Should I Eat Morning Or Night
It doesnt matter whether you eat in the morning or at night when intermittent fasting. However, in my experience, it is much easier to skip breakfast for the following reasons:
- Morning hunger is learned and can be unlearned
- The hormone release in the morning gives you power for the day
- Without breakfast, your focus at work will increase noticeably
- Dinner is usually the most crucial social pivot of a family
- You save time and can sleep longer
Over the decades, we have learned to be hungry in the morning. But this is not natural.
The body increases adrenaline, glucagon, growth hormone, and cortisol in the morning. For this reason, we wake up. Furthermore, this potent hormonal cocktail nourishes us with enough energy for the upcoming day.
Hence, the morning hunger disappears in just one or two weeks with the forced breakfast in my experience.
Nevertheless, you can also successfully do intermittent fasting if you skip dinner.
For example, if you sleep earlier, work longer, or cannot have dinner with your loved ones because of your daily working routine.
What Breaks A Fast
When most people hear the word fasting, it is not uncommon to quickly assume that it is for religious purposes even though there are scientifically proven benefits of fasting outside spiritual gains. Whether for religious purposes or not, it is simply the controlled consumption of food. For anyone intending to embark on one, what breaks a fast is one of the first things they want to be sure of. Although answers to this can be confusing for someone who does not have adequate information, it is important to note that the answer to this will vary depending on the type of fasting you are following and for what purpose .
Apart from religious purposes, people engage in fasting for various reasons. Weight loss, a possible cure for diabetes, fitness, mental alertness are just a few of the plenty of claimed benefits of intermittent fasting. When people dont eat, a lot of things are involved from burning of excess fat stored in the body to an intense feeling of weakness when the whole energy has been depleted to the barest. Among several misconceptions, some people think that taking anything like water during a fast signifies the end of it. This is, however, not totally true as there are substances you can consume without breaking it .
Whats Happening With Your Body: Healing Mode
During stage three, your body starts to enter into a healing mode. This healing process begins as your digestive system takes a rest from the common stressors and toxins it endures on a daily basis. As a result, your body has fewer free radicals entering the mix, and oxidative stress decreases.
On the flip side, fasting causes a stress that provides an added benefit. This is a kind of mild stress that is comparable to the stress caused by exercise, which ultimately makes you stronger and your immune system more resilient.
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How To Prevent Diarrhea During Fasting
There are a few things you can do to prevent diarrhea during fasting.
- Drink lots of water.
- Take electrolytes like magnesium, sodium, calcium, and potassium .
- Avoid caffeine from coffee, tea, and energy drinks.
- Avoid zero-calorie sweeteners like aspartame, sucralose, erythritol, and xylitol.
When you break your fast, eat a small, easy-to-digest meal instead of a heavy or high-fat one. A small meal will stimulate your digestive system and bring it back to full function.
A couple of hours after you break your fast with a small meal, you should be okay to eat whatever you want.
What To Eat When Intermittent Fasting
Of course, we know that an all-or-nothing approach isn’t always warranted or sustainableâand that there are still plenty of benefits to be had in the territory that lies between a strict water-only fast and eating a full-blown meal.
Some foods maintain many of fasting’s benefitsâwhile keeping you sane. So, many experts say it’s OK to consume certain caloric foods in small quantities to help you stick to an intermittent fasting plan.
Case in point: To help patients stay happy and compliant with their fast, integrative physician Amy Shah, M.D., allows the consumption of 30 to 40 calories from sources that won’t spike blood sugar, like coffee or tea with a splash of unsweetened almond milk. “I call this ‘dirty fasting,'” says Shah. “For me, I like to fast as long as possible with just waterâthat might be 13 or 14 hours of a water fastâthen I’ll have my tea with almond milk and end at around 16 hours.”
Even Horne agrees that some perks of fasting remain with minimal food intake: “One mechanism that is known to remain active when a small amount of food is consumed is ketosisâas long as you consume less than 50 grams of carbohydrates ,” he says. “Some effects, such as the impact of fasting on the gut microbiome, may be different depending on whether it’s a water-only fast or a very-low-calorie diet with a small amount of food consumed, but both may provide some level of benefit when compared to eating a standard amount of food.”
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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.
How Many Meals To Eat When Intermittent Fasting
As we have just discovered, eating less often keeps insulin levels in check and burn fat. For this reason, science has proven that snacks cannot help you lose weight .
Intermittent fasting, unlike conventional dieting, has the advantage that you can always increase it.
If you like, you can eat only once a day instead of twice or even fast for several days. Thus, it is incredibly flexible.
Nevertheless, you should not immediately overstrain your body when you start intermittent fasting. For example, it is advantageous to establish simple rules when you start:
- Lunch and dinner only
- Between the two meals, natural snacks, like a handful of walnuts, are allowed
With time and experience, you will get to know your body better, and you can stop snacks completely or eat one big meal a day.
In any case, an 8-hour eating period is enough to lose weight with the appropriate diet.
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The Science Of Fasting
A large body of evidence now supports the benefits of fasting, though the most notable data has been recorded in studies with animals. Even so, these findings are promising for humans. Essentially, fasting cleanses our body of toxins and forces cells into processes that are not usually stimulated when a steady stream of fuel from food is always present.
When we fast, the body does not have its usual access to glucose, forcing the cells to resort to other means and materials to produce energy. As a result, the body begins gluconeogenesis, a natural process of producing its own sugar. The liver helps by converting non-carbohydrate materials like lactate, amino acids, and fats into glucose energy. Because our bodies conserve energy during fasting, our basal metabolic rate becomes more efficient, thereby lowering our heart rate and blood pressure.
Ketosis, another process that occurs later into the fast cycle, happens when the body burns stored fat as its primary power source. This is the ideal mode for weight loss and balancing blood sugar levels.
Fasting puts the body under mild stress, which makes our cells adapt by enhancing their ability to cope. In other words, they become strong. This process is similar to what happens when we stress our muscles and cardiovascular system during exercise. As with exercise, our body can only grow stronger during these processes when there is adequate time to rest and recover. Thats why short-term fasting is recommended.
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
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How Supplements Affect Fasting
Becoming deficient in nutrients while fasting is unlikely, but it depends on how restrictive your fast is and how long it lasts.
Some people choose to take supplements while fasting to ensure adequate vitamin and mineral intake. Fasting too frequently could lead to nutrient deficiencies if your diet is already low in vitamins and minerals .
If you supplement while fasting, its important to know which supplements could break your fast. This will help you decide if you should take them with a meal or during your fasting period.
What Happens In Acid Reflux
According to the American College of Gastroenterology, more than 60 million Americans experience acid reflux at least once a month, with 15 million having symptoms daily. Acid reflux goes by many names, including GERD , acid indigestion, sour stomach, heartburn and dyspepsia.
No matter what you call it, the mechanism behind this condition is the same. Essentially, the acid from your stomach “misfires,” flowing up into your esophagus, the tube that runs from your mouth to your stomach. When this happens, it can irritate the lining of the esophagus, causing pain, burning or a sour taste in the back of your throat. People who get acid reflux regularly may also experience symptoms like a dry cough, sleep problems or difficulty swallowing.
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Fasting Headache Caused By Caffeine Withdrawal
Cure: Reduce caffeine intake slowly
Caffeine withdrawal will be the main headache cause if youve decided to practice a more strict fasting form that only allows pure water .
Most avoid coffee drinkers will experience a headache when their daily caffeine level is not met. Therefore, to avoid this unpleasant side effect, the best option is to slowly reduce your caffeine intake to let the body adapt. That means reducing caffeine content and switching to decaf coffee or simply reducing the number of your daily coffee cups.
How To Use Intermittent Fasting To Lose Weight
When using fasting to lose weight, you will eat all of your meals in a 6-8 hour eating window. This is best accomplished by going 5-6 hours upon waking before having your first meal. Your last meal should be around 2 hours before going to sleep.
Meal 2 at 6-7pm.
Meal 3 at 10pm.
By skipping a morning breakfast you force your body to break into its fat stores to fuel itself instead of burning food energy. That is why intermittent fasting is the ultimate fat loss diet for men and women! In addition, by pushing your first meal later into the day you can enjoy big, satisfying healthy meals while staying in a caloric deficit.
If you havent skipped breakfast before it may take some getting used to. This is probably the hardest part about transitioning into using intermittent fasting for fat loss.
But after a few days of skipping breakfast your body will learn to thrive in the fasted state. You will stimulate the sympathetic system and feel effects such as alertness, laser like focus, and a hunger blunting effect.
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Intermittent Fasting: Surprising Update
- By Monique Tello, MD, MPH, Contributor
Theres a ton of incredibly promising intermittent fasting research done on fat rats. They lose weight, their blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugars improve but theyre rats. Studies in humans, almost across the board, have shown that IF is safe and effective, but really no more effective than any other diet. In addition, many people find it difficult to fast.
But a growing body of research suggests that the timing of the fast is key, and can make IF a more realistic, sustainable, and effective approach for weight loss, as well as for diabetes prevention.
God Encourages Husbands And Wives To Have Sex
In fact, the apostle Paul warns couples to do just the opposite. God wants married couples to have sex. A great example of this truth is found in the Song of Solomon which describes courtship, marriage, the wedding night and marriage between a man and a woman. In chapter 4, which is the wedding night, the entire chapter is devoted to a graphic and sensuous, yet figurative description of sexual intercourse. God wants married couples to have sexual relations.
Apparently, some Christians in the city of Corinth thought there was virtue in avoiding sexual relations with ones spouse. It may be that some spouses did not want to have sex. Maybe one or both of the spouses thought it was good to regularly avoid sexual relations. God did not agree that was a good idea. Listen to what Paul had to say.
But because of immoralities, each man is to have his own wife, and each woman is to have her own husband. The husband must fulfill his duty to his wife, and likewise also the wife to her husband. The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does and likewise also the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does. Stop depriving one another, except by agreement for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer, and come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control. 1 Corinthians 7:2-5
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What Can You Have During A Fast If Youre Trying To Lose Weight Or Reverse Type 2 Diabetes
In cases where the goal is to improve or reverse symptoms associated with too much insulin in the body, a condition called hyperinsulinemia, the goal of your fast should be to avoid adding more insulin to the body. When you eat anything, it has the potential to raise your insulin levels.
You also want to be fuelling your own body fat rather than the energy from food. You might not think fatty coffee in the morning is doing much to your insulin levels, but its giving your body plenty of fat to fuel off of throughout the day. If your goal is to burn your own body fat, wouldnt you rather forgo the fat and just drink the coffee black instead?
Here are our recommendations for fasting fluids if your health goals involve lowering insulin levels:
- Water: you can drink it at any temperature and experiment with having flat, mineral or carbonated water during your fasting day.
- Tea: any tea is great to have during a fast and green tea is a known appetite suppressant. Pique Tea has their own line of fasting teas they created with Dr. Jason Fung.
- Coffee: we prefer you consume it black if you can and add cinnamon for sweetness, or salt to help curb the bitterness.
- Homemade broth: you can make a nice bone broth or a homemade vegetable broth. Kettle and Fire is a good store bought alternative for bone broth.
- Sugar-free pickle juice: is a great alternative to broth if you find you need some salt throughout your fast.
Why Fasting Can Aggravate Reflux
Billions of people around the world practice fasting as part of their religious practice. And with the increasing popularity of intermittent fasting as a weight-loss tool, millions more have begun to embrace the idea of going for longer periods without food.
There’s no doubt that the practice of fasting can have many benefits, both spiritual and physical, but one unfortunate side effect is that it changes the balance of acid in the stomach. This can lead to reflux, says Peyton Berookim, MD, a gastroenterologist with the Gastroenterology Institute of Southern California in Beverly Hills.
“When there are no contents or food in the stomach for it to break down, such as when one is fasting, stomach acid levels can start to increase,” says Dr. Berookim. “But if there’s no food in the stomach to ‘soak up’ the acid, this can result in harmful acid buildup that can cause epigastric pain, discomfort and regurgitation of the acid into the esophagus .”
For this reason, many people also experience the worst of their acid-related stomach pain upon waking up with an empty stomach.
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Foods To Avoid During The Intermittent Fasting
You need to avoid some foods during intermittent fasting to maintain a balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle. Processed foods such as burgers, fries, and nuggets are high in calories, and they can increase your food cravings. These foods contain fat, added sugar, and empty calories.
Here is the list of foods you need to avoid during your intermittent fasting
- Snacks such as fried chips
- Sugary drinks like carbonated drinks, coffee, cold coffee
- Processed, packed juices
- Processed foods such as cheese, meat, etc
Many studies suggest that processed foods and carbonated drinks lead to weight gain. You can replace carbonated drinks with fresh juices and fried foods with healthy salads. Be more mindful while choosing your food to make your intermittent fasting more powerful.
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.
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