Inflammation is a natural response to harm and an essential healing process for our bodies.

There are two forms of inflammation: acute and chronic. 
Acute inflammation, is a normal and crucial component of the immune system’s defensive mechanism, which is typically caused by a cut, bruise, injury, or viral infection. The period of inflammation is short and sustained for a few days, allowing the immune system to initiate an inflammatory response to aid in healing.

Chronic inflammation occurs when the immune system responds to perceived threats, resulting in a prolonged inflammatory response that may persist for months or years. If the chronic inflammation response is not regulated properly, it can contribute to several chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer, autoimmune disease, and heart disease, and poses a significant threat to people’s health and lifespan.

 Now, how can chronic inflammation be dealt with? 

Recently, fasting has gained attention for both weight loss and potential health benefits, particularly its impact on chronic inflammation. “There is tremendous potential in researching the anti-inflammatory effects of fasting, given the wide range of diseases that are caused by chronic inflammation and the growing number of patients affected by these diseases,” says Dr. Stefan Jordan, a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Oncological Sciences at the Icahn School of Medicine.

His research was conducted in 2019, and the result showed that intermittent fasting can lower the number of pro-inflammatory cells, which is known as monocytes (a type of immune cells). Monocytes act to release cytokines to recruit more immune cells to the region of inflammation and activate inflammatory pathways to assist recovery. However, excessively activated monocytes cause tissue damage and malfunction over time. His team tested blood samples from 12 individuals who had fasted for 19 hours. His research, which was published in the Cell Press journal, reveals that short-term intermittent fasting or calorie restriction can lower the amount of peripherally circulating monocytes discharged into sites suffering inflammation. During the fasting period, these cells remain in a sleep state, resulting in reduced metabolic activity and fewer inflammatory concerns.

Next, in 2024, another study published in the Cell Press journal showed the positive effect of fasting on chronic inflammation. The researchers described how fasting elevates levels of arachidonic acid in the blood, which serves as an inflammation inhibitor. This study was led by Professor Bryant and his colleagues at the University of Cambridge and the National Institute for Health in the USA. His team analyzed blood samples from 21 volunteers. These volunteers consumed a 500-calorie meal, fasted for 24 hours, and then ate another 500-calorie meal. The study revealed that calorie restriction led to increased levels of arachidonic acid, a lipid crucial for energy storage and cell communication. This discovery suggests that elevated levels of arachidonic acid could suppress the activity of the NLRP3 inflammasome, a key trigger of chronic inflammation.

Another study published in the European Heart Journal Open presents encouraging results that intermittent fasting for 24 hours, at least once a week, just with water, can increase the concentrations of galectin-3, a protein responsible for regulating inflammation. This observation renders galectin-3 as a promising therapeutic target for the modulation of diseases associated with inflammation.

 Not only that, fasting has been linked to improvements in insulin sensitivity, which can further mitigate the inflammation associated with conditions like obesity and diabetes. In this instance, fasting reduces metabolic inflammation and is associated with a decline in proinflammatory cytokines, both of which are crucial for managing insulin and blood sugar levels.

 All in all, integrating fasting into a well-rounded lifestyle, alongside other anti-inflammatory practices like maintaining a balanced diet, ensuring quality sleep, and engaging in regular exercise, could yield combined advantages in alleviating chronic inflammation and enhancing overall well-being. Additionally, alongside these anti-inflammatory recommendations, NK Biocell offers an alternative therapy product called MYJ1633 – an autologous NK immune cell-based therapy, aimed at maintaining immune balance and preventing excessive inflammation.


  1. Pereira, M., Liang, J., Edwards-Hicks, J., Meadows, A. M., Hinz, C., Liggi, S., … & Bryant, C. E. (2024). Arachidonic acid inhibition of the NLRP3 inflammasome is a mechanism to explain the anti-inflammatory effects of fasting. Cell Reports43(2).
  1. Jordan, S., Tung, N., Casanova-Acebes, M., Chang, C., Cantoni, C., Zhang, D., … & Merad, M. (2019). Dietary intake regulates the circulating inflammatory monocyte pool. Cell178(5), 1102-1114.
  1. Bartholomew, C. L., Muhlestein, J. B., May, H. T., Le, V. T., Galenko, O., Garrett, K. D., … & Horne, B. D. (2021). Randomized controlled trial of once-per-week intermittent fasting for health improvement: the WONDERFUL trial. European Heart Journal Open1(2), oeab026.