The list of celebrities who vouch for Intermittent fasting is endless, with top names being Kourtney Kardashian, Halle Berry and Jennifer Lopez, we’re left wondering if this fasting trend actually works.If you’re as puzzled about IF as us, fret not, below is everything you need to know before you decide to get your 2020 revenge bod from this and only this diet.
First things first, what is IF: Intermittent fasting, the very popular health and fitness trend, involves eating patterns that cycle between time periods (10-16 hours) of eating and fasting.
How it works: During the period of alcohol or fast, the levels of insulin decreases while growth hormone increases, which breaks down body fat and stores energy. Short-term fasting increases metabolic rate by 3.6-14% . This is why intermittent fasting helps in weight loss.
Why are so many stars turning to intermittent fasting?
“It’s popular because it works!” Dr.Edwina Raj, senior dietician at Aster CMI Hospital, Bangalore told us about IF, going on to detail the benefits of the popular method everyone seems to be talking about lately. “Intermittent fasting supports metabolic markers,” she explained, “it lowers glucose, insulin, triglycerides and increases insulin sensitivity. Fasting increased in popularity because the research supports it and people showed positive results.”
Like Jacqueline Fernandez: “When I first started IF, was 12 hours long, instead of 16. Honestly, of the 24 hours in a day, one sleeps for eight and naturally minimises food intake over the two hours before and after sleeping.
“So, fasting for 12 hours was easy. I have been following intermittent fasting for about a year,” the fit-fanatic star shared with Mid Day News.
The gist of IF? Fasting for anywhere from 14-18 hours daily, only consuming water, coffee and/or tea within the fasting period. The window and timing of meals are subjective, with Edwina advising finding what works for you rather than what you may have heard someone else do.
The key is to be mindful of what you are eating at what time, the doctor recommends ensuring maximum fat burn by assembling a breakfast that includes protein, fibre, greens and healthy fat. If you want to give IF a try, start with “a couple of days of the week to delay breakfast or even better, finish dinner earlier,” and note that intermittent fasting is ideal for the day after a food-filled holiday, Diwali or New Year Eve, suggest Dr. Edwina.
“Research shows that breaking a fast with a glucose-heavy meal causes a higher increase in inflammatory markers and blood sugar,” Edwina explained. “Fasting is not a free ticket to eat what you want, it’s even more important to eat a balanced mix of nutritious food.”
The six to eight hour window where you can eat doesn’t mean you inhale whatever is in sight without a care in the world, mindless snacking on that free biscuit and tea in the office kitchen or breaking your fast with complex carbs will actually negate the impact of the fasting period. Consider breaking your fast with scrambled eggs and avocado, followed by a couple of meals (depending on your appetite) by 6pm.
Edwina advises consulting with your doctor before incorporating intermittent fasting into your routine, especially if you have a history with low blood pressure, or any kind of eating disorder. “It is not for everybody and you don’t want it to get out of hand,” she explained. “IF does have the possibility of creating an eating disorder, food anxiety and binge eating when it is taken too far.”
So when it comes to fasting, take things slow and know it’s ultimately OK if it’s not your thing even if your favourite celeb or your mom’s best friend’s second cousin’s sister swears by it.
Images: upi, medicalnewstoday, foodlocate, eggs.ca