While some people are looking for diets to help them lose weight, there are many people on the lookout for nutrition plans and diets to help them with their health. Intermittent fasting is not only a great tool for weight loss, but also comes with a huge list of health benefits. In this article, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about intermittent fasting:
What is intermittent fasting?
Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern that focuses on alternating between periods of fasting and eating windows within a fixed number of hours.
Instead of focusing on what you can eat, intermittent fasting revolves around when you can eat. However, if you’re hoping to achieve weight loss, it is best to follow a healthy eating plan during your eating window and still remain in a calorie deficit.
Intermittent fasting schedules
While all intemittent fasting methods focus on eating within a specific window and fasting for a set number of hours each day, there are several different intermittent fasting schedules that work differently for each individual. It is always a good idea to switch up between them to prevent the body from getting used to your eating pattern and reaching a plateau.
One of the most common intermittent fasting weight loss methods is fasting for 16 hours per day and only allowing oneself to eat within an 8-hour window. During the fasting hours, no food should be eaten; however, there are slight options you can drink that do not break your fast:
- Black coffee with no sugar
- Herbal drinks with no sugar
Another intermittent fasting plan involves eating normally for 5 days per week and fasting for weight loss for 2 non-consecutive days per week while eating minimum calories. This method is a great way to shock your system to reach results as well as ease into intermittent fasting for beginners. During those two days, one consumes minimum amount of calories by trying to eat around 500 calories per day.
One Meal A Day or Eat, Stop, Eat is an advanced intermittent fasting plan that relies on a 24-hour fast. After the 24-hour period, a person breaks their fast to eat one healthy, balanced meal filled with their required nutrients and then instanly start a new fasting day. This intermittent fasting method is best when combined with the above two schedules allowing one to maximize results and use intermittent fasting for weight loss effectively.
For best results, you should use OMAD once or twice a week.
How does the intermittent fasting diet work?
While the fasting hours allow you to elimate your calorie intake for at least 16 hours per day and heavily reduce your calorie intake, it is not the only reason one loses weight during intermittent fasting.
Not only does intermittent fasting adjusts the hormone levels in the body to boost weight lost and enable fat burning but it also lowers insulin levels in the blood and increases growth hormone levels. This in turn helps the production of the hormone noreinephine which boosts fat burning levels.
Health benefits of intermittent fasting:
While intermittent fasting is known for weight loss, there are several other health benefits to fasting:
- Reduces cholestrol levels
- Improves glucose control by reducing insulin resistance
- Reduces liver fat
- Improves blood pressure
- Improves sleep
- Regulates hormones
- Improves cell repair and functions
- Helps reduce belly fat
- Reduces inflammation in the body
- Improves heart health
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