A healthy lifestyle is an investment that will always beget positive returns. Health is nothing less than an asset and demands undue attention.
Modernization and steep growth in technology have put the health of people at stake. People cling to their devices and have substantially reduced their physical activities. The food delivery apps have exacerbated the situation by increasing the reliability of people on fast foods. As a result, people are attracting more weight and are becoming vulnerable to obesity and obesity-related disorders.
Moreover, the prevailing pandemic is also largely affecting the lifestyle of people which again is creating an impact on the health of a whole human population. It has resulted in higher chances of comorbidities in patients which is a grave situation. Stress has been an age-old enemy which has always made an individual lose his equanimity. People have become sluggish and are in desperate need of a panacea. I won’t say intermittent fasting is a panacea but is a proven alternative for weight loss and for promoting good health. It significantly improves the rate of metabolism in a person without draining excessive energy and doesn’t let the bad fat store. So it helps us with a multitude of problems alongside making our weight loss journey possible.
Ways to do Intermittent Fasting
There are many ways to do intermittent fasting:
- The 12 hours fast
- The 16/8 method
- The 5:2 diet
- Eat stop eat
- Alternate-day fasting
- Spontaneous meal skipping
- The warrior diet
To choose one amongst the various possible ways, one must have an acquaintance with all of them. Let’s discuss them one by one
1. The 12 hours fast
This one can do well for beginners. Since the name itself mentions, the fasting period lasts for 12 hours. This way is relatively easier than the other ones and can be made simpler by incorporating sleep time into the hours of fasting. So if you have very recently decided upon choosing intermittent fasting as a part of your lifestyle, you should follow this routine during the initial months.
2. The 16/8 method
This one can be called level 2 of intermittent fasting. The fasting period extends to 16 hours and a person is free to eat during the remaining 8 hours. This alternative is also recommended if the previous one doesn’t work for a person. There are many ways of adopting this method and the most common is whereby a person skips the breakfast and lunch becomes the first meal of the day. This type of fasting promotes autophagy which in turn maximizes fat cell metabolism and optimizes insulin function.
3. The 5:2 diet
The 5:2 Diet is a method of intermittent fasting. In this method, a person can eat normally for 5 days of a week without considering the calories and for the remaining two days the calorie intake should be restricted to 500 in the case of women and 600 in the case of men. It may seem easy to restrain yourself from consuming extra calories for two days of a week but it’s a bit tricky and leads to the adoption of an overall reduction in the calorie intake for the whole week.
4. The eat stop eat method
This method involves fasting for 24 hours once or twice a week. A person can eat normally during the non-fasting periods and doesn’t need to put any restrictions on the calories. This is an arduous method and should be practiced only after trying out any of the above-mentioned alternatives so that the body gets enough time to develop the potential needed to get adjusted to this way of intermittent fasting.
5. Alternate-day fasting
As the name suggests, a person has to fast each alternate day. This method has several versions and some of them do allow the intake of some calories while fasting. This method is not suggested to beginners.
6. Spontaneous meal skipping
This is an unstructured method of intermittent fasting whereby you can skip any meal of the day from time to time. This method is favorable if you are too busy or traveling somewhere.
7. The warrior diet
In this alternative, a person needs to rely on small meals of raw fruits and vegetables during the daytime and can have a huge meal at night. The consumption of fruits and vegetables ensures the availability of necessary nutrients within the body.
The diet to be followed
It’s always important to keep a check on the diet you eat whether you are following an intermittent fasting routine or not. Also to make your intermittent fast a successful one, you should eat the right thing during the non-fasting hours. Though there are no specifications to be followed, nutrient-dense foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, soya, as well as dairy are recommended.
Seafood is a great source of healthy fats that can also be included in the diet. Besides seafood, nuts are also an important source of good fats.
Intermittent Fasting with Keto
At the beginning of this blog, I regarded intermittent fasting as one of the alternatives for weight loss which means there are other methods as well. There is one more important alternative for a healthy lifestyle and that is a keto or ketonic diet. Call it a fad or a trend, the keto diet, and intermittent fasting are both potentially able to help a person in a weight loss journey.
The keto diet is a high-fat, very-low-carb way of eating. Carbs are significantly reduced which forces the body to rely on fats for its energy. In the metabolic process of ketosis, the body breaks down fats to form substances called ketones that serve as an alternate fuel source. When both intermittent fasting and the keto diet are followed simultaneously, it helps the body to reach ketosis quicker and helps in the faster burning of fat. The combination of these two alternatives is likely safe however people with certain health conditions should consult a doctor before trying them together.
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Author at Factsberry