When Can I Eat On The 1: 8 Diet
If you’re following the 16:8 diet, you can pick any 8-hour window to suit your day.
“The most common hours adopted for the eating period is 12pm to 8pm,” explains Tom Jenane, nutrition and fitness expert at Nature’s Health Box . “The reason for this is because people aren’t normally that hungry in the morning and you don’t want to be consuming too many calories in the evening. This window allows for lunch and dinner as well as healthy snacks .”
But while the choice is yours, research has identified the best time to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner for weight loss. According to a study by the University of Murcia , it’s best to stick to a breakfast in the morning, as skipping the meal is linked to a higher rate of obesity. Meanwhile, a late lunch can hinder weight loss in those trying to reduce fat mass, and a late dinner decreases glucose tolerance, making it easier to gain weight.
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What Are The Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting
An intermittent fasting diet is often called a fasting diet, but this is a slight misnomer. You are still eating, just not consuming calories for a period of time. There are various ways to implement this diet, but one of the most popular is a 16/8 fasting diet. This type of diet only allows you to eat during a set window of time. After this window is over, you are in a fasting state. This means you are not consuming any calories. What happens during this fasting period is that your body uses stored fat and protein to produce energy. In this fasting period, your body is not using any carbs or calories from food. This is different from traditional diets where you are not eating at all. Intermittent fasting is a popular diet because it has been shown to be more effective in controlling weight than traditional diets.
How To Plan Your 1: 8 Fasting Schedule
So, what 16:8 fasting schedule will suit you best? No matter when you choose to fast, it should include your sleep hours. To determine what hours are best for you, ask yourself:
- Which meal is essential to me?
- How do I feel if I miss this meal, or if its late or early?
- What part of the day do I feel most hungry?
Try to schedule your fasting period when you tend to be less hungry and least likely to eat otherwise, you might break your fast too early or overeat during your eating window.
Once youve identified the most vital part of your day for your eating window, choose what time you want your window to begin and end. For instance, if youre going to skip breakfast or eat a late breakfast and early dinner, you might set your eating window from 11 am to 7 pm. And if you cant start your day without breakfast, you might choose to eat from 9 am to 5 pm.
Simply put, pick start and end times that work best for you and stick to them. Youll feel better if you follow a set schedule, and youll be more likely to stick to your fasting plan.
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So What Is 1: 8 Intermittent Fasting Method
The 16:8 method is one of the most popular versions of intermittent fasting.
In the 16:8 method, you need to fast every day for 16 hours and consume meals only during the 8-hour eating window.
To make the 16-hour fasting period bearable, you can also align it with your sleep routine so that you spend most of the fasting period asleep.
Moreover, You can eat whatever you like during the eating period and are allowed to consume non-calorie beverages, water, tea, coffee, even during the fasting period.
Unlike other intermittent fasting methods like the warrior diet, where you can consume only one big meal/day or Spontaneous meal skipping, where you randomly skip meals, the 16:8 method is much easier to stick to.
Since you can eat anything anytime during the 8-hour eating window, and are spending a large portion of your fasting period asleep.
Schedule #: Skipping A Meal Sometimes
Though it may not offer all of the physiological benefits of true IF, meal-skipping offers an easy way to ease into IF.
What it involves
There are a couple of ways to try this schedule.
Level 1: Wait until youre hungry to eat. You might remember this from chapter 4 as IF Lite. So if youre not hungry for breakfast when you wake up, for example, you might wait to have your first meal until 11am.
Level 2? Sometimes, dont eat a meal youd normally eat.
For instance, if youd normally eat dinner, and youre not actually hungry for it dont. Or skip lunch. Or breakfast. Try intentionally skipping a meal once or twice a week and see how you feel.
People who benefit
This is an approachable way for beginners to explore how their bodies and minds respond to hunger.
Youll discover: Are you the type of person who can experience hunger, ride it out, and use what you learn to graduate to more intense fasting schedules? Or are you better suited to regular meals and snacks?
If you try it
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How Does The 8 Hour Diet Work
The 8 hour diet works in the following ways:
- Stimulates The Function Of The Mitochondria Mitochondria are cell organelles that convert glucose to usable energy . Fasting for 16 hours helps stimulate the mitochondria and reduces the level of intracellular damage caused by a poor diet ,
- Uses Up Glycogen And Fat Stores Glucose is converted into glycogen and stored in your muscles and liver. In a fasted state, your body first uses up glycogen for fuel and then gains access to fat stores .
The 8 hour diet teaches you how to trigger the furnace in your body that burns fat while you sleep so that the flab can get stripped away right from the moment you wake up.
- Burns The Calories You Consume According to David Zinczenko and Peter Moore, the authors of The 8 Hour Diet, modern lifestyles involve grazing or eating around the clock, which does not give your body sufficient time to burn all the calories that it is required to.
While you are fasting, your body gets the chance to reset itself and digest food. This allows your body to process nutrients and eliminates toxins effectively.
- Keeps You Satiated Most diets are restrictive. From portion control to caloric restriction, there are various terms and conditions that the dieter needs to follow. The 8 hour diet takes the pressure off a traditional diet.
Having the freedom to eat everything within an 8 hour window keeps your taste buds alive and prevents boredom. Thats why it is sustainable.
Making Weight Loss Easier
Intermittent fasting can change the function of hormones, cells and genes, Sawyer says. “Changes in hormone levels makes stored body fat more accessible and initiates important cellular repair processes. When you fast, insulin levels drop, and human growth hormone increases. Your cells also initiate important cellular repair processes and change which genes they express.”
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Are You Getting Enough Sleep
If you’ve cut out late-night snacking, that alone could help you go to bed earlier a very crucial component to any weight loss plan. Getting seven hours of sleep per night has been linked to better weight management, reduced risk of chronic disease, and improved metabolism.
The bottom line: Its simply not feasible for many of us to restrict food entirely for set periods of time in order to achieve better health. In addition to being difficult socially , self-imposed rules are simply not as joyful as having the right information and making choices that empower you versus hold you back. It’s best to find ways to make eating nutritious food work for you in the context of your day-to-day life. If you are considering intermittent fasting, Id encourage you to try it by starting small and keeping it as simple as possible: Close your kitchen after dinner, aim to get more sleep, and sit down for a full breakfast at your usual time tomorrow.
Choosing A Time Window
To get started, begin by picking an 8-hour window and limiting your food intake to that time span.
Popular 16/8 time windows include:
- 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
- 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- 12 p.m. to 8 p.m.
- 2 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Many people prefer to eat between noon and 8 p.m., since you need to fast only overnight and skip breakfast but can still eat a balanced lunch and dinner, along with a few snacks throughout the day.
Others opt to eat between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., which allows plenty of time for a healthy breakfast around 9 a.m., a standard lunch around noon, and a light, early dinner or large snack around 4:30 p.m. before starting your fast.
However, you can experiment and pick the time frame that best fits your schedule.
It may help to set timers at both the beginning and the end of your eating window to remind you when to start and stop eating.
Faster Weight Loss Results
Following a keto intermittent fasting plan can significantly speed up your weight loss process, provided the calories consumed do not exceed the daily requirement. During the fasting hours, your body will be in ketosis due to the intermittent fasting plan, and during the eating window, the body will break down the fat, leading to more ketosis.
Intermittent Fasting Meal Plan Example: What I Eat To Get Lean
Ive been following the 16/8 intermittent fasting model for several years now.
Though I follow the fasting hours looser than I did at the beginning, its made losing weight or cutting extraordinarily easy when thats my goal. Plus, the health benefits are well-documented by now.
But some people get confused about what they can eat and when while fasting.
So heres an intermittent fasting meal plan example: exactly what I eat during the eating window on a typical day to drop fat and lose weight:
On my meal plan, I wake up around 730am and break my fast around 1pm.
Ill usually start with a light but filling lunch a high-protein sandwich on wheat bread and an apple, for example. Sometime in the afternoon Ill get another shot of protein with a low-calorie protein bar or a cup of Greek yogurt.
Then I have a large dinner, somewhere around 1000 calories, and a small sweet treat before bed.
Heres a closer look at what I eat in a day during fasting and how you can build your own intermittent fasting meal plan.
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Where Are You Physically When You Decide To Eat
Many of us eat based on scenario, not hunger levels. Case in point: Raise your hand if youve ever gone to the movies after dinner and suddenly wanted popcorn? Yep, me too!
By considering the moments when you eat, you may become aware of patterns you didn’t notice before. Say youre a person who loves to graze during The Bachelor. If youre fasting after 8 p.m., youve automatically cut hours and subsequently, calories from your post-dinner snacking.
Guide To 16/8 Intermittent Fasting
The 16/8 method is one of the most common and sustainable forms of intermittent fasting. This method involves fasting for 16 hours and then eating during the other eight hours of the day. It may help people lose weight and control blood sugar levels. However, it is not a substitute for a well-balanced diet and whole foods.
The best part about 16/8 intermittent fasting is that it is extremely flexible and easy to follow. It is best when you focus on eating clean and limiting junk food. This way, you are more likely to reap the health benefits of intermittent fasting.
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Risk Of A 1: 8 Fasting Schedule
Its best to avoid intermittent fasting if youre pregnant or breastfeeding, have type 1 diabetes, or a history of eating disorders. You may also experience:
- Weight gain. You can gain weight if you overeat during your eating window. Carefully plan your fasting and eating windows so you dont feel overly hungry during your fast. Be mindful of what and how much you eat during your eating window.
- Hunger. Initially, you may feel starving. But, thoughtfully scheduling your fasting and eating times can help. Also, drink plenty of fluids, find ways to distract yourself, and try meditation.
- Feel cold. Fasting can make you chilly, but its less likely on the 16:8 protocol than more restrictive schedules like 5:2 or OMAD. If you feel cold, bundle up this effect will disappear when you adapt to your new fasting schedule.
- Mild dehydration. Make sure to drink plenty of liquids during your fasting period just be sure that theyre non-caloric beverages like unsweetened tea or water.
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.
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Intermittent Fasting 16/8 What Can You Drink
There are several variations of intermittent fasting, but the basic concept is to limit your daily food intake to 16-hours, or 8 hours per day. In intermittent fasting, you eat during the 8 hours youre awake, and fast during the remaining hours. It can be hard to stick to the diet. I suggest you drink a small amount of water to stay hydrated. Drinking more than three to four liters of water each day might make fasting difficult, so try to drink only a gallon of water or less a day.
Schedule Of 16/8 Intermittent Fasting
Remember that our biological clock is designed to eat early in the morning. Thats why its beneficial to keep your eating periods earlier in the day- say, from 7 oclock in the morning to 3 oclock in the afternoon.
Our body can digest better in the morning.
Thus, it might be useful if you want to experience the full health benefits that intermittent fasting has to offer. This strategy provides you with the weight loss benefits even if you decide on an alternate day fasting method.
Our blood sugar control is also great in the morning, while it gets worse later in the day.
A surprising update was published in Health Harvard discussing the difference between a diet that starts from 7 am to 3 pm, and a diet that starts from 7 am to 7 pm.
It was found out that both groups did not gain weight or experienced weight loss in the first five weeks, but later on, the eight-hour group experiences lower insulin levels and significantly lower blood pressure. The appetite of the eight-hour group also decreases significantly.
But then, you are not obliged to follow a structured plan.
You can fast whenever it suits you. Some people would find it easy to skip meals when they dont have enough time to cook or when they dont feel hungry.
It is worth noting that the type of fasting you choose doesnt matter for as long as you find a way which works best for your lifestyle.
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Schedule #: The : 2 Diet
Popularized by Dr. Michael Mosleys The Fast Diet, this approach involves consuming a lot less food two days of the week, and eating normally the other five.
Maybe youre thinking, Thats not fasting! Thats part-time dieting! And youre right.
Technically, this style of eating is called intermittent energy restriction .
What it involves
Exactly what and how much someone eats on the two fasting days can vary from around 20 percent of normal intake to 70 percent. For someone consuming 2800 Calories a day, a fasting day might range from 560 Calories to 1900.
As you can imagine, the lower end of that range is a lot more challenging than the upper end.
People who benefit
People who do best with 5:2 fasting tend to have a lifestyle and/or fitness schedules that align with it.
Heres an example: Robin Beier, PN2, is a German nutrition coach who practices IF personally and coaches a number of clients who do the same. In Germany, most shops are closed on Sundays, including grocery stores. So for one of his clients, a 5:2 diet naturally emerged.
This client would wake on Sunday with hardly any food at homeand didnt want to eat out. So hed have breakfast and then eat either very little or nothing at all for the rest of the day. He broke the fast Monday evening, after hitting the grocery store for dinner supplies.
If you try it: