Intermittent fasting is enormously popular at the moment. It is simply an eating pattern where you cycle between fasting and eating. It is not so much about the foods you are eating but rather only dictates when you are eating them.
The most common form of Intermittent fasting is the 16/8 method where you do all of your eating in one eight- hour window. This time restraint results in a significant decrease in your daily calorific intake. Fewer calories: less fat! Research has proven that intermittent fasting has positive benefits for weight – loss and can even help you live longer!
Some changes that occur in your body when you fast include:
- Human Growth Hormone. This hormone sky rockets when your body goes into fasting mode. This has great benefits for muscle growth and fat loss.
- Insulin. Levels of insulin drop dramatically. This makes stored body fat more accessible.
- Cellular repair
- Gene expression: the changes in the function of genes related to disease prevention.
By eating fewer meals intermittent fasting can lead to an automatic reduction in calorie intake. Additionally intermittent fasting changes hormone levels to facilitate weight loss.
However, keep in mind that the main reason for its success is that intermittent fasting helps you eat fewer calories overall. If you binge and eat massive amounts during your eating periods, weight loss may not occur.
Have a read of the main health benefits of intermittent fasting:
- Weight loss.
- Insulin resistance. Fasting lowers insulin levels and can contribute to prevention of type 2 diabetes.
- Inflammation. Some studies have stated that fasting can help contribute to reduced inflammation, particularly helpful when it comes to chronic diseases.
- Heart health. Fasting may help reduce ‘bad’ cholesterol and contribute to improved heart health.
In theory eating healthy is simple, in reality putting it into practice can be very difficult. Intermittent fasting can help you simply this process by restricting you to a limited time to plan and arrange your meals.
This eating cycle may also be easier to follow than other types of fasting. People doing 16:8 intermittent fasting should focus on eating high fiber whole foods, and they should stay hydrated throughout the day.
The plan is not right for everyone. Individuals who wish to follow the 16:8 intermittent fasting diet should speak to a doctor or dietitian if they have any concerns or underlying health conditions.