Fasting was easy for our ancient ancestors. There were no all-night diners or frozen pizzas to tempt them. They had no choice but to ignore that gnawing emptiness in their stomachs until they happened upon a bush of ripe berries or got lucky with a spear.
Intermittent fasting, that is, purposely abstaining from eating for a certain number of hours or days, is much harder for modern humans who have access to food 24/7. (Insomnia Cookies delivers until 3 a.m.) But regular extended breaks from eating can be so beneficial to our welfare (not to mention our waistlines) that it’s worth the struggle.
To understand just how, it helps to realize what happens in our bodies when we eat like normal Americans do, which is to say, all day and too much of the wrong stuff. We eat a lot of protein and carbohydrates—think meat and potatoes (and chips, cookies, pasta, bread, juice, beer, etc.).
Excerpted from Men’s Health