Fasting diet, over the years, has garnered a fair share of popularity due to its pool of benefits, especially for shedding extra kilos. Adding a feather to the cap, a new study has found that this diet may also boost breast cancer therapy. As per the findings, published in the journal Nature, fasting-mimicking diet, along with hormone therapy, has the potential to treat breast cancer. For the uninitiated, fasting-mimicking diet (or FMD) refers to the diet that restricts calorie consumption for a set period of time.

This research was conducted by the researchers at the University of Southern California and the IFOM Cancer Institute in Milan, in collaboration with the University of Genova. As per a report by the University of Southern California, it was found that this diet helped to reduce “blood insulin, insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) and leptin.”

The study was performed on mice and in two small breast cancer clinical trials (on 36 women). The results from the human and mice study found that this process of fasting-mimicking diet and hormone therapy has a promising effect; however, it is too early to draw any conclusion.

“Our new study suggests that a fasting-mimicking diet together with endocrine therapy for breast cancer has the potential to not only shrink tumors but also reverse resistant tumors in mice,” said Valter Longo, the study’s co-senior author and the director of the Longevity Institute at the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology and professor of biological sciences at the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences.

“We have data that for the first time suggests that a fasting-mimicking diet works by changing at least three different factors: IGF1, leptin and insulin,” Longo added.

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