Why does therapeutic fasting make entrepreneurs in all countries run?
They are early converts. Entrepreneurs have always been aware that their most precious capital is their physical and mental health. Today, the new generation is joining them with a determined step. The many benefits resulting from therapeutic fasting – backed by a century of data from the gold standard Buchinger Wilhelmi method – are of particular interest to the post-Covid modern man. Forbes offers you an incursion into the heads and bodies of fasters, the time of a joint interview with Dr Françoise Wilhelmi from Toledo and Leonard Wilhelmi, from the famous clinic.
Why is medically supervised fasting no longer a niche today?
Leonard Wilhelmi : There is so much literature compiled on the subject! We see it in people who come for the first time to try our century-old method. They often took the time to browse our studies, consult press articles or follow people on social networks sharing their experience. Also, there is no denying the impact of the pandemic on this awareness, now people want to take care of themselves at any age. They find many benefits in the food break.
Dr Françoise Wilhelmi from Toledo : Fasting people who discover us are often taken aback by the reaction of their body because they realize for the first time that they are able to eat nothing for several days. And everything is fine! A new program will start in their body: it is no longer glucose that is metabolized, but fats. The mitochondria, which are the small energy factories in the cells, activated from oxygen, sugar and fats, will regenerate. The old ones are eliminated to make room for new cells (juventology process). This state is accompanied by a real boost on the mind, it’s great to think that we have the resources within us!
Leonard Wilhelmi : Often, first timers will make lots of promises, they tell us that they will no longer drink alcohol, will stop eating red meat, will do sports every day…(laughs). We recommend that they take it step by step, seeing it as a real success to get rid of one bad habit at a time. I like to give them the image of a staircase to climb to have better health.
We can talk about euphoria then, what happens in the brain?
Dr Françoise Wilhelmi from Toledo : Completely ! The regulars are very familiar with this lift / uplift in mood, which is partly explained by neuronal regeneration. There is a substance produced in the brain called “Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor” with a stimulating effect via neurotransmitters. “BDNF” – brain-derived neurotrophic factor – plays an important role in neuronal survival and growth, it serves as a modulator and participates in neuronal plasticity, essential for learning and memory. We are more alert when we practice intermittent fasting.
Add to this the phenomenon of “shrinkage” / shrinkage of the organs. With the elimination of fat, old cells, there is a re-expansion of all tissues from new cells. Only the brain is not affected by this shrinkage.
How often to prolong the benefits of therapeutic fasting?
Dr Françoise Wilhelmi from Toledo : Once a year, possibly twice if you encounter certain problems (work subject to great stress, cardiovascular or inflammatory diseases, overweight, severe fatigue, etc.). Otherwise, I recommend practicing intermittent fasting at home to maintain the benefits. This consists of observing a food break of 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. between your dinner and your first meal the next day. It is ideal for keeping your weight in shape, staying alert, maintaining a healthy medical ground.
In what form do they return?
For the group of clients with cardiovascular pathologies, there is a significant drop in medication intake. As for people with weight problems, they are in better medical condition and have avoided falling into obesity. Among those over fifty, a population that sees the appearance of blood pressure concerns, which feels greater fatigue on a daily basis, they have understood the challenge of investing in their health for better aging. I have the recent example of a great sportswoman victim of the Covid who saw her health drastically decline, thanks to therapeutic fasting, she regained the hair of the beast. His case is not isolated.
Leonard Wilhelmi : It is particularly interesting to interview the male entrepreneurs who visit us. In their answers, most will tell you that they are there to lose a few pounds…but in a more private interview, they explain that they need to slow down, to recharge their batteries. They say they felt great benefits after their fast.
Dr Françoise Wilhelmi from Toledo : We are certainly a clinic, but also a place of life, of community. We can indulge in a multitude of activities every day: Yoga, pilates, hiking, meditation, cooking workshops, thematic conferences… This hardly happens anymore, but there were sometimes people who arrived at our house with exclusively nightgowns in their suitcases…they thought we were going to put them in a bed and they wouldn’t have an ounce of energy from fasting (laughs)! It is the revelation when they discover how full of energy they are, that it is possible for them to rest as well as to chain activities. As for their brain, it is stimulated like never before!
In everyone, there is this realization that food is the next medicine.
Some fasters are also looking to rebalance their sleep. What do you observe in your clinics in Lake Constance and Marbella?
This is clearly a problem of modern man. Ever since screens have taken over our lives, sleep has been affected. The blue light from screens is a stimulant in the same way as taking caffeine before going to sleep. Our circadian programming is modeled on the alternation of day and darkness, but the blue light in the evening gives the signal to keep us in a state of wakefulness, as if we were in the middle of the day. Sleep, we know, has a big impact on chronic disease, on mental health.
Night rest also plays the essential role of relieving us of trauma suffered (loss of a loved one, accident, shock, etc.) through the mechanics of REM (Rapid Eye Movement) which will sort out the emotions. Fasting helps regulate sleep, restore a normal circadian rhythm. We are therefore seeing a growing demand in our clinics to resume good habits.
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