Should You Be Intermittent Fasting?
First of all, intermittent fasting is the process of regularly allowing your body to go many hours (up to 13) without food. The fundamental concept behind intermittent fasting is that fasting speeds autophagy (the process where your body accelerates the speed of clean-up of waste from dead and damaged cells). In turn, this helps diminish the risk of chronic diseases, especially those associated with aging.
If you want to test it out and see how it feels, start slowly. Try skipping breakfast two days this week, and have your first meal around 11:00 am. Another option is eat breakfast but skip dinner, having your last meal around 5:00.
To maintain a sustainable diet while still practicing intermittent fasting, eat every three to four hours. Eating smaller meals during the day with snacks will keep you satisfied, increase your metabolic rate, preserve lean muscle mass, and keep your moods consistent.
Dr. Andrew Weil says, “I do think the evidence for the health benefits of IF [Intermittent fasting] should make us rethink what seems to be a modern cultural imperative: to avoid hunger at all costs. To the contrary, getting hungry now and then is clearly a healthy thing to do as long as overall caloric intake stays high enough to maintain a healthy weight. (Fasting, like every other healthy activity, must be done sensibly and in moderation.) Many people who follow IF regimes report both physical and mental benefits, including improved energy and concentration, better sleep, and an overall feeling of well-being.”
Your intermittent fasting meal plan would look as follows:
11 am – Breakfast
1 pm – Lunch
4 pm – Snack
7 pm – Dinner
7 pm – 11 am – Intermittent fasting period
Intermittent fasting isn’t for everyone. Diabetics, children under 18 and pregnant or lactating women should avoid IF.