Heard of autophagy? It’s the term experts use to describe our body’s ability to regenerate and slow down the ageing processes that cause ill health and disease. The good news is that with some changes in habits, improved nutrition and the right supplements, it’s possible to reactivate this powerful, basic bodily function.
Is it possible for your body to replace damaged cells?
Yes! Auto (meaning ‘self’) and phagy (meaning ‘eat’) means ‘self-eating’ – a process where cells devour themselves, recycling damaged and distressed cellular organelles and replacing them with better functioning ones. The result is renewed cells that are better equipped to fight off disease and distress – it’s how our bodies have evolved over time to eliminate worn and poorly functioning cellular parts and reuse them in a way in which they function optimally.
Research shows that autophagy may be a powerful force in the fight against neurodegenerative diseases, some cancers and auto immune diseases. I’ve been amazed at the positive results I’ve seen with clients once they’ve implemented some of the principles of autophagy into their lifestyles.
How exactly does the autophagy process work?
The premise is relatively simple. In the absence of external food sources, the body looks to itself for fuel. Cellular components that are damaged or no longer hold any value are devoured and recycled into better functioning cells, ones that are better equipped to fight illness and degeneration.
Does autophagy reverse ageing?
Ageing is inevitable for every human being, and although ageing itself isn’t a disease, it is the primary risk factor in many chronic conditions and diseases, including cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease and cancer. Some experts are proposing that slowing ageing (on a cellular level) and encouraging a state of autophagy may be the answer we need to slowing down and even possibly eradicating some dread diseases. A growing body of research also supports the idea that intermittent fasting can be an integral component in addressing autoimmune disease.
Ancient man was a master at autophagy
Our ancestors hold the key to understanding how in times of enormous stress, that they were able to continue functioning. Despite food scarcity and significant swings between states of feast and famine, our ancestors survived and even thrived.
Experts are now saying that by emulating our ancestors and the state of food scarcity they so often found themselves in through fasting, targeted food choices and timing our food ingestion we are able to trigger our longevity
A guide to inducing autophagy
Practise intermittent fasting
Eat less carbohydrates & more protein
Plan your nutrient intake
Eat to promote autophagy
Autophagy is a state of cellular renewal our ancestors needed for survival. By implementing some of the basic tenets of autophagy we may set ourselves on a path to surviving and thriving in the world we live in.