The research surrounding intermittent fasting (IF) is super exciting; it's been shown to increase autophagy (also known as cellular repair), decrease inflammation, and heal the gut. Sounds awesome, right? Intermittent fasting is one of my favorite tools, and I recommend it to many of the patients at my functional medicine clinic.
But depriving the body of food for longer stretches of time raises some concerns for our hormones—like insulin, stress hormones like cortisol, and female hormones like estrogen and progesterone. If you have adrenal fatigue, irregular cycles, or a thyroid issue, should you be experimenting with fasting—or steering clear? Here are some common hormones and how IF might affect them: