You could be thinking… what makes this possible? Missing breakfast is harmful, isn’t it? Why would somebody choose to fast for sixteen hours every day? What are the advantages? Are you crazy, or does this have any basis in science? Is it hazardous?
My friend, be patient. I’ve done some insane stuff before, but this is absolutely true. There are numerous health advantages, and it’s simple to incorporate into your routine. I’ll explain intermittent fasting and all of its implications in this post.
What is meant by intermittent fasting?
The practice of intermittent fasting is a pattern of eating, not a diet. It’s a strategy for planning meals, so you get the most benefit possible from them. Instead of altering what you eat, intermittent fasting alters when you eat.
So, how does intermittent fasting work?
There are numerous ways to practice intermittent fasting. There is no “ideal” fasting strategy; thus, your strategy should be centered on what works best for you.
One strategy is to fast every day for a predetermined period of time, typically 12 hours or longer. A regular person sleeps for seven to eight hours at night, which counts toward the required fasting period. If you don’t eat after dinner, you may simply maintain a daily fast to improve your body’s ability to burn fat. For someone who frequently eats snacks at night, this form of fasting is much-needed and beneficial.
Alternate-day fasting is another type of intermittent fasting. Here, you can eat whatever you want five to six days a week and pick one or two days to fast. Water and broth are recommended during those fasting days to prevent dehydration. For someone whose work schedule may be extremely hectic some days and who is unable to eat regularly, this form of fasting may be helpful.
Are there side effects to intermittent fasting?
You could initially feel tired and find it difficult to concentrate due to hunger. It would definitely take time for your body to adapt to the new meal pattern, but this should only be a temporary situation. It will get better from here on!
Tips for maintaining intermittent fasting
People may maintain their goals and maximize their benefits from intermittent fasting by using the following advice:
- Keeping hydrated: Throughout the day, sip a lot of water and calorie-free beverages.
- Stay away from food obsession: To prevent yourself from thinking about food while you’re fasting, be sure to schedule plenty of activities such as paperwork, catch-ups, or movie dates.
- Relaxation and sleep: On your fasting days, stay away from heavy exercises, but yoga or other gentle stretching could be helpful.
- Counting every calorie: Choose nutrient-dense foods that are high in fiber, protein, and beneficial fats if the chosen plan permits some calories during fasting times. Lentils, beans, eggs, salmon, almonds, and avocado are a few examples.
- Eating a lot of food: Pick foods that are satisfying yet low in calories, like popcorn, raw vegetables, and fruits with a lot of water, like grapes and melons.
- Without adding calories, increase the flavor: Garlic, herbs, spices, or vinegar should be used liberally to season food. These ingredients are flavorful and extremely low in calories, which may help resist hunger.
- Selecting foods that are high in nutrients after the fast: Consuming foods rich in minerals, vitamins, fiber, and other nutrients aids in maintaining stable blood sugar levels and avoiding nutrient shortages. Additionally, such a diet helps with both weight loss and general health as it is a balanced diet.
Even while the basic concept behind intermittent fasting is, in a way, food deprivation, going beyond it won’t be beneficial. Depending on your lifestyle and habits, it is a question of controlling your specific food intake. If intermittent fasting is effective for someone else, it might not be effective for you. Before experimenting with extreme intermittent fasting variations, it is always preferable to take baby steps. All the best!