How Intermittent Fasting Can Change Your Life

How Intermittent Fasting Can Change Your Life

“Gosh, I wish I could go on Intermittent Fasting.”

 

...said no one, ever!

 

But seriously.

 

Several studies are underway on fasting and how it can improve health disorders.

 

Just remember – “Whatever is your problem, answer is not always in the FRIDGE”

 

Do you know that fasting was a normal practice during human evolution? Indeed, humans have been fasting for thousands of years. Sometimes out of necessity, when no food was available.

 

Other times, it was out of rituals. Certain religions such as Christianity, Hinduism, Islam and Buddhism have a certain form of fasting rituals purely for religious reasons.

 

In prehistoric times, before humans learned to farm, people sometimes did not eat for days. Eating three times a day was a luxury at that time. It has also been seen that the human body is fully equipped to manage long periods of fasting.

 

But what is the truth behind “Intermittent Fasting” in today’s day and age?

 

Intermittent fasting is all the rage NOW. What the heck is it?

 

Is it good, bad, or ugly for your health?

 

Let’s dive in.

 

First

What is Intermittent Fasting?

It is basically redesigning your eating pattern, creating a set window of “X” number of hours (it can be 8, 9, 10 hours or whatever duration you’re comfortable) where you refrain from eating anything during that time.

 

This cycle can be repeated as frequently as you want – once in a week or twice or it can be everyday – depending entirely on your personal preferences and the strength of your body.  

 

Now you’d think

 

ummm….

 

Where to start from?

 

But wait...

 

Before you start intermittent fasting, like everything else in life, let’s have a clear  goal -- What are you trying to achieve through FASTING?.

 

According to many studies, intermittent fasting may:

  • Improve your health
  • Help you in losing your weight and belly fat
  • Improve digestion and metabolism
  • Help in fighting with diseases such as Cancer, Diabetes, Alzheimer’s, etc.

 

 First understand your existing body condition.

 

Then, why do you want to do FASTING? How can it help and with what?

 

Now, once you have a clear goal – objective in your mind, it will be much easier for you to start intermittent fasting in a right way. Plus, it will give you some motivation and you can always measure the success rate of it when you have clear goals in your mind.

 

Now…

 

Listen

 

First few days of fasting could be a challenge -- both physically and mentally. For sure, you’re not going to like it. Your body isn’t used to it. It may take a couple of weeks or sometimes months for you and your body to get used to fasting.

 

If you’re doing this for the first time, this is something alien to your body.

 

AND your body would be like -- “What the hell is going on here?

 

Honestly the only argument you will have is at that point will be  – “This is for your good, believe me”

 

Obliviously, it doesn’t work that way. Especially, when you’re not used to starving.

 

Yes, at times, you will be lured to GIVING IN!

 

This is the point when you need strong WILL POWER.

 

Interestingly, this is not about

 

…food

or

…hunger

or

…sugar rush

 

It’s just your BRAIN is messing up with you.

 

One word – MINDSET

 

Work on your mindset before you start working on any type of fasting. That’s what’s going to help you follow any kind of fasting. Fasting is never about food, it is always how well you’re prepared for the changes with regards to your eating habits.

 

There are several types of Intermittent Fasting methods. We will discuss 6 most popular fasting methods. Each type of fasting is effective, but depends on what suits you best.

It is very important to understand and learn about different fasting methods. It is strongly recommended to try few of them to see what works for you. And choose the one where you get most effective results or it can be combination of few.

 

 

6 Most Popular Intermittent Fasting Methods

  1. 16:8 Method

This is time-restricted fasting method, where you fast for 14-16 hours a day and eat during a window of 8-10 hours. Simple, isn’t it?

You have full flexibility how you time your eating window or fasting window in 24 hours. However, you must follow the same schedule each day to get better results.

Different people do this differently, like:

  • Some people will stop eating anything after dinner and skip breakfast. And then, they’ll only eat during middle of the day

 

  • For others, morning hunger can be intolerable, so they will have breakfast and early lunch and won’t eat anything for rest of the day

 

I know that fasting for 16 hours can seem like freaking tough. One hack is to include your 8-10 hours sleep time and then you are only left with 6-8 hours during the day for fasting.

 

Although, there is no special diet you need to follow during your eating window. However, it is recommended to eat healthy foods during it, avoid any kind of junk food for better results.

 

Exceptions:

  • Whew! you can have all the water you want.

 

  • Whoops!, you can drink coffee or any other zero calorie beverages during fasting

 

  1. Alternate-Day Fasting

Now, this is tough one. Get ready for some tough love.

Alternate-day fasting as the name says, you eat every other day or alternatively you don’t eat for 24 hours.

Of course, it’s not for everybody. Fasting for full day is kinda extreme, and I totally agree with you. If you’re new to fasting, this is definitely you don’t want to start with.

Quick tip: Before, you try this type of fasting, you should adapt your body with other types of fasting.

 

The schedule for weekly alternate day fasting would look like this

Sunday: Fast (500 calories, if you wish to eat)

Monday: Healthy eating

Tuesday: Fast (500 calories, if you wish to eat)

Wednesday: Healthy eating

Thursday: Fast (500 calories, if you wish to eat)

Friday: Healthy eating

Saturday: Fast (500 calories, if you wish to eat)

 

Exceptions:

  • Whew! you can have as much water as you want.

 

  • Whoops!, you can drink coffee or any other zero calorie beverages during the fast

 

  • Yay! you’re allowed to eat 500 calories during the fasting days, if you wish to

 

  1. 5:2 Method

Under 5:2, you have a restricted diet (anything less than 500 calories) for any two days in a week and have a normal diet for rest 5 days. Best part -- Fasting days shouldn’t be consecutive. Quick hack is spacing your fasting days out like Monday & Thursday or Wednesday & Sunday or anything that fits you.

 

Easy-Peasy.

 

This is one of the most popular methods of intermittent fasting because it suits many people. You don’t have to push yourself like with other intermittent fasting methods. It’s also called Fast Diet.

 

If you’re new to fasting, this is where you can start from.

 

  1. Eat Stop Eat

It is a fairly straight and simple method of intermittent fasting. No complexity, whatsoever.

In this you fast 24 hours once, twice or thrice a week. That’s all.

To make it simple, you can do this -- have a dinner on Monday at 8PM and then you don’t eat anything until dinner next day at 8 PM.

 

Exceptions:

  • Whew! you can have as much water as you want.

 

  • Whoops!, you can drink coffee or any other zero calorie beverages during the fast

 

 

  1. The Warrior Diet

In this, you eat small portions of raw fruits and vegetables during the day while fasting and then you get four-hour window at night where you eat one whole meal.

The food you eat is very similar to paleo diet and you avoid any kind of processed food while doing this kind of intermittent fasting.

 

  1. Spontaneous Meal Skipping

This is not a very structured way of fasting.

Honestly, not every type of intermittent fasting should be structured and organised.

Enough with the discipline..LOL

You can always try something very random like Spontaneous fasting, just out of the blue.

In this, you just skip random meal during the day, there is no set pattern for it. It can be breakfast, lunch or dinner.

 

This may be aligned with your busy schedule or it can be while you’re traveling. Let’s say you’re busy with work or you’re traveling and you don’t have time to eat, you can always skip a meal to do spontaneous fasting. Or sometimes, you may not be hungry, and it’s okay to do spontaneous fasting at that time.

Just be careful that you eat healthy, unprocessed food during other meals.

 

Health Benefits of Intermittent Fasting

People have mixed opinions about intermittent fasting. It worked wonders for some and some have said that they saw no health benefits in it. It's more like a conflict right now.

According to many studies, intermittent fasting has different health benefits like:

 

  • Weight Loss – Intermittent fasting is very popular among people who want to lose weight and belly fat. Andy yes, it works. It’s a natural way to remove toxins from your body. The key here is to identify which fasting method is best for your body and follow it with discipline.

 

  • Diabetes – There has been huge increase in the number of type 2 diabetes patients in last decade. Thanks to JUNK FOOD. We have seen people across all ages getting affecting by it.

 

Recently, people with type 2 diabetes have seen unprecedented positive results with intermittent fasting lowering their blood sugar levels. 

 

  • Inflammation – Fasting may reduce oxidative damage and inflammation in the body. Inflammation may cause several common diseases. Oxidative stress can damage your body and can led to chronic diseases. Both of them can be addressed by intermittent fasting.

 

  • Healthy Heart – According to CDC, heart disease is the world’s biggest killer. With the help of fasting, you can improve your blood pressure, LDL cholesterol, blood triglycerides, inflammatory markers and blood sugar levels. Therefore, all this can be added to a healthy heart.

 

  • Body Recovery and Repair – Our body needs to recover and repair every day, especially when we’re working hard day in day out. Fasting leads to the initiation of waste removal process from our body called Autophagy. What Autophagy do to our body? It breaks down cells and metabolizes broken and dysfunctional proteins that is build up inside the cells over time. This process helps to recover, repair the body and fighting with several diseases like Cancer and Alzheimer’s.

 

 

If you made it, so far, just give a PAT on your back.

 

You’re now more informed about fasting than average Joe.

 

Just remember intermittent Fasting is not easy way. It is hard. It is difficult. It is challenging. It is what it is.

 

Is it for everyone? Not exactly, yes you can try and see it for yourself. But if you’re having any kind of medical condition or illness, you should always consult medical practitioner before you try fasting.

 

Is it effective? Everybody is different. Everybody reacts differently to different forms of diet. So, there’s no definitive answer here, until and unless you try and see how your body reacts to the changes or you see some positive results.

 

In the end, like anything else, Intermittent is not a magic wand that can solve your weight issues or health problems.

 

Try it. Get your mind ready for hunger. Don’t push too hard.

 

Until then, take it easy.


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