Is fasting on occasion good for YOU?
Did you know that one of the most popular health trends right now is intermittent fasting? Studies reveal that it can improve your overall health, help you to lose weight, and it might even help people lead longer lives!
Intermittent fasting involves cycles of eating and fasting. This way of eating does not tell you what to eat. Rather, it tells you when you should eat. Therefore, it is not considered a diet. Rather, it has often been described as an eating pattern. Fasts, periods of not eating, often involve 16 hours or 24 hours of not eating twice a week.
This is not a new way of eating. In fact, people have been fasting throughout history. Fasting was done when food was not available. It is also used in religion and can be seen in Buddhism, Christianity, and Islam.
A long time ago when we were hunters and gatherers, food wasn’t always plentiful. So we evolved to not need food to function for long periods of time. Because of this, fasting on occasion is more natural for man than eating our contrived 3 or 4 meals a day. Remember, ancient man didn’t have a nearby grocery store or food that was instantly available 24 hours a day.
The most popular ways to fast intermittently are:
The 16/8 Method: Also known as the Leangains protocol. Here, you skip breakfast. Restrict your eating time to 8 hours. (for example, from 12 noon to 8pm). After, fast for 16 hours in between.
Eat-Stop-Eat: For this method, you should fast for 24 hours. Do this one or two times a week.
The 5:2 Diet: On two days out of the week that are not next to each other, eat only 500-600 calories. On the other 5 days, eat normally.
Fasting is safe if done correctly and by eating fewer calories on the whole, you should end up losing weight. Just remember, don’t over compensate on the days that you eat by eating too much during your “eating” periods.
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