fasting for immunity boost

A new study on the effect of fasting has shown that a three day fast can prompt the body to use stem cells to make new white blood cells which are essential to the immune system.

I certainly don’t recommend anyone do a three day fast without medical supervision, but the science is utterly fascinating.

The study, Prolonged Fasting Reduces IGF-1/PKA to Promote Hematopoietic-Stem-Cell-Based Regeneration and Reverse Immunosuppression, suggests fasting could be highly beneficial for those with compromised immunity. That may include patients undergoing chemotherapy, or simply older people who are more prone to dips of immunity.

They found that during the fast, old white blood cells were recycled. And when food was reintroduced, the white blood cells were remade from stem cells. Not only were the damaged parts eliminated, but brand new, healthy, strong cells were the replacement.

The scientists conducting the study also found that prolonged fasting also reduced the PKA enzyme. This has been linked to ageing and a hormone that may lead to cancer risk and tumour growth.

All in all, a three day fast sounds like it may have significant health benefits.

If you’re considering an extended fast, I highly recommend you seek the guidance of your medical professional.


Dr Carmen Hunwardsen owns and operates Carmen’s Spinal Care, a busy North Brisbane chiropractic clinic in Everton Hills.