One of the many interesting articles on religious fasting and it’s effects on human health. This is a more recent 2010 article on the effects of fasting on health. The article reviews the findings of multiple studies on religious fasting. It finds that Ramadan fasting gives mixed results, while other types of fasting offer improvement in health benefits. This tells me that Muslims are fasting incorrectly; gorging, binging, eating more total calories, eating fattier and more sugary foods.
Here are a few excerpts. You can download the full article from the link below.
“Few definitive conclusions can currently be made regarding the effects of Ramadan fasting on human health, because the collective body of research has noted mostly heterogeneous findings regarding both dietary intake and health-related outcomes. The above-listed confounding variables in studies of Ramadan fasting – particularly the dietary norms of the subjects – are likely the main causes of these heterogeneous findings.”
But for other types of religious fasts (Not Ramadan) teh research is pretty clear:
“Some of the more favorable effects of these fasts include the lowering of body mass, total cholesterol, LDL-C, and the LDL-C/HDL-C ratio.”
“Regarding cardiovascular health, the following changes have been noted following a CR regimen: decreases in resting heart rate (HR) and blood pressure (BP); increases in HR variability; and improvements in left ventricular function, post-exercise recovery of both HR and BP, and flow-mediated vasodilation. Regarding glucoregulatory health, CR has been shown to decrease fasting glucose and insulin levels, increase insulin sensitivity, decrease body fat percentage, and lower the incidence of diabetes ”
This article is a very good read!
Full article, and link to PDF: