Intermittent fasting has become a weight-loss trend over the past 10 years; it’s the most popular health and fitness trend; it is believed that you can lose weight, increase strength and extend your energy levels with Intermittent fasting.
Intermittent fasting is gradually developing and becoming one of the new trends in health and fitness. Some experts claim that intermittent fasting can help reduce weight, control blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol, and other health effects. There is growing evidence that intermittent fasting can change the risk factors associated with obesity and type 2 diabetes.
But is intermittent fasting that great, and is intermittent fasting safe?
What Is Intermittent Fasting?
Intermittent fasting is a way of eating, including alternate eating and fasting for several weeks or months. Intermittent Fasting is not considered a “diet” because it is to eat what has nothing to do with when to eat about.
There is also a form of fasting for 16 hours a day with an 8-hour eating window. It feels like a long time without eating for 16 hours, but don’t forget that night bedtime is also included. During the eating window period, you can’t eat a lot of food; you can only have 2-3 times balanced and nutritious meals.
It is also very important to do weight training on an empty stomach during the fasting period because, as mentioned earlier, your body can only burn fat to recharge your workout.
Zero Calories In The Fasting Hours
Intermittent fasting introduces to holding zero calories or extremely low-calorie consumption for a specific time systematically. Periodicity means not always fasting. It can be fast for one day a week or one day a month, but not for several days in a row. Zero or very low-calorie intake is also different from traditional dieting.
Many people feel a little scared when they hear about fasting. Moreover, we often inadvertently fast intermittently in our daily lives, but we just don’t pay attention. For example, after dinner at six o’clock, they go to bed with an empty stomach at night. Sometimes some people do not eat breakfast until noon the next day. They have already fasted for 18 hours, but this should happen systematically to achieve benefits.
What Are The Methods Of Intermittent Fasting?
Following are the most popular methods:
- 16/8 Method: The Leangains protocol involves skipping breakfast and limiting your daily eating time to 8 hours, such as 1-9 in the afternoon. Then you will fast for 16 hours in between.
- Eat full: This includes fasting for 24 hours a week, once or twice a week, such as not eating from dinner one day until dinner the next day.
- 5:2 diet: Using this method, you only consume 500-600 calories on two non-consecutive days of the week, and you can usually eat during the other 5 days.
1) Fasting Alternate Day
Fasting every other day is taking turns eating and fasting. During meal days, people eat as usual. No calorie-containing food or beverages are allowed on fasting days, and only non-calorie beverages such as water, black coffee, and tea are allowed.
2) Modified Intermittent Fasting
Modified fasting refers to eating very little during fasting days, usually eating only 20-25% of our daily calorie requirements, or eating less than 500 calories a day.
The “5:2 diet” is the most common form and is widely used in Europe and the United States. This type of diet refers to eating as usual for 5 days of non-fasting and then fasting for the next 2 days. During the fasting time, men can usually eat 600 calories of food, and women can eat 500 calories.
3) Fasting For A Limited Time
Time-limited fasting refers to fasting at specific times of the day. Usually, people eat a normal diet all day and then fast from the evening to the next morning. This mode restricts eating at night and may also help improve sleep quality.
Time-limited fasting is also more suitable for the circadian rhythm. In this rhythm, the human body will change its physiological behavior through the 24-hour light and clock cycle, which may also promote the body to better control the metabolism.
How It Affects Your Cells And Hormones?
Intermittent fasting will initiate autophagy in human cells, and cells will digest the old, damaged, and unused parts. Remove toxins from the body.
- Intermittent fasting can reduce the oxidative stress of cells and alleviate the symptoms of inflammation: Oxidative stress is the increase in the production of oxidized substances in animal cells, which is characterized by the release of free radicals and cell degradation. Intermittent fasting reduces oxidative stress, thereby achieving anti-aging and preventing a large number of chronic diseases.
- It also promotes cell repair and detoxification as it gives the body the time to heal.
- Intermittent fasting can prevent type 2 diabetes: Reduce insulin resistance and lower blood sugar.
- Intermittent fasting can prevent heart disease: Intermittent fasting 101 can improve several indicators that affect heart disease, including blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, and blood lipids.
- Helps prevent diseases, speed up body recovery, delay aging, and reduces the occurrence pimples
The Effects On Human Growth Hormone
increase the level of testosterone, increase libido, increase muscle and bone density, increase fat loss, avoid cardiovascular disease, better sleep, and better mood
Other ways to promote human growth hormone are: adequate sleep, vigorous exercise, lower blood sugar levels (avoid sugar, fine carbohydrates), and reduce fat content.
Significantly Increases The Secretion Of Growth Hormone
Studies have proved that fasting can improve the reduction of cardiovascular system disease indicators (for example, triglycerides, blood sugar levels), whether intermittent fasting 101 can reduce the occurrence of coronary heart condition or diabetes needs long-term analysis and follow-up to resolve. But in some religious customs, such as Arabs during Ramadan and Mormons only eat one meal a day for some time. Studies have found that these people have better cardiovascular health indicators than the average person during this period.
How Does Intermittent Fasting Work For Weight Loss?
Intermittent fasting 101 narrows the eating window, the total food intake will also be reduced, and the calorie intake will naturally become smaller. Intermittent fasting will temporarily increase metabolism slightly and consume more energy.
This fasting will significantly reduce insulin levels (20-31%). Low levels of insulin help make the fat stored in the body easier to use, which reduces fat.
Intermittent fasting will increase the content of norepinephrine and help the body break down fat into fatty acids that can be converted into energy.
Both ordinary dieting and Intermittent fasting 101 dietings (reducing total calorie intake) can reduce weight and fat, but Intermittent fasting can more effectively retain muscle loss.
Intermittent fasting can allow you to lose 3-8% of your body weight and 4-7% of your waist circumference within 3 to 24 weeks, which effectively eliminates a big belly.
Foods To Eat While Intermittent Fasting
When following Intermittent fasting 101, systemise your diet according to your chosen intermittent fasting plan for healthy living by choosing fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins to ensure that you get all the necessary vitamins and minerals every day.
You can consider choosing a limited-time fast, which is a simple form of intermittent fasting. You have a fixed 8-12 hours a day to limit your food intake and continue to maintain a healthy and balanced Intermittent fasting diet for the rest of the time.
The most common and feasible way of fasting is to fast for 16 hours (including sleep time) and eat for 8 hours (usually 2 meals), accordingly following Intermittent fasting 101. During the 16 hours of fasting, you can only drink water, tea, or pure coffee.
For example, you eat dinner at 6 p.m., go to bed at 10 p.m., get up at 6 a.m. and skip breakfast; you have to wait until at least 10 a.m. to start eating. With intermittent fasting, it is also important to follow a diet plan for healthy living, lose weight, and increase energy levels.
What Are The Health Benefits And Side Effects Of Intermittent Fasting?
|Weight loss||May actually reduce metabolism rate|
|Insulin resistance||Risk of malnutrition|
|Inflammation||Not suitable for pregnant women|
|Intermittent fasting helps you gain muscle||Not suitable for diabetic patients|
|Intermittent fasting is beneficial to the functioning of the brain||Eating disorders due to changes time table|
|Intermittent fasting is likely to make you live longer.|
|Intermittent fasting saves you time.|
The benefits of Intermittent fasting are as follows:
- Intermittent fasting for weight loss: As mentioned above, intermittent fasting can help you lose weight and belly fat without consciously restricting calories.
- Insulin resistance: Intermittent fasting can reduce insulin resistance, reducing blood sugar by 3–6%, and fasting insulin levels by 20–31%, which should prevent type 2 diabetes.
- Inflammation: Some studies have shown that the reduction of inflammatory markers is a key driving factor for many chronic diseases.
- Helps you gain muscle (the total calorie intake per day is not less than the output)
- Intermittent fasting can greatly increase human growth hormone (up to 5 times) and help increase muscle mass.
- Intermittent fasting is beneficial to the functioning of the brain: Intermittent fasting can promote the generation of new nerve cells, protect the brain from damage, prevent Alzheimer’s, and also increase a brain hormone-brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Lack of BDNF can cause symptoms such as depression.
- Likely to make you live longer: In an animal experiment, a rat that fasted every two days lived 83% longer than a rat that did not fast!
- Intermittent fasting saves you time: You only need to eat one or two meals a day, saving a lot of time for cooking, eating, and washing dishes.
The side effects of Intermittent fasting are as follows:
Existing related studies have limitations due to the small sample size, short duration of the study, unrepresentative sample size, and inconsistent dietary patterns, so the results have limitations. We need more research to determine the actual operation of intermittent fasting.
Some religions fast for 8-16 hours during the day, which may reduce the metabolism rate.
It’s not suitable for pregnant or breastfeeding women, diabetic patients (especially those taking insulin), eating disorders, or suffering from eating disorders. People, people at risk of malnutrition, people taking certain medications, and others.
Before starting intermittent fasting, please consult your doctor or nutritionist and let them help guide you. Intermittent fasting you fast for religious reasons, please discuss with your doctor to better adjust your medications during the fast.
Note that the first meal after 24 hours of fasting is the key to success or failure. Follow a normal diet and balance carbohydrates, protein, and fat. Enjoy your meal slowly and chew it properly, which makes the digestion smooth. Do not eat a lot of sweets.
Those who have stomach ulcers, low blood sugar, or those who are phobic about new things, try cautiously!
If you are following intermittent fasting, here is what you need to know:
- Make sure you do not have any health conditions that are not suitable for intermittent fasting.
- During the non-fasting period, it is still recommended to follow a healthy diet.
- Not fasting does not mean that you can eat anything you want, nor does it mean that you can make up all the food you eat less on fasting days on non-fasting days.
The following are situations where Intermittent fasting should not be performed:
- Too skinny
- Eating disorders
- Irregular menstruation
- Lack of sleep
- To engage in a lot of physical activity
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