When To Eat Carbs On Intermittent Fasting
Since no essential carbohydrates exist, the body does not need them to survive. However, our body cannot produce essential fatty acids and amino acids.
But because it can produce glucose through gluconeogenesis, blood sugar levels remain stable if you eat zero carbs .
Nevertheless, there are situations with intermittent fasting where carbohydrates can fit well into the diet.
For example, many athletes do not want to do without carbohydrates, as they continuously empty their glycogen stores. Adding carbohydrates to their diet can contribute to muscle recovery .
Thus, you can time carbohydrates very well during intermittent fasting:
- Training day: More carbohydrates replenishing glycogen stores in the muscles
- Rest day: low-carb or ketogenic diet
Accordingly, you can adapt your intermittent fasting plan to athletic needs through carb-cycling or cyclical ketogenic nutrition.
Nevertheless, so-called loading days are not necessary for muscle building as long as the protein supply is given .
Although the insulin levels increased by carbohydrates can help the muscles recover, it also helps build body fat more efficiently .
For this reason, bodybuilders often claim that they cant gain muscle without also building up body fat.
In short, a low carbohydrate ketogenic diet is still the best option if losing weight is your primary goal.
Concerns And Adjustments With Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is becoming popular, but it’s still not the normal thing to do. As a result, you may have some concerns about it or you may want to make some adjustments to your intermittent fasting schedule. Here are some common questions I’ve seen that should help point you in the right direction.
What if I ate my first meal at breakfast, skipped lunch, and then ate my second meal at dinner time?
This idea would work well for one reason, but not well for another reason. Let’s talk about both.
First, if your goal is to lose weight, then skipping lunch should help because it decreases the number of calories that you’re eating throughout the day. As I said in my article on lessons learned from 1 year of intermittent fasting, even if you try to eat two large meals instead of three regular meals, it’s hard to get the same number of calories. Even if you want to eat more, you often end up eating less.
So the end result of skipping lunch is that you would probably reduce your overall caloric intake and end up losing weight.
However, one of the primary benefits of intermittent fasting is that it puts you in a fat burning state. In other words, fasting makes it more likely that you’ll burn fat and not muscle.
In other words, you need to have at least 8 to 12 hours off from eating before your body enters the fasted, fatburning state. This is why you want to squish your meals into a smaller time frame rather than spreading them throughout the day.
What Are The Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting
Fasting provides numerous benefits, some short-term, others long-term. Some benefits are due to the bodily functions that come from fasting, and others are due to simply not eating as much. Here are some of the noted benefits of intermittent fasting:
- Weight loss – As long as you dont compensate by eating much more during the other meals, you will end up taking in fewer calories while fasting
- Reduced risk of Type 2 Diabetes – Fasting has been shown to have significant benefits for insulin resistance which can help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes
- Heart health – Heart disease is the biggest killer in the world. Intermittent fasting can improve blood pressure, total and LDL cholesterol, blood triglycerides, inflammatory markers, and blood sugar levels
- Cancer prevention – The impact fasting has on the metabolism can reduce the risk of cancer
As mentioned above, most of the benefits of intermittent fasting are due to the reduced caloric intake.
Recommended Reading: How Much Should I Eat During Intermittent Fasting
When Should I Exercise
When Varady and her colleagues conducted a study that combined alternate day fasting and exercise, they allowed the participants to pick whether they wanted to exercise on a feasting or fasting day, and found there was no strong preference one way or the other. But the researchers were surprised the dieters actually reported feeling more energetic on fasting days.
What Are The Benefits Of 16
16-hour intermittent fasting is also called a 16:8 diet plan where you consume just water, black coffee, green tea, and other unsweetened beverages. Then, you can eat all of your meals and snacks for the remaining eight hours of the day.
The 16-hour period may appear to belong, but if you’re receiving adequate sleep, you should be asleep for around half of that time.
The benefits of a 16:8 intermittent fasting diet include:
Recommended Reading: What Can You Have To Drink During Intermittent Fasting
Best Hours For Intermittent Fasting 16/8
When choosing which 8 hours of the day will make up your eating window, really considering your daily routine and schedule will be key. Most often, people following 16/8 intermittent fasting will choose to skip breakfast and eat in a window from roughly 11 a.m.-7 p.m. or 12 p.m.- 8 p.m., with those later hours allowing for flexibility for after work get-togethers and later dinners with friends and familythis option is also great for late-risers. If you choose to allow for coffee or tea in your plan, you can ease into your day with a cup and then begin your eating window with lunch or a late-morning snack.
In our current pandemic climate, however, you probably dont have any after-work gatherings with friends on your agendain which case you may want to try moving your last meal earlier in the day so you can allow for an earlier breakfast. Intermittent fasting allows for flexibility, and the best schedule can only be determined by what you will be able to stick with .
Is Intermittent Fasting Safe
Some people try intermitting fasting for weight management, and others use the method to address chronic conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, high cholesterol or arthritis. But intermittent fasting isnt for everyone.
Williams stresses that before you try intermittent fasting , you should check in with your primary care practitioner first. Some people should steer clear of trying intermittent fasting:
- Children and teens under age 18.
- Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
- People with diabetes or blood sugar problems.
- Those with a history of eating disorders.
But, Williams says, people not in these categories who can do intermittent fasting safely can continue the regimen indefinitely. It can be a lifestyle change, she says, and one with benefits.
Keep in mind that intermittent fasting may have different effects on different people. Talk to your doctor if you start experiencing unusual anxiety, headaches, nausea or other symptoms after you start intermittent fasting.
Also Check: Is Fasting For 5 Days Healthy
Why Do Intermittent Fasting Then
So if fasting per se isnt what results in weight loss and health improvements, why then do intermittent fasting in the first place?
Well, although fasting doesnt seem to have any magical properties in and of itself, there are a number of good reasons why you should consider doing intermittent fasting! This is, after all, why we often use this approach with many of our online fitness coaching clients!
So here are a few reasons why you should consider doing intermittent fasting :
1. More structured eating
How often have you found yourself mindlessly snacking between meals? A couple of cookies with your coffee, a small piece of cake that Suzy brought for her birthday at work, a few nuts and dried fruits before dinner, some popcorn with a movie at night. When you think about it, little snacks here and there can add up to quite a few calories. Well, the more structured eating that is a result of intermittent fasting can eliminate this problem and can help people better control their diet.
2. Bigger, more satisfying meals
Eating every 2-3 hours sucks. For one, its impractical and makes you think of food all day. It also means that you never really get to eat big meals, especially if you are a smaller, physically inactive person. On the other hand, more infrequent meals that are larger in volume and provide more calories are usually much more satisfying and may help you feel fuller for longer.
3. Sustainability and adherence
4. Social Flexibility
5. Improved hunger awareness
What To Eat While Intermittent Fasting 16/8
Although you may eat whatever you want during the 8 hours of intermittent fasting, this will not result in success.
Many people try to fast and then reward themselves with junk food.
If you want to lose weight noticeably with intermittent fasting 16/8, you will have to restrict your carbohydrate intake.
Every time you fill up your glycogen stores, you have to burn all those carbs before the body can switch back to burning fat.
As a result, you run the risk of experiencing the symptoms of keto flu and gain weight due to water retention.
If you are serious, avoid refined carbohydrates, such as:
- Energy drinks
- Sweetened tea and coffee drinks
These highly processed foods drive insulin levels to unprecedented heights and promote inflammation, which likewise promotes weight gain .
After reducing carbohydrates leaves a gap in your daily energy intake, we can fill it with healthy fats.
While carbohydrates stimulate ghrelins hunger hormone, fats increase the release of satiety hormones such as peptide YY, CCK, or leptin .
Therefore, healthy fats keep you full longer and have been shown to reduce food intake .
In particular, the best sources of fat include:
- Coconut oil
- Macadamia nuts
Pure fats like olive oil do not stimulate insulin production and interfere with fat burning.
Therefore, you can also do fat fasting if you have trouble fasting for 16 hours at first.
Read Also: What Is 5 2 Fasting
So Wtf Should I Eat On If
There are no specifications or restrictions about what type or how much food to eat while following intermittent fasting, says Lauren Harris-Pincus, MS, RDN, author of The Protein-Packed Breakfast Club.
But Mary Purdy, MS, RDN, chair of Dietitians in Integrative and Functional Medicine, counters that by advising that the benefits are not likely to accompany consistent meals of Big Macs.
Pincus and Purdy agree that a well-balanced diet is the key to losing weight, maintaining energy levels, and sticking with the diet.
Anyone attempting to lose weight should focus on nutrient-dense foods like fruits, veggies, whole grains, nuts, beans, seeds, as well as dairy and lean proteins, suggests Pincus.
Purdy adds, My recommendations wouldnt be very different from the foods I might normally suggest for improved health high-fiber, unprocessed, whole foods that offer variety and flavor.
In other words, eat plenty of the below foods and you wont end up in a hangry rage while fasting.
Beverages You Can Drink During Intermittent Fasting
The best kind of drinks for your fasting hours are calorie-free. That way, they will not activate an insulin response or break your fast. Acceptable beverages for intermittent fasting include water, teas, coffee, and apple cider vinegar. These zero-calorie beverages are suitable for your fasting window.
Recommended Reading: What’s Allowed During Intermittent Fasting
What Is Intermittent Fasting 16/8
The 16:8 fasting method means you fast for 16 hours and then have your meals during the 8-hour window.This plan is relatively effortless to follow. If you tend to eat a late breakfast and an early dinner the 16/8 method will be easy for you!You can have your first meal at noon and your last meal at 8 p.m. If youre a fan of breakfast, have it at 8 a.m. and then stop eating after 6 p.m.
Its not an easy task for late snack lovers, but it sure brings results.
Questions About Exercise And Intermittent Fasting
A lot of people have questions about how to exercise and train while fasting. Here are some good questions that should push you in the right direction with your training.
I wanted to thank you both for writing such a fantastic, motivating blog and for introducing me to intermittent fasting. I am enjoying watching my weight go down by basically doing something that involves no effort skipping breakfast! I was hoping you could elaborate more on your exercise routine. I have waded through the Leangains site and the other links you mentioned in the beginner’s guide, and while very interesting, they are WAY too complex for me at this stage.Paul S.
Readers like Paul are what make our community great. He read about an idea that interested him and even though some of the details were overwhelming, he didn’t let that prevent him from taking action. In other words, he started before he felt ready.
I try to make my writing as easy as possible to use, but it’s always up to you to experiment and see if it makes sense for your circumstances. Keep up the good work, Paul!
Back to the question
Intermittent fasting works great with most strength training programs.
I believe in strength training and compound movements. I think 99% of the population could get in the best shape of their life with only eight exercises: snatch, clean and jerk, squat, bench press, deadlift, pushups, pullups, and sprints. If you did those exercises and did them well, then that’s all you would ever need.
Why Does My Blood Sugar Go Up During Fasting
While this does not happen with everyone, it can occur due to hormonal changes that occur during intermittent fasting. Your body is producing sugar in order to provide energy for your system. This is a variation of the dawn phenomenon and in general is not a concern as long as blood sugars are not elevated the rest of the day.45
Psychological Advantages Of Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is more of a lifestyle than a diet.
Diets are eating patterns we follow for a short period of time. They often require considerable willpower, which is why they have such an incredibly low success rate.
On a traditional diet, each time you eat, you face a decision about whether to eat what you should eat or to eat what you feel like eating.
With intermittent fasting, theres no decision to be made about what to eat when youre most likely to make a poor decision. You just dont eat.
Researchers have found this to be the case as well. Adherence to intermittent fasting is much better than other diets.
Try it tomorrow morning. When you walk into your kitchen at your usual breakfast time, instead of asking, What should I eat for breakfast? simply say out loud, I dont eat breakfast.
Eliminate the opportunity to be tempted, and you save yourself from making a poor decision.
Read more: Why Meal Plans Dont Work.
Losing Weight Isnt Easy But If You Know What Intermittent Fasting 16/8 Foods To Eat You Can Succeed At Your Weight Loss Goals For Good
Most people find it easier to combine other diets with intermittent fasting. Think of it as eating low carb or reducing refined carbohydrates during eating hours.
But there are some general rules for what to eat with intermittent fasting if you want a more customized experience. Intermittent fasting 16/8 foods to eat will help you lose weight.
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- The 16/8 intermittent fasting approach means you fast for 16 hours and eat only in an eight-hour window.
- Fasting triggers autophagy, which is needed for healthy metabolism.
- IF has plenty of research-backed health benefits including better brain function, lower blood sugar levels, and lower inflammation.
- Fasting can be a great way to get into ketosis, but its not the only way.
- If you want to use fasting for ketosis, its ideal if you do it while following a keto diet.
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Intermittent Fasting 16/: The Ultimate Guide To Getting Results
Almost every culture and religion ingrains fasting. Why it has been practiced for thousands of years is best shown by its scientifically proven health benefits.
For this reason, intermittent fasting has gained immense popularity, with 16/8 being by far the most widespread method.
In addition, 16/8 intermittent fasting is mainly considered sustainable and safe.
Recommended Foods And Tips
While the 16:8 intermittent fasting plan does not specify which foods to eat and avoid, it is beneficial to focus on healthful eating and to limit or avoid junk foods. The consumption of too much unhealthful food may cause weight gain and contribute to disease.
A balanced diet focuses primarily on:
- fruits and vegetables, which can be fresh, frozen, or canned
- whole grains, including quinoa, brown rice, oats, and barley
- lean protein sources, such as poultry, fish, beans, lentils, tofu, nuts, seeds, low fat cottage cheese, and eggs
- healthful fats from fatty fish, olives, olive oil, coconuts, avocados, nuts, and seeds
Fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are high in fiber, so they can help keep a person feeling full and satisfied. Healthful fats and proteins can also contribute to satiety.
Beverages can play a role in satiety for those following the 16:8 intermittent fasting diet. Drinking water regularly throughout the day can help reduce calorie intake because people often mistake thirst for hunger.
The 16:8 diet plan permits the consumption of calorie-free drinks such as water and unsweetened tea and coffee during the 16-hour fasting window. It is important to consume fluids regularly to avoid dehydration.