The Physiological Changes that Occur During a Fast

With so many sporting activities that exist today, which is the ultimate sporting activity and why? Not forgetting health, which is also a closely related issue that should be amongst our top priorities.
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The Physiological Changes that Occur During a Fast

Postby Tayyaba » 19 Oct 2006, 00:08

For many people the key question regarding fasting is whether it is good or bad
for one’s health. The answer to this requires a quick overview of what happens
inside the body during fasting:
The physiology of fasting.
The changes that occur in the body in response to fasting depend on the length
of the continuous fast. Technically, the body enters into a fasting state eight
hours or so after the last meal, when the gut finishes absorption of nutrients
from the food. In the normal state, body glucose, which is stored in the liver
and muscles, is the body’s main source of energy. During a fast, this store of
glucose is used up first to provide energy.
Later in the fast, once the stores of glucose run out, fat becomes the next
store source of energy for the body. Small quantities of glucose are also
‘manufactured’ through other mechanisms in the liver.
Only with a prolonged fast of many days to weeks, does the body
eventually turn to protein for energy. This is the technical description of what is
commonly known as ‘starvation’, and it is clearly unhealthy. It involves protein
being released from the breakdown of muscle which is why people who starve
look emaciated and become very weak.
As the fast only extends from dawn till dusk, there is ample opportunity to
replenish energy stores at pre-dawn and dusk meals. This provides a
progressive gentle transition from using glucose to fat as the main source of
energy, and prevents the breakdown of muscle for protein.
The use of fat for energy aids weight loss, preserving the muscles, and in
the long run reduces one’s cholesterol levels. In addition, weight loss results
in better control of diabetes and reduces blood pressure. A detoxification
process also seems to occur, as any toxins stored in the body’s fat are
dissolved and removed from the body. After a few days of the fast, higher levels
of certain hormones appear in the blood (endorphins), resulting in a better level
of alertness and an overall feeling of general mental well-being.
Balanced food and fluid intake is important between fasts. The kidney is
very efficient at maintaining the body’s water and salts, such as sodium and
potassium. However, these can be lost through sweating, To prevent
muscle break down, meals must contain adequate levels of ‘energy food’ such
as carbohydrates and some fat. Hence, a balanced diet with adequate
quantities of nutrients, salts and water is vital.

The Physiological Changes that Occur During a Fast
health_spirituality.indd 6 21/09/2006 11:17:21
Tayyaba Salim Kassam
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Postby Syed Kazim » 03 Nov 2006, 16:19

Didn't no much of that, lol

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