Basics and benefits of intermittent fasting

Hello and welcome to article number 37471657 about intermittent fasting. I started doing this about a month and a half ago, when I decided I need to find a way to cut calories in my day. As I’m already eating healthy most of the time and do not want to restrict myself totally and not enjoy an occasional delicious vegan burger or some fantastic vegan brownies, I needed to find a different way. Now why do I want / need to save up on calories? Cause firstly I’m not the lucky one who loses weight when stressed, I gain weight. And the last couple of months were intense. And secondly, summers coming and we’re planning on going to Hawaii… Hellooo bikini body 🙂 No I’m not that shallow… But I do believe in everybody should be happy with their body.

What is this intermittent fasting everyone is talking about???

So the easiest way to apparently loose some kilos is not eating as many calories as you spend. It’s simple math even I can do: Consumed calories minus burned calories results in either plus or minus. Minus is the goal. Easy right…? Well I love to eat, so it’s difficult to just eat smaller portions. And everybody is hyping about intermittent fasting. So I thought I’d give it a try. The only thing I knew about it when I started, was that you can eat for 8 hours and then fast for 16 hours. Easy peasy…. I’ll just stop eating breakfast. But wait… isn’t breakfast the most important meal of the day???? Damn it, I’ll just try and see what happens….

A couple of days in, I started researching what I’m doing to my body. Here’s what I found out:

  • Intermittent Fasting is an eating pattern where you cycle between eating and fasting
  • Different cycles are possible, from splitting your days to splitting your week
  • If you’re doing the day version like me: You can fast 16 hours and eat in an 8-hour window. If you’re a good sleeper, you’ll sleep through a half or more of these hours. YAY!
  • You can drink water and unsweetened beverages such as coffee or tea during the 16 hours fasting time
  • Even though it’s a trend, this is nothing new. People have been doing this for a long time, for example religious rituals such as Ramadan or our ancestors during the Stone Age
  • There aren’t too many studies out there about risks and benefits.

VeganCure-Intermittent-fasting-tea_600x400px

How it’s supposed to work

If you fast, you discard old blood cells. When you start eating again, your body produces new, happy cells. This results in regenerating the immune system. (Longo Study) This study was tested on animals, which we absolutely do not support. We are strictly against animal testing. And these poor mice were put on a diet for four days…. Doing intermittent fasting, you don’t eat for 16 to 24 hours. So no chance your blood cells will vaporize within this short time. It will take two to three days to even start this process in your body.

So this doesn’t really speak for intermittent fasting. Should I keep doing this? Other studies show that it does help prevent diseases, it supports you on your weight loss journey.

But how do you lose weight? Your body digests for about 8 to 12 hours after your last meal. After that you enter the fasted state. This is the time when it is the easiest for your body to burn fat, cause the insulin levels are low.

Vegancure-intermittent-fasting

What’s supposed to be the benefit of this?

  • Weight loss
  • More energy
  • Improve metabolic health
  • Boost your immune system
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Lower cancer risk
  • Burning fat
  • Helps prevent type 2 diabetes, atherosclerosis and Alzheimer’s disease
  • Saves you some money… 🙂

When to stop

It is also important to listen to your body. If you start feeling weak, nauseous or are getting muscle cramps, you probably should stop. These are sings of low electrolytes.

Drastically cutting calories while exercising could also lower your overall metabolism. – Mens Health

My experiences so far

The first week was really hard…. I was constantly hungry and started eating more for lunch and obviously faster, cause my stomach thought I was gonna starve. If you eat faster, you eat more. Cause it takes some time for your brain to register what’s going on and that your belly actually received some food already. The next thing I noticed or actually struggled with (and sorry for this extremely unsexy topic) was my digestion. It was bad! I’ll just leave it at this.

After the first two weeks, everything started to settle, my body and my digestive system registered that hoping for breakfast is a waste of time. So they started cooperating. And I actually also started to lose some weight. So hey, it’s working, right??

What I’m absolutely loving, is that I’m not craving any food till lunchtime. Before starting intermittent fasting, I’d eat breakfast at 6 AM and at about 10 AM my tummy would start rumbling. None of that now. I’m perfectly happy till 12.00 am.

But I am really hungry for dinner time and I do believe I am eating more than before during dinner.

Also, I’m not sure if it has something to do with intermittent fasting, but I kinda think my body is buffering fat at not so pleasant areas, such as my thighs… 🙁 I’m actually a very active person, so I try to go jogging twice a week and adding in another two to three training sessions per week as well. I can’t exactly pinpoint it, but I do have the feeling, that my muscles take much longer to regenerate and that I constantly have aching muscles. It’s not like I just started with sports… I’ve been doing it all my life. So why do I have sore muscles every single time a day after a training session? Hmm….

So my verdict about intermittent fasting: I’m actually not sure… I’ll continue for a couple more weeks and then see if I do lose the last two kilos. If not and my legs keep on getting fatter, I’ll definitely be stopping.

Let us know, what you have experienced with intermittent fasting. We’d love to know and chat a bit about it.

Have a great day everyone!

 

Sources:
Mens Health
Healthline

 

 

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