Intermittent Fasting – How You Can Benefit and What to Watch Out For

A major trend in losing weight is a technique called intermittent fasting. As the name suggests, it involves setting specific times when you can eat and when you have to fast. Big celebs like Hugh Jackman, Kourtney Kardashian, and Gisele Bundchen are big advocates of the method; however, celebrity endorsement should not be the only thing to make you consider it.

Intermittent Fasting Methods

While there are some preset formulas for intermittent fasting, most experts advise that you can always experiment and find out one that works the best for you. Some of the most common windows for intermittent fasting are the 12:12 method, the 16:8 method, the 5:2 method, and the 24-hour method. In the 12:12 method, the windows available for eating and fasting are the same. You can, therefore, just have your dinner and eat your breakfast 12 hours later. In the 16:8 method, you need to fast for 16 hours after enjoying an 8-hour window for eating while in the 5:2 method; you can follow a normal diet for five days in a week and fast for the other 2 days. The 24-hour method requires you not to eat for 24 hours at a stretch. According to dietary experts, the 16:8 method is the most popular simply because the benefits are easily recognized.

Detoxification Takes Place

According to experts, depending on how big the meal was, the body completes the process of digestion and assimilation of the food. It is only after this period that the body can focus on detoxification after having slowed down during the period when digestion was the priority. Fasting, however, begins only after 12 hours and not 8 hours people tend to assume. This means that a 12-hour fasting window is a minimum needed for the detox to take place. One of the best ways of starting intermittent fasting is to have your dinner early and not having anything thereafter till the next morning. By doing this, you can automatically cut down the high-calorie junk food that one tends to eat while watching TV.

Drink Plenty of Water

One of the main concerns and side effects of intermittent fasting is dehydration. Typically, people tend not to drink water if they cease to have food; however, consuming water is not contra-indicated when you are fasting intermittently. Rather, you should make it a point to keep yourself hydrated well with any kind of fluid as long as it is calorie-free. Increasing fibre-rich foods also helps in keeping constipation at bay.

Watch Out the First Time

When practising IR for the first time, you may experience excessive hunger in addition to feelings of nausea and irritability. This probably means that you are doing things too fast or too much and can be set right easily by easing up the process. Ensure you consume adequate nutrients and calories by tracking your consumption with one of the many online or mobile apps and tweak your diet accordingly. According to https://www.health.harvard.edu, a plant-based, Mediterranean-style diet is the best.

Sometimes you forget that the main intention of restricting the eating window is to encourage weight loss. People need to be careful regarding their choice of food in terms of the balance of nutrition and not binge on eating calorie-loaded foods simply in anticipation of the period of fasting.