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Intermittent fasting for weight loss is a popular strategy to lose weight that involves cycling between periods of eating and fasting. It has gained a lot of attention in recent years due to its potential health benefits, including weight loss.
If you’re on a weight loss journey, and eager to find the most effective strategies to help you succeed in your weight loss goals, then intermittent fasting might just be for you.
In this article, we’ll explore the science behind intermittent fasting and how it may be able to help with weight loss! Let’s get right into it…
Before we dive into the science, let’s first define what intermittent fasting is.
Otherwise referred to as IF, intermittent fasting is a widely popular fasting method where you have an allowable eating window and a mandatory eating restriction window (fasting window).
The idea behind fasting largely comes from the fact that by prohibiting the consumption of food for several hours, the body ultimately exhausts itself of glucose, burning it all for energy during the fasting window itself.
The body ultimately begins to use fat as its primary energy source which then switches the body’s natural processes toward a weight loss-promoting process.
There are several different variations of intermittent fasting, but the most common one involves restricting food intake for certain periods of time, particularly for 16+ hours. Such a strategy can take different shapes, however, and can thus be accomplished in a few different ways:
Now that we’ve defined intermittent fasting and its types, let’s look at how it can help with weight loss!
Also Read: The Right Way To Do Intermittent Fasting
When we eat, our bodies use the calories from food for energy. Any excess calories are stored as fat. When we fast, our bodies are forced to use stored fat for energy instead of constantly relying on the calories from food. This can ultimately lead to significant weight loss results.
Intermittent fasting can also help with weight loss by reducing appetite and increasing feelings of fullness. When we eat, the hormone ghrelin (also known as the “hunger hormone”) is released, which ultimately stimulates appetite. On the other hand, when we fast, ghrelin levels decrease, which can reduce appetite.
Intermittent fasting can also increase levels of the hormone adiponectin, which is involved in the breakdown of fat and has been shown to increase feelings of fullness.
Other than weight loss, intermittent fasting has been shown to have a number of other health benefits, from improved markers of heart health such as blood pressure and cholesterol levels to improved insulin sensitivity which can help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Finally, intermittent fasting has even been shown to have anti-aging effects by increasing the production of human growth hormone and decreasing inflammation.
Also Read: Does Intermittent Fasting Work?
While the evidence supporting the benefits of intermittent fasting is promising, it’s important to keep in mind that more research is needed to fully understand its effects on the body. Also, most of the research till date has been on fasts lasting over 24 hours and not on intermittent fasting.
It’s also important to note that intermittent fasting may not be suitable for everyone. If you have a history of disordered eating or if you have any underlying health conditions, it’s important to speak with a healthcare professional before starting any new diet or exercise program.
So, is intermittent fasting right for you?
If you’re considering trying intermittent fasting for weight loss, it’s important to talk to a healthcare professional or nutritionist to determine if it’s a safe and appropriate choice for you. They can help you determine the best approach based on your individual needs and goals. Fasting without the right diet plan is not advisable and can even have harmful effects. This is especially true for women as their bodies are more sensitive to energy intake and fasting must be approached with care and planning.
In conclusion, intermittent fasting is a popular weight loss strategy that involves cycling between periods of eating and fasting. It has been shown to help with weight loss by reducing appetite, increasing feelings of fullness, and improving markers of heart health.
While the evidence supporting the benefits of intermittent fasting is promising, more research is needed to fully understand its effects on the body. If you’re considering trying intermittent fasting for weight loss, it’s important to speak with a healthcare professional or nutritionist to determine if it’s a safe and appropriate choice for you.
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