A person’s entire immune system can be rejuvenated by fasting for as little as three days as it triggers the body to start producing new white blood cells, a study suggests. Fasting for as little as three days can regenerate the entire immune system, even in the elderly, scientists have found in a breakthrough described as “remarkable.” Although fasting diets have been criticized by nutritionists for being unhealthy, new research suggests starving the body kick-starts stem cells into producing new white blood cells, which fight off infection.
Dr. Valter Longo, a professor of biological sciences at the University of Southern California. One of Longo’s recent experiments involved a small group of people who fasted for five consecutive days once a month, three months in a row. Among the study participants, markers of cell regeneration increased, while risk factors for diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and aging all dropped, he says.
Dr. Luigi Fontana, a professor of nutritional science at Washington University in St. Louis and Italy’s University of Brescia says when you go long periods without food, the resulting metabolic changes appear to stimulate “autophagy,” or a natural cleaning out of your body’s damaged cells. “Cells start to eat dysfunctional proteins, organelles, and mitochondria, and this kind of cleaning of garbage and regeneration may be very beneficial,” he explains.
Juice fasting has been a favorite of many to pack in super nutrition while in fasting mode. The immune system will respond to concentrated nutritional intake when done with foods that are easy to digest like spirulina and chlorella.