What Is The Intemittent Fasting Diet Method
This method focuses more on when you eat, instead of what you eat. There are many ways to practice intermittent fasting, but two of the most popular ones are 16:8 and 5:2.
During intermittent fasting, one is supposed to eat during certain times, and fast the other times. For instance, in the 16:8 diet pattern, people eat for the 8 hours during the day and fast themselves for the other sixteen. Similarly, in 5:2, people eat normally during the 5 days of the week, and fast during the other two.
Fasting Meal Plan Sample
Are you interested in trying the 16:8 diet?
Below is a 7-day meal plan that has everything you need to get started. Each day consists of lunch and dinner with snacking between meals.
- Meal #1: Avocado chicken salad
- Snack #2: Handful of mixed nuts with apricot slices
- Meal #3: Macadamia basil pesto pasta
- Snack #4: Glass of red wine and cheese
- Meal #1: Vegan chickpea salad
- Snack #2: Apple slices with peanut butter
- Meal #3: Teriyaki chicken and cauliflower rice
- Snack #4: Mixed berries with coconut cream
- Meal #3: Asian fried noodles
- Snack #4: Two chocolate chip cookies and a glass of milk
- Meal #1: Broccoli tofu salad with quinoa
- Snack #2: Piece of dark chocolate and bowl of mixed berries
- Meal #3: Seared salmon with brown rice and parmesan-kale salad
- Snack #4: Baked apple with cinnamon
- Meal #1: Turkey chili with cornbread
- Snack #2: Organic edamame and almond slices
- Meal #3: Grilled shrimp served with corn and black bean salsa
- Snack #4: Fruit salad with walnuts
- Meal #1: Grilled salmon with brown rice and mixed greens
- Snack #2: Greek yogurt topped with raspberries
- Meal #3: Mexican tempeh quinoa salad
- Snack # 4: Watermelon slices sprinkled with sea salt
- Meal #1: Sprouts, chicken, and quinoa Buddha bowl
- Snack #2: Hummus and pita with raw veggie sticks
- Meal #3: Hearty chicken tortilla soup with garlic bread
- Snack #4: Banana slices dipped in dark chocolate
What Is 16/8 Intermittent Fasting
The practice of 16/8 intermittent fasting involves limiting your intake of foods and calorie-containing beverages to a set window of 8 hours per day. You abstain from food for the remaining 16 hours, though youre still allowed to drink water and other no-calorie beverages, like plain coffee or tea.
You can repeat this cycle as frequently as youd like from just once or twice per week to every day, depending on your preference.
The popularity of this fasting method has grown widely among those looking to lose weight and burn fat. 16/8 intermittent fasting is also believed to improve blood sugar control and enhance longevity.
While other diets often set strict rules, 16/8 intermittent fasting is easy to follow and may provide measurable results with minimal disruption to your diet. Its generally considered less restrictive and more flexible than many other diets and works with most lifestyles.
With 16/8 intermittent fasting, you restrict your food intake to an 8-hour window and fast for the remaining 16 hours. This practice may support weight loss, improve blood sugar, and increase longevity.
It is simple, safe, and sustainable to do 16/8 intermittent fasting.
You May Like: How To Ease Into Intermittent Fasting
But Is Intermittent Fasting Good For You
While some researchhas shown the benefits of IF, such as weight loss, lowerblood pressure and improved metabolic health, more investigation isstill needed, especially regarding long-term outcomes of IF. There is also theaspect of sustainability. Severely restricting calories or not eating for longperiods at a time isnt for everyone. Some researcheven shows that those who do intermittent fasting dont usually stick with itas compared with those trying to lose weight on more traditional diets.
Still, IF has been shown to be an effective form of weight loss but so have other options like eating a well-balanced diet paired withexercise. One studysuggests that IF is not more effective at supporting weight loss or improvingblood sugars than other well-balanced approaches.
Weight loss is never a one-size-fits-all approach, saysTaylor. IF may be sustainable for some people, while others find that this approachjust isnt for them.
If you want to try IF, youll first need to figure out how you are 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 IF methods.
Eat Often Or Intermittent Fasting
The main difference between eating less but more often and strict periods without meals is a hormonal change.
Accordingly, intermittent fasting shows a more potent reduction of insulin levels as well as insulin resistance, which enables better fat burning .
In addition to the growth hormone, which protects muscle mass, the hormone noradrenaline increases to boost metabolism during fasting .
In contrast to intermittent fasting, conventional calorie restriction leads to a loss of muscle mass. Also, the basal metabolic rate decreases if you eat less but frequently.
Consequently, a study with the participants of the weight-loss TV show The Biggest Loser revealed that those participants who lost the most weight through calorie restriction suffered the longest from a weak metabolism.
Since it was precisely these participants who were again rapidly gaining weight, scientists observed a severe yo-yo effect in them .
Also Check: How Many Meals During Intermittent Fasting
Is It Ok To Skip Breakfast
Yes, Varady said. The notion that omitting a morning meal is bad for your waistline likely began with studies sponsored by cereal companies, and most of that research looked at the effects of breakfast skipping on cognition in children, she noted: Im not sure how that all got translated to body weight.
/6you Will Get Better At Planning And Mindful Eating
Intermittent fasting will make you better at pre-planning your meal. It is something necessary for clean eating and avoiding junk foods. Moreover, it will make you more mindful. Since you will have to eat only in the eating window, you will try to add more fiber and healthy foods to your plate, rather than eating in small meals more frequently.
Extended Fasting For Weight Loss
Your body is designed to have two different states: fed state and fasting state.
In the fed state, when you are regularly eating, insulin levels are high. During this time, it makes sense to derive the energy from the food that you are eating and store excess calories in your fat cells.
In the fasting state, insulin levels fall. This is the signal for your body to switch energy sources from food to stored body fat from your fat cells and start burning it for energy.
As each of our bodies works differently, the time needed to reach ketosis also varies. On average, your body will start burning ketones after 8-10 hours of fasting. However, it can be accelerated by exercise or following low-carb a.k.a. Keto diet before starting the fast.
Bear in mind you will also be skipping around 1500- 2000 calories each day youre fasting. This means fewer calories for your body to burn, promoting weight management or weight loss.
Just make sure you dont overcompensate for these lost calories during your periods of eating. A healthy, balanced diet is the key to feel and look your best, no matter what the numbers on a scale say.
Fasting has also shown to increase metabolic rate by 3 14%, which translates to an additional 100 275 calories burned daily. This effect seems to diminish if youre fasting longer than 72 hours.
What Types Of Intermittent Fasting Plans Lead To Weight Loss
The review included studies on three types of intermittent fasting:
- Alternate day fasting , which typically involves a day of unrestricted eating alternated with a fasting day where 500 calories consumed in one meal account for the total daily calorie intake
- The 5:2 diet, a modified version of alternate day fasting that involves five feasting days and two fasting days per week.
- Time-restricted eating , which limits eating to a specified number of hours per day , followed by 16 hours of fasting
Its worth noting that the review wasnt designed to compare the effectiveness of different types of intermittent fasting plans because the studies were done in different groups of people and using different parameters. But the results did indicate that individuals who followed either the alternate-day diet or the 5:2 plan both averaged a loss of around 7 percent of their body weight , and were able to maintain that loss for a year. Despite fasting much less frequently than alternate-day fasters, subjects who participated in the 5:2 diet lost an equivalent amount of weight, a finding that surprised researchers.
While all plans led to some weight loss, following a time-restricted eating plan was the least effective plan for shedding pounds. In total, participants with obesity who followed a time-restricted eating plan lost an average of 3 percent of their body weight.
You May Like: What Is The Best Intermittent Fasting For Weight Loss
What Is Prolonged Fasting And How Long Can You Safely Fast
Fasting is natural to us. Or at least it used to be
Fasting has been part of human nature since the beginning of time. Until relatively recently, food was not so readily available. To survive, early humans needed to store energy from food as body fat to survive the times when food was scarce. If the human body did not have an efficient storage and retrieval method of food energy, we wouldnt have survived until now.
When it comes to fasting length, if youre a healthy person , you shouldnt worry that a few days without food will starve you. The longest-lasting hunger strike in recorded history was undertaken by an Irish political prisoner, Terence MacSwiney. He went for 74 days with no food. Disclaimer it did not end well for him.
Nevertheless, an average person nowadays is accustomed to regular meals and our bodies are not used to no-food-days anymore. Therefore, we strongly suggest limiting your prolonged fast to a maximum of 72 hours and undergo longer fasts only under medical supervision.
Why would people even put themselves under this challenge of giving up one of the greatest pleasures in our lives food?
And do it voluntarily for hoursor even days?
Heres what science says about some of the benefits of prolonged fasting and the prolonged fasting results you could expect.
Eating Junk While Intermittent Fasting
Since highly processed foods not only raise blood sugar and insulin levels but also have a severe pro-inflammatory effect, you should avoid them during intermittent fasting .
Therefore, this one also applies to intermittent fasting:
Eat real food, such as on the previous list!
Correspondingly inadequate nutrition during the eating periods can destroy the health benefits of intermittent fasting.
Thus, do not trust any food in colorful packaging and read the labels thoroughly before you seriously consider eating these garbage foods:
- Ready Meals
- Fast food
If you have one of these foods on your meal plan, you wont get any results, even with intermittent fasting.
Recommended Reading: How Many Hours Intermittent Fasting
What Is Intermittent Fasting For Weight Loss
Intermittent fasting for weight loss is a diet regimen that involves fasting and eating cyclically. It is a way to consume fewer calories and speed up your weight loss by eating only in certain timeframes. Intermittent fasting has many health benefits besides weight loss. It is a relatively easier dietary plan where you have few restrictions on the choice of food.
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.
Don’t Miss: What Kind Of Fasting Should I Do
What Is 168 Intermittent Fasting
168 intermittent fasting is a time-based approach to eating. It involves fasting for 16 hours a day then eating only during the remaining 8 hours. There is no limit to how many times 168 intermittent fasting can be done. The Frequency will depend entirely on you and your weight loss goals. What makes this fasting diet so popular for beginners is the fact that it is not very restrictive. You can easily adjust it to fit your lifestyle. The fact that it lasts only for 16-hours makes it a lot more bearable.
What To Do And Drink While Fasting
Sounds easy right? Still, there are certain important things to note during your fasting time.
Firstly, as mentioned before, stay hydrated! Normally you should follow the rule of 8×8 however, during fasting time it is important to drink even more as you are not intaking water from food.
What exactly can you drink during prolonged fasting?
Your safe drinks with zero calories are:
- Black coffee
For more in-depth fasting drinks guide, check What Can You Drink During Intermittent Fasting.
If you choose to stick with strict fasting, you shouldnt consume any food or caloric beverages. However, if a splash of milk in your coffee, a cup of light broth or water infused with fruits/cucumber/mint changes your fasting experience from unbearable to doable, feel free to do it. Some fasting experts, for example, Berkhan from Leangains, allow to consume up to 20 kcal during the fasting period.
Recommended Reading: What Foods Can You Eat On Intermittent Fasting
Foods To Avoid After The 2
Overall Unhealthy Foods
Foods that provide you with empty calories, highly processed, high glycemic index foods. Sugary foods and beverages are advised to be avoided at all times, but it is especially important to reduce their consumption right after your 2-day fast. These unhealthy foods provide you with little to no essential components and may even lead to an increased risk of various serious diseases. And since your body may be sensitive to the consumption of carbs after your fast, it may lead to undesired insulin spikes .
It is recommended to keep away from such high-lactose dairy products such as milk, yogurt, and ice-cream right after you finish a fast. It is because lactose is overall difficult to digest for some people, and consuming it after a 2-day fast may lead to some problems with digestion .
Although they overall have health benefits and can provide you with lots of vital nutrients, cruciferous vegetables may interfere with your digestion right after the fast, leading to gassiness. This happens because they are packed with fiber and contain a trisaccharide called raffinose, which is difficult to digest .
Tips For How To Succeed With Fasting
Tip 1: Try to pick an intermittent fasting weight loss plan that will set you up for long term success
Consider your lifestyle, schedule, current eating pattern, and appetite when selecting any diet plan for losing weight.
Keep in mind that the best diets are the ones that you can maintain for an extended period.
Tip 2: Drink Plenty of Fluids
Hydration is important during intermittent fasting and should not be limited to your eating window.
Most intermittent fasting plans allow for beverages with zero calories, including water, unsweetened tea, and black coffee.
In addition to preventing dehydration, these drinks may help keep hunger pangs and food cravings at bay.
Research has shown that drinking plenty of fluids may increase feelings of satiety , and is one way to help you feel fuller while you are on a fast.
Tip 3: Choose foods that are rich in nutrients and have fewer calories
Unlike most diets, intermittent fasting plans do not have any food rules for losing weight.
However, it is still recommended to limit processed and junk food intake, such as sugars, soda, cookies, and candy.
These foods are associated with weight gain, obesity, oxidative stress, inflammation, high cholesterol levels, and greater calorie intake.
They are also linked with an increased risk of certain diseases, including heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and insulin resistance.
Read Also: Is Intermittent Fasting Bad For You
What Is A Fasting Mimicking Diet Learn The Basics
As the name suggests, FMD mimics the physiological state of fasting. Simply put, it tricks your body into believing that you are fasting but you are actually eating selected foods. The brainchild of Professor Valter Longo, the FMD program comprises low-protein, low-carb, and high-fat meals. According to Longo, a fasting mimicking diet promotes health in a way similar to fasting but with meals that contain certain nutrients.
What Foods To Avoid During 14/10 Intermittent Fasting
Sometimes weight loss depends not as much on what you consume, but on what you should avoid. Its not a secret that certain types of food can make you put on weight and harm your health. To avoid that and to reach your goal more effectively, you should decrease to the minimum your consumption of the following foods and components:
You May Like: How Beneficial Is Intermittent Fasting