If you haven’t already heard, intermittent fasting has been gaining popularity when it comes to weight-loss lately, and there are several reasons why. There have been countless weight-loss programs introduced to America, but there is something different about this particular strategy that sets them apart. What is intermittent fasting? Intermittent fasting is a weight-loss strategy that involves regular short-term fasts to help regulate weight and appetite with calorie counting not necessarily required.
Intermittent Fasting Methods
In this method, you will skip breakfast every day and schedule meals within an 8-hour window, such as from 12-8pm. The “16/8” stands for 16 hours fasting (refraining from eating or drinking anything but water) and 8 hour window for meals.
This fasting method requires a 24-hour (full-day) fasting one-two times a week.
3. 5:2 Diet
This diet includes two days a week of consuming only 500-600 calories within those days, while eating normally the other 5.
Following any of the three methods listed above should be effective as long as you don’t overeat on the non-fasting periods. Although calorie counting is not necessary, intermittent fasting also practices portion control. Overall, these methods should result in reduced caloric intake as well as help you begin to shed excess weight.
Intermittent Fasting and Hormones
The body stores energy using calories (body fat). When we don’t eat, the body will alter ways to be able to access the stored energy. The body will make changes in several important hormones as well as activity in our nervous system when we fast. Certain changes in your metabolism during the fasting periods include:
- Insulin: Usually increasing whenever we eat food, fasting will cause your insulin levels to decrease dramatically, stimulating fat-burning.
- Human Growth Hormone: These levels may shoot up to 5 times as high during a fasting phase. The human growth hormone is responsible in helping with fat loss while building muscle mass and other benefits.
- Norepinephrine (noradrenaline): During fasting, the nervous system will send norepinephrine to our fat cells to aid in breaking down body fat that are able to be burned to create energy.
Overall, fasting short-term can create several changes in our body to make fat burning easier to do including reducing insulin levels and increasing fat-burning and increasing muscle mass for those who train and exercise.
Intermittent Fasting - Consume Less Calories and Lose Weight
Besides the fasting aspect, you will also naturally consume less calories with this method. Again, it is important to note that effectiveness coincides with making sure you don’t binge or overeat on eating periods or non-fasting days. Some people may consider this time to have “cheat” meals or cheat days, but it should be considered another normal meal. Following this will result in a decline of your daily calorie intake.
When Can I Expect to See Results with Intermittent Fasting?
On average, following an intermittent fasting strategy for a period of 3 weeks can reduce your body weight by 3-8%! Some people will lose a little over half a pound a week using intermittent fasting, and over double (1.65 pounds a week) utilizing the alternate-day fasting method (Eat-Stop-Eat). With these impressive data, there is no question intermittent fasting is a great method to give a shot.
Intermittent fasting benefits don’t stop at just weight loss either. You can expect improvements in your metabolism, expanded lifespan, quality of life, as well as help prevent from certain chronic diseases as well.
How to Maximize Effectiveness with Intermittent Fasting
Take into consideration the below to maximize in weight loss using intermittent fasting:
1. Quality of Food - Treat your body like a temple! What are you putting in it? Stick to eating primarily simple foods with few ingredients and whole foods. Try to avoid processed foods and products with GMO.
Related: 5 Best Foods to Help You Lose Weight
2. Calories - You don’t have to count your calories, but gauge it. Try to eat a regular portioned meal during non-fasting periods so you don’t sabotage your progress on the fasting days.
3. Consistency - Like any other weight loss strategy, consistency is key to making weight-loss effective. Do not deviate from the intermittent fasting method you chose and over time, you will start to see the results you’re looking for, but don’t forget #4 - patience.
4. Patience - Working any changes into your daily life will take some for your body to adapt to. Be consistent with your intermittent fasting schedule and be patient to see results.
Although there are several types of weight loss methods to follow, intermittent fasting is a simple one that allows the body to alter itself to increase fat-burning and muscle gain. Intermittent fasting may be the reliable tool you’ve been looking for to lose weight. Along with weight loss, it has many other advantages such as preventing disease, boosting your metabolism, and benefits critical hormones. Fasting is not for everyone, but it works for a lot of people. Give it a shot, and see whether or not intermittent fasting works for you! Ageless Forever also offers personalized weight loss programs to suit your unique needs. Whatever you choose, make sure you are putting your health first to help you stay Ageless.
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