Alternate Day Intermittent Fasting
Alternate day Fasting
Alternate day intermittent fasting incorporates longer fasting periods on alternating days throughout the week.
Alternate-day fasting has you fast every other day, either by not eating anything or only eating a few hundred calories. Many of the test-tube studies showing the health benefits of intermittent fasting used some version of this method.
Cons Of Intermittent Fasting For Women
“Despite the benefits found in research, it’s important to consider the context and remember that it’s not appropriate for all people at all times,” says Greaves. “Women of reproductive age need to be particularly careful with intermittent fasting as their bodies are more sensitive to stressors like prolonged fasting and caloric restriction.”
Greaves explains, “Intermittent fasting itself is a stressor on the body, and in the context of our modern day life that’s already filled with chronic emotional, physiological and environmental stressors, IF might do more harm than good. Fasting increases cortisol which can lead to blood sugar dysregulation, increased insulin resistance, lean muscle loss, fatigue and disruptions to thyroid function over time. In the short-term fasting may lower thyroid stimulating hormone, but elevated cortisol on a persistent basis can reduce the conversion of thyroid hormone.”
“Fasting can also lead to undereating, which we know negatively influences female hormones in a variety of ways,” Greaves says. The caloric restriction caused by intermittent fasting could lead to loss of menstrual cycle and interfere with fertility .
It Could Lead To Disordered Eating
The Warrior Diet places an emphasis on overeating, which could be problematic for many people.
Though Ori Hofmekler argues that one should know to stop eating when you feel pleasantly satisfied, this may not translate into healthy eating practices for everyone.
The Warrior Diet could lead to binging and purging behaviors, especially in those at risk of developing disordered eating.
Binging on large quantities of food may also lead to feelings of regret and shame, which can negatively impact mental health and body image.
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Benefits To Gut Health
Short periods of fasting, such as skipping breakfast , may benefit your gut microbes, explains Professor Tim Spector of Kings College London in his book Spoon-Fed. Although research in the field is in its early stages, accumulating evidence suggests that during fasting, certain species of microbes replicate and feed off carbohydrates in the gut lining. This makes the gut barrier healthier and more efficient.
One explanation for this could be that gut microbes follow a circadian rhythm like you do. Microbe communities, like us, may also need to rest and recuperate as part of a daily circadian rhythm which could be important for our gut health, writes Spector.
Everyones body responds differently to skipping meals, so Spector suggests experimenting by giving breakfast or another meal a miss to see how you feel. Leaving a minimum of 12 hours between eating, even if its only occasionally, could improve your mood and energy levels in the short term , he argues.
How Does It Differ From The 1: 8 Method
This plan may sound very similar to the 16:8 intermittent fast with just a smaller feeding window, however, it is actually very different to execute. Heres why:
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What Is The Best Time Of Day To Fast
Our metabolism has evolved to be in sync with the circadian rhythm, which means our bodies function optimally when we eat during the day when we’re awake and active, and don’t eat at night.
This is why for the 16/8 Method, it is commonly recommended that your eating period be from approximately noon to 8 pm, 11 am to 7 pm, or 10 am to 6 pm, for example, to keep the majority of your meals within the daytime. The best time of day to fast, however, may vary depending on your lifestyle and work and sleep schedules.
Life Intermittent Fasting Tracker: Lasting Results
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Unique Features of This Intermittent Fasting App
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Schedule #: 1: : 4 Omad And Other Types Of Time Restricted Feeding
Popularized and researched by Satchidananda Panda, PhD, time-restricted feeding combines a fasting window with a feeding window. During the fasting window, people either dont eat at all or eat much less than usual. During the feeding window, people may either eat normally or more than normal.
In theory, this protocol takes advantage of our natural circadian rhythm to optimize metabolic health.
What it involves
Three of the more popular types of time-restricted eating include:
- 16:8, which calls for a 16-hour fast followed by an 8-hour eating window.
- 20:4, which entails fasting for the first 20 hours of each day, and then eating only during a 4-hour overfeeding window. Generally, most people put their 4-hour overfeeding window at the end of the day, as its more convenient for family dinners and after-work training sessions.
- OMAD, or one meal a day, which involves consuming all of your calories within 1 hour and nothing for the other 23 hours.
In each approach, some people focus on including highly-satiating foods such as colorful veggies and lean protein. These foods can help to dampen hunger during the fasting window.
For someone following 16:8, it might look like this:
Monday, 8pm: Finish your last meal of the day.
Tuesday, 11am: Work out.
Tuesday, 12pm: Eat your first meal, ideally the biggest one of the day.
Tuesday, 12-8pm: Feeding window during which you eat your daily energy intake.
Tuesday, 8pm: Last meal of the day ends, and the fasting period starts.
What Is The Ideal Time For Fasting
Well, this is going to depend on your lifestyle.
What hours do you work? What time do you wake up?
What time do you go to bed?
If you want to have success with intermittent fasting these are the questions you need to start asking yourself. Your answers will vary from the next person. The ideal time for fasting is really going to be determined by your schedule.
Here is an example: When I was following the 16:8 schedule I was waking up at 6 am, started working at 8 am and then my first meal was at Noon. When I got home around 6 pm, Id eat dinner and have a light snack at 7:30 by 8 pm I was done eating until Noon the next day.
I, of course, was also following a ketogenic lifestyle so my total carb intake was anywhere between 15 20 carbs per day . This allowed me to get the most out of intermittent fasting.
If you want to get started on Keto check out my FREE KETO EDITION: EAT THIS, NOT THAT. This is a great place to start and will show you all the foods that are Keto approved. As well as, foods you should avoid.
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Like I said before, its whatever makes the most sense for your lifestyle. Whatever time frame is easiest for you is what you should aim for and this will allow you to be consistent!
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How To Get Started
16/8 intermittent fasting is simple, safe and sustainable.
To get started, begin by picking an eight-hour window and limit your food intake to that time span.
Many people prefer to eat between noon and 8 p.m., as this means youll only need to fast 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 normal lunch around noon and a light early dinner or snack around 4 p.m. before starting your fast.
However, you can experiment and pick the time frame that best fits your schedule.
Additionally, to maximize the potential health benefits of your diet, its important to stick to nutritious whole foods and beverages during your eating periods.
Filling up on nutrient-rich foods can help round out your diet and allow you to reap the rewards that this regimen has to offer.
Try balancing each meal with a good variety of healthy whole foods, such as:
- Fruits: Apples, bananas, berries, oranges, peaches, pears, etc.
- Veggies: Broccoli, cauliflower, cucumbers, leafy greens, tomatoes, etc.
- Whole grains: Quinoa, rice, oats, barley, buckwheat, etc.
- Healthy fats: Olive oil, avocados and coconut oil
- Meat, poultry, fish, legumes, eggs, nuts, seeds, etc.
Drinking calorie-free beverages like water and unsweetened tea and coffee, even while fasting, can also help control your appetite while keeping you hydrated.
Fasting For 2 Days A Week
People following the 5:2 diet eat standard amounts of healthful food for 5 days and reduce calorie intake on the other 2 days.
During the 2 fasting days, men generally consume 600 calories and women 500 calories.
Typically, people separate their fasting days in the week. For example, they may fast on a Monday and Thursday and eat normally on the other days. There should be at least 1 non-fasting day between fasting days.
There is limited research on the 5:2 diet, which is also known as the Fast diet. A involving 107 overweight or obese women found that restricting calories twice weekly and continuous calorie restriction both led to similar weight loss.
The study also found that this diet reduced insulin levels and improved insulin sensitivity among participants.
A small-scale study looked at the effects of this fasting style in 23 overweight women. Over the course of one menstrual cycle, the women lost 4.8 percent of their body weight and 8.0 percent of their total body fat. However, these measurements returned to normal for most of the women after 5 days of normal eating.
How Can I Suppress Hunger During Intermittent Fasting
Eat high-fiber foods, such as nuts, beans, fruits and vegetables, and high protein foods, including meat, fish, tofu, or nuts, during your eating window, Varady advised. Chewing high-fiber gummies can also help.
Drink lots of water. People tend to think they’re hungry, when they are really just thirsty, she said.
Go for black coffee or tea, or cinnamon or licorice herbal teas. These beverages may have appetite-suppressing effects, Varady noted.
Watch less TV: I know this sounds strange, but while you are watching TV, you are bombarded with dozens of ads for food. This can make you feel hungry, when in actuality, you are not hungry at all, she said.
Remember, being “a little hungry” is the best thing that can happen to you, wrote Madelyn Fernstrom, health and nutrition editor at NBC News, calling it a “true mind-body connection” that helps you recognize fullness.
How To Successfully Do The : 4 Intermittent Fast
The Warrior Diet plan involves fasting for 20 hours during the day followed by overeating in a 4-hour window at night.
For example, you may set your feeding window at 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm. During this time you can eat as much as you want with an emphasis on unprocessed, organic whole foods particularly those high in dietary fats and protein.
After 10:00 pm, you fast or eat very small portions of specific foods such as raw fruit and vegetables until 6:00 pm the next day. Its important youre eating as fewer calories as possible during this time.
The method is best suited for people who have tried intermittent fasting before or who already consume a low-carb/ketogenic diet.
Hofmekler recommends you follow a three-week, three-phase plan initially before starting the Warrior Diet. This helps the body adapt to the eating and fasting schedule and become accustomed to using body fat as energy. This three-week introduction includes:
Once you have completed the three-phase diet, it is recommended you start it again before following the 20:4 guidelines.
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Its Inappropriate For Many People
The Warrior Diet is not a way of eating that everyone should follow.
This type of intermittent fasting is inappropriate for many people, including:
Some women may be able to fast intermittently without negative effects. However, some may experience unpleasant side effects like insomnia, anxiety, missed periods and reproductive health disturbances.
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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Leangains Aka 1: 8 Intermittent Fasting
Next up, we have leangains! With leangains intermittent fasting, you will fast for 16 hours, followed by an 8-hour eating window on a daily or near-daily basis. Using the same example times as before, you would eat between 12 pm and 8 pm and fast from 8 pm to 12 pm the following day with this plan.
Leangains intermittent fasting is ideal for those that have experience with crescendo intermittent fasting in addition to at least one of the characteristics below:
- Dont like eating breakfast or dont have time.
- Busy folks.
- Those that do little to no snacking.
- People who prefer eating larger meals.
- Those seeking enhanced weight and fat loss benefits.
Learn more about leangains intermittent fasting:
What Foods To Eat
OMAD can be a lifestyle. But its generally a type of dietary pattern. Just like any other diet, you should consider eating only whole, nutrient-dense foods.
Thus, make sure to fill your stomach with a variety of nutritious foods, like fruits, vegetables, healthful fats, legumes, and seeds, among others. You may refer to this guide to help you plan your OMAD.
When you do OMAD, you must limit or avoid eating highly processed foods, such as white bread, chips, sugary baked goods, and cereals. They have little nutritional value. They also make you feel hungry, which can break your fast.
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Switching Up Your Fasting Plan May Be Beneficial As Well
Some experts find that people’s fasting results eventually stall, in which case it helps to switch things up. “Increase your fasting time to a few days a week or do a longer fast one day a week,” suggests Pedre. “In the end, what works best is mixing it up for your body and keeping it guessing when food is coming.”
To learn more about what IF approach may be right for you, check out our other expert-powered articles about the different types of intermittent fasting plans, the ultra-popular 16:8 intermittent fasting schedule, and the fasting-mimicking diet. Also, be sure you know exactly what breaks a fast to ensure you’re getting the maximum possible benefit.