Fasting intermittently is gaining worldwide popularity, not only for its anti-aging and powerful weight loss results, but for a range of other benefits from mental clarity to improving metabolic risk factors such as elevated blood pressure and fasting blood glucose levels.
Research shows intermittent fasting is a cost-effective protocol that together with other lifestyle behaviour modifications, is helping to combat the world's rising epidemic of obesity, diabetes, dementia and even cancer.
Fasting is free and allows you to implement flexible protocols to suit your lifestyle!
Fasting saves you time, since you're not cooking or shopping for food.
Fasting is not starving - 'your body does not fall into 'starvation mode' - that is a myth! Our ancestors had limited access food, so often spent time hungry/fasting; they became smarter and stronger - how could we have hunted for food if fasting made us weaker and stupid!
How and when to fast varies by your individual preferences, health concerns and most importantly, your medical consultation and clearance.
Two popular Intermittent Fasting protocols for those starting out:
An example that most people are aware of is the 5:2 Diet popularised by Author: Dr Michael Mosley. You eat normally five days per week and restrict calories to 500-600 for two days per week. This fasting protocol has merit, however ''eat normally' is of concern. People who consume a diet high in processed carbs, sugar and dangerous unhealthy fats may not obtain health results they are chasing in the long term.
2. Time restricted:
You eat all of your meals within a particular window of time each day. The fasting "window" is typically more than the eight to 12-hour fast most experience when they sleep. An example of time restricted fasting could be: stop eating (consuming calories) at 7p.m, then fast through the night and upon waking, you either delay or skip breakfast to commence eating at 9 am or later. Coffee or tea is OK during a fast as long as they’re not loaded with calories.
I will address the "Breakfast is the Most Important Meal of the Day" marketing manipulation on another page!
Other fasting protocols include 24-hour fasts, where no calories are consumed except water, black coffee or teas: from dinner one night to dinner the next night. This is my personal favourite now. I find my blood pressure and body fat levels respond well and I can eat normally on other days (normal for me doesn't include highly processed food).
Longer multi-day fasts can be implemented once a month or even once a year and can really pack metabolic punch, for those who are prepared to go the distance .
It can be confusing and many questions raised such as "can I drink diet soda?" (Answer: nooooo!) Working with a health coach and collaborating with your doctor can provide support during a fast and personalise the fasting protocol that gives you the best results. Otherwise, buy a book or download an app! Fasting is natural and necessary to live long and strong.
People who should not fast: anyone under 18 years of age, pregnant women, those with eating disorders and if you have an existing infection/on antibiotics. People on medications must collaborate closely with their primary healthcare professional - seek one out if your usual one is not interested in supporting you.
Yours In Health