Why we would all benefit from feeling the odd hunger pang

Fasting aside, on a daily basis one of the best things we can do for our health is to stop eating all day long in order to allow our digestion to do its thing, without piling more food on top. It’s our snack culture of frothy coffees, mid-morning “health bars”, 4pm pick-me-ups or the late-night indulgences that is also causing rising obesity levels. 

According to a recent report conducted by Cancer Research UK, it is estimated that over 21 million UK adults will be obese by 2040, which equates to almost four in 10. Dr Wilhelmi de Toledo says: “Snacking, especially of ultra-processed foods, triggers the secretion of insulin by the pancreas, making the metabolic switch to ketosis and fat burning impossible.” She tells me that fat layers then accumulate and this magic spring cleaning of our cells can’t occur. She also says that snacking late in the evening means we don’t sleep as well, which then has knock-on health implications.

Obviously there may be some people who, for health reasons, shouldn’t go for sustained periods without food, but the majority of us need to stop being afraid of a hunger pang. Recently I’ve been trying hard not to eat between meals. What I’ve found is that it definitely makes mealtimes taste better, and when I feel my tummy rumble I tell myself that it’s OK to be a bit hungry. Whether it can help shift my perimenopausal tummy is yet to be seen, but I think Dr Wilhelmi de Toledo will say I need to ditch those lattes first.

The verdict: fact

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For medically guided fasting visit buchinger-wilhelmi.com

Please consult your doctor before embarking on a new health regime.

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