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Which Intermittent Fasting Plan Is Best For Me

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What Is Intermittent Fasting How Does 1: 8 Intermittent Fasting Work

BEST Plan to Build MUSCLE with Intermittent Fasting – Complete Guide

7 Day Intermittent fasting diet meal plan All about the IF diet

The Intermittent fasting diet meal plan offers a time-restricted eating pattern.

So, how does this work? It recommends consuming food for only 8 hours of the day and avoiding food for the remaining 16 hours.

Some studies suggest that this method works by supporting the bodys internal clock, the circadian rhythm.

The easiest way to follow the diet is to incorporate this 16-hour fasting period into the time you sleep.

You can make the interval period coincide with the time of the day when you are active.

However, stopping eating 2-3 hours before going to sleep will be beneficial for your health, quality sleep, and weight loss.

So, should nothing be consumed in this 16-hour fasting period? Of course not. You still need to drink lots of water.

Apart from that, you can drink as much tea as you want .

Also, you can drink unsweetened coffee. But thats all. You cannot consume anything that is not zero in calories.

In addition, supplementing this diet with light exercises will always give better results and will bring you the result you dreamed of faster.

This applies to every diet you follow. Now lets look at how we should eat in the intermittent fasting diet meal plan day by day.

According to ClevelandbLab intermittent fasting also helps lower blood sugar levels.

The 3 Types Of Intermittent Fasting Compared

Fasting for five days with juice will just leave you cranky and hungry. But fasting for 16-24 hours throughout the week? Thatll leave you energized and leaner.

Intermittent fasting, as this diet method is known, is just as effective as daily calorie restriction for improving body composition, according to a 2017 study analysis from the International Society of Sports Nutrition.

Unlike calorie restriction, though, intermittent fasting doesnt require you to count calories all the timeand its better at preventing hunger.

Furthermore, intermittent fasting is especially good at helping you lose fat while maintaining muscle, rather than losing both , says Krista Varady, Ph.D., an associate professor of kinesiology and nutrition at the University of Illinois at Chicago and key researcher on intermittent fasting. According to a study analysis in Nutrition Reviews, intermittent fasting also helps improve total cholesterol and triglyceride levels in both overweight and normal-weight people. The best part: Theres virtually no downside.

There are three types of intermittent fasting: whole-day fasting, alternate-day fasting, and time-restricted feeding.

Youll see the same benefits from eachthat is, losing fat without losing musclebut, since each type incorporates a different fasting period and fasting frequency, some are better-suited to certain guys and fitness lifestyles.

Interested? Here are the three types of intermittent fasting, and whether each is right for you.

Is Intermittent Fasting Safe And Healthy

Yes, intermittent fasting does havea lot of benefits. We talk about them in our 21-Day Intermittent Fasting Challenge a lot.

In general, Intermittent Fasting is safe for most people, but you have to know the risks too.

It is also a good time to say that this article should and does not intend to replace advice from your doctor and you should always consult your physician before planning any fasting and especially extended fasting .

Now that we made it clear, here are some of the cases that does not go well with intermittent fasting:

  • if you have a diabetes
  • if you take medications for blood pressure or heart disease
  • if you are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • if you have a history of disordered eating
  • if you dont sleep well
  • if you are under 18 years old

Also, you should be a lot more careful if you are practicing extended fasting, which depending on the source you follow will be continuous fasting for either anything more than 24, 48 or 72 hours. There is a general consensus that any fasts longer than 72 hours should be done under strict medical supervision.

Also Check: What Foods To Eat On 16 8 Intermittent Fasting

Recommended Reading: What Not To Eat When Fasting

Can Be A Sustainable Lifestyle Change

Intermittent fasting might sound complicated and intimidating, but it can be simple at times. In fact, you might even find that fasting helps simplify your day since you need to plan fewer meals.

Whats more, it doesnt typically require calorie counting, watching your macros, eating certain foods that you might not be used to eating, or eliminating certain foods that you otherwise enjoy.

For example, having an early dinner followed by a late breakfast the next day is one way to fast intermittently. If you finish your last meal at 8 p.m. and dont eat until noon the next day, youve technically fasted for 16 hours.

For people who get hungry in the morning and like to eat breakfast, or for those who cant eat until later in the evening due to work schedules and other obligations, this method may be hard to get used to.

However, other people instinctively eat this way already. They may be more prone to trying out an intermittent fasting eating pattern.

Alternate Day Fasting Approach


In the alternate-day fasting approach, the person eats every other day according to their wish and then fast on the alternate days.

If someone finds alternate day fasting tough, then that person can consume up to 500 calories even on fasting days but not more than that.

This intermittent fasting approach can help reduce the risk of heart disease and insulin levels.

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Intermittent Fasting Diet Plan

To ensure that you get the most health benefits from intermittent fasting, its vital that you consume nutritious foods and beverages during the eating periods. Consuming nutrient-dense whole foods will help you benefit the most from this health regimen.

Although there is not a diet plan per se, incorporate the following during your eating periods:

Fruits: All fruits are good options especially oranges, apples, pears, peaches, bananas, and berries.

Vegetables: You may consume all the vegetables. Opt for many green, leafy options as well as broccoli, cucumber, cauliflower, tomato, etc.

Whole Grains: Avoid all products containing refined wheat. Opt for grains such as buckwheat, barley, quinoa, oats, rice, etc.

Healthy Fats: Skip all saturated fats. Choose oils made from coconut, olive, avocado, mustard, peanut, sesame, etc.

Protein: Choose lean protein options such as poultry, meat, eggs, seeds, nuts, legumes, lentils, etc.

During the fasting period, you may consume calorie-free drinks such as unsweetened tea , coffee , and water. These will help you stay hydrated. Avoid binging on junk food or over-eating during eating periods as this will prevent you from experiencing the positive effect of this health regimen.

Modified Alternate Day Fasting

If the thought of going an entire 24 hours without eating freaks you out, youll be happy to know that you dont have to do that with the modified alternate-day fasting plan.

Like alternate-day fasting, you will fast 24 hours, every other day. However, you are allowed to eat a small number of calories during your fasting window. The limit is 500 calories or 20-25% of your regular calorie budget.

Learn more about alternate-day fasting:

Also Check: What To Expect With Intermittent Fasting

How Can Intermittent Fasting Help With Weight Loss

Intermittent fasting can be effective in reducing body weight in people of every size, according to a report in Nutrition Reviews . Most studies focused on alternate day fasting or whole-day fasting trials, but there is also evidence to support the success of time-restricted eating. As well as weight loss, intermittent fasting can have cardiometabolic benefits for those with obesity, as found in another review in the 2021 Annual Review of Nutrition .

Similar to the way the keto diet helps with weight loss, intermittent fasting can put you into a state called ketosis where you are using ketones as fuel. A study in the journal of Cell Metabolism indicates that in the state of ketosis, the body metabolizes fat and produces ketones, which the body can use as an alternative energy source.

After a meal, you pass through four different metabolic states as your body digests the food, explains Dr Deborah Lee, MD, from Dr Fox Online Pharmacy . These are: the fed state, the post-absorptive state/early fasting state, the late fasting state, and starvation.

Having worked for many years in the U.K’s National Health Service, initially as a GP, and then as Lead Clinician for an integrated Community Sexual Health Service, Dr Deborah Lee now works as a health and medical writer, with an emphasis on womens health. She is a menopause specialist.

Heres What Happened When I Tried Time Restricted Feeding

Intermittent Fasting Meal Plan | FULL DAY IF Meal Plan (What I Eat)

Krista Scott-Dixon, PhD, Precision Nutritions director of curriculum, is a morning person.

I didnt want to give up my big breakfasts, so I chose evening fasting first. she says. I normally trained in the mornings, so this worked for me.

However, she noticed three things about her sleep when fasting in the afternoons and evenings.

First, she was much more tired. Once my battery ran out, I was done. Getting up the stairs to bed was a terrific ordeal, she says.

Second, although shed conk out quickly, she didnt sleep well.

Third, she woke up extremely earlyat a consistent 4am.

Later, she experimented with skipping breakfast and lunch.

At first, that felt like much more of a sacrifice, she says,

Eventually she got to like the efficiency of waking, grabbing a cup of tea, and getting straight to work. And she slept a lot better after a good meal in the evenings.

Bottom line: For any fasting schedule, youll want to experiment, tweak the plan, and do what works for you.

Read Also: Does Fasting Lower Psa Levels

Best Intermittent Fasting Method For Weight Loss

When it comes to weight loss, there are some factors you should consider when deciding which intermittent fasting method is best:

  • Can you maintain the chosen method long term?
  • Is it going to allow enough of a calorie deficit to see results?
  • Is your chosen method allowing you to fast long enough to at least get in ketosis occasionally?
  • Can you find a way to shake things up?
  • Do you have more than one way to track your progress?
  • Most likely, you will have to try different methods before you find one that works for you.

    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:

    Read Also: How Can I Lose Weight With Intermittent Fasting

    Are There Benefits To Crash Diets Over Intermittent Fasting

    Crash diets always fail because losing muscle mass is counterproductive and even when you lose lots of pounds, the fact that you are losing several pounds of muscle means you dont look better. This is disappointing because when starting a crash diet with a goal of losing 30 pounds or more, in your minds eye you picture yourself returning to the body that had 30 fewer pounds of fat on it. Your new crash diet body doesnt look anything like you anticipated.

    Plus you tend to feel lousy and all you think about is food.

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    When you engage in intermittent fasting, you do not cut calories, and do not enter a semi-starvation mode. On the contrary, although my weight has been reduced, I actually eat more now than I did before I started intermittent fasting because I dont want to lose any more weight. Thus, I am easily replenishing my liver glycogen stores every day, and sustaining my blood glucose at optimal levels which preserves my muscle mass.

    All thats required is simply making the firm decision to commit to eating at prescribed times and sticking to it.

    Why Does My Blood Sugar Go Up During Fasting

    13 Tips for Intermittent Fasting While Breastfeeding

    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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    Will I Lose Weight

    Most likely.64 If you have weight to lose, it is extremely likely that you will lose weight if you do not eat.

    In theory, its possible to eat more after fasting, of course, cancelling out the weight lost. But studies generally show that most people tend to eat significantly less overall.65

    I call intermittent fasting the ancient secret of weight loss because it might be one of the most powerful dietary interventions for weight loss, yet it has been mostly ignored by doctors and dietitians for a long time.66

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    /8intermittent Fasting Mistakes To Avoid

    Whenever you think about losing weight or shedding a certain amount of kilos, you first list down the kind of diets you can follow and the exercises you can perform. Out of all the diet programmes, intermittent fasting is one of the most popular, which is more like a lifestyle rather than a diet.

    Several researches have shown that intermittent fasting not only aids your weight loss goals, but also reduces your risk of different health conditions, which is absolutely fantastic! However, following an IF diet is not as simple as it seems. There are many ways it can backfire, which is why you must pay attention to the many mistakes you can make while following such a diet.

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    Alternate Day Fasting :

    Alternate day fasting builds upon a 24 hour fast and is more of a weekly intermittent fasting schedule rather than a daily one. A typical schedule includes fasting for even days of the week and eating on odd days . With ADF you typically fast for 36-44 hours and then have a 12 to 8 hour eating window during one day.

    When beginning ADF and longer fasts, make sure to break your fast gently with a food such as broth, milk , a handful of nuts, or something similarly gentle on your stomach to gently reawaken your digestive system.

    Once you get good at the alternate day fasting, consider yourself an intermediate faster! Maintaining this level of intermittent fasting will begin to steadily show results of mental clarity, reversing insulin resistance, and can be a great way to drop weight. It also gives you the skills you need to explore extended fasting .

    Types Of Fasting Diets And How To Choose The Right One

    The MOST Important Intermittent Fasting Basics for Beginners: MUST WATCH – Dr. Berg

    Reviewed by Emily Gonzalez, ND for Scientific Accuracy

    • Fasting diets can help you manage your weight, increase mental clarity and reduce your risk for disease, simply by changing when you eat.
    • You can incorporate fasting into any diet, but more structured options are also available. Types of fasting diets include 16:8 intermittent fasting and OMAD.
    • The best fasting diet is the one that works best with your lifestyle. Below, youll find tips on how to choose the right plan for you.

    Fasting isnt just a scientifically proven way to manage your weight. Different types of fasting diets also help your body remove cellular waste and even improve your mood. From lowering your risk for disease to improving memory, you can enjoy loads of fasting benefits just by changing when you eat.

    Fasting can fit into any dietbut if you need structure, you have options. Depending on your eating habits and health goals, youll find a style that fits your routine. Keep reading to learn about some of the best fasting diets and how to get started.

    Read Also: What Do You Eat When Intermittent Fasting

    First What Is Metabolic Syndrome

    Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of conditions that increase your risk of heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. These conditions include increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist, high LDL cholesterol, and abnormal triglyceride levels.

    Metabolic Syndrome is not new, and has become increasingly more prevalent. At the time of this writing, 1 in 3 older adults have this condition. However, fasting can play a key role in reversing many of these symptoms. Research consistently demonstrates that intermittent fasting is one of the best methods for reducing excess body fat and many of the conditions that go along with it.

    In fact, type 2 diabetes, can be reversed with long term intermittent fasting. Type 2 diabetes in the last 10 years is being re-understood thanks to the work of Dr. Jason Fung and others. It is essentially a disease of chronically high insulin that progresses very gradually, typically for many years patients wont know that they have high insulin, then the begin to get symptoms of insulin resistance, then prediabetes and eventually , full blown type 2 diabetes.

    Science Of Intermittent Fasting For Weight Loss

    To understand the science of intermittent fasting, we need to look into the basics of nutrition.

    And it is quite straight-forward: the food we eat gets broken down to molecules and ends up in our blood, which feeds the cells in our bodies.

    Part of those molecules are net carbohydrates and our body turns them into sugar so our cells could use it for energy.

    To be able to use sugar for the energy we need insulin, which is produced in our pancreas and spikes each time we throw in some food with carbohydrates.

    Any excess sugars that we dont utilize get stored in the form of fat with the idea that we will use that fat for energy later, once we have no sugar left.

    The best way to NOT end up having huge fat reserves is to spend the same amount of energy you get from food.

    However, life is not perfect and many of us have lifestyles that limit our chances to move throughout the day. In fact, office workers tend to spend 75% of their waking hours sitting.

    So, what can we do to lose or not gain weight?

    One way to do it is to focus on increasing your energy expenditure through increased physical activity or in laymans terms exercising and doing sports. But you knew this one already, didnt you?

    Another way though is to focus on consuming less food than you need for the energy that day and as a result, creating a caloric deficit.

    And thats where intermittent fasting comes in.

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