Subsequently, overweight men and women who followed the fasting diet had lower body fat, body weight, blood pressure, total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. Men and women have different metabolisms and hormonal balances, and obviously these differences are partly responsible for how we respond to stress such as intermittent fasting. One of the main benefits of intermittent fasting is an increase in autophagy, the process by which our bodies remove cellular waste and repair damaged cellular structures such as mitochondria. A recent study showed that exposing young mice of both sexes to an intermittent starvation diet had a negative effect on fertility. What does this mean for women interested in intermittent fasting? Unfortunately, there are not many studies examining this question in women. In another study, women on intermittent fasting were subjected to an interval training protocol for six weeks. One of the most cited articles in the intermittent fasting literature is this one, which shows how short-term fasting causes deep neuronal autophagy. Another study shows that male neurons respond to starvation, as one would expect, with autophagy, while female neurons respond with resistance to autophagy. Join the Intermittent Fasting Program for four weeks of intermittent fasting tips and advice as well as daily primary fitness lessons, recipes and lifestyle inspiration to lay the foundation for a purposeful new year. I have never prescribed intermittent fasting as a necessary part of the Primal lifestyle, but rather as an optional addition, a personal choice – a potentially therapeutic strategy that everyone should test for themselves. Fasting triggers Nrf2, a hormonal pathway that is also activated by other hormonal stressors such as exercise, polyphenols and radiation. Above all, I advise women interested in fasting to be cautious, self-aware, and to fast only when it comes naturally to them.