How Long You Need To Fast For Metabolic Flexibility
The length of your fast for the metabolic switchover will vary depending on the types of foods you eat, whether you have been in ketosis before, and how often you fast. Fortunately, with practice, you will be able to feel the switchover happens. Before learning this skill, using a ketone monitor will help you determine how much intermittent fasting to do for weight loss.
Using a Ketone Monitor to Know How Much Fasting for Weight Loss
As a beginner, using a ketone monitor to know how much fasting to do for weight loss is helpful. Before we get into the optimal weight loss ketosis that you should aim for, lets talk about how frequently you should fast for weight loss.
How Often Should You Practice Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss
The answer to the question how much intermittent fasting for weight loss is twofold: how frequently and how long. Lets address how frequently first. How frequently will depend very much on how quickly you want to lose weight and how long you fast when you do fast. First, I recommend you dont fast every single day. Five days a week is usually the maximum I advise. Limiting how many days you fast is helpful to ensure your body thrives on glucose some days and doesnt get too accustomed to fasting. Moreover, its great for your mindset! You get to enjoy three meals a day sometimes!
How Long Should You Fast for Weight Loss
Feeling the Metabolic Switchover
Can I Have Cream And Sugar In My Coffee While Fasting
To stay in a fasted metabolic state, its best not to add any sugar to your coffee. Cream is a better option. If youve already fasted overnight for 12 or so hours and you just cant drink black coffee, a bit of cream, butter , coconut oil, MCT oil or other healthy plant fat likely isnt going to kick you out of ketosis or a fat-burning state.
At most, these coffee fixings might lengthen the time it takes you to get into ketosis after an overnight fast. They can slightly and temporarily activate your insulin and mTOR pathways, telling your body that nutrients are around and thus delay entry into some fasting metabolic processes such as autophagy . However, its normal in human clinical studies of fasting to allow participants up to 500 calories on fasting days fasting benefits occur regardless of these few calories!
Sugar is another beast, as it can quickly raise your blood sugar levels. Try to avoid adding sugar into your coffee, opting for cream or other healthy fats instead. Also watch out for sugar-added creamers.
It May Decrease Inflammation
Inflammation caused by oxidative stress is thought to be the cause of many diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers .
Studies have demonstrated that intermittent fasting may be an effective way to reduce inflammation in your body.
One study in 34 healthy men found that the 16:8 intermittent fasting method decreased levels of TNF- and interleukin 1 beta , substances that promote inflammation .
Another study in 50 people found that those fasting for the Muslim holiday of Ramadan had significantly lower levels of the inflammatory markers IL-6, C-reactive protein and homocysteine, compared to non-fasting individuals .
How Safe Is Intermittent Fasting
The 12 hour intermittent fasting Keto or Ketogenic diet and other carbohydrate-restricted diets aim to achieve ketosis, which is an accumulation of acidic ketones in the blood. As much as the outcomes are great, ketosis can cause liver, brain, and kidney damage. It is unsafe for individuals with chronic disorders such as diabetes and heart disease. Your blood sugar should also be stable for you to follow this diet plan. Therefore, it is important to discuss with your doctor and seek guidance from a licensed dietitian before beginning 12 hour intermittent fasting.
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Fasting 20 Hours A Day For Weight Loss
Some people find themselves getting leaner and more muscular at the same time during 20 hour intermittent fasting.
This has to do with an increase in your metabolic ratethe amount of calories your body burns at rest. One study showed that fasting can boost your metabolic rate by as much as 14%.
Another study published in the journal Cell, found that IF was so effective at increasing metabolism that it could be the antidote for Americas obesity epidemic.
Blending the 20 hour fast with Circadian Rhythm Fasting may further increase your metabolism by synchronizing your food intake with the faster metabolic rate that occurs during the daytime.
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Is Intermittent Fasting Right For You
Intermittent fasting is safe for many people, but it’s not for everyone. Skipping meals is not recommended for people under 18, those with a history of disordered eating, or those who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Athletes may find it difficult to fuel and refuel appropriately for an active lifestyle. If you have diabetes or other medical issues, talk with your health care team before starting intermittent fasting.
Also, note that the key to weight loss with intermittent fasting is not to overeat during your eating windows. Eating fewer calories than you expend remains the basis for losing weight.
Shortening the eating window may make it difficult to get the vitamins and minerals you need. While on this diet, it is important to eat meals made from quality, healthy ingredients, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy and lean protein.
Intermittent fasting can be dangerous if taken too far. A technique called dry fasting restricts food and fluid intake, resulting in severe dehydration and posing serious health concerns. Malnutrition can occur if the caloric restriction is too severe, such as averaging fewer than 1,200 calories a day long term.
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There Is Interest In Whether Autophagy Can Increase The Lifespan Of Whole Organisms Though So Far This Has Only Been Replicated In Animals
There is interest in whether autophagy can increase the lifespan of whole organisms, too though so far this has only been replicated in animals, like 1mm-long nematode worms and mice, and not humans . Until there are longitudinal studies of human intermittent fasters, it is too soon to say that it will extend our lifespans.
But, other animal studies have linked autophagy to improvements in immune system memory. The fact that autophagy is essential to maintain cell health has also generated interest in its role in cancer suppression. There might be more reasons than increasing lifespan to take interest in autophagy.
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Unlike calorie-restrictive diets , the purpose of intermittent fasting is to increase the amount of time between the last meal of one day and the first of the next. This could help to promote autophagy, but to understand how we should look at what happens to us after we eat.
Eating even a small bite before bed extends the “fed state”, meaning you may never achieve ketosis before your next meal
When you stop eating at 19:00 you will still be in the fed state until 22:00 because you will still be digesting nutrients, says Clarkson. Any carbohydrates in your diet will give you a nice supply of glucose, our premium source of fuel, for a few hours.
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Is It Better To Intermittent Fast In The Morning Or Evening
Fasting in the evening and overnight, then eating early in the day is the pattern that has the most profound benefits. The research is clear that people who eat in the morning and afternoon have healthier blood lipid profiles and better blood sugar control and tend to weigh less than those who eat late in the day.
Why Is Intermittent Fasting Different For Women And Men
Intermittent fasting affects men and women differently. There are possible risks for women to consider around reproductive health, bone health, and overall well-being.
Although you can eat normally during the non-fasting periods, certain forms of intermittent fasting may reduce your calorie intake. Calories provide your body with energy, and when energy is in short supply, your body will focus its attention on survival over other functions.
Research with women as participants is limited, but some studies that involve rodents suggest intermittent fasting may cause changes in estrogen levels and negatively affect reproductive functions, such as menstrual regularity, fertility, pregnancy, and lactation.
The hormone levels of male rodents are also affected, but the disruptions dont seem to change their reproductive functions as much as they do for female rodents.
One possible reason for this is that some aspects of reproduction in women including pregnancy and breastfeeding require more energy than those in men.
So, if energy intake is too low, these functions can be negatively affected. However, its not clear at the moment if human females are affected in the same way that rodent females are.
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The Biggest Challenge I Had To Overcome
I think I assumed that the most difficult thing would be getting through the days when I didnt eat anything. I went from eating around 2,500 calories a day to fewer than 2,000 every other day, so it was a huge change. But because I was so determined to change, somehow that wasnt the hardest part.
For me, the biggest challenge was finding my love for lifting weights.
I started adding physical activity about six months into my weight-loss journey. I would run on the days I wasnt fasting. When I had dropped 85 pounds, I began lifting weights, too.
When I began, it was something I just could not enjoy. I found it hard to lift and felt like I wasnt making progress. I couldnt see the calories I was burning, unlike when I was on a treadmill. As I pushed myself to continue and get more into it, though, the physical difference was apparent and I was hooked!
Now that I have gotten down to a healthy weight, I work out six days a week, lifting weights on my fasting days and running on my eat days.
Ready to Add Weights to Your Routine?
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How To Do A 12
The Keto-IF diet involves following the Keto routine during the day, then IF overnight. For instance, on the first day, you can take scrambled eggs capped with avocado slices with black coffee or plain hot tea at 9 a.m., then water or a keto-friendly smoothie all morning. At noon, take lunch. This can include large leafy green salad broccoli and cauliflower topped with two tablespoons of olive oil, vinegar, and 3 ounces of grilled salmon or chicken breast.
You can have macadamia nuts as a snack at 2 p.m., but this is optional. Take dinner at 5 p.m, and this can be cooked wild rice with a chicken leg with skin and two cups of zucchini prepared with olive oil. Note that a KETO IF rich in bacon and butter is different from the one rich in avocado and olive oil.
To do this combination, get approval from your physician and work with a registered dietitian conversant with the Keto-IF diet for perfect ratios.
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Intermittent Fasting: Fad Or Valid Weight
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Is skipping meals a bad idea or a secret weight-loss weapon? One diet trend that shows no sign of going away soon is intermittent fasting. That’s when you voluntarily abstain from food or beverages other than water for a certain amount of time. Some fasting is for religious reasons, while others fast for weight loss.
But is intermittent fasting a healthy way to lose weight?
What Is Intermittent Fasting And Why Would You Do It
Intermittent fasting is not a diet, it’s a pattern of eating. It’s a way of scheduling your meals so that you get the most out of them. Intermittent fasting doesnt change what you eat, it changes when you eat.
Why is it worthwhile to change when youre eating?
Well, most notably, its a great way to get lean without going on a crazy diet or cutting your calories down to nothing. In fact, most of the time you’ll try to keep your calories the same when you start intermittent fasting. Additionally, intermittent fasting is a good way to keep muscle mass on while getting lean.
With all that said, the main reason people try intermittent fasting is to lose fat. We’ll talk about how intermittent fasting leads to fat loss in a moment.
Perhaps most importantly, intermittent fasting is one of the simplest strategies we have for taking bad weight off while keeping good weight on because it requires very little behavior change. This is a very good thing because it means intermittent fasting falls into the category of simple enough that you’ll actually do it, but meaningful enough that it will actually make a difference.
Can Be A Sustainable Lifestyle Change
Intermittent fasting might sound complicated and intimidating, but it can be simple at times. In fact, you might even find that fasting helps simplify your day since you need to plan fewer meals.
Whats more, it doesnt typically require calorie counting, watching your macros, eating certain foods that you might not be used to eating, or eliminating certain foods that you otherwise enjoy.
For example, having an early dinner followed by a late breakfast the next day is one way to fast intermittently. If you finish your last meal at 8 p.m. and dont eat until noon the next day, youve technically fasted for 16 hours.
For people who get hungry in the morning and like to eat breakfast, or for those who cant eat until later in the evening due to work schedules and other obligations, this method may be hard to get used to.
However, other people instinctively eat this way already. They may be more prone to trying out an intermittent fasting eating pattern.
Helps Reduce The Risk Of Developing Diabetes
By improving blood sugar control and blood sugar levels through burning fat stores instead of glucose, your risk of diabetes is lowered by fasting routinely.
Additionally, you can lower levels of blood triglycerides by either long or short-term intermittent fasting, helping to lower cholesterol in your body that might cause diabetic issues later on.
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My Initial Fasting Experience
Knowing the potential health benefits of intermittent fasting for women, I was eager to give it a try. Unfortunately, I failed MISERABLY at my first attempt. Lets just say I did NOT experience increased energy and clear-mindedness.
The first day I under-ate and couldnt sleep for hunger pangs. The next day, tired and cranky, I overate with the veracity of a starved animal. Thats when my hunger and hormone roller coaster began. And after one full week of this, I had to quit.
As a physician I wondered if other women had experienced something similar. And when I searched the internet, I discovered that, across message boards, blogs and online communities, women were complaining about intermittent fasting and its effect on their hormones. In fact, there was scientific literature that supported all of our experiences.
Overeating And Potential Weight Gain
Restricting your intake to just 8 hours per day may cause some people to eat more than usual during eating periods in an attempt to make up for hours spent fasting. This may lead to weight gain, digestive problems, and unhealthy eating habits.
Interestingly, current research doesnt suggest that intermittent fasting leads to any more weight loss than typical diets that recommend overall calorie restriction. Both eating patterns may lead to modest weight loss .
If weight loss is your primary goal, you may therefore prefer to lower your calorie intake instead of fasting intermittently to prevent the overeating that may occur when restricting intake to a certain time window.
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Who Shouldnt Try Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting isnt for everyone. You should always check with your doctor before trying a new diet, even one thats proven to be beneficial. The following groups of people should avoid IF:
- People who suffer from diabetes or other blood sugar problems
- Children under the age of 18
- People with a history of eating disorders
- Pregnant and breastfeeding women
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How Much Weight Can You Lose While Fasting
Let’s be clear about one thing: intermittent fasting doesn’t guarantee weight loss. In theory, you’ll consume less calories because you’re eating fewer meals, but it’s entirely possible to overeat while fasting.
You don’t want to gorge on a burger, fries, and shake right after fasting, says Sowa.
“In order to continue the benefits of the fast you want to choose foods that will not spike your insulin,” she says.
She recommends eating foods that are high in fiber and protein, like leafy green vegetables, eggs, and chicken.
Research about intermittent fasting for weight loss is mixed.
“Some studies have demonstrated that it can result in as much as a 7 percent weight loss in body weight,” says Sessions.
However, a randomized clinical trial of obese adults showed that intermittent fasting was no better than standard calorie restriction, according to a 2017 paper published in JAMA Internal Medicine.
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