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What Fasting Is Right For Me

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Risk Of Further Vitamin Mineral And Other Micronutrient Deficiencies

Is Intermittent Fasting Right for Me?

Likely the biggest problem with regular fasting is that one aggravates or induces micronutrient deficiencies. Micronutrient deficiencies are very common. Most people, even those that eat healthy, are deficient in various micronutrients or take in suboptimal levels, typically without even knowing it. For example, studies show that about 70 percent of people are not consuming enough magnesium, a very important mineral for health and longevity. Many people are deficient in optimal levels of iodine, B vitamins, iron , omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D, vitamin K, zinc and so on.

These deficiencies lead to all kinds of health problems, from brain fog and fatigue to an increased risk of cancer, Alzheimers and accelerated aging.

We explain here why so many people are deficient and why the vitamin and mineral recommendations of governments are substandard.

Fasting, which means eating less, can further lead to deficiencies, which in the long term can compromise your health and accelerate aging.

So if you fast, make sure you take supplements. Because even if you eat healthy, you do need supplements.

Also Check: What Is The Advantage Of Intermittent Fasting

How Does Intermittent Fasting Work

There are several different ways to do intermittent fasting, but they are all based on choosing regular time periods to eat and fast. For instance, you might try eating only during an eight-hour period each day and fast for the remainder. Or you might choose to eat only one meal a day two days a week. There are many different intermittent fasting schedules.

Mattson says that after hours without food, the body exhausts its sugar stores and starts burning fat. He refers to this as metabolic switching.

Intermittent fasting contrasts with the normal eating pattern for most Americans, who eat throughout their waking hours, Mattson says. If someone is eating three meals a day, plus snacks, and theyre not exercising, then every time they eat, theyre running on those calories and not burning their fat stores.

Intermittent fasting works by prolonging the period when your body has burned through the calories consumed during your last meal and begins burning fat.

What Is Intermittent Fasting And How Does It Work

Though commonly referred to as a diet, it is, in fact, an eating pattern where by a person cycles through periods or eating and fasting. There are several ways to practice Intermittent Fasting.

1. Limited Eating Window

Often referred to as 16:8 or 18:6, this simply means you fast for 16 or 18 hours each day followed by an eating window of 8 or 6 hours. You can manipulate the eating window to be whenever you choose.

For example, you can begin your fast after dinner at 7 p.m. on Monday night and continue your fast through the night and into the morning until 11 a.m. when you break your fast with a late breakfast or early lunch.

You can easily shift your eating window to earlier in the day and begin your fast earlier in the evening. The important part is that you stick to the limited eating window, regardless of the time of day.

2. Alternate Day Fasting

Also called 5:2, this pattern involves choosing two non-consecutive days each week to fast while eating a normal calorie intake the other five days of the week.

Fasting in this sense is more like strictly limiting calories. For women it is less than 500 calories on the fasting days and for men it is less than 600 calories.

An example of this pattern is limiting your calorie intake to two small meals of less than 250-300 calories per meal on Mondays and Thursdays each week.

3. Eat-Stop-Eat

4. Warrior Fast

With this type of fasting, you can move your eating window to any time during the day that suits you.

Recommended Reading: Jesus Fasting For 40 Days

Keeps Me Focused On The Why

I was needing structure and routine in my life so I find this app helps me to have that Focus and structure and routine that I need to be serious about being healthier. Using the app daily keeps me super focused on when I should be eating, when I should not be eating and what I am eating. It pushes me to eat healthier, make better choices. Also, I love the fact that we are not counting calories or tracking specific Foods.

What Is Intermittent Fasting And Is It Right For You

Intermittent Fasting: Is It Right For Me?

For many of us, our lives revolve around certain hours of the day, such as work hours, happy hours and sleep hours. But have you heard of eating hours?

You may not have heard it mentioned quite like this but limiting your mealtimes to certain hours of the day is a growing trend known as intermittent fasting. Some people swear by this eating pattern, finding that it helps their weight and appetite and supports overall health.

Is intermittent fasting all hype or is there some truth to these feeding windows? Read on to better understand intermittent fasting, the most popular types of fasting and the advantages and disadvantages associated with each.

Recommended Reading: Does Fasting Help Burn Fat

It Enhances Your Self

Fasting is a great way to challenge yourself, and its even better if you have a support network or online community to keep you accountable. Research suggests that fasting contributes to an increased sense of achievement, reward, pride, and control. Yet fasting is just the start of your longevity journey. If youve already established a fasting habit, then consider it a launchpad to invest in other habits that will improve your health and longevity.

The : 8 Method Of Fasting Is One Of The Easiest Forms Of Intermittent Fasting To Maintain

The 16:8 method requires a person to eat for eight hours per day and to fast for 16 hours per day, Yule said. This can be one of the easiest forms of intermittent fasting to maintain, she said, since a person can eat every day, and several meals and snacks can fit inside the eight-hour window. The person can also adjust the window to meet their lifestyle needs and behaviors, she added.

Recommended Reading: What Foods Do You Eat On Intermittent Fasting

Side Effects Of Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting can have unpleasant side effects. They could include hunger, fatigue, insomnia, irritability, decreased concentration, nausea, constipation and headaches. Most side effects go away within a month.

Sticking with an intermittent fasting routine can be easier for some people rather than trying to watch calories every day. Other people, especially those with busy or variable schedules, have more difficulty maintaining an intermittent fasting routine.

The Leangains Method Aka The 16/8 Method By Martin Berkhan

BEST Plan to Build MUSCLE with Intermittent Fasting – Complete Guide

Method: Dont eat after dinner, then skip breakfast the next day.

Suited for: Devoted gym-goers who want to build muscle and lose fat.

How to:

  • Women = Fasting time 14 hours, feeding time 10 hours.
  • Men = Fasting time 16 hours, feeding time 8 hours.
  • Calorie-free drinks permitted during fast .
  • Start fast after dinner so sleeping takes up most of fasting time. .

Ex. If you finish your last meal at 8 pm on Monday and then dont eat until 12 in the afternoon on Tuesday youve completed your 16 hour fasting time.

Why Leangains?

  • Still able to eat 2-3 meals during feeding time.


Cons: Lean gains has strict guidelines of what to eat especially if youre working out.


Recommended Reading: Men’s Intermittent Fasting Diet

Schedule #: Fasting 1

On this plan, you fast for a full 24 hours once or twice per week, eating sensibly the other days of the week.

What it involves

Its flexible: You can choose whichever 24 hours you want.

People who benefit

This is an advanced fasting schedule.

It works best for people whove tried either meal skipping or a one-day fasting experiment and thought, Gee, that was interesting. Lets see what happens if I push this a bit more.

Note that if youre not ready to fast one or two days a week, theres a nice half step. You can just fast for 24 hours occasionallysay, once a monthas a refresher to remind yourself that hunger is no big deal.

If you try it

  • Start with just one fasting day. Two fasting days can be stressful .
  • Take an honest look at the rest of your life. Fasting doesnt pair well with things like the sleep deprivation that comes from being a new parent or exhaustion from training for a marathon.
  • Train on your non-fasting days. This is especially important if youre exercising intensely.
  • On your non-fasting days, eat real food. Were talking plenty of lean protein, colorful veggies, healthy fats, and minimally processed carbs.
  • On your fasting days, practice radical self care. Relax. Drink plenty of water or tea. Wrap yourself in a cozy blanket. Breathe deeply and find comfort in ways that work for you.
  • Plan for how you will break your fast. Have food you feel good about eating ready to go. Take a few breaths before your first bite. Slow down and enjoy.

Types Of Intermittent Fasting

How to intermittent fast is important because you want to maintain proper nutrition in your overall diet and not put yourself at unnecessary risk. Weight loss is never a one-size-fits-all approach, says Taylor. Intermittent fasting may be sustainable for some people, while others find that this approach just isnt for them.

If you want to try intermittent fasting, youll first need to figure out how youre going to incorporate this style of eating into your life, especially when it comes to things like social events and staying active, she advises.

Ready to explore your options? Here, Taylor explains some of the most popular intermittent fasting methods.

1. Time-restricted eating

In this option, you have set fasting and eating windows. For example, you fast for 16 hours of the day and are able to eat for only eight hours of the day.

Since most people already fast while they sleep, this method is popular. Its convenient, as you extend the overnight fast by skipping breakfast and not eating until lunch. This form of fasting is a safer bet for many people who are interested in trying intermittent fasting for the first time, says Taylor.

Some of the most common ways are:

  • The 16/8 method: Only eating between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.
  • The 14/10 method: Only eating between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m.

This method of intermittent fasting can be repeated as often as youd like or even done once or twice a week whatever your personal preference is.

2. The twice-a-week method

Don’t Miss: What Happens To Your Body During Intermittent Fasting

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.

You might also like:

For most of us, autophagy occurs in our sleep, but it is also brought on by exercise and starvation. Could controlled fasting help to trigger it?

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.

I Would Move Away From Intermittent Fasting For Fat Loss And If You Want To Adopt It Think About The Health Benefits Rachel Clarkson

Episode 13: Is Intermittent Fasting Right for Me?

Someone who has a high-carb diet might never move beyond the catabolic state as they will always have a reserve supply of glycogen. However, someone with a low-carb diet and who regularly exercises might move through it very quickly . I would move away from intermittent fasting for fat loss, and if you want to adopt it think about the health benefits, says Clarkson.

How to fast

To fast you have to downregulate the feeling of hunger, says Clarkson. Hunger is felt when ghrelin, a hormone released from our stomach, triggers the production of two other hormones, called NPY and AgRP, in the hypothalamus.

While these three hormones generate feelings of hunger, there are a multitude more that suppress it. Sometimes called the satiety hormones, one of the key ones is leptin which is released from fat cells to suppress the production of ghrelin basically telling the body “there is fat here that you can burn”.

Ghrelin is sometimes called the short-term hunger response because it is released when the stomach is empty and there is less pressure on the stomach wall. It can be overridden to a certain extent by drinking water. Leptin meanwhile works over the long term.

* William Park is a senior journalist at BBC Future and is @williamhpark on Twitter.

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Read Also: How To Start 16 8 Intermittent Fasting

What Are Leading Intermittent Fasting Plans

When you dive into the world of intermittent fasting, youll find endless streams of information on intermittent fasting plans. Here are some leading intermittent fasting plans for you to consider. Choose the one that suits you best.


16:8 intermittent fasting method is very simple: fasting for 16 hours a day and eating in the remaining 8-hour eating window to supplement all required nutrients. The most popular way is not to eat from 8 p.m. to 12 at noon the next day. In addition to this time period, you can eat as usual. And it is not necessarily limited to this time period, and you can arrange a suitable fasting period according to your own living procedures. Most people find that the easiest way is to fast at night, then skip breakfast and have the first meal at lunchtime or earlier in the afternoon.


5:2 intermittent fasting method requires eating according to normal living habits five days a week and limiting the calories of diet to 500-600 for the other two days. These two days can be carried out continuously or separately. In the two days of calorie restriction, you can eat fewer and more meals or concentrate on eating. But be careful to choose low-carbon water and low-calorie food and drinks, and dont exceed the limit.

Warrior Diet


Alternate-Day Fasting

Choose-Your-Day Fasting

Over-Night Fasting

The Best And Worst Diets For Sustained Weight Loss According To Registered Dietitians

So, does it actually lead to weight loss? Anecdotal evidence has led proponents of the plan to believe so. For the people who can adhere to IF, it does work, Kumar says. But fans of the approach claim theres so much more to IF than just a lean body. Lori Shemek, PhD, a nutrition and weight loss expert in Dallas and author of How to Fight FATflammation, explains to clients that IF may improve their insulin sensitivity , reduce inflammation, and boost longevity by bettering the health of your mitochondria , she says.

Recommended Reading: How Does Fasting To Lose Weight Work

Editorial Sources And Fact

  • Fothergill E, Guo J, Howard L, et al. Persistent Metabolic Adaptation 6 Years After The Biggest Loser Competition. Obesity. August 2016.
  • Varady KA, Cienfuegos S, Ezpeleta M, et al. Cardiometabolic Benefits of Intermittent Fasting. Annual Review of Nutrition. October 2021.
  • Gabel K, Hoddy KK, Haggerty N, et al. Effects of 8-Hour Time Restricted Feeding on Body Weight and Metabolic Disease Risk Factors in Obese Adults: A Pilot Study. Nutrition and Healthy Aging. June 2018.
  • Catterson JH, Khericha M, Dyson MC, et al. Short-Term, Intermittent Fasting Induces Long-Lasting Gut Health and TOR-Independent Lifespan Extension. Current Biology. June 2018.
  • De Cabo R, Mattson MP. Effects of Intermittent Fasting on Health, Aging, and Disease. The New England Journal of Medicine. December 26, 2019.

Find Out Which Intermittent Fasting Method Suits You

Why Intermittent Fasting is Not Working For You (Top 8 Mistakes!)

Tired of searching for which Intermittent fasting is best for me? Take our free intermittent fasting test today! Its quick, easy and of course free. Find out which intermittent fasting diet is best suited to your body type and lifestyle

Take the quiz now and reveal our thought-provoking questions to find out whats best for you. It only takes 3 minutes to complete!

  • How much alcohol do you drink per week?*
  • 1 to 3 standard drinks
  • 4 to 6 standard drinks
  • 7 to 10 standard drinks
  • 11+ standard drinks
  • Do you have an ideal weight in mind?*
  • yes, 20kg+ less than today
  • yes, 15kg to 20kg less
  • yes, 10 to 15kg less
  • yes, 5 to 10kg less
  • yes, 3 to 5kg less
  • yes 0 to 3kg less

Don’t Miss: Is 14 Hours Enough For Intermittent Fasting

This Is The Only Diet That Helped Me Ditch My Belly Fat

About two years ago, I was in the store with my two kids and someone asked me when I was due. I looked down at my belly and said, âIâm not.â This was the second time Iâd been asked about my âbaby â the first time was in college after gaining 40 pounds. I felt pretty defeated. My entire life, Iâve always had a little belly and have always felt self-conscious. I exercise regularly and eat healthy, but came to accept that this is how my body is meant to look. Or is it?

Left: July 2016, Right: April 2018

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