Thursday, May 30, 2024

3 Ways Intermittent Fasting Can Change Your Life

Priyanka Bhattacharya (Sub Editor)

Let’s start with the basics. How can intermittent fasting benefit us? What is it? In simple words, intermittent fasting is a diet that alternates between fasting and eating on a set schedule. Using intermittent fasting can help us control our weight and stop or even reverse some diseases. The human body burns fat more efficiently if we fast once a day or weekly. You may lose weight without monitoring calories or engaging in physical activity; did you know that? But how do we go about it? Given the hectic schedules of our generation, is it also unchallenging? In contrast to many diets, intermittent fasting solely depends on when to eat. On the internet, you may discover several articles with suggestions for different approaches. However, we’ve included a list of the tried-and-true techniques preferred by those of our generation to lose weight quickly and achieve the physique you want, as long as you follow the prescribed timetable and don’t go overboard. You may also consult a doctor for more effective results. To find out more about its benefits, keep reading this article.

The three most effective strategies to get started are listed below:

1. The 16/8 Method

There is a 16-hour fast and an 8-hour eating window. The majority of individuals skip breakfast and start eating again as soon as they reach 16 hours.

How is it done?

A type of time-restricted fasting is the 16:8 intermittent fasting schedule. It entails eating within an 8-hour window each day and going without food, or fasting, for the other 16 hours. The circadian cycle, or biorhythm, of the body, according to some, is what makes this strategy effective. Most people who follow the 16:8 schedule skip dinner and miss meals for part of the morning as well as the evening. Individuals frequently consume the majority of their daily calorie requirement in the afternoon. The kinds and quantities of food that a person can consume throughout the 8-hour interval are unconstrained. Because of its adaptability, the strategy is quite simple to implement.

Scheduling

People can consume their meals and snacks at convenient times within this interval. As metabolism slows down after a certain time, it is advisable to finish eating in the early evening. In order to minimise blood sugar spikes and drops and increase hunger, eating is often crucial. The following are the eight-hour eating periods that are most frequently observed:

  • 9 am to 5 pm
  • 12 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Tips and tricks to help you with your 16/8 method

  • Minimising mindless scrolling and exposure to food-related imagery
  • Adding honey, lemon, or gooseberry to water
  • Doing freehand movements to feel revitalised
  • Water consumption at regular intervals
  • When eating meals, adopt a mindful eating approach.
  • Attempting to relax through meditation while fasting to help with hunger

2. The 5:2 Diet

This regime suggests solely consuming 500 to 600 calories on two distinct days that are not consecutive but otherwise eating regularly during the week.

How is it done?

As long as there is at least one non-fasting day separating them, you are entitled to decide on any two days of the entire week that you would like. You don’t have to bother about keeping track of calories on the other five days of the week when you eat regularly. Following this, you consume only one-fourth of your daily calorie needs on the other two days of the week, which equates to roughly 500 calories for women and 600 for men each day. Since there are no guidelines concerning what foods to eat or when to eat them, the plan is more of a lifestyle than a dietary regimen. It has come to be referred to as the 5:2 diet because the first five days of the week are ordinary eating days, while the other two contain calories.

Scheduling

On days of fasting, there is no set guideline regarding what or when to eat. While some individuals believe that eating a little breakfast in the morning helps them operate better, others prefer to wait as long as they can before starting to eat. One’s ability to significantly cut their calorie intake is the major goal on days of fasting. Only 500 calories should be consumed during periods of fasting if a person typically consumes 2,000–2,500 calories per day. On fast days, a person who normally consumes 1,500–1,800 calories per day should limit their consumption to 450 calories. Individuals often adhere to one of four eating patterns:

  • Usually, for breakfast, lunch, and dinnertime, three small meals are served.
  • Consuming only one meal, either dinner or breakfast
  • Two significantly larger meals for lunch and dinner.
  • Skipping dinner and eating a light lunch and a late breakfast

Tips and tricks to help you with your 5:2 Diet

  • Maintain an eating regimen high in plants and proteins
  • Move your body frequently
  • Consume salads to aid with weight loss
  • Get good rest, and if you feel fatigued, take a nap
  • Seek to distinguish between conscious and irrational eating. Control your appetite, and the cravings will go away
  • Take in a lot of water
  • Pick days that won’t be as cognitively or emotionally taxing

3. The Eat-Stop-Eat Method

This approach entails going without food for 24 hours twice a week, then returning to a regular eating schedule the rest of the time.

How is it done?

Simply pick out one or two non-consecutive days every week to go without eating for a complete period of twenty-four hours. You are allowed to eat anything you want for the remaining five to six days of the week, but it is advised that you choose a diet that is balanced and doesn’t exceed what your body requires. Even though it appears paradoxical, if you use the Eat-Stop-Eat approach, you will still eat something every day of the week. Say, if you’re fasting between Friday 10 a.m. and Saturday 10 a.m., you’ll need to consume something before 10 a.m. on Friday, and your next meal won’t be until after 10 a.m. on Saturday. By doing so, you may make sure that your fast is exactly 24 hours long and no more. It should be noted that sufficient hydration is a must on Eat-Stop-Eat fast days as well.

Scheduling

  • A two-day, 24-hour fast
  • 5 days of unlimited food consumption

Tips and tricks to help you with your Eat-Stop-Eat Method

  • Consume foods high in calcium
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Focus on healthy fats and protein
  • Eat whole grains
  • Avoid milk and sugar in your tea and coffee.
  • Consume fresh produce

Some people, including those taking diabetic medication, should refrain from intermittent fasting unless they are under close medical supervision. Children under the age of 18, anybody with a known history of eating disorders such as bulimia or anorexia nervosa, and pregnant or nursing mothers. Do not forget that different people may respond differently to intermittent fasting. If you begin to experience unusual feelings of stress, migraines, nausea, or other symptoms after commencing intermittent fasting, consult your doctor. We recommend that you consult with your physician of choice when deciding whether or not intermittent fasting is an ideal choice for you.

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