There are various methods for fasting.
Intermittent fasting is a diet model currently very popular and trend that implies periods of normal consumption and severely restrict your food consumption during certain periods of time.
These effects are related to longevity and reduced risk of illness. Thus, people who fast regularly generally expect to lose weight or live a healthier and longer life.
But fasting can be dangerous or harmful if it is not tried correctly.
Here are 10 tips on how to fast safely.
1. Keep Fasting Periods Short
There is no one way to fast, which means that your fasting time depends on you.
Popular procedures consist of:
- The 5:2 Pattern: Reduce your calorie intake by two days a week (500 calories a day for women and 600 for men).
- The 6:1 Pattern: This model is similar to 5:2, But there is only one day of limited calorie consumption instead of two.
- “Eat Stop Eat”: Fasting all day or a full 24-hour fast one or two times a week.
- The 16:8 Pattern: This model only implies taking a meal in an eight-hour window and fasting for the remaining 16 hours in a day, every day of the week.
Most of these procedures indicate a quick brief duration of 8 to 24 hours. However, some people prefer to fast much longer than 48 or as much as 72 hours.
Longer and faster times increase the risk of problems associated with fasting. It includes dehydration, fatigue, irritability, mood swings, weakness, faintness, hunger and inability to concentrate (5, 6, 7).
The best way to prevent these side effects is to fast for less than 24 hours. Especially as a beginner.
If you would like to increase your fasting period to more than 72 hours, you should follow the advice of your health care professional.
2. Eat a Small Amount on Fast Days
Usually, fasting implies the withdrawal of some or all foods and drinks for a period of time.
If you would like to fast, Restricting your calories so that you always eat small amounts on your fasting days can be a safer option than a complete fast.
This can help reduce some of the risks associated with fasting, such as feelings of weakness, hunger, fatigue and lack of concentration.
It can also make fasting more possible since you will likely not feel as hungry (9).
3. Stay Hydrated
Mild dehydration can lead to tiredness, dryness of the mouth, thirst and headaches (10).
Most healthcare officials suggest it 8×8 rules eight 8-ounce glasses (a little less than 2 litres in total) of liquid per day to avoid dehydration (11).
However, the absolute quantity of liquid you need, although probably in this range is totally vary from person to person.
When you get 20 to 30% of the liquid needed for food, it is very easy to dehydrate while fasting (12).
While fasting, many people aim to drink 8.5 to 13 cups (2 to 3 litres) of water throughout the day. However, your thirst should tell you when you need to drink more, so pay attention to the needs of your body (13).
4. Go for Walks or Meditate
Staying away from fasting can be difficult, especially if you feel tired and hungry.
One way to avoid unintentionally breaking your fast is to stay busy.
Activities that can turn you away from hunger without consuming too much energy include walking and meditation.
However, any activity that calms and not too hard would keep your mind committed. You may be able to take a bath, read a book, listen to music or talk to your friend.
5. Don’t Break Fasts With a Feast
It may be attractive after a restricted period to take advantage of eating in large quantities.
However, breaking your fast with a celebratory party or meal may make you feel swollen and tired.
What’s more, if you want to lose weight, a feast can affect your long-term goals by reducing or stopping your weight loss.
Because your total calorie quota affects your weight, excessive consumption of calories after fasting will reduce your calorie deficit.
The easiest way to break the fast is to continue eating normally and return to your regular or normal diet routine.
6. Stop Fasting If You Feel Unwell
Fasting can make you feel a bit weak, tired, hungry and irritable, but you should never feel bad.
To ensure your safety, especially as a beginner, Consider limiting your periods of fasting to 24 hours or less and keeping a snack at your fingertips in case you begin to feel weak or ill.
If you fall sick or pass out and worry about your health, make sure you stop fasting immediately.
Some of the signs that you should give up your quick and medical help include fatigue or weakness which cause difficulties in carrying out day-to-day tasks, as well as unexpected feelings of illness and discomfort.
7. Eat Enough Protein
Many people begin fasting with the intent of losing weight.
However, being in calorie deficiency may lead to the loss of muscle along with fat loss (14).
In addition, if you eat a small amount of fasting days, including certain proteins may offer other benefits, including the control of appetite.
Some studies suggest that the consumption of about 30% of a meal’s calories from protein can significantly reduce your appetite (16).
As a result, eating protein on fasting days can help offset some of the side effects of fasting.
8. Eat Plenty of Whole Foods on Non-Fasting Days
The majority of people who fast strive to improve their health.
Even if fasting means staying away from food, it is always important to keep a healthy lifestyle on you days without fasting.
You can keep your diet healthy and balanced by choosing whole foods such as meat, fish, eggs, vegetables, fruits and legumes, whole grains when you eat.
9. Consider Supplements
If you fast on a regular basis, you may not have enough essential nutrients.
This is due to the fact that eating fewer calories on a regular basis makes it difficult to meet your nutritional needs.
In fact, people who practice weight loss diets are more likely to be poor in a number of essential nutrients such as iron, calcium and vitamins (20).
Thus, those who fast regularly should consider taking multivitamins for their normal health and to help prevent deficiencies.
That said, it is still very good to take your nutrients out of the whole food (21).
10. Keep Exercise Mild
Some people believe that they can maintain their regular exercise routine during their fasting (5).
However, if you are a beginner or not in the habit of fasting, It is necessary to keep any exercise at low intensity, especially during startup so that you can see how you handle.
Low-intensity activities can include walking, gentle yoga, normal stretching and housework.
The most important thing is to listen to your body and rest if you have a hard time exercising.
Fasting Isn’t for Everyone
Although short-term fasting is generally considered secure, The following populations should not attempt to fast without taking any advice from your physician or healthcare professional:
- People who have a health condition such as heart disease or type 2 diabetes.
- Women trying to get pregnant.
- Pregnant and breastfeeding women.
- People with low body weight.
- People with previous eating disorders.
- People that have problems with regulating blood sugar.
- Persons with low blood pressure (hypotension)
- People who use prescription medications.
- Woman with an amenorrhoea history (lack of periods)
- Older adults
Fasting consists in avoiding food and drinks for longer periods. According to how it is followed, it can stimulate your health.
People can opt to fast for food, culture and religious purposes. One common method is periodic fasting, where you cycle between periods of food and fasting.
To remain healthy while fasting, it is best to keep fasting times small, avoid exhaustive exercise and keep you hydrated.
Eating enough protein and taking a balanced diet during your days without fasting can also keep you healthy and successful fasts.