Weight loss program focuses on when to eat

  • Category: Blogs
  • Posted On:
Weight loss program focuses on when to eat

Most everyone knows the meaning of fasting. That is, to refrain from eating for a certain length of time. But what is intermittent fasting?

John Hopkins Medicine defines intermittent fasting as an eating plan that switches between fasting and eating on a regular schedule. Unlike many diets that focus on what to eat, this popular health and fitness trend is all about when to eat.

With intermittent fasting, you only eat during a specific time. Fasting for a certain number of hours each day, or eating just one meal a couple days a week, can help burn fat.

There are different ways of doing intermittent fasting. All involve splitting the day or week into eating and fasting periods. Below are the most popular intermittent fasting methods. They can be modified to include a shorter or longer fasting period:

  • The 16/8 method: Restricts a person’s daily eating period to eight hours, such as 1 to 9 pm, then fasting for 16 hours.
  • Eat-Stop-Eat: Involves fasting for 24 hours once or twice a week.
  • The 5:2 diet: Involves eating normally for five days a week. For the two other days, one 500–600 calorie meal is eaten.

According to the Cleveland Clinic, intermittent fasting has been shown to be an effective form of weight loss. It also can help lower blood pressure and improve metabolic health as it shifts the body into a state of ketosis, which burns fat rather than carbohydrates, for fuel. Studies show it can also lower blood sugar, reduce inflammation, and improve heart and brain health.

Although the long-term effects of intermittent fasting are still being studied, it is important to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet while following the program. Intermittent fasting has been proven to be successful because it helps reduce the amount of calories consumed. However, binging and consuming massive amounts during eating periods may not result in weight loss at all.

Intermittent fasting may not be for everyone, especially those with certain health conditions. This includes people who have diabetes, blood sugar problems, or a history of eating disorders.

Side effects of intermittent fasting can include irritability, low energy, persistent hunger, temperature sensitivity, and poor work and activity performance. Talk to your primary healthcare provider before trying an intermittent fasting plan.