There are many options to choose when your goal is a low body fat and that perfectly slim yet muscular beach body that gleams in the summer sun. You may have tried working out, doing your cardio right and dieting, but have you heard about intermittent fasting?
Intermittent fasting is a technique of eating that is getting a lot of traction these days. As described, it is one of the least expensive fasting regimens to trim the fat. It does not require pills or medications, nor does it involve expensive exercise equipment.
However, it does require a firm and strict discipline to fasting. Intermittent fasting means the control of food intake in not consuming anything between large meals. Additionally, it follows that you must accomplish a successive order of eating.
How to Do Intermittent Fasting (IF)?
Remember, Intermittent fasting is not a diet it is an eating pattern where one fast for a set of time and afterward eats calories for another set of time. There are four basic programs or approaches to doing this: the 16/8 or 20/4 routine, the 24-hour routine, the once a week/month routine and fast occasionally.
The 16/8 or 20/4 routine (the recommended):
In the 16/8 or 20/4 routine, you do not need to eat for either 16 to 20 hours. Then, you eat meals throughout the other 4 to 8-hour period.
It simply needs trading breakfast for a cup of espresso or several other non-caloric fluids. And having lunch as the first meal of the day. For instance, fasting from 7 pm to 11 am is equal to 16 hours of fasting.
The 24-hour routine (eat-stop-eat):
This method is surprisingly easy to do. In this, you can consume foods with low calorie or calorie-free, such as water, tea, coffee, and vegetables.
After the 24 hours fasting, you can start eating and consuming all the calories in a specific number of hours again. This program is often dinner to dinner, and you need serious self-discipline to finish this method.
The once a week/month routine (the 5:2 Diet):
You can eat your usual meals daily, then choose one or two days weekly where you fast for 24 hours. You can pick Sunday night to consume your last meal, and then don’t eat again until the following day for dinner.
On the fasting days, men are recommended to consume 600 calories, and for women 500 calories. Remember, losing weight is all about consuming fewer calories than you burn.
Fast occasionally (Spontaneous meal skipping):
Most likely this is the simplest method for you if you need to do the least amount of work. Skip a major meal whenever it’s advantageous. Like if you are on the road, just skip breakfast, or you are occupied at work, skip lunch.
The entire goal of fasting is to let a day produce a calorie deficit of 10 to 15%.
Could You Benefit from Intermittent Fasting Beyond Weight Loss?
Yes! Various researches prove that Intermittent fasting can have comprehensive benefits for your body. And typically, what is good for your body is also good for your brain. Some of the advantages are the following:
- Researchers show that intermittent fasting can enhance various dangerous factors for heart illness such as cholesterol levels, blood pressure, triglycerides and inflammatory markers.
- It can drop the level of insulin and increases human growth hormone.
- It can lessen oxidative damage and swell in the body that may counter aging and growth of several diseases.
- It can help you consume lesser calories, while slightly improving metabolism.
- It can build up autophagy that may provide protection against numerous diseases, including Alzheimer’s illness and cancer.
Highlighting the Bright Side of IF
Intermittent fasting is essential and effective for most of us. Furthermore, some of the obvious pros of intermittent fasting are:
- Ability and adaptability to set fasting schedule
You can pick the best time or day to fast. Additionally, you can alter it over the long haul.
- Free from arranging your day about your meal always
At least for one day out of the week, you don’t need to plan your meals.
- Decrease in food expenses weekly
Not eating for an entire day once per week implies a lesser weekly grocery budget. Instead of purchasing six big meals daily, you just have to buy two.
- Straightforward eating scheme
No complicated diet regimen formulas, no expensive meals, no calculating carbs, calories, or whatever of that kind. You mostly skip a meal or two and just stress over consuming food in your eating window.
- Necessitates less time
You just need to do the dishes twice instead of having to do it six times.
Considering the Dark Side of IF
While Intermittent Fasting may have its advantages for a few, it has its side effects too. Note that these side effects are not particular to any approach of Intermittent Fasting. So, you could or not likely to encounter them, depending on your body.
The following are probably some side effects of IF:
- Being Uneasily Full After Mealtime
With a small feeding window, you need to consume one or two major meals. Large meals could leave you feeling constipated and uneasy.
- Preoccupied with Fasting and Feeding Window
A few intermittent fasting fasters go to the degree of calculating down hours and minutes until to the feeding window. Some fasters even quit following intermittent fasting procedures and prolong the time frame to lose weight quicker.
- Over-Dependence on Coffee
Intermittent Fasting schemes permit fasters to drink coffee to handle appetite and stay active. But as we know, drinking coffee or anything with caffeine can prompt to stress, poor sleeping habits, and anxiety. And these can cause weight gain in response.
- Starvation and Food Cravings
For some people, even when they eat six meals daily, they still encounter hunger pangs. So, much more for people who are fasting, their hunger is more intense.
- Decreases Physical Performance
When fasting, it’s alright to train mildly. However, doing vigorous exercises can hurt you like cross-fit, power-lifting, or high power interval training.
- Heartburn and Headaches
The heartburn occurs as your body is used to your old eating habit, so it discharges acids at specific times. Likewise, headache is a typical manifestation amid fasting.
- Recurrent Diarrhea
Diarrhea is brought about by high fluid consumption, like drinking a lot of water and coffee. However, how bad it is relying upon on to what extent the fast was.
Little energy is one of the main concerns for people who desire to give Intermittent Fasting a try. And it’s a serious issue because fasting fallouts to weakness.
Keep in mind that neither intermittent fasting nor some other eating regimen or diet, not even basic nutrition guidelines, will work for everybody. Individuality, the way of life, and preferences should be measured when it is about eating patterns.
Give intermittent fasting a shot if this appears like something you’d like to try. But if it sounds insane to you, question yourself why you think it is crazy, and do your experimentation before disregarding or judging it.
If your present nutrition regimen is bringing too much strain or isn’t creating the desired outcomes, try not to be reluctant to explore and make it easier. All you need is to make up your mind, and you will have the capacity to accomplish it.