- Is your blood pressure high?
- Do you have pre-diabetes or diet-controlled diabetes?
- Are you overweight?
- Is your HDL (good) cholesterol too low?
- Are your triglycerides too high?
You may be eligible to participate in the WONDERFUL Trial: A Randomized Trial of Intermittent Fasting among 128 People at Risk of Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases.
The goal of this study is to determine how effective repeated fasting is at improving certain health factors, like high blood pressure and high triglycerides. These factors, among others, predict the development of chronic cardiovascular diseases, metabolic problems like diabetes, and cognitive impairments.
Intermittent fasting may improve health and extend longevity. Experts propose that health benefits from fasting occur by making the body switch to fat cells for energy. Fasting may also cause nutritional stress that speeds up cell repair and renews metabolic function. Individuals who fast may also improve their ability to control their diet.
Unfortunately, it is not known whether those ideas are correct. This is why we've begun to study 128 people at risk of chronic diseases for whom a frequent but sustainable fasting regimen may provide meaningful health improvements. That study, named the WONDERFUL Trial, will be crucial to determine whether intermittent fasting is just a passing weight-loss fad or if it can provide real health benefits.
How Does This Study Work?
The study is testing whether intermittent fasting reduces “bad” cholesterol (LDL cholesterol). Other measurements of secondary interest will also be performed. Participants who are randomized to the fasting group will fast for 24 hours (consuming water only) twice per week for the first four weeks of the study. Then, they will fast once per week for the final five months of the study.
Am I Eligible?
To participate in the WONDERFUL trial you must be 21-70 years of age and not currently taking statin medication. You must have moderately-high LDL cholesterol that does not qualify for statin therapy, OR high LDL cholesterol and not taking statins because you are intolerant or have contraindications. You must also have one of the following risk factors:
- Type 2 diabetes not requiring medications (diet controlled)
- High blood pressure or anti-hypertensive medication
- Low HDL (good) cholesterol
- High triglycerides, or using niacin or a fibrate