How can autophagy preserve health and make your life happier?
2020-03-05 21:39:11
Autophagy is a natural process of digesting a cell’s organelles and cytoplasmic sites with the help of lysosomes. 5 1 1 5
Mike Greenfold By Mike Greenfold, Contributor Nov. 01, 2019, at 01:45 PM

Modern people are so accustomed to the cult of food that he considers it normal to eat more than three times a day, eat delicious food, even sophisticated, no matter how harmful it may be.

It is no secret that human health consists not only of his usual lifestyle but also of the measures he takes to prevent and improve health. A restriction in food intake can have the same positive effect as medical procedures, or even surpass them. It is the easiest way to self-healing, the cheapest and most affordable, depending only on the will and desire of a person.

During fasting, a body appears a natural process of digesting a cell’s organelles and cytoplasmic sites with the help of lysosomes. It is called autophagy. It has been known since the middle of the twentieth century. However, scientists began to pay attention to him after the research of Yoshinori Osumi, who discovered the genetic mechanisms of this phenomenon and showed the importance of autophagy for the health of organisms. In 2016, the Japanese scientist Osumi received the Nobel Prize for the discovery and study of autophagy mechanisms.

Thanks to autophagy, the body fights against infectious diseases. When the bacterium enters the cell, the cell forms a vacuole around the “alien” and tries to “digest” it. At the same time, the proteins that are involved in autophagy work, too.


Autophagy can be used to fight cancer. If the cascade of reactions that trigger autophagy is activated in "immortal" cancer cells, then their "self-destruction" can be stimulated in this way.

How can autophagy be stimulated?

Since receiving the Nobel Prize, scientists and pharmaceutical companies have been trying to develop compounds that could stimulate autophagy. However, it is already known that autophagy can be stimulated by starvation, intense exercise and restriction of carbohydrates. 

What is the use of "proper" fasting?

According to the results of animal and human studies, scientists have concluded that the inclusion of periodic fasting in adulthood will help maintain optimal health, maintain normal weight and reduce the risks of developing cardiovascular, neurodegenerative, metabolic, oncological and other diseases. This especially gives a significant effect on those who are overweight and lead a sedentary lifestyle.

It should be remembered that fasting can't be used for children and elderly people since such a regimen can be harmful to them.

Fasting for 12-24 hours with water once a week (or once every two weeks) is considered safe and beneficial. However, before you begin such starvation, especially if you spend it for the first time, you should consult with a doctor.

There are various options for the autophagy-based nutrition system, but their essence is the same. A day or a week is divided into two-time intervals. In one interval, you can eat whatever you want. On the other, you can not eat just a drink. Depending on how these periods are related, there are several types of fasting:


This scheme involves 16 hours of fasting and 8 hours for eating. For example, a person can eat between 10 am and 6 pm of the day, fitting 3-4 meals during this period. The rest of the time it is limited to only drinks.


This is one of the most sparing options. 14 hours of hunger alternate with 10 hours when you can eat.


It is a fairly radical option, which is daily fasting between meals. Unlike the schemes listed above, this option should be approached more carefully and not resort to it more often than once or twice a week.


This scheme, developed by Michael Mosley, author of The Fast Diet, suggests that you can eat whatever you want 5 days a week, and limit yourself to as much as 2 days. However, we are not necessarily talking about a complete rejection of food. Just on a hungry day, you can not consume more than 500 kcal.