been fasting and experiencing high blood sugar readings switch to eating this way, their blood sugar numbers almost always hastens.

 

There’s a controversial standpoint about how eating every 2-3 hours is “normal” in the evolutionary view. But neither is driving in traffic or staying up till 2:00am on Facebook. It’s not a set of rules, although the paleo template is there to direct us. This should also be a reminder that there’s no “one size fits all” approach when it comes to healthcare. Successful therapy depends on addressing them and identifying the underlying mechanisms.

 

The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic and spinal injuries and conditions. To discuss options on the subject matter, please feel free to ask Dr. Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900

 

By Dr. Alex Jimenez

 

Additional Topics: Wellness

 

Overall health and wellness are essential towards maintaining the proper mental and physical balance in the body. From eating a balanced nutrition as well as exercising and participating in physical activities, to sleeping a healthy amount of time on a regular basis, following the best health and wellness tips can ultimately help maintain overall well-being. Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables can go a long way towards helping people become healthy.

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Professional Scope of Practice *

The information herein on "Intermittent Fasting, Cortisol and Blood Sugar | Science Chiropractor" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own health care decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified health care professional.

Our information scope is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, sensitive health issues, functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from a wide array of disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system.

Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and support, directly or indirectly, our clinical scope of practice.*

Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request.

We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900.

We are here to help you and your family.

Blessings

Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, ATN*

email: coach@elpasofunctionalmedicine.com

Licensed in: Texas & New Mexico*

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