I was talking to a health care professional about intermittent fasting and we discussed different types of intermittent fasting…. Did you know there are multiple ways to intermittent fast? I know most people think intermittent fasting is for weight loss but there are so many other benefits as well.
There have been numerous studies that state intermittent fasting. When you don’t eat for a while, several things happen in your body.
Here are just some other benefits:
- Can help you lose weight and visceral fat
- Can lower your risk of Type 2 diabetes by reducing insulin resistance
- Improves mental concentration
- Reduces inflammation in your body, inflammation is a key driver in common diseases
- It can improve your hear health by decrease blood pressure and cholesterol levels and improve resting heart rate.
- Slows down aging- Similar to anti-inflammation, fasting promotes reducing oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is a key driver of aging. Research has found that fasting increases a molecule which slows the aging of arteries and skin. (I mean say no more, that is reason enough for me!)
- Encourages various cellular repair processes. During a fast, the cells in the body initiate a cellular “waste removal” process called autophagy. Autophagy is when cells break down and metabolize the broken and dysfunctional proteins that build up inside the cells over time. Increasing autophagy provides protection against multiple diseases, such as cancer and Alzheimer’s.
What are the different types of Intermittent fasting? Believe it or not there are many different types of fasting, I am going to go over 5 different ones.
The most popular one is called 16-8, this is when you pick an 8-hour window, that is consistent every day that you eat, and you do not eat for 16 hours. I have personally done this for about 3 years now and love it. I eat from 11:30am- 7:30pm. I used to be a breakfast person and now I really enjoy not having to mess with breakfast in the morning. I usually eat lunch at 11:30am, a small snack around 3:00pm and dinner around 6:00pm (depending on kids sports schedule) and if I need another snack I will usually eat fruit before 7:30pm.
The alternating day fast, this is when you eat for 24 hours and then fast for the next 24 hours and you continuously rotate. I have not personally tried this and think it would be difficult for people who workout every day. If you do this type of fasting, I would love to hear how you got starting and how it works.
The 1 day fast, you pick one day and you fast for 24 hours. This is easier than you think. I used to fast every Thursday. For example, if you eat dinner on Wednesday, you don’t eat again until dinner on Thursday. I have even heard that going 36 hours is great for your body, so eating dinner on Wednesday and then don’t eat again until breakfast on Friday. Remember this is just once a week.
The 5:2 fast, this is when you eat normal for 5 days and then 2 days a week you limit your calories to 500-600 calories in one meal.
The last fast is called OMAD, that stands for one meal a day. Pretty self-explanatory, you literally eat one meal a day and fast the rest of the day.
I personally think the 16:8 is the easiest to stick with long term, but I may thing that because I have done it for so long. There are so many long-term benefits to intermittent fasting I would encourage everyone to try it. It does take some getting used to. It is something you use step into not throw yourself into. If you want to try the 16:8 I would start with looking at your schedule what 8-hour block is best for you? Then from there I would stop eating at the time your block ends for a few days. Then start eating your first meal 1-2 hours later then you are used to until you get to the start time of your block.
I also want to mention just because you are eating less does not mean you should eat poorly. In order to give your body the nourishment and energy it needs make sure you are eating nutritious food.
There are a ton of articles on intermittent fasting and their benefits check them out! As always, I am not a healthcare professional, I am just providing you with information. Anytime you are changing your diet you should seek professional advice.
Also here is an article of Fasting Apps you can download to keep you on track!