Updated: 6 days ago
Let me start off by explaining what intermittent fasting is. Fasting is an eating pattern in which you have a designated period of time where you do not eat followed by a certain time where you begin eating. This is most commonly and easily done in the mornings. Real life example: Everyday, I fast until 12-1 in the afternoon. I stop eating around 8pm, so I go all through the night until the next afternoon before I have my first meal. Thats about 16 hours of fasting and 8 hours of eating in a day.
Now, you do not have to fast for that long or do it every single day. I have been doing this for years so my body is used to it and can go longer periods of time without food. That being said, I do still drink lots of water and enjoy my morning coffee. I would never recommend going that long without water.
What I do recommend is starting off slow. If you typically eat breakfast at 7 in the morning, then try to wait until 8 or 9 in the morning. This is something that should be done gradually so you don't become dizzy or fatigued.
You might be wondering, why you would want to go that long without eating or isn't breakfast the most important meal of the day? Intermittent fasting has many benefits, so lets dive into them!
The first benefit
Why most people begin fasting, is weight loss. Since you are delaying your intake of food, the idea is that you are consuming less calories, resulting in weight loss. That is only true if you do not go and eat huge meals or calorie dense meals after fasting. It is still important to still stay within a good calorie range based on your current body and goals.
Intermittent fasting can reduce the chances of developing type 2 diabetes by reducing blood sugar levels and insulin resistance. It can also lower cholesterol because it causes our bodies to metabolize food better.
Intermittent fasting has been shown to improve the brains function and structure. This also means that it can protect against Alzhiemer's and memory loss.
Another benefit and one that is so important. Most of us have some kind of inflammation going on in our bodies, whether we're aware of it or not. Either way, inflammation is linked to chronic illnesses and autoimmune disorders. Intermittent fasting reduces the number of pro- inflammatory monocytes in the blood, in turn reducing overall inflammation. This is great for everyone, but especially those who suffer from acne, eczema and other skin issues. It also gives the gut a break from constant digestion which also aids in reducing inflammation.
Fasting can help reset the immune system by giving the body a chance to flush out damaged immune cells and regenerating new ones.
The benefits are clear as day and anyone can do this! Like I mentioned earlier, you can fast for however long you're comfortable with and you do not need to do it everyday. Start off slow. Try a couple days a week to start off with. Try increasing your fasting time by an hour a week and go from there. How many days you fast for and how long you fast for is a personal decision. You may find that you love it or that it isn't for you and thats okay!
To better keep track of your fasting, I recently downloaded an app called Zero. It's basically a fasting clock & just makes the whole thing easier & more convenient!
The only people that I do not recommend intermittent fasting for are those who are under the age of 18, pregnant or trying, breastfeeding, have or had eating disorders (bulimia, anorexia, obesity), and those with type two diabetes.
If you do decided that you want to make intermittent fasting part of your lifestyle, know that eating a clean, healthy diet is super important! You are basically cutting out a meal so you need to make sure that the meals you are eating are nutrient dense. Eating an unhealthy diet will defeat the purpose and benefits of fasting.
Wishing you a beautiful day 🌿