Among our several new year’s resolutions, many of us have a desire for a lower fat percentage and a higher muscle growth. This requires a diet that works for you and a
productive exercise routine.
Have you heard about the diet where you have to fast for 16 hours and can eat “whatever you want” for 8 hours? This diet is called intermittent fasting, or periodic fasting. The diet is based on the fact that the body should have time to digest the food and that a shorter eating window can lead to lower energy intake.
Such a diet is ideal for those who don’t eat breakfast, and for those who want fewer but larger meals, and those who want to lose fat without feeling hungry. On the other hand, the diet can cause you to not get enough nutrition if you’re not eating enough.
This is how intermittent fasting works
Intermittent fasting is a diet where you have an “eating window” of 8 hours and fast for 16 hours. Here you can, for example, eat your first meal at noon and the last one at 20 o’clock.
But the body feels almost no difference in an hour or two, so extending your window of eating to 9-10 hours a day won’t have much impact on the diet (unless you increase your energy intake). How you choose to schedule your period of fasting is up to you, and this is perhaps where many people have misunderstood the diet and fallen off.
Personal preferences are important
It’s important to take into account personal preferences and individual needs. For example, some need to expand their eating window to accommodate both lunches at work and dinner with the family, while others need a smaller dining window to accommodate fewer but larger meals.
The most important thing is that you don’t break the fast during the period of the day you’re fasting to achieve an optimal meal rhythm. This doesn’t apply to coffee, water, and tea – you can supply this at any time.
In order for the diet to work and to be effective, you still have to think about your energy intake, your energy needs and that the meals cover all of your nutritional needs. This also applies to essential nutrients.
The advantage of the diet, on the other hand, is that many people experience weight loss because they have fewer hours to consume their food and therefore have a lower energy intake, which is crucial for weight loss.
Apart from weight loss, the diet can also lead to better sleep and digestion, as the body gets a small break. This is because the digestive system and the combustion don’t have to work continuously on high gear.
Does the diet fit my lifestyle?
The diet is suitable for those who are tired of hearing that breakfast is the most important meal, for those who want to have better control over the meals, and for those who don’t want to be hungry on a diet.
But basically, a diet is about what you enjoy, and a diet that doesn’t satisfy your needs is nothing to strive for. If the diet becomes stressful, you may actually experience the opposite effect because the body secretes hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline when stressed. This could, over time, lead to poorer sleep and lower energy levels.
Many people experience a positive effect from the diet and consider this meal rhythm as a lifestyle. Here, it’s important to try and find out what your body likes best.
It’s also possible to work out during fasting hours if morning or evening workouts are for you. But keep in mind that heavy workout sessions, such as heavy strength training and cardio workouts, require a higher energy intake, which is important to keep in mind when starting on a diet.