There is an interesting piece on the Daily Telegraph website this morning. Francoise Wilhelmi de Toledo is a renowned medical director at the Buchinger Wilhelmi Clinic. A lot of focus in her role is around the management of diseases including obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and cancer. Inevitably, a lot of attention is around diets and the key one of recent times is the 5:2 diet.
Fasting, as part of a lifestyle is, she believes, undoubtedly a good thing but her focus is on making it part of a toolkit available to doctors coping with an epidemic of lifestyle diseases in the West that threaten to cripple healthcare systems. Fasting has been shown to lower blood pressure, reduce excess fat and glucose in the blood, modulate the immune system, increase the effect of the mood and sleep regulating neuro-transmitter serotonin, promote protein repair, boost the growth of ‘good’ bacteria in the gut and reduce inflammation.
In essence, fasting has been likened to a ‘’reset’’ button that returns the human body to its – healthy – factory settings. Most employees retain the ability to fast from our ancestors but, very few of us use it. In the absence of carbohydrates as a source of energy (glucose) for the cells, fatty acids, from fat supplies, were broken down in the liver to produce molecules known as ketone bodies which were used for fuel instead.
Dr Wilhelmi de Toledo herself still fasts twice a year, during a 12 day annual retreat, and to counteract a severe seasonal allergy to birch pollen. For the future, a renewed emphasis on data collection is her priority and the clinic has taken on a new research assistant to oversee this. Suspicion and cynicism about fasting is still rife among doctors and nutritionists and she is determined to challenge it. ‘’We want to document and show that fasting is therapeutically efficient, safe and enjoyable,’’ she says. The science, it would seem, is increasingly on her side.
At Healthy Performance, we have seen a steep increase in our 1-2-1 health and wellbeing consultation appointments aimed at employees. The appointments can be delivered in person or over the phone – they represent a great opportunity for your employees to put realistic goals and plans in place. Our health expert will be able to give employees simple and actionable advice on nutrition and fitness and can discuss on how they can improve their health. For more details please contact us.
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