Will Intermittent Fasting Help Me Lose Weight
What is it?
Fasting has been practiced for centuries with many different variations and restrictions. Intermittent fasting is the term used to describe an eating pattern that cycles between eating and non-eating. This type of eating pattern focuses only on timings of when food should be consumed, not the types or amounts of food that is eaten. One example of an intermittent fasting regime is the 5:2 diet, that involves eating on 5 days of the week and then fasting for 2 days.
The 16/8 method is another popular type of intermittent fasting that involves fasting for 14-16 hours and restricting youre eating to 8-10 hours per day. For example, your first meal of the day could be 12pm and then you would finish eating around 8pm. The general idea of intermittent fasting is to lower your energy intake, from food, below requirements to lose weight. Although this may seem like a simple concept of energy balance, it can actually be quite complex when other things come into play
Fasting has benefits to weight loss and has shown improvements in chronic disease risk factors. Another suggested benefit of intermittent fasting practices is to gut health, in terms of potentially affecting the composition, function and interaction in the body in a positive way. Improvements in cholesterol levels has also been a proven benefit of intermittent fasting, where the bad cholesterol is lowered and the good is raised.
The Bottom Line
Is Intermittent Fasting Effective For Weight Loss
On a personal note- a while ago I did some very comprehensive genetic testing . My testing revealed that genetically, I am the perfect candidate for Intermittent Fasting. So, for several months I followed the 16/8 form of fasting. I felt amazing.endless energy, zero brain fog, great digestion. All in all, I found the benefits amazing and knew this is how I should be eating for long term. Over the few months, I began to lose more and more weight – a bonus for many but on my frame, I did not have much to lose. So, after a few months, I had to add in more calories BUT I can personally attest to the weight loss benefits of Intermittent Fasting. Since then I have guided many patients through different fasting regimes, and they have ALL lost weight using different forms!
Intermittent fasting is helpful with weight loss not only because the overall calories consumed are less but also because it supercharges the metabolic rate! Fasting also fasting helps to stabilize blood sugar levels, reduce inflammation and keep your heart healthy.
One of the major intermittent fasting benefits is its ability to rev up fat burning and help the pounds disappear. In fact, many people prefer intermittent fasting to traditional diets because it doesnt require measuring and tracking foods.
Lots of people say they have success with it. But what do the studies say?
How To Get Started
Intermittent fasting can take some adjustment. “It takes your body a little while to get used to that up-down pattern of eating,” Varady says.
You’re likely to be hungry at first. But after about 2 weeks, most people get used to the routine.
In time, fasting could actually help control your hunger. “It may be because your blood sugar levels are more stabilized throughout the day,” Peterson says. And time-restricted feeding causes less hunger than alternate-day fasting, which could make it more sustainable long-term, she says.
One way to avoid hunger during your fast is to drink more water. Extra fluids will also prevent the headaches some people get when they don’t eat.
You might also need to change what you eat. Get more protein from sources like lean poultry, tofu, beans, and nuts. “That helps keep your muscle mass up, because you can lose muscle mass while fasting,” Varady says. It also helps you feel full for longer.
Although many of these diets let you eat what you want during your feast days, don’t go wild and binge. You’ll get the best results if you eat healthy every day.
You May Like: Can You Drink Alcohol While Intermittent Fasting
Could Fasting Help You Lose Weight Get Healthier
Nov. 5, 2018 — The route to weight loss has traditionally been to cut calories. Swap that regular soda for diet, grab an apple instead of a cookie, and you’ll trim pounds, the idea goes.
But, instead of going for such calorie cuts, many people are now taking more intense steps to lower their average daily calorie counts.
Called intermittent fasting, this latest way to diet takes a different approach. Rather than change how much you eat, you change when you eat. “Intermittent fasting is loosely defined as periods of non-eating, followed by periods of eating,” explains Krista Varady, PhD, an associate professor of nutrition in the University of Illinois at Chicago department of kinesiology and nutrition.
The origins of fasting are rooted in religion. Several faiths, including Islam, Judaism, and Christianity, observe periods of food restriction for spiritual reasons. Somewhere along the line, researchers discovered that skipping meals also has a few health benefits, including weight loss and lowered blood pressure and cholesterol.
Who Should Not Try A Fasting Diet For 3 Days
While fasting for 3 days is relatively safe for most people, it can be quite dangerous for some people. These exceptions include :
- Patients with diabetes, as it can lead to dangerous dips and spikes in blood sugar.
- Pregnant women, new moms, or breastfeeding women.
- Anyone who is ill, under medication, or suffers from uncontrollable migraines.
- Older adults, children, or teenagers.
- People with heart problems.
- People with eating disorders. Fasting has been linked to an increased risk of binge eating and bulimic pathology . The risk of triggering such disorders gets worse with anyone with an existing eating disorder.
Read Also: What Is 14 10 Intermittent Fasting
What Does This Mean
Although this was a small study, the results were significant, and in the light of the experiments in mice it appears likely that simply leaving it later in the morning to eat breakfast, and eating our last meal of the day earlier, could help us all be healthier.
There are two theories about why this might be and both may be coming in to play.
Firstly, its now well known that periods of not eating fasting is good for our health. It allows the cells in our body to go into a repair state rather than a growth state. It seems that if we lengthen the mini fasts that we have every night, this might itself be enough to give us a benefit, without us having to have whole days of eating little food.
Secondly, our bodies have a body clock which affects how they deal with food over the 24 hour period. In the evenings, our bodies are preparing for night-time fasting, and this means that eating can affect our blood sugar and fat levels particularly badly. Michael did an experiment to investigate this see Is eating after 8pm bad for me?
The researcher in charge of our study, Dr Jon Johnston, believes that we dont all need to stick to a rigid regime of restricted mealtimes as our study volunteers did social occasions can get in the way! However, he thinks that any time we CAN eat a later breakfast or an earlier dinner, we should try it, as every time we have a longer fasting period or avoiding a late-night meal, its helping our health.
Weight Loss Story: I Lost 21 Kilos Without Going To Gym And By Simply Following Intermittent Fasting
Pintrestweight loss journeyName:Height:City:Highest weight recordedWeight lost: Duration it took me to lose weight:The turning point:My diet:My breakfast: My lunch:My dinner:Pre-workout meal:Post-workout meal: I indulge in:My workout: Low-calorie recipes I swear by: Fitness secrets I unveiled: How do I stay motivated?How do you ensure you dont lose focus?What shape do you see yourself 10 years down the line? What are the lifestyle changes you made?
You May Like: Is 119 High For Fasting Blood Sugar
What Are The Different Intermittent Fasting Patterns
Intermittent fasting involves consuming all of your calories within a short period of time. There are many intermittent eating patterns, so its important to choose one thats right for your body, your activity level and your lifestyle. Here are two popular options:
The 16:8 DietThe 16:8 diet involves fasting for 16 hours each day and consuming all of your calories during an 8-hour window. Many people who follow this 16-hour fast eat 2 meals between noon and 8 pm, but you can adjust the 8-hour window to suit your lifestyle, exercise habits and work schedule. With this option, however, plan your eating so that the majority of the fast occurs during your normal sleeping hours. This will help you avoid feeling hungry during your waking hours.
The 5:2 DietAnother popular option is the 5:2 diet, which involves 5 days of normal eating and 2 days of eating around 500-600 calories per day. The 5:2 diet gives you the flexibility to choose the 2 fasting days that work best for you, as long as theyre separated by at least one normal eating day.
I Did Intermittent Fasting For 1 Month And This Is What Happened
After six months of CrossFit, five days a week, my transformation wasn’t as dramatic or amazing as I had hoped. I didn’t get insanely ripped as planned I still had extra weight around my stomach that I was hoping to ditch. So I was on a quest to find a way to keep up with the workouts I loved without having to add in extra cardio or drastically changing the foods I liked to eat.
Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Mark Popovich
I’d heard of intermittent fasting because my father had success doing the 5:2 plan: you eat normally five days a week, then eat 500 calories a day twice a week. But there’s no way I would be able to eat so little and be able to exercise, work full-time, and take care of my family.
Recommended Reading: Can You Drink Alcohol While Intermittent Fasting
What To Eat Before Fasting For 3 Days
There are no specific rules that state what to eat before fasting for 3 days. However, it is advisable for you to eat foods that are healthy and well-balanced. A balanced diet is one that supplies your body with the nutrients that it needs to work effectively.
A healthy diet is one that :
Some people also suggest that you should slowly and steadily reduce your caloric intake for about a week or two before the start date of your 3-day water fast. This helps your stomach and body get ready for not having enough energy.
What Surprised Me
The thing that intrigued me the most about intermittent fasting, and the reason I wanted to try it, was that I knew I had a slight obsession with tracking my food. As someone who’s been trying to lose weight on and off since I was in high school, I hated the fact that I was constantly thinking about food. What to eat, what not to eat, how many calories a food had, how many calories I’d eaten, and how many calories I wish I hadn’t eaten. So much time was consumed by planning out what I was going to eat, shopping for food, making food, and then eating it. It was exhausting.
I thought not being able to eat all morning long would make me think about food more, and I already had an issue with wanting to eat all day long, but the opposite happened! Fasting all morning freed up my time and my mind for other thoughts. By the last two weeks, I wasn’t thinking about food or checking the clock much at all during my fasting window. I even accidentally fasted too long a few times, realizing it was 1:30 p.m. and I hadn’t eaten yet.
Also Check: What Is 14 10 Intermittent Fasting
What Is The 3
The 3-Day Diet is a type of fad diet that dates back to 1985. The 3-Day Diet promises:
- Lower cholesterol
- Increased energy
However, there is no scientific research that validates any of the claims made by the diet.
The diet is meant to be followed for 3 days on, and 4 days off. It may be followed for up to one month, cycling through 3 days on and 4 days off for the month.
What About Severe Calorie Restriction
What if you eat only 500 or 600 calories a day? Although drastically cutting calories can cause rapid weight loss, consuming far less than your body needs can be counterproductive.
Severe calorie restriction can make you feel extremely hungry, deprived, and fatigued. Whats more, it often leads to loss of muscle, or lean mass.2
Generally speaking, the more lean mass you have, the more calories your body burns at rest.3 Loss of muscle during very-low-calorie dieting can slow down metabolism, making future regain much more likely.4
So fast weight loss via severe calorie restriction may not be a good idea for many people.
Also Check: Is 119 High For Fasting Blood Sugar
It Forces The Body To Switch Into A Fat
When fasting, your body will more fequently burn fat stores for fuel than it would if you were eating throughout the day. “When you’re fasting, your insulin levels and glycogen go down . As a result, your body switches from burning carbohydrates for fuel and taps into burning fat for fuel. This forces your body into ketosis ,” say The Nutrition Twins, Lyssie Lakatos, RD, CDN, CFT, and Tammy Lakatos Shames, RD, CDN, CFT, authors of The Nutrition Twins’ Veggie Cure and members of the Eat This, Not That! Medical Expert Board.
Did I Lose Weight
Yes! I lost about two pounds, which for me was HUGE, since I wasn’t seeing the scale budge otherwise. I was still doing CrossFit, so I know I was gaining muscle weight, but still the scale showed a decrease. I was amazed. The biggest thing, and I noticed this after the first week, was when I looked in the mirror, I could see more definition in my abs and upper back. That visual progress was what kept me going when I wanted to throw the towel in and drown myself in a bowl of oatmeal.
You May Like: Alcohol During Intermittent Fasting
Keep Fat Intake Moderate
When youre trying to drop pounds or kilos quickly, eating less fat may seem to make sense.
However, its not a good idea to eat a diet thats low in both carbs and fat. Youll likely end up feeling deprived within a few days or weeks and it certainly isnt sustainable long term.20Theres no need to fear fat.
That said, eating excessive amounts of fat isnt a good strategy for quick weight loss either. Even on a very-low-carb diet, eating more fat than your body needs can slow down rather than speed up weight loss.21
So dont add large amounts of butter, heavy cream, or other fat to your food. Also, avoid or minimize your intake of fat bombs and similar treats that provide very little protein or other nutrients.22
Instead, eat enough fat to add flavor and richness to your food but not so much that you feel stuffed. Let your body burn its stored fat rather than the fat you are eating.
How Intermittent Fasting Can Help You Lose Weight
There are many different ways to lose weight.
One strategy that has become popular in recent years is called intermittent fasting .
Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern that involves regular, short-term fasts or periods of minimal or no food consumption.
Most people understand intermittent fasting as a weight loss intervention. Fasting for short periods of time helps people eat fewer calories, which may result in weight loss over time .
However, intermittent fasting may also help modify risk factors for health conditions like diabetes and cardiovascular disease, such as lowering cholesterol and blood sugar levels 30002-0/fulltext” rel=”nofollow”> 2,
There are several different intermittent fasting methods. The most popular ones include:
- the 16:8 method
- Eat Stop Eat
- alternate-day fasting
All methods can be effective, but figuring out which one works best depends on the individual.
To help you choose the method that fits your lifestyle, heres a breakdown of the pros and cons of each.
Recommended Reading: Drinking Alcohol While Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent Fasting Can Be Hard But Maybe It Doesnt Have To Be
Initial human studies that compared fasting every other day to eating less every day showed that both worked about equally for weight loss, though people struggled with the fasting days. So, I had written off IF as no better or worse than simply eating less, only far more uncomfortable. My advice was to just stick with the sensible, , diet.
New research is suggesting that not all IF approaches are the same, and some are actually very reasonable, effective, and sustainable, especially when combined with a nutritious plant-based diet. So Im prepared to take my lumps on this one .
We have evolved to be in sync with the day/night cycle, i.e., a circadian rhythm. Our metabolism has adapted to daytime food, nighttime sleep. Nighttime eating is well associated with a higher risk of obesity, as well as .
Based on this, researchers from the University of Alabama conducted a study with a small group of obese men with prediabetes. They compared a form of intermittent fasting called “early time-restricted feeding,” where all meals were fit into an early eight-hour period of the day ,or spread out over 12 hours . Both groups maintained their weight but after five weeks, the eight-hours group had dramatically lower insulin levels and significantly improved insulin sensitivity, as well as significantly lower blood pressure. The best part? The eight-hours group also had significantly decreased appetite. They werent starving.