What Is Intermittent Fasting? Easy Weight Loss Guide

Intermittent fasting is a type of eating regimen in which you alternate between fasting and eating regularly. Studies have shown that intermittent fasting will help people to lose weight and prevent — or even reverse — disease.

Other diets are focused on what to eat instead of when to eat which is by intermittent fasting.

Intermittent fasting is when you only eat at certain times of the day. According to Intermittent Fasting, for specific hours each day or eating just one meal a few times a week could really help in fat loss. And this fact is also proved by scientific data that intermittent fasting has pretty good results in losing weight.

It was easy to maintain a healthy weight even 50 years ago. Christie Williams, M.S., R.D.N., a nutritionist at Johns Hopkins, explains:

“People stopped eating to go to bed because there were no computers and television shows ended at 11 p.m. The servings were somewhat smaller. More people worked and played outside, resulting in increased physical activity.”

 Television, the internet, and other forms of entertainment are now available every day of the week, 24 hours a day. We stay up later to catch up on our favorite shows, play games and communicate with one another. Obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other ailments can all be exacerbated by eating too many calories and exercising too little. Intermittent fasting has been shown in scientific research to help reverse these patterns.

How does intermittent fasting work?

Intermittent fasting can be done in a variety of methods, but they all revolve around choosing regular eating and fasting times. For example, you could try eating only for eight hours a day and fasting for the rest of the day. Alternatively, you could choose to eat only one meal each day two days per week. There are plenty of plans for intermittent fasting from where you can choose whatever suits your needs.

According to Mattson, after fasting, the body’s stored sugar levels started depleting and it begins to burn fat to produce energy that used to come from stored sugar. This is referred to as metabolic switching by him.

“Most Americans eat throughout their waking hours, so intermittent fasting is in contrast to their regular eating pattern,” Mattson explains. “If someone eats three meals a day plus snacks and doesn’t exercise, they’re running on those calories and not burning their fat stores every time they eat.”

Intermittent fasting works by extending the time between when your body burns off the calories from your last meal and starts burning fat.

Intermittent fasting plans

Before beginning intermittent fasting, make sure to see your doctor. The actual technique is straightforward once you have his or her permission. You can choose a daily strategy, which limits daily meals to one six- to eight-hour period. For example, you could try 16/8 fasting, which involves eating for eight hours and fasting for sixteen.

Another method, known as the 5:2 technique, is eating five times a week. You only eat one 500–600 calorie meal on the remaining two days. For instance, suppose you decided to eat normally every day of the week except Mondays and Thursdays, which are your one-meal days.

Fasting for longer lengths of time, such as 24, 36, 48, and 72 hours, is not always beneficial and can be dangerous. Going too long without eating may cause your body to begin storing fat as a response to the lack of food.

What can I eat while intermittent fasting?

Water and zero-calorie liquids like black coffee and tea are allowed at periods when you aren’t eating.

And “eating normally” during your periods does not really mean “going insane” here. If you fill your meals with high-calorie food-usually junk food, highly fried foods, and extra sugar-coated desserts, you’re not going to lose weight.

But what Williams enjoys about intermittent fasting is that it allows him to eat — and enjoy — a wide variety of things. She explains, “We want people to be conscious and enjoy eating delicious, nutritious food.” Eating with others and sharing the mealtime experience, she continues, enhances satisfaction and promotes excellent health.

Whether you’re trying intermittent fasting or not, Williams, like other nutrition experts, considers the Mediterranean diet to be a solid pattern for what to consume. When someone goes for complex, unprocessed carbohydrates e.g., whole grains, vegetables, healthy fats, and lean protein, he/she just can’t go wrong.

Benefits of intermittent fasting

Intermittent fasting does more than burn fat, according to research. “Changes in this metabolic switch affect both the body and the brain,” Mattson explains.

Longer life, a slimmer body, and a sharper intellect are among the health benefits connected with the practices.

“During intermittent fasting, numerous things happen that protect organs from chronic diseases including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, age-related neurological disorders, even inflammatory bowel disease, and many cancers,”

Memory and Thinking skills. Intermittent fasting aids in the improvement of memory in animals as well as verbal memory in adults.

Cardiovascular health. Researches have shown that fasting for a specific time period, every now and then, helps in the regularity of blood pressure, improvement in resting heart rates, and other heart-related parameters.

Physical abilities. Scientist’s data have proved that fasting for 16 hours or more resulted in fat loss with retaining of muscular mass in young males.

Obesity and diabetes. Intermittent fasting has been proved to help prevent obesity in animals and also helped obese patients to lose weight.

The condition of the tissues. Intermittent fasting in mice minimized tissue damage during surgery and improved outcomes.

How safe is intermittent fasting?

Some people use intermittent fasting to lose weight, while others use it to treat chronic illnesses including irritable bowel syndrome, high cholesterol, or arthritis. Intermittent fasting, on the other hand, isn’t for everyone.

Before attempting intermittent fasting (or any diet), Williams recommends consulting with your primary care physician. Those who should avoid intermittent fasting include:

• Children and teenagers under the age of eighteen.

• Pregnant or breastfeeding women; people with diabetes or blood sugar issues.

• Individuals with eating disorders in the past.

Keep in mind that intermittent fasting can have a variety of effects depending on the individual. If you experience unusual anxiety, headaches, nausea, or other symptoms after beginning intermittent fasting, consult your doctor.

So, that’s it for now. This is all you need to know about intermittent fasting at the start.

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