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How To Use Intermittent Fasting For Weight Loss

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Keto And If Diet Plan

How to Use Intermittent Fasting For Rapid Weight Loss

Maybe youre thinking about trying the keto diet or experimenting with fasting. Perhaps youre already doing both. Either way, weve provided a sample daily and weekly layout of what a plan might look like for someone on a keto diet who is also integrating some alternate-day fasting and 16:8 time-restricted feeding into their regimen.


6:00 am: Water and/or black coffee

9:00 am: More water or black coffee.

12:00 pm: TRF ends. Have a keto-friendly meal: maybe a salad with grilled chicken topped with olive oil and feta cheese, avocado and some hard-boiled eggs or bacon bits.

3:00 pm: Snack on some nuts or have some nut butter, and maybe coffee with some MCT oil or coconut oil.

6:00 pm: 8 12oz of a fatty cut of meat plus some vegetables; maybe brussels sprouts cooked in butter.

8:00 pm: Small snack of nuts, blueberries, and a piece of strong dark chocolate for dessert. This is your last meal of the day.

Monday: Same eating window as yesterday: 12 8 pm.

Tuesday: Fasting day. No calories consumed today.

Wednesday: Eating period of 12 8 pm. You might be hungrier today since you fasted yesterday, especially if you did an early morning workout today.

Thursday: Fasting day

Friday: 12 8 eating window. Workout in the morning or, if you want to do a fueled workout, do so in between lunch and dinner.

Saturday: Fast day

A Beginners Guide To 168 Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting is a growing eating trend that alternates between the period of eating and fasting.

According to research, this trend is not only beneficial to your health but can also help you lose weight too.; There are different schedules you can use to get started. One popular way is the 168 intermittent fasting.

Please note that this post may contain affiliate links. You can read my full disclosure;here.

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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.

Recommended Reading: What Foods Can You Eat When You Are Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent Fasting: Whats The Catch

All three of our experts agree: There are no real downsides to intermittent fasting. Its quite safe in terms of how it affects your health and biomarkers, and it doesnt lead to eating disorders, says Varady.

Fung concurs: We, as physicians, tell people to fast all the time. Prior to surgery, prior to colonoscopy, for ultrasounds, even for fasting blood work, people need to fast and nothing bad happens. Theres no more risk with extended fasting.

The biggest drawback is irritabilitythe first five fast days on alternate-day fasting and whole-day fasting are difficult for many people, Varady adds. subsides after the first week or so, though, after which people actually say they have a boost of energy on their fast day, she adds.

What if you sneak a few beers with the boys during a fast window? The only real risk of cheating on your time frames is the same as cheating on any dietyou wont lose weight as quickly as if you had stuck to it perfectly, Varady says.

The Backstory On Intermittent Fasting

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IF as a weight loss approach has been around in various forms for ages, but was highly popularized in 2012 by BBC broadcast journalist Dr. Michael Mosleys TV documentary;Eat Fast, Live Longer;and book;The Fast Diet, followed by journalist Kate Harrisons book;The 5:2 Diet;based on her own experience, and subsequently by Dr. Jason Fungs 2016 bestseller;The Obesity Code. IF generated a steady positive buzz as anecdotes of its effectiveness proliferated.

As a lifestyle-leaning research doctor, I needed to understand the science. The;Obesity Code;seemed the most evidence-based summary resource, and I loved it. Fung successfully combines plenty of research, his clinical experience, and sensible nutrition advice, and also addresses the socioeconomic forces conspiring to make us fat. He is very clear that we should eat more fruits and veggies, fiber, healthy protein, and fats, and avoid sugar, refined grains, processed foods, and for Gods sake, stop snacking. Check, check, check, I agree. The only part that was still questionable in my mind was the intermittent fasting part.

Also Check: What Is 14 10 Intermittent Fasting

The Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting

Fat loss is great, but it isn’t the only benefit of fasting.

1. Intermittent fasting makes your day simpler.

I’m big on behavior change, simplicity, and reducing stress. Intermittent fasting provides additional simplicity to my life that I really enjoy. When I wake up, I don’t worry about breakfast. I just grab a glass of water and start my day.

I enjoy eating and I don’t mind cooking, so eating three meals a day was never a hassle for me. However, intermittent fasting allows me to eat one less meal, which also means planning one less meal, cooking one less meal, and stressing about one less meal. It makes life a bit simpler and I like that.

2. Intermittent fasting helps you live longer.

Scientists have long known that restricting calories is a way of lengthening life. From a logical standpoint, this makes sense. When youre starving, your body finds ways to extend your life.

Theres just one problem: who wants to starve themselves in the name of living longer?

I dont know about you, but Im interested in enjoying a long life. Starving myself doesnt sound that appetizing.

The good news is that intermittent fasting activates many of the same mechanisms for extending life as calorie restriction. In other words, you get the benefits of a longer life without the hassle of starving.

Way back in 1945 it was discovered that intermittent fasting extended life in mice. More recently, this study found that alternate day intermittent fasting led to longer lifespans.

Intermittent Fasting Can Be Hard But Maybe It Doesnt Have To Be

Initial human studies that compared fasting every other day to eating less every day showed that both worked about equally for weight loss, though people struggled with the fasting days. So, I had written off IF as no better or worse than simply eating less, only far more uncomfortable. My advice was to just stick with the sensible,;,;;diet.

New research is suggesting that not all IF approaches are the same, and some are actually very reasonable, effective, and sustainable, especially when combined with a nutritious plant-based diet. So Im prepared to take my lumps on this one .

We have evolved to be in sync with the day/night cycle, i.e., a circadian rhythm. Our metabolism has adapted to daytime food, nighttime sleep. Nighttime eating is well associated with a higher risk of obesity, as well as;.

Based on this, researchers from the University of Alabama conducted;a study;with a small group of obese men with prediabetes. They compared a form of intermittent fasting called “early time-restricted feeding,” where all meals were fit into an early eight-hour period of the day ,or spread out over 12 hours . Both groups maintained their weight but after five weeks, the eight-hours group had dramatically lower insulin levels and significantly improved insulin sensitivity, as well as significantly lower blood pressure. The best part? The eight-hours group also had significantly decreased appetite. They werent starving.

Read Also: Does Intermittent Fasting Help With Belly Fat

The Dark Side Of Intermittent Fasting

Certain cultures have been using intermittent fasting for decades, but like anything that catches on trend, it has been bastardized.

Take a look at social media, youll see all kinds of crazy advice!

There are even fasting detox plans out there now, from so-called gurus looking to make a quick buck. How anyone can class themselves as an expert in not eating is beyond me, but this is the fitness world where anything is possible!

One myth those gurus love to say is that intermittent fasting can reverse the effects of type 2 diabetes.

This is not true.

In fact, a 2015 study published in Diabetes Care found that fasting actually impaired insulin response. Improving your overall lifestyle and getting regular exercise will reverse the effects of type 2 diabetes, and intermittent fasting can be part of that jigsaw if you want, but is not capable of reversing diabetes on its own.

Another myth is that intermittent fasting can boost oxygen supply to muscles during exercise.

Again, not true.

Early research on this showed a very slight increase, yes, and this created a big buzz around IF because its essentially the same thing endurance athletes are trying to achieve when they take illegal substances.

However, fasting doesnt create anywhere near the same level of improvement.

And now on to my favorite intermittent fasting myth

Ive saved the craziest until last.

Website member Jenny asked about this particular myth on my social media recently:

Pros And Cons Of Intermittent Fasting For Weight Loss

How to Use Intermittent Fasting for WEIGHT LOSS

Like any weight loss method, there are pros and cons to intermittent fasting. Most weight loss techniques come with similar pros and cons. Those being that they are great for results, pose some risks and are not ideal for everyone. So lets take a look at the positives and negatives for IF and weight loss.;


Also Check: Is Fasting Good For Your Health

Level Of Effort: Hard

Limitations: Its not easy to skip most of your calories a few days a week and rely mostly on water, coffee, and tea to keep you feeling full. Youll need a balanced meal plan to eat in moderation on your so-called “feast” days, despite their name. You can indulge in a treat occasionally, but that’s about it if you want to see results.

Cooking and shopping: You can continue your regular cooking and shopping, as long as you stick to mostly healthy foods.

Packaged food and meals? No.

In-person meetings: No.

Exercise: How much you exercise is up to you. But obviously, youre not going to have a lot of energy for that on your fasting days. The creators of the Every Other Day diet studied people doing cardiovascular exercise while on the alternate-day fasting plan and found that they were able to maintain muscle mass while fasting.

Is It Easy To Follow A Whole Food Diet

Once youve got your head around having ingredients rather than ready-to-eat things in your kitchen cupboards, its actually very easy. The only issue is the lifestyle and habit changes that come along with it.

It is very likely that for many people, following a totally, religiously whole food diet may be unattainable at least some of the time. For example, there are days where you dont get time to make your lunch or if you want to enjoy social eating. Similarly, people who have young children or who are working more than one job are unlikely to be able to follow a whole food diet all of the time.

Sometimes, we put ourselves under pressure to be as perfect as we can with diets like this, which can lead to an eating disorder called Orthorexia, which is a preoccupation with healthy eating.

This means that following a whole food diet, in principle, can be healthy and accessible for some people but not for everyone. It also means that those with previous disordered eating, as always, need to avoid any form of dietary restriction or rules around their diet.

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What Should The Grand Feast Look Like

When on a fat loss diet I like to eat around 10 calories per pound of goal bodyweight per day. This may seem on the low side for calories but thats why fasting and fat loss go hand in hand. You can still eat massive meals and not feel deprived all while still being a caloric deficit!

This level of calories has never failed me at getting lean even with the absence of cardio.

Depending on what your goal weight is this may give you 600-1200 calories to play with. I generally keep this meal around 800-1000 calories in size. I recommend keeping this meal high in protein with moderate amounts of fat and carbs.

If you are having a very lean source of protein then you can use fats more sparingly . If you are going for a fattier cut of meat then I recommend staying away from any additional fats.

Fasting For Healthy Weight Loss The Wrap Up

Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting can play a role in your healthy weight loss lifestyle.;

But remember, fasting is not a magic bullet. The rest of your diet and lifestyle still matter.;

Also, remember our six tips for healthy weight loss with intermittent fasting:

  • Start with shorter fasts, especially if you take blood sugar lowering medications. You can always increase your fasting time later as you gain experience with it.
  • Start with eating at least two meals per day, targeting a 14 to 18 hour fasting window to ensure you arent feeling too deprived or excessively hungry.
  • Eat an adequate-protein or high-protein diet to help maintain lean muscle mass.; This is a key component of healthy weight loss!
  • If you need help meeting your protein goals, feel free to add a high-protein snack on your fasting days.
  • It isnt all about food. Add resistance training to your weekly exercise routine to maintain lean mass.;
  • You dont need to overeat during your eating window to make up for lost calories. Eat until you feel satisfied and then stop.
  • If you follow these tips, theres a good chance that intermittent fasting can help you lose weight in a healthy way.

    Read Also: What Can I Have While Intermittent Fasting

    Should I Try Intermittent Fasting

    Sessions says this plan probably works best for people who are regimented and says yo-yo dieters will likely have a hard time fasting. The best way to lose weight is by finding something you can stick to.

    “The long-term key to weight loss is to establish a lifestyle that you can sustain,” says Sessions.

    If you think this will work for you, it’s best to work with a doctor or dietitian who can ensure you’re getting enough nutrients.

    Is A Whole Food Diet Boring

    Absolutely not! The beauty of this way of eating is that there are barely any recipes that are off-limits. If you can make it yourself using natural ingredients, then it counts. So, dig out your recipe books and get familiar with your spice cupboard.

    Heres my advice if youre just starting: stock up on coconut milk and canned tomatoes. Youll use them all the time in sauces.

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    Can I Drink Bcaas During My Fast

    No you cant.

    Muscle building magazines and supplement companies LOVE advising people to sip on BCAA supplements during their fasting window to avoid muscle breakdown. Myprotein do it here.

    This is total bulls**t.

    First, you neednt worry about losing muscle because a fasting window isnt long enough to cause this to happen anyway. Also, BCAAs will break your fast!

    This is a commonly made mistake, because BCAA supplement labels claim the product has zero calories. They do actually contain calories, its just that current food industry regulations prevent manufacturers from listing them on the label. If Ive just blown your mind with that information, read this post for more.

    Lose Weight With Intermittent Fasting How It Works

    How to do Intermittent Fasting for Serious Weight Loss | Dr Berg
    • Breakfast
    • Nutrition

    Anyone who wants to lose weight in a healthy and sustainable way will sooner or later come across interval fasting as a nutritional concept. Unlike classic diets, it does without prohibitions and extreme calorie deficits, which is probably one of the reasons why it is so popular.

    Here we tell you what Intermittent Fasting actually is and how it works. Youll also find out how to get rid of unloved kilos and which breakfast is particularly suitable for this. Lets go!

  • Nutrition
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    How Long Should You Fast

    The concept calls for going extended periods of time without eating, and people generally follow three common fasting schedules:

    • Alternate-day fasting entails switching from days without food restrictions and days that include one meal that provides about 25 percent of your daily calorie needs, according to Harvard Health Publications. For example, you might eat one 700-calorie meal on Monday and resume your normal diet on Tuesday.
    • Whole-day fasting is also known as the 5:2 fasting schedule, which means you eat roughly 500-calories two days a week. The other five days have no food restrictions.
    • Time-restricted fasting is typically following in a 16:8 format, meaning you only eat for 8 hours throughout the day and fast for 16. For example, noon to 8 p.m. is a good guide as many people only eat lunch and dinner.

    Everyone’s preferred fasting schedule will vary, but New York-based Alexandra Sowa, M.D., says it’s best to start slow with just a 12-hour fast. If that’s not unbearable, move onto a 16-hour fast several times a week.

    “If you like it then see how you do extending it to 24-hour fast,” she tells Men’s Health.

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