Intermittent Fasting – Complete Guide 2021

Intermittent fasting has become one of the most favored health and fitness trends in the world. It is used to improve a person’s health and lifestyle loosing weight.

Based on many studies It is proven to have strong effects on your body and brain as it can even help you delay your aging and live longer and healthier lives.

What Is Intermittent Fasting (IF)?

Intermittent fasting is a pattern of eating that is repeats or cycles between intervals of fasting and eating. Nhi hua hai

It has nothing to do with the food you should eat, but rather, in time, when you should eat them.

Conventionally, this is not a diet, but more specifically it is referred to as a dietary model.

Common methods of fasting consist of every day 16 hours of fasting or fasting for 24 hours, twice a week.

Fasting was an ancient practice, because at that time, ancient hunter-gatherers did not have enough food options. Sometimes they couldn’t get food.

As a result, humans have evolved so that they can function without food for long periods of time.

In fact, fasting occasionally is more natural than always eating (more than 3 – 4 times a day).

Fasting is also frequently practised for religious and spiritual purposes, including in many religions.

Methods of intermittent fasting:

There are many ways to do intermittent fasting that suggest splitting the day or week into periods of food and fasting.

During times of fasting, you eat either in very small quantities or nothing at all.

Some of the most commonly used methods are:

The 16/8 method: This method involves skipping breakfast and limiting your daily meal period to 8 hours (as from 8 hours to 16 hours) Then you fast for 16 hours in between.

Eat-Stop-Eat: This implies fasting for 24 hours, once or twice a week, as in not eating breakfast on the first day until noon the next day.

The 5:2 diet: In this method, you limit calories up to 500 – 600 calories on two consecutive days of the week, but usually eat the remaining 5 days.

By reducing calorie intake, all of these methods should lead to weight loss, as long as you do not make up for overeating during meal periods.

Among all those methods 16/19 method is the most popular and people find it is the easiest and practical method to follow.

How It Affects Your Cells and Hormone?

During fasting, a number of cellular and molecular changes take place in the body. like Endocrine changes, lipolyses, stress resistance, etc.

Cells also start restoration processes and modify gene expression.

Here are a few changes that happen in the body while fasting:

Human Growth Hormone (HGH): Growth hormone levels are up to five times higher. This may result in weight loss and muscle gain.

Insulin: Insulin sensitivity is improving and insulin levels are declining properly. The reduction in insulin levels makes stored body fat readily available.

Cellular repair: During fasting, cells start cell repair processes such as autophagy (cells that feed themselves digest and eliminate old dysfunctional proteins that accumulate inside the cells).

Gene expression: There are changes in the function of genes related to longevity or durability and disease protection.

These changes in cellular function, harmone levels and gene expression are the outcome of all the health benefits of intermittent fasting.

Intermittent fasting is a very effective weight loss Tool

Weight loss is the most frequent reason why people try intermittent fasting.

Because intermittent fasting makes you eat less food, it can automatically reduce calorie intake.

As well, it changes hormonal levels to promote weight loss.

In addition, it inhibits the release of norepinephrine fat-burning hormonal agent (norepinephrine).

Because of all these hormone changes, short-term fasting can increase metabolic rate by 3.6 – 14%.

Since intermittent fasting makes you eat less and burn more calories, it results in weight loss by changing both sides of the calorie equation.

Research shows that periodic fasting can be a very powerful tool for weight loss.

In the 2014 review study, it was found that periodic fasting can lead to weight loss of 3 – 8% in 3 – 24 weeks, which is a remarkable amount in comparison to the majority of weight loss studies.

According to the same study, people have lost between 4% and 7% of their waist, This indicates a dangerous loss of fat that accumulates around your bodies and causes so many illnesses.

And according to another study, it is suggested that it results in less muscle loss than other methods of ongoing calorie restrictions.

The main reason for successful periodic fasting is that it helps you eat fewer calories overall and If you eat large quantities of food during your meal periods, you can not lose weight.

Health Benefits

Numerous studies have been carried out on periodic fasting in animals and humans.

Based on these studies, it is proven that it can have huge advantages for weight control and health of your body and brain. It can even extend the lifespan.

The most important health benefits of intermittent fasting are:

Weight loss: As stated above, intermittent fasting is the easiest way to reduce weight and fat on the abdomen without the need to reduce calories.

Insulin resistance: Intermittent fasting can reduce insulin resistance, reduce blood sugar by 3-6% and fast insulin by 20-31%, which protects type 2 diabetes.

Inflammation: Some studies indicate a decline in inflammatory markers.

Heart health: Intermittent fasting can result in a decrease in LDL cholesterol, blood triglycerides, inflammatory markers, blood sugar and insulin resistance (which are the risk factors for heart disease) protect against a wide range of heart diseases.

Cancer: Some animal studies have found that intermittent fasting can protect against cancer.

Brain health: Intermittent fasting increases the brain hormone BDNF (neurological factor derived from the brain), the proliferation of new nerve cells. It can also protect against Alzheimer’s disease.

Anti-aging: Intermittent fasting increases rats’ life expectancy. Studies have suggested that fasting rats live between 36 and 83 percent longer.

However, research is still in its early stages. A lot of the studies were small, short-lived, or animal-based. There is so much more to discover and so many unanswered questions in better human study.

Makes Your Healthy Lifestyle Simple

Eating healthfully is easier but difficult to maintain in the long time.

Periodic fasting provides a healthy and simpler way of life and makes things easier, as it is not necessary.

One of the biggest challenges is the amount of work required to plan and cook healthy meals.

Intermittent fasting may make things easier, because you do not have to plan, cook or clean after as many meals as before.

For this reason, intermittent fasting is very popular among the hacking crowds of life, because it improves your health while making your life simpler at the same time.

Who Should Be Careful Or Avoid It?

Periodic fasting is definitely not for everybody.

If you suffer from low body weight or a history of eating disorders, you should not fast without first consulting a healthcare professional.

When this happens, it can be downright harmful.

Should Women Fast?

It is proven that intermittent fasting may not be as beneficial to women than to men.

For example, one study has shown that it improves insulin sensitivity in men, but aggravates glucose control in women.

Although human studies on this subject are not available, studies in rats have revealed that intermittent fasting may make female rats emaciated, masculinized, infertile and make them miss cycles.

There are a number of anecdotal reports of women who are no longer menstruating when they began to make IF and returned to normal when they resumed their previous eating habits.

Because of this, women must pay attention to intermittent fasting.

They must follow separate guidelines, such as making it easier to practice and immediately stop if they have problems such as amenorrhea (lack of menstruation).

If you have fertility problems and/ or try to conceive, consider delaying periodic fasting at this time. This diet model is also probably not a good idea if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Safety and Side Effects

Hunger is a major adverse effect of periodic fasting.

You may also feel weak and your brain may not be functioning as well as you usually are.

This can only be temporary, because it can take a while for your body to adjust to your new diet program.

If you have any health problems, you should check with your doctor before trying intermittent fasting.

This is especially important in case you:

  • Have diabetes.
  • Have problems regulating blood glucose.
  • Have low blood pressure.
  • Take medications.
  • Are underweight.
  • Previous history of eating disorders.
  • Are a woman trying to get pregnant.
  • Are a Female with an amenorrhea story.
  • Are pregnant or breastfeeding.

On the other hand, intermittent fasting has an exceptional safety profile. There is nothing dangerous about not eating for some time if you are in good health and well fed overall.

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