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How Should I Start Intermittent Fasting

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It Could Lead To Negative Side Effects

How to: start intermittent fasting â? And why you SHOULD do it?

The Warrior Diet may lead to side effects, some of which could be severe.

Potential side effects include (

  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Weight gain

In addition, many health professionals argue that dieters will not get enough nutrients when following an intermittent fasting plan like the Warrior Diet.

However, as long as healthy, nutrient-dense foods are chosen and calorie needs are met, nutrient needs can be covered by carefully planning your food choices when following the Warrior Diet.


The Warrior Diet is inappropriate for many people, can be hard to stick to and may lead to negative side effects such as fatigue, insomnia and hormonal imbalance.

Hofmekler suggests that anyone starting the Warrior Diet should follow an initial three-week, three-phase plan to improve the bodys ability to utilize fat for energy.

Should You Do Intermittent Fasting And The Keto Diet

We have a crazy extensive guide on the Keto Diet in case youre not familiar with it, so here it is in a nutshell:

This process is called ketosis, and there are two ways for a body to enter ketosis:

  • Eating in a way that induces ketosis .
  • FastingHey, thats what youre reading about right now!

We actually have an amazing success story here on Nerd Fitness, Larry, who followed our strategies, went Keto and start intermittent fasting. He ended up losing weight, getting stronger, AND overcame the challenges of rheumatoid arthritis !

Heres how the fasting portion of it works:

As your body enters a fast period when there are no sources of glucose energy readily available, the liver begins the process of breaking down fat into ketones.

Fasting itself can trigger ketosis.

Fasting for a period of time before kicking off a Keto-friendly eating plan COULD speed your transition into the metabolic state of ketosis, and fasting intermittently while in ketosis could help you maintain that state.

I personally love fasting for the simplicity: I skip breakfast every day and train in a fasted state. Its one less decision I have to make, its one less opportunity to make a bad food choice, and it helps me reach my goals.

WHY KETO + IF WORKS = eating Keto can be really challenging. And every time you eat, its an opportunity to do it wrong and accidentally eat foods that knock you out of ketosis.

Youre also tempted to overeat.

Your value may vary!

You need to decide what works for you.

A Brief Guide To Fasting

Fasting is fairly simple. You just have to follow three rules:

  • Choose a fasting window. As you read, the stages of intermittent fasting each come with different benefits. Pick a window of time fast and stick to it. for example, if youre doing an 18-hour fast, maybe you stop eating at 8 PM today and dont break your fast until 2 PM tomorrow.
  • No calories. A true fast includes zero calories during the fasting period. Water, coffee, tea, and other zero-calorie beverages are fine during water fasting, but anything with calories will break your fast.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water during your fast. make sure you also get your electrolytes by adding sea salt to the water and/or taking an electrolyte supplement.

For more details about different fasting schedules and how to use fasting as part of a healthy lifestyle, you may want to take a more in-depth look at fasting.

Don’t Miss: How To Keep Yourself From Eating While Fasting

May Lead To More Fat Loss

Combining the diet and the fast may help you burn more fat than the diet alone.

Because intermittent fasting boosts metabolism by promoting thermogenesis, or heat production, your body may start utilizing stubborn fat stores .

Several studies reveal that intermittent fasting can powerfully and safely drop excess body fat.

In an eight-week study in 34 resistance-trained men, those who practiced the 16/8 method of intermittent fasting lost nearly 14% more body fat than those following a normal eating pattern .

Similarly, a review of 28 studies noted that people who used intermittent fasting lost an average of 7.3 pounds more fat mass than those following very low-calorie diets .

Plus, intermittent fasting may preserve muscle mass during weight loss and improve energy levels, which may be helpful for keto dieters looking to improve athletic performance and drop body fat .

Additionally, studies underscore that intermittent fasting can reduce hunger and promote feelings of fullness, which may aid weight loss .


Combining intermittent fasting with a keto diet may help you reach ketosis faster and drop more body fat than a keto diet alone.

Combining the ketogenic diet with intermittent fasting is likely safe for most people.

However, pregnant or breastfeeding women and those with a history of disordered eating should avoid intermittent fasting.

Though some people may find merging the practices helpful, its important to note that it may not work for everyone.

Fasting May Improve Brain Health

A Beginners Guide to Intermittent Fasting

The Warrior Diet is promoted as a way to improve brain health.

There may be some truth to that based on scientific studies on intermittent fasting.

Intermittent fasting has been found to benefit the regulation of inflammatory pathways that affect your brain function.

For example, animal studies have shown that intermittent fasting reduced inflammatory markers like interleukin 6 and tumor necrosis factor alpha , which may negatively impact memory and learning (

5 ).

However, research in this area is ongoing and more human studies are needed to determine the benefits of intermittent fasting on brain health.

Also Check: What Can I Have During Intermittent Fasting

Choose How Youll Fast

Fasting is distinct from the likes of a juice cleanse or a two-day restrictive diet. There are two categoriestraditional and intermittenteach of which appeals to different individuals depending on their goals and lifestyles.

While both can be beneficial to your brain health, intermittent fasting is better for weight loss and maintenance. Pick the one that works best for what you want to accomplish.

Choosing A Type Of Intermittent Fast That Is Beyond Your Ability

There are several different styles of intermittent fasting, and the one you choose should suit your lifestyle and your level of experience.

20:4 intermittent fasting

This method is one of the more extreme ones and might not be the best for beginners. It involves fasting for 20 hours and eating in a 4-hour window each day. Trying to eat a lot in such a small window can give you a stomachache if youre not experienced.

16:8 intermittent fasting

This is the most common way to intermittent fast, and its definitely doable for those new to the fasting world. It consists of fasting for 16 hours and eating for 8 hours every day. This allows you to have two meals in your feeding window so its easier to get all of the calories you need.

Its very easy to adjust your fasting time to suit your schedule. Most people choose to have their fasting window start after dinner and last until lunchtime the next day. Depending on your schedule, you might want to skip dinner instead and have your feeding window in the morning and early afternoon. If youre unsure, try both and see which one works better for your schedule and your body.

14:10 intermittent fasting

Even easier to follow than 16:8, this is a good place to start if youre totally new to the intermittent fasting world and youre a little apprehensive. Because you fast for 14 hours and eat in a 10-hour window, its not very different from a normal schedule of not eating for 12 hours at night .

5:2 intermittent fasting

Recommended Reading: How Do I Know If Intermittent Fasting Is Working

A Beginner’s Guide To 30 Days Of Intermittent Fasting

Whenever a new eating trend makes its way into the mainstream conversation, I like to give it a try. Whole30, South Beach, Paleo, Vegan — you name it, Ive tried it! Recently, Ive been hearing about Intermittent Fasting nonstop. And while its not actually a new style of eating, its having a real moment and picking up steam in the wellness world.

I was weary at first. Ive been told for years that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Now Im being told that you should skip breakfast and wait as long as possible before eating each day. Mixed messages, right?

After researching the details, the pros and the cons of IF, I was on board to give it a shot. I consulted with D.C.-based RD Sarah Waybright of to get a professionals advice as I navigated IF for the first time.

Sarah shared some of the positive results clients can expect from IF, including improved energy, weight loss , improved blood lipids and glucose balance.

Ive been playing around with IF for the last month and am ready to share my thoughts and experiences with you.

Lets start with the different types of fasting. From my research, four types stand out as the most popular ways to do IF:

  • Fast for 14 hours to 16 hours and eat for the remaining eight to 10 hours
  • Eat regularly five days a week and for two days a week, only consume about 1/4 of your normal calorie consumption
  • Fast completely for 24 hours one-two times per week
  • Weeks One and Two: The 5:2 Plan

    Ways To Use This Information For Better Health

    What’s the best time to start my fast when intermittent fasting?
  • Avoid sugars and refined grains. Instead, eat fruits, vegetables, beans, lentils, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats .
  • Let your body burn fat between meals. Dont snack. Be active throughout your day. Build muscle tone.
  • Consider a simple form of intermittent fasting. Limit the hours of the day when you eat, and for best effect, make it earlier in the day .
  • Avoid snacking or eating at nighttime, all the time.
  • Recommended Reading: How Many Hours Do You Fast For Intermittent Fasting

    Types Of Intermittent Fasting

    • 16:8. You eat all of your daily calories within an 8-hour window and fast the rest of the time.
    • 20:4. Just like 16:8 fasting, but you eat all your meals in a 4-hour window and fast for 20 hours each day.
    • One meal a day . You eat all of your daily calories in just one meal each day, and fast the rest of the day.
    • Alternate day fasting. You eat nothing every other day and eat normally on non-fasting days .

    The biggest takeaway here is that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to intermittent fasting. Experiment with a few different routines to the perfect fit, pay attention to how you feel and dont be afraid to experiment with different schedules.

    You can also choose the hours for your eating window. If you love breakfast and dont want to give it up, you can just switch your fasting period. Eat a full meal around 8 a.m., and stop eating around 4 p.m. Youre still fasting for 16 hours daily .

    Play around with different types of fasting and see what works for you.

    Isnt It Important To Have Breakfast Every Morning

    Not necessarily. This appears to be an old misconception, based on speculation and statistics, and it does not hold up when its tested.57 Skipping your morning meal gives your body more time to burn fat for energy. Since hunger is lowest in the morning, it may be easiest to skip it and break your fast later in the day.58

    Learn more:

    Recommended Reading: What Foods Do You Eat On Intermittent Fasting

    Cons Of 1: 6 Intermittent Fasting

    For those who are used to eating all day long, limiting your meals and snacks to a six-hour window may seem impossible. It can also be tough if you have to consume a ton of daily calories, as you might find it hard to eat as many as you need without feeling stuffed. If you’re going from 16:8 to 18:6, it’ll take a week or so to get used to cutting your eating window by two hours. Also, if you don’t make a point to eat enough calories or eat enough protein and healthy fats, 18:6 may cause you to feel hungry or tired.

    Any form of intermittent fasting, especially 18:6 since it’s stricter, could potentially be a trigger for unhealthy behaviors for those with a history of eating disorders. Lisa Eberly Mastela, MPH, RD, told POPSUGAR that any form of IF should be done under the supervision of a registered dietitian, and any diet that encourages a restrictive eating schedule really should be approached with caution from the start. You might be fine doing a less rigid form of intermittent fasting, such as 16:8, but if you have any doubts, it’s best to talk to a doctor or dietitian, and, if you have a history of disordered eating, a therapist. Intermittent fasting shouldn’t negatively affect your life.

    Start A Meal Prep Routine

    Intermittent Fasting: AMA by Tucker Medical  Square One ...

    The idea behind intermittent fasting is to break up food consumption into shorter periods, so it doesnt feel like such a big deal, and reduce decision fatigue which can be especially challenging for people who are constantly bombarded with marketing messages about what they should eat.

    If you want to stay healthy and have a not too stressful lifestyle, it is essential to create a routine. A good way for people who do not know how to cook or pre-make meals is to start this process by buying ingredients in bulk from the grocery store and making one meal before work each day.

    When you start a meal prep routine, it will be easier for you to stay on track. You can reduce the number of decisions by following these steps:

    • Start with breakfast and work your way up through dinner.
    • Plan your menu and recipes in advance, so you dont have to think about what youre going to eat all day.
    • Put together a grocery list that includes foods for each meal.
    • Prepare foods that dont require too much cooking or preparation time.

    Don’t Miss: How Do You Do Intermittent Fasting On Keto

    Alternate Day Fasting : 2 Method

    Some people fast on alternate days to improve blood sugar, cholesterol, and weight loss. A person on the 5:2 method eats 500 to 600 calories on two non-consecutive days each week.

    Some alternate-day fasting regimens add in a third day of fasting each week. For the rest of the week, a person eats only the number of calories they burn during the day. Over time, this creates a calorie deficit that allows the person to lose weight.

    Resources on the Eat Stop Eat, Warrior, and Leangains fasting methods are available to purchase online.

    Before You Get Started

  • Talk to your doctor before you start. Especially if you have any medical condition or if youre on any medication. Stop if you feel sick.
  • Keep it simple. Fasting is defined as consuming only plain water , or black coffee, or unsweetened tea.
  • Keep it easy. Eat your usual meals during your eating window. In my personal experience, intermittent fasting works best when combined with a low carb-high fat diet of real, whole foods. But launching the perfect combination to get the best results is not your goal right nowits to finish a fast.
  • Time is mentioned for simplicity. You dont have to follow them. You may adjust the times according to your schedule.
  • Which days of the week? In my experience, fasting on weekdays are more convenient because theyre more structured and have less variables. But that may not be true for you. What youre looking for are those days where youre more likely to say, Whered the time go? I forgot to eat!
  • Slip ups are okay. First, forgive yourself. You may pick up where you left off or start from Day 1. Do whats easiest to get you back on track. Next
  • If you’re looking for a simple, doable way to practice fasting, I get it. It shouldn’t have to be hard. Get my FREE email course below that shows you the easier way.

    Read Also: How Does Intermittent Fasting Work 16 8

    Keep Track Of Your Journey

    It helps keep track of progress and helps with staying motivated by finding ways to keep up the momentum with the nutrition goals.

    Trifecta App is a weight loss app that helps you to track your progress and stay motivated. It also motivates challenges, rewards, and competitions.

    Alternatively, you can write your progress in a notebook or journal.

    How Long And How Often Should I Fast For

    I LOST OVER 100LBS WITH FASTING | How to Start Intermittent Fasting For Weight Loss | Rosa Charice

    Great question! How long and how often you should fast for on a regular basis depends on your health goals and current health status. For example, if you are overweight or have a high BMI, you might be able to fast more often that someone who is already lean. However, you still need to ensure that your daily eating window gives you enough time to consume a healthy variety of fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts and plant oils, whole grains and protein.

    Its best to begin your intermittent fasting journey by progressively working up from overnight fasting . And yes, sleeping counts as fasting! If you are looking for significant weight loss, you might consider working up to 18-20 hours of daily fasting , alternate day fasting or a 5:2 schedule . Learn more about fasting for weight loss and other benefits here.

    Also Check: What To Eat After Intermittent Fasting

    Can You Eat Anything Before Intermittent Fasting

    Yes, you can eat anything before intermittent fasting. While it is considered normal to eat, intermittent fasting does not mean eating crazy. Intermittent fasting allows you to have periods where you can eat good, nutritious food. Mindfulness of what and when one eats will help individuals become more aware of their diet habits and the nutritional value of what they are consuming.

    Believing The Myths About Intermittent Fasting

    Before you start your intermittent fasting journey, its important to make sure you arent unintentionally buying into these common myths about intermittent fasting. Setting aside these myths will allow you to have more confidence in the decision youve made for your health.

    Myth #1: Intermittent fasting will put you in starvation mode

    This might be the most widely-held myth when it comes to fasting. The concern is that fasting will put your body in starvation mode, which would shut down your metabolism and stop your body from burning fat. On the contrary, studies show that short-term fasting actually increases your metabolic rate.

    Myth #2: Breakfast is the most important meal of the day

    Weve all been reprimanded by Grandma for skipping breakfast. Supposedly, breakfast has tons of benefits, including weight loss and increased metabolism. But is that really true? This study found that breakfast eaters burn the same amount of calories as breakfast skippers. If you choose to have your intermittent fasting window include skipping breakfast, you wont suffer from whatever Grandma was worried about.

    Myth #3: Intermittent fasting causes muscle loss

    Lots of people think that fasting will cause your body to burn muscle for fuel. While this can happen with any kind of diet, research shows that intermittent fasting is better for maintaining muscle mass than calorie-restrictive diets. That means youre likely to have a lower body fat percentage with intermittent fasting.

    Read Also: Is Intermittent Fasting For Me

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