Autophagy: Exercise vs. Fasting

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 08/31/2023

What triggers autophagy more: exercise or fasting? Find out.


0:00 What is autophagy?

0:48 What triggers autophagy?

3:18 Share your success story!

Let’s talk about exercise vs. fasting when it comes to triggering autophagy. Autophagy is a condition. It’s the recycling of old worn-out cell parts. It’s a condition that’s very good for the body.

Autophagy is all about anti-aging. When we age, we have a deficiency of autophagy. Autophagy is also very deficient in chronic disease states. So, it’s very important to know how to trigger autophagy.

The suppression of glucose with the increase of ketones is what triggers autophagy. This is why fasting is probably the most potent thing to trigger autophagy.

But, exercise can also trigger autophagy. Exercise forces the body to use up glucose, and it helps increase insulin sensitivity. When you exercise, you lower insulin. When insulin becomes too high, it can knock you out of autophagy. It can be very beneficial to exercise while fasting because you have a compounding effect.

The autophagy that’s created when you exercise will only last until the next time you eat. Compared to if you fast for 48 hours, you’re getting a massive amount of autophagy.

When it comes to exercise, the amount of autophagy you’re going to get is going to be related to the intensity and the volume of exercise you do. A strong, resistant type workout with high intensity and a good amount of volume can give you more autophagy. But, a low-intense endurance type workout while fasting can enhance the autophagy you're getting from fasting.

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