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Does intermittent fasting increase diabetes risk?

Intermittent fasting diets(despite weight loss) may actually damage the pancreas and affect insulin function in normal healthy individuals, which could lead to diabetes and serious health issues.

Type-2 diabetes is a growing global epidemic that is often attributed to poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle, which is closely linked to obesity. Blood sugar is partially regulated by the hormone insulin, which is produced by the pancreas. If insulin levels are too low or the body becomes resistant to its effects, type-2 diabetes results and high blood sugar levels can cause serious health issues, including heart, kidney and eye damage.

In addition to medical strategies used to treat type-2 diabetes, patients are also advised to make lifestyle and dietary changes to lose weight. Recently, intermittent fasting diets have gained general popularity for weight loss, however, evidence on their success has been contradictory and there is a lack of knowledge and some debate on their potentially harmful long-term health effects. Short-term fasting can produce molecules called free radicals, which are highly reactive chemicals that can cause damage to the body at a cellular and may be associated with impaired organ function, cancer risk and accelerated ageing.

The overweight or obese people who opt for intermittent fasting diets may already have insulin resistance, so although this diet may lead to early, rapid weight loss, in the long-term there could be potentially serious damaging effects to their health, such as the development of type-2 diabetes.