Losing Weight with Intermittent Fasting
Losing weight is not limited to specific strategies. Instead, there are many options today, which one can take in their quest to lose weight. Depending on the resources at your disposal and the preferences of the alternatives, you can pursue a measure you believe in. There are traditional methods of losing weight, which come with a variety of requirements. Most of them are based on frequent exercise and dieting, even coffee. The most recent advancement to losing weight by fasting is called intermittent fasting.
Basically, it involves regular short-term fasts but is not popular among the wide population. The reason is it this idea is among the most passive of all techniques of losing weight. Experts suggest that it is effective in helping people to reduce the amounts of calories they take. Moreover, it helps optimize some of the hormones responsible for weight control. Even with statistics and testimonials available; can you lose weight with intermittent fasting?
Background to Intermittent Fasting
Notice that intermittent fasting requires the individual to form a habit of regular short-term fasts. There are, however, several methods to choose here. The basic ones include:
- The 5:2 Diet: restrict yourself to consuming only 500-600 calories on two days of the week. You should however re-compensate by eating normally the other 5 days.
- The 16/8 Method: You will be skipping breakfast every day and instead eat during an 8-hour feeding window (for example, you could choose to eat between 12 noon and 8 pm)
- Eat-Stop-Eat: This one means you take one or two 24-hour fasts each week. For example, you could avoid eating from dinner on a particular day until dinner the next day.Be careful not to compensate by consuming more calories that you can burn. During the non-fasting period, you should limit calorie intake and remain disciplined enough to fight on.
Intermittent Fasting and Hormones
It is important to note that your body stores energy (calories as fat). This means that without eating, your body reacts by accessing the stored fat. It converts this fat into the necessary energy you need. The changes occur in your nervous system to cause the diversion of critical hormones. Here are some of the changes in your metabolism:
- Norepinephrine (noradrenaline): The nervous system is responsible for sending out norepinephrine to the fatty cells. It helps to break them down into free fatty acids that can easily be burned for energy
Insulin: Insulin increases every time we are eating. Whenever we fast, the insulin levels fall sharply and facilitate fat burning.
- Human growth hormone (HGH): The levels of growth hormone may rise sharply during a fast, consequently raising as much as 5-fold. The growth hormone aids fat loss and muscle gain, among other issues.
How to reduce Calories and Lose Weight
The main technique implored by intermittent fasting is to help you reduce your calorie intake. Most of the techniques have a variety of timings to skip meals as you fast. If you do not compensate by eating enough during the break (eating periods), it means you have succeeded in reducing your calorie intake. A recent study showed how the technique can be used to make significant changes in weight loss.
Within a period of 3 months, you can reduce your overall body weight by between 3% and 8%.
People who participated in the study lost between 4% and 7% of their waist circumference meaning they successfully eliminated belly fat.
Luckily, the benefits of this technique exceed losing weight. You will improve your metabolic health and may prevent chronic disease and expand lifespan.
Most importantly, intermittent fasting can help you hold on to muscle when dieting. This is usually the challenge faced when fasting as the body burns muscle alongside the fat.
Beware, if you maintain continuous intake of calories even while in the process of intermittent fasting, you will not find the results you want.
Another recent study had the subjects consume the same amount of calories as before, in just one huge meal during dinner. The participants were closely monitored.
The results showed that these individuals lost body fat and increased their muscle mass, along with many other beneficial changes in health markers.
Perhaps the biggest benefit to this technique of weight loss would be its simplicity. It helps health living easy and organized. You do not have to sweat or shift your work schedule to incorporate the exercises. Though, it is always a good thing to exercise.
Regardless of the criticisms today, the truth is short term fasting can help you burn fat but how can you lose weight with intermittent fasting? The logic is this process helps to initiate changes in the body, which burn fat easy and fast. Part of the process is reduced insulin, increased growth hormone, enhanced epinephrine, signaling and rise in overall metabolism.