You are not alone if you associate fasting with cultural events or religious occasions. However, it turns out that when done in a disciplined manner, fasting is an important tool to reach your fitness goals!
That's where intermittent fasting comes in. A hot topic among health enthusiasts, it has become one of the well-known health trends to maintain and drop down weight.
"Unlike other diets, it does not tell you about what foods to eat and incorporate in your diet, instead, it focuses on ‘at what time you should eat.’ There are diverse methods of this type of fasting such as 16:8, 5:2, 6:1 and eat: stop: eat method, all of them assist in dividing the day or week into eating periods. There are various advantages and disadvantages of this type of fasting. However, it has some negatives associated with it like a high dropout rate i.e. this type of fasting is not made for the long term and people find it hard to follow it for a longer period of time. While breaking the fast it can contribute to some health ailments like leaky gut, food intolerances, inflammation, and stomach-ache. To make intermittent fasting healthy you should make your fasting period’s short, try to stay hydrated all the time and avoid high-intensity workouts as much as you can. The best way to do it is under the guidance of a nutritionist," says celebrity nutritionist Nmami Agarwal, who's also worked with the Miss World herself aka Manushi Chhillar.
How does it work?
Nmami says, "The methods involved in intermittent fasting includes regular and short fasts which helps people to consume lesser calories while optimizing weight controlling hormones which help in losing weight. Short term fasting helps in certain body changes that easily cut down the fat. Certain hormonal changes like reduced insulin while eating and amplified growth hormone give a great uplift to metabolism which increases the burning of fat. Various researches said that intermittent fasting reduces the weight by 3-8% in 3-24 weeks. But, it also depends on one’s body type, medical history, and type of lifestyle along with the food choice he/she makes."
While there are many ways you can intermittent fasting in your health regimen, here are her suggestions to try out:
16:8 method: "This method involves fasting on a regular basis for 14-16 hours and limiting the window of eating to 8-10 hours. This method is extremely simple as you have to skip eating anything after your dinner and miss out the breakfast. You can eat three to four meals or more within your window of eating. Your eating window mainly consists of 8 hours and the rest 16 hours you have to stick to fasting."
5:2 method: "This method of intermittent fasting is well known by the name of ‘fast method’ and this method involves 5 days a week normal eating and minimizing the intake of calories to 500-600, rest 2 days of the week. During the window of eating, you can eat 2 meals of smaller calories i.e. 250 each."
Eat: stop: eat: "This type of fasting can be done once or twice a week and it incorporates a complete 24 hours of fasting. It focuses on a proper 24 hours of fasting in which you have to choose a specific time to stop eating and start eating at the same time after the completion of 24 hours."
Alternate day fasting: "Going along with the name of the method, it involves doing the fasting on the alternative days. This method has different versions, some of them allowed to eat 500 calories during the time of fasting while some allowed only 100 calories."
The warrior diet: "This type of method involves eating and relying on smaller quantities of vegetables and fruits in the daytime duration and consume one enormous meal at night-time."
Tips to keep in mind
Always follow this diet under the guidance of an expert.
Try to keep your fasting window short
Eat smaller and healthy meals during the time of fasting
Keep yourself hydrated
Stay away from high-intensity workouts as it can make your feel weak and lower down your energy levels.
If you have any underlying medical condition, like diabetes, heart disease or hormonal issues- stay away from this diet.
Eat enough protein