Study Links Ramadan Fasting to Lower Risk of Chronic Disease Development

A recent study has revealed that Ramadan fasting may be associated with a lower risk of developing chronic diseases. Published in the “American Journal of Clinical Nutrition,” the study found that Ramadan fasting was linked with a significant reduction in the risk of breast, colorectal and lung cancers.

Researchers collected data from 72 participants from the London Ramadan Study (LORANS), an observational cohort of 140 Muslims who follow the annual Ramadan fast. Ramadan typically involves avoiding all food and drink from before the day’s first light till the sun sets on a specific set of days every year.

The researchers took blood samples from the participants before and after the fast before generating metabolic scores from both sets of samples. Study participants had to be older than 18 years of age with an intended fasting duration of at least 20 days and have complete medical records. Researchers excluded pregnant women. The research team also reviewed demographic data and the remaining 72 participants’ medical records, body composition and blood pressure.

After isolating blood plasma from the blood samples, the research team used high-throughput Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy via the Nightingale platform. The researchers opted for the Nightingale platform because its readings appear on the United Kingdom Biobank dataset, a nationwide large cohort prospective study comprised of 500,000 UK citizens. Additionally, the Nightingale platform can identify and quantify 189 metabolites and lipids.

The research team used linear mixed-effects models to compare Nightingale platform readings with blood samples taken before and after study participants fasted. UK researchers then used Nightingale platform metabolite readings from the UK Biobank dataset to compute the study participants’ risk of developing common chronic diseases.

The researchers then applied the values to the study’s NMR readings to determine the degree to which Ramadan and intermittent fasting reduced chronic disease risk. Intermittent fasting is a type of time-restricted fasting that involves restricting eating to certain windows of the day,  while fasting the remainder of the time.

On average, researchers found that the study participants lost 1.1% of their body fat and 3.7 pounds in the interval between providing the first and second blood samples. There was also a significant reduction in an amino acid, two triglycerides, one inflammation marker, six lipoprotein subclasses and two ketone bodies.

Lactate, acetate, tyrosine and acetone registered the largest reductions before and after Ramadan. The findings indicate that time-restricted or intermittent fasting can help reduce the risk of developing chronic illness. Larger studies with longer follow-ups will be crucial to determining the full effect of intermittent fasting on chronic health risk and general health.

While fasting has the potential to reduce the risk of chronic disease onset, it doesn’t eliminate that risk. Enterprises such as Longeveron Inc. (NASDAQ: LGVN) are focused on developing novel treatments that will help aging people combat the different challenges they face, such as chronic ailments.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Longeveron Inc. (NASDAQ: LGVN) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/LGVN

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