“Breakfast is the most vital food of the day” is something we have been hearing for years now. And we love and enjoy our breakfast so much that we hardly spare any option.
More and more cafeterias offer all-day breakfast, but, what if breakfast, being the most vital meal that provides you with the needed energy for the day, was just a myth?
In case you follow trends on health and fitness, you have probably heard of the terminology “Intermittent Fasting (IF).” Most of us know just a little about it, and frown at the term “Fasting”, as it usually has to do with skipping meals.
In case you can already hear your belly growling, as you think of giving up your delicious eggs and pancakes, you can stop.
What if I told you there is a way you can still eat your favourite meals and not worry about becoming unnecessarily fat, all while benefiting and increasing your lifespan.
The answer lies in getting a new eating pattern, and not in how much or what you eat, but instead when you eat.
What is Intermittent Fasting?
Intermittent Fasting (IF) is fundamentally a form of restricted consumption of beverages/food to achieve the most essential benefits which I will list below.
Intermittent fasting is a method of eating in which you fast for several hours every day and eat within the remaining hours.
The day can be divided into “eating period” and “fasting period”. The normal ratio is 2:1, but, that could be changed with regards to your choice.
What are the types of Intermittent Fasting?
There are several different types of techniques when it concerns intermittent fasting, the top two being a 24-hour fast and 16/8 hours fast.
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Most of the common kinds of fasting are Periodic and Daily intermittent fasting. For instance, daily intermittent fasting will take place for 24 hours where you have a longer time for fasting and a shorter time for eating.
The 24-hour fast virtually means not eating for the whole day; sounds scary right? No chips, no midnight snack, nothing relating to all that.
On the bright side, the next day you can eat all the foods your heart wants though you should eat like a grownup as a general thumb rule.
The second option is certainly easier to adopt into your daily regimen and it is quite simple. You fast for sixteen (16) hours and eat during the remaining eight (8) hours. The timing can be of your choosing, whether you choose to skip dinner or breakfast.
Why should I fast intermittently?
Intermittent fasting is a schedule adjustment method that is most typically used to lose some pounds. But, this isn’t the only health benefit of IF. It is very likely to gain muscle mass whilst minimizing body fat percentage.
Most people would struggle to get adequate calories within 8 hours and feel satisfied eating less than their usual daily calories.
How does intermittent fasting work?
Intermittent fasting makes impulsive sense. Whenever we eat food, it gets broken down in our digestive systems and turns up as different molecules in our blood.
Our bodies utilize the sugar gotten from broken-down carbohydrates for energy, a procedure that happens rapidly for refined sugars and carbs.
Whenever we fail to use all of the energy provided by the food we eat, we store it as far. Sugar can’t enter your cells on its own, your body produces insulin to bring the sugar into your fat cells for storage.
In between meals, your insulin levels reduce and fat cells can discharge the sugar they have been preserving.
We tend to lose fat whenever our insulin levels go down and this is the foundation of intermittent fasting – to allow your body to enter a state where they are utilizing fat as your fuel source, making you lose weight.
Benefits of Intermittent Fasting
Whenever insulin level drops you begin to use fat as a source for fuel in place of sugars. Fat which is stored around your body would be utilized for energy.
Minimised Cancer Risk
Research on animals reveals that fasting intermittently can assist in reducing cancer risk. These studies show that diets that restrict calories can push back the onset of swellings and tumors.
Being obese is a risk factor for many cancer patients. So the weight loss related to intermittent fasting can be the reason for the minimized cancer risk these studies hint at.
Research into mice has revealed that fasting can result in improved brain health.
The link can be related to lowered inflammation and indicated that mice subjected to intermittent fasting have a greater capacity for memory and learning than those with unlimited access to different kinds of food.
Studies have also shown that intermittent fasting can help in reducing the risk of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.
Easier Than Dieting
Most diets do not work because they take too long to work or are too restrictive.
Maintaining a juicing diet where you are peeling vegetables and fruits three times daily and getting very few calories from them is both restrictive and inconvenient.
The science behind Intermittent Fasting
Whenever it concerns food, your body is in either of these two states, fasted or fed.
In the fed state, your body absorbs all the nutrients you just consumed. And since carbs and sugar are the first ones to get absorbed, your levels of insulin go up.
Because of this, it is hard for your body to quickly burn fat. Insulin is the hormone typically referred to as the fat-storage hormone.
The fasted state happens approximately twelve (12) hours after you had your last meal.
During that time, your level of insulin reduces and your body depends on fat for energy.
Since you are going without food for about 16 hours after having your last meal, it means you have enough time for fat burning without having to do anything.
In conclusion, the benefits of intermittent fasting are essential for literally everybody, but always contact your healthcare provider before fasting intermittently.