What Are The Possible Side Effects
There can be a number of possible side effects of intermittent fasting.40 Heres what to do if you encounter them:
- Hunger is the most common side effect of intermittent fasting. This may be less of an issue if youre already on a keto or low-carb, higher-fat diet.41Learn more
- Constipation is common. Less going in means less going out. However, keep in mind this is a normal response to eating less. It is not a concern and shouldnt require treatment unless you experience significant bloating or abdominal discomfort. Standard laxatives or magnesium supplements can be used, if needed.
- Headaches are common and tend to disappear after the first few times on fasts.42 Taking some extra salt often helps mitigate such headaches.43
- Mineral water may help if your stomach tends to gurgle.
- Other possible side effects include dizziness, heartburn and muscle cramps. Learn more
A more serious side effect is the refeeding syndrome. Fortunately, this is rare and generally only happens with extended fasts when one is undernourished.44
Since most of these side effects are manageable, they do not mean you have to stop your fast. However, if you truly feel unwell, are excessively dizzy, profoundly weak or have other severe symptoms, then you should break your fast.
Just remember to go slowly when you break it and prioritize fluids and salt . And of course, if the symptoms persist, see your doctor immediately.
What To Eat During Intermittent Fasting
You can eat whatever you want during the eating window, paying attention to ingredients to avoid worsening your health and weight.
If youre following the intermittent fasting pattern, youre probably also into healthy food so its advised to eat clean: proteins and vegetables have to be preferred, carbs should be avoided or eaten in moderation, and sugar should be completely avoided.
Eat for your goals. This is the only recommendation possible. You should avoid snacks in between your meals but this is not mandatory and if you feel you need a snack, go for it!
Dont overthink it keep things simple, and youll see big changes in your body and your life!
Examples Of Different Intermittent Fasting Schedules
If youre considering giving fasting a shot, there are a few different options for working it into your lifestyle.
Daily Intermittent Fasting
Most of the time, I follow the Leangains model of intermittent fasting, which uses a 16hour fast followed by an 8hour eating period. This model of daily intermittent fasting was popularized by Martin Berkhan of Leangains.com, which is where the name originated.
It doesn’t matter when you start your 8hour eating period. You can start at 8am and stop at 4pm. Or you start at 2pm and stop at 10pm. Do whatever works for you. I tend to find that eating around 1pm and 8pm works well because those times allow me to eat lunch and dinner with friends and family. Breakfast is typically a meal that I eat on my own, so skipping it isn’t a big deal.
Because daily intermittent fasting is done every day it becomes very easy to get into the habit of eating on this schedule. Right now, you’re probably eating around the same time every day without thinking about it. Well, with daily intermittent fasting it’s the same thing, you just learn to not eat at certain times, which is remarkably easy.
Weekly Intermittent Fasting
One of the best ways to get started with intermittent fasting is to do it once per week or once per month. The occasional fast has been shown to lead to many of the benefits of fasting we’ve already talked about, so even if you don’t use it to cut down on calories consistently there are still many other health benefits of fasting.
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Do Consult With A Trusted Integral Physician
Some doctors still think that intermittent fasting for weight management is a fad or dietary gimmick, but the research shows that fasting is not dangerous and provides multiple health benefits when done correctly. Find an integral physician who is up to date with the latest research and consult with them about your desire to try intermittent fasting, especially if you are under 18 years of age, have a history of eating disorders or are past the age of 65.
Is Intermittent Fasting Right For You
Fasting, like eating a low carb-high fat diet, is another;tool;for weight loss and improving your health. But the effectiveness of these tools rely on whether you can do them consistently over the long run.
Here are some pros and cons to help you decide:
- Its simple and easier to stick to because you simply skip a meal when youre not hungry or too busy to eat.
- You can fit it into your lifestyle, i.e. schedule around special occasions, Holidays.
- However, theres the;hunger;. You need to develop the skill to ride the ebb and flow of hunger by being more mindful about;why;you eat. But because its a skill, you can learn it.
What if you achieved the health benefits you want from intermittent fasting?
How will that change you?
“You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.”
– Martin Luther King Jr.
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.
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What Is The Most Popular Way To Do Intermittent Fasting
The most popular way to intermittent fast is the 16/8 method also known as the Leangains Protocol. This involves counting your calories and limiting your food intake for 8 hours a day and fasting for the remaining 16. Within this 8-hour window, you should fill up on healthy nutrients and try to balance every meal with a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, healthy fats, and good sources of protein.
This method is popular because it is generally a lot less restrictive than other forms of dieting and requires minimal effort when considering the potential benefits. Because you will be fasting for long periods of time, you will have a lot less to think about. Counting calories during this method isn’t as pivotal as it is with other forms of dieting, either. If you are looking to do more extreme versions of fasting, this type would definitely be the best one to start with. As stated previously, however, please consult your doctor before embarking on this journey.
Benefits Of 16/8 Intermittent Fasting
16/8 intermittent fasting is a popular diet because its easy to follow, flexible and sustainable in the long term.
Its also convenient, as it can cut down on the amount of time and money you need to spend on cooking and preparing food each week.
In terms of health, 16/8 intermittent fasting has been associated with a long list of benefits, including:
- Increased weight loss: Not only does restricting your intake to a few hours per day help cut calories over the course of the day, but studies also show that fasting could boost metabolism and increase weight loss (
16/8 intermittent fasting is easy to follow, flexible and convenient. Animal and human studies suggest that it may increase weight loss, improve blood sugar levels, enhance brain function and extend longevity.
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What Exactly Is Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent Fasting is nothing more than timing up your food at certain times throughout the day and basically having a window in which you eat. That window can be anywhere between four to eight hours, and you close that window or widen it. You typically put that window in the last third of the day which is when you tend to be more insulin sensitive naturally.
Lets talk about that window for example, instead of eating between 7AM and 8PM, thats a thirteen hour window, were taking that and closing it down maybe to eight, or five, or four hours.
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.
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How To Start Fasting
Some of todays most cutting-edge nutrition research suggests that you should eat less often, forcing yourself to go longer periods of time without fooda practice that was common just a few centuries back. Our basic, primal instincts drive our brain;to function best when we are hungry and physically active, says Mark Mattson, chief of the laboratory of neurosciences at the National Institute on Aging. It evolved, in part, for success in seeking and acquiring food.
The way many of us eat todaysatiating hunger with snacks high in simple carbsleaves the body craving a constant sugar fix. Without it, you crash and suffer from fatigue, lack of mental clarity, and deteriorating athletic performance, among other things. But fasting has been shown to help stabilize blood sugar levels through a process called glucose regulation, says Mattson. By putting your body through short-term stress, you teach it how to use energy more efficiently and recover quickly, he says.
Getting started can be a daunting task, but were here to make it simpler. Read on for your guide on how to hit your bodys reset button.
Struggling To Cook Healthy We’ll Help You Prep
Ive been a dietitian for nearly 15 years, so Ive read my share of research on IF, Ive written about it a handful of times, and Ive even tried intermittent fasting out for myself. Heres my take: it works really well for some people regardless of what type of IF they follow, but one common denominator is that plenty of folks out there are doing it wrong.
There happens to be a lot of misinformation floating around the internet , so I culled a list of some of the top comments and questions on Reddits Intermittent Fasting thread and answered them the best I could. Here are some common questions I found about IF, plus some common mistakes to avoid when trying it.
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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.
Understanding How To Start Doing Intermittent Fasting For Weight Management
If you are interested in learning about how to do intermittent fasting for weight management, youve come to the right place. Here at Organifi, we have not only been exploring and leveraging the benefits of fasting for health and weight;management in our own lives, but we’ve also been helping others’ achieve their goals for years, too. When youre practicing fasting to lose weight, boost your immune system, balance gut bacteria and reboot your metabolism, its essential to have an optimal intermittent fasting schedule that meets your life and nutrition needs appropriately. And that includes paying special attention to how to;break your fast, too.Before we dive deeper into that let’s clear some basics up:
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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.
Who Should Avoid The : 2 Diet Or Intermittent Fasting Overall
Although intermittent fasting is very safe for healthy, well-nourished people, it does not suit everyone.
Some people should avoid dietary restrictions and fasting completely. These include:
- Individuals with a history of eating disorders.
- Individuals who often experience drops in blood sugar levels.
- Pregnant women, nursing mothers, teenagers, children and individuals with type 1 diabetes.
- People who are malnourished, underweight or have known nutrient deficiencies.
- Women who are trying to conceive or have fertility issues.
Furthermore, intermittent fasting may not be as beneficial for some women as it is for men .
Some women have reported that their menstrual period stopped while they were following this type of eating pattern. However, things went back to normal when they returned to a regular diet.
Therefore, women should be careful when starting any form of intermittent fasting, and stop doing it immediately if any adverse effects occur.
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Should I Try Intermittent Fasting
Now that were through a lot of the science stuff, lets get into the reality of the situation: why should you consider Intermittent Fasting?
#1) Because it can work for your goals. Although we know that not all calories are created equal, caloric restriction plays a central role in weight;loss.
When you fast, you are also making it easier to restrict your total caloric intake over the course of the week, which can lead to consistent weight loss and maintenance.
#2) Because it simplifies your day. Rather than having to prepare, pack, eat, and time your meals every 2-3 hours, you simply skip a meal or two and only worry about eating food in your eating window.
Its one less decision you have to make every day.
It could allow you to enjoy bigger portioned meals; and STILL eat fewer calories on average.
#3) It requires less time . Rather than having to prepare or purchase three to six meals a day, you only need to prepare two meals.
Instead of stopping what youre doing six times a day to eat, you simply only have to stop to eat twice. Rather than having to do the dishes six times, you only have to do them twice.
Rather than having to purchase six meals a day, you only need to purchase two.
#4) It promotes stronger insulin;sensitivity;and increased growth hormone secretion, two keys for weight loss and muscle gain.;Intermittent fasting helps you create a double whammy for weight loss and building a solid physique.
#6) Plus, Wolverine does it:
#7) Boy George is a fasting fan :
Prepare For Your Body To Feel Different
Many people feel tired, get a headache, and generally feel out of sorts on days two and three of any fast. Thats normal. The negative side effects of fasting typically go away by the end of day three or four. If youre going shorter than two days, youll likely start to feel better just as the fast comes to a close. Once you turn the corner on day three, most people feel great after the negative symptoms have passed, and a sense of calm, well-being, and heightened concentration takes over. But if you feel like something is wrong during a fastmore than just feeling a bit tireddefinitely eat. You can always try again another time.
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Heres My Simplest Formula For Those Looking To Lose Weight With Intermittent Fasting
Focus on the main lifts while cutting out breakfast. Get stronger in the compound lifts. Keep it simple. Replace breakfast with coffee, water, sparkling water or a mix of all three. Youre not trying to compete on stage. Youre just looking to get more jacked without devoting your entire life to this stuff. Your body will change with weight training and fasting.
You wont even feel restricted. Youre going to have more energy than ever. You finally have a plan that you can stick to because were all good at doing nothing. Lets do this. Lets do more of nothing.
The goal is to add more play to your life. You dont want to live in the kitchen or feel like you have to spend hours on the treadmill. You dont have to feel guilty over not wanting to eat chicken and rice every single day.
Those are the rules for intermittent fasting to lose weight. You dont have to follow all of these rules religiously. This isnt a cult. These are just the guidelines that will help you get lean by doing nothing.