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  • 100 Facts About Intermittent Fasting You Need to Know

    | 2020-06-23

    intermittent fasting

     

    So you're curious about intermittent fasting and want to learn more. We've compiled 100 facts about this wellness trend, pulling from research articles, books, and even real-life testimonials. Whether you're new to intermittent fasting or want to understand more about this health trend, dig into these amazing facts.

     

    The Basics

    1.     Intermittent fasting is a trendy phrase for cycled eating or timed eating. Basically, it's the process of establishing eating and fasting times during the day or week. 

    2.     Intermittent fasting can help you increase health now and in the long-term.

    3.     Intermittent fasting can promote faster weight loss.

    4.     Studies show intermittent fasting can improve blood pressure.

    5.     Both men and women can benefit from intermittent fasting.

    6.     Intermittent fasting is done in several ways by varying the hours you eat and fast.

    7.     Given the different types of intermittent fasting, it can fit with almost any schedule.

     

    The Methods 

    8.     The most popular methods of intermittent fasting are 5:2 and 16:8.

    9.     5:2 is a weekly schedule where you eat normally for five days of the week and reduce caloric intake on the other two days. Low-calorie eating days are also called 'fasting days.'

    10.  5:2 was made popular by British journalist, Michael Mosley. He's often referred to as the '5:2 Guru.'

    11.  Technically, you never completely go without food on 5:2, which many people like. During 'fast' days, you consume fewer calories- about a quarter of your regular calories- any time of day or night. 

    12.  It's recommended that the two fasting days on 5:2 should be spaced out and not back-to-back.

    13.  People who do 5:2 suggest fasting on weekdays so they can enjoy social eating on the weekend.

    14.  During 5:2, you can still consume food on fasting days. Calories are restricted, but being able to eat a little means your body can intake essential nutrients. 

    15.  The second most popular intermittent fasting method is 16:8.

    16.  16:8 is a daily schedule where you eat all your food during an 8-hour window and then fast for the next 16 hours.

    17.  The 8 hours you eat food should be consecutive. Think of these times as blocks. 

    18.  Most people choose to skip breakfast on the 16:8 method and begin eating around noon and stop at 8 pm.

    19.  Some experts suggest eating in the morning and fasting in the evening may be a 'healthier version' of 16:8 because it limits nighttime eating. (See Fact #18)

    20.  Intermittent fasting can help reduce nighttime eating that is associated with a higher risk of obesity and diabetes.

    21.  16:8 is also called the Leangains protocol.

    22.  Traditionally, there is no counting calories on 16:8 - only counting hours.

    23.  In fact, you can quit counting calories during intermittent fasting! Eliminate this stress and eat based on the health of the foods and drinks you do consume.

     

    Mind & Body on Intermittent Fasting

    24.  The idea of fasting or cutting food entirely can be scary. Try this method where you don't have to totally cut any foods.

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    25.  Intermittent fasting can simplify your eating schedule, giving you more time to do other activities you love.  

    26.  You may feel a desire to overeat during non-fasting blocks or days. Remember to eat healthy and be active on these regular eating days.

    27.  Regular eating blocks should not be thought of as cheat days.

    28.  Just because you're intermittent fasting doesn't mean you'll lose weight. Continue practicing healthy eating and wellness habits to see better results.

    29.  Intermittent fasting goes hand-in-hand with eating a healthy diet. Your body needs it!

    30.  Intermittent fasting can help people lose weight because it puts the body in a caloric deficiency- the only circumstance that results in weight loss.

    31.  Restricting food intake to 8 hours in the 16:8 method increases the body's ability to burn fat.

    32.  Some people feel hungrier doing 16:8, and others feel hungrier on 5:2. Test which one is right for your body.

    33.  Another method of daily intermittent fasting is called 12:12, where you fast for a 12-hour window. 

    34.  Fasting for more than 12 hours increases the production of human growth hormone, which helps build and repair healthy tissue.

    35.  After about 14 hours of fasting, the body begins to use fat as an energy source- also known as putting the body into ketosis.

    36.  Another type of intermittent fasting is called alternate-day fasting. This requires limiting caloric intake every other day to about 25% of what you usually eat. On other days, you eat regularly.

    37.  Alternate-day fasting has lower odds of long-term success since more days are spent 'fasting'.

    38.  Find your purpose. Figuring out why you want to try intermittent fasting, whether to lose weight or promote longevity, can fortify your resolve to stick with it.

     

    24+ Hour Fasting

    39.  Another less common form of intermittent fasting is a complete 24-hour fast done one day a week.

    40.  The 24-hour fasting method is also called Eat Stop Eat, popularized by author Brad Pilon.

    41.  Expect to feel hungry. Fill up on plenty of water to avoid dehydration. 

    42.  The longer duration of a 24-hour fast promotes processes in the body that regenerate cells.

    43.  Fasting done for 24-48 hours promotes autophagy-a process that may remove damaged cellular components linked to the development of some diseases. 

    44.  Intermittent fasting activates glucagon, a hormone that keeps blood sugar levels balanced. 

     

    Fasting & Feeding Periods 

    45.  Intermittent fasting is very different from a standard low-calorie diet.

    46.  Intermittent fasting is considered a more effective long-term health solution compared to ordinary calorie restriction.

    47.  By cycling between low-to-no calorie consumption and regular eating, the body may lose more weight compared to a strictly low-calorie diet (where the body adapts to less food and stops losing weight). 

    48.  Intermittent fasting should not slow down your metabolism.

    49.  During any intermittent fasting program make sure to drink plenty of water, any time day or night.

    50.  During fasting periods you can also drink plain coffee and 0-calorie beverages like tea.

    51.  Getting a headache from intermittent fasting? Try a natural electrolyte drink like coconut water or a homemade sports drink.

    52.  During fasting periods, stay away from sugar and cream-rich beverages that have lots of calories.

    53.  Some of the best foods to eat while doing intermittent fasting are nuts, beans, fish, vegetables, greens, and chicken- these whole foods support the body during fasting.

    54.  High-fiber, high-nutrient, and high-protein foods help you feel fuller longer while giving your body the nutrients it needs. 

    55.  Some of the worst foods to consume while intermittent fasting are cakes, candies, cookies, and other processed foods high in sugar.

    56.  Some people also limit natural sugars while intermittent fasting. Healthy, natural sugar options include blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, orange, noni, and grapefruit.

    57.  That being said... a little indulgence won't undermine all your progress. Continue to live and enjoy life. (Never say no to birthday cake!)

    58.  Eat meals, not snacks. Snacking can actually slow your metabolism and make you feel less satisfied. 

    59.  Combat intermittent fasting cravings by eating for satisfaction. You are still allowed to enjoy your favorite foods.

    60.  There are thousands of recipes online that make intermittent fasting easier and more enjoyable. Check them out!

    61.  Intermittent fasting can help improve your relationship with food and move you toward making consistent healthy choices for years to come.

    62.  It's bigger than a diet; it's a lifestyle change.

    63.  One of the biggest hurdles people face during intermittent fasting is a slow increase of caloric intake on fasting days.

    64.  This can be avoided by choosing nutrient-dense foods when you do eat, or adding a nutritional supplement to support you on fasting days. 

     

    Optimize Your Method

    65.  Call in reinforcements! Having an expert in your corner increases your odds for success.

    66.  Joining a community of people who are also intermittent fasting can make you feel more motivated and supported.

    67.  Weight-loss as a result from intermittent fasting can make you lose fat as well as muscle, but there are intermittent fasting supplements and superfruits that can help you maintaining muscle mass.

    68.  All intermittent fasting programs can be difficult in the beginning. It's hard changing our eating habits, so be gentle and understanding with yourself. 

    69.  The body is an amazing machine and will adjust to timed eating. Support it during the transition.

    70.  Expect slip-ups and move past them.

    71.  You can still workout!

    shape workout

    72.  You should workout. Keeping your body moving even with light exercise can benefit overall results of intermittent fasting, especially if weight loss is one of your goals.

    73.  Take your time increasing activity as your body adjusts to fasting.

    74.  Schedule difficult workouts on regular-eating days or first thing in the morning.

    75.  Above all else, listen to your body.

    76.  Paying attention to what you consume when you end a fast can help avoid a painful stomach ache and overeating.

    77.  Breaking a fast or "refeeding" should be done with a nutritious, balanced meal.

    78.  Intermittent fasting is not a one-size-fits-all approach. Our bodies are unique and each individual should take inventory of how they feel, physically and mentally, while intermittent fasting. Keep a journal!

    79.  Consult your dietician or physician before starting an intermittent fasting program. It's a quick trip that will support you in the process.

     

    It's Not For Everyone 

    80.  Intermittent fasting is not for everyone and that's ok! There are a number of ways to approach getting healthier and fasting is only one of them.

    81.  Intermittent fasting may not be recommended for people with diabetes or a history of eating disorders.

    82.  Pregnant or breastfeeding women should ask their doctors before beginning an intermittent fasting program.

    83.  On the day before a fast, fill up on healthy fats and proteins.

    84.  Plan activities to distract your mind on fasting days. Don't think of a fasting day or time as deprivation. It will end and you will eat again.

     

    The Benefits

    85.  Intermittent fasting can help cells respond to insulin.

    86.  Research studies on intermittent fasting and its benefits for cardiometabolic health have been performed on humans as well as animals.

    87.  Intermittent fasting can support cardiovascular health.

    88.  Intermittent fasting can prologue the health of the nervous system as you age.

    89.  Intermittent fasting can have a long-lasting beneficial effect on your metabolism.

    90.  Intermittent fasting may improve your sleep!

    91.  Intermittent fasting may decrease overall hunger levels.

    92.  Intermittent fasting can improve the health of your gut microbiome.

    93.  Intermittent fasting should NOT affect your mood in an extreme way. If it does, consult your doctor.

    94.  Intermittent fasting should not have a negative impact on your social eating habits.

    95.  To reiterate, listen to your body.

    96.  Intermittent fasting may increase your natural energy, since your metabolism does not go through as many cycles of breaking down carbohydrates and turning them into blood sugar.

    97.  Even a single interval of intermittent fasting can benefit the body and mind.

     

    The Takeaway

    98.  Take it day by day. You don't have to do intermittent fasting for the rest of your life. Commit to a one-month program and reassess after that.

    99.  On a mass scale, experts believe intermittent fasting could improve health at the population level with "multiple public health benefits."

    100.  It's in our DNA to fast! Our ancestors did intermittent fasting; since antiquity people around the world have volunteered to undergo periods of food and drink abstinence.

     

    Ready to try intermittent fasting? We're here to support you! Join the Shape Challenge with your friends and family today.

    TeMana Shape


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