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Intermittent Fasting For Weight Loss? Is It Possible

When I first started out figuring I read an article a few years back about how important meal frequency is for your metabolism. The article recommended that you eat about 5 to 6 small meals a day to boost your metabolism and to keep it high. The information seemed sound, so from that point on, I made sure to get my five meals a day: breakfast, lunch, dinner and a snack in between each. As body got used to the small meals, I would get hungry every couple of hours. I took that as I sign that the small meals were working and my metabolism. Although, when I started working, it became harder and harder to stick to the multiple small meals a day. But I always managed to find a way somehow.

At this point, I was spending a little bit of extra money on food, but I was OK with it as long as if I was working toward my goal. Eventually, though, I came upon times where I was unable to keep the eating schedule, and it resulted in me psychologically kicking myself each time because I messed up. I know that there are always a few bumps in the road, but that was my way of thinking back then and even now at times (I have gotten a lot better though, I promise).

A few months ago, while researching other alternatives and ways to speed up the process as quickly as possible, I came across a post about intermittent fasting for weight loss and how it was greatly superior to eating 5 to 6 small meals a day. If you’re like me, you would’ve probably gotten upset about finding out this kind of information this late in the game, however, that was the moment I realized that sculpting your perfect body takes time. It’s a journey and a marathon, not a sprint. So I took a few breaths, researched this topic a bit further, and found a holy grail of information that I would like to share with you today…

Intermittent Fasting For Weight Loss


What Is Intermittent Fasting?

We know that regular fasting consists of just restrict your calorie intake on a daily basis.However intermittent fasting changes the game a bit. Intermittent fasting is a schedule where go between a period of fasting and a period of eating day to day where the window of fasting is longer and nearly twice as long than the window of eating. At first discovery, I thought that this can’t be a good weight loss strategy. However, I later discovered that the whole “eating multiple small meals a day” for metabolism was just another way to apply the thermic effect of food. The thermic effect of food is about a number of calories you eat and not the frequency.

If you’re one who also implements the multiple small meal option but finding it difficult to maintain or just looking for a change, you’ve come to the right place. So with this tidbit of info, I continued my research. into IF (Intermittent Fasting). One way that people have been implementing intermittent fasting without knowing it is by skipping breakfast. We’ve all heard the saying “breakfast is the most important meal of the day”. Society claims that eating is necessary for weight loss, however, a study conducted in 2014 by the American Journal Of Clinical Nutrition showed that there was no difference in weight loss between the group who ate breakfast and the group who didn’t.

The skipping breakfast was made popular by fitness expert Martin Berkhan and is more commonly known as the 16/8 method or Leangains protocol. With this method, you would fast for up to 16 hours of the day, and use the remaining 8 to take in your daily calories. The other two most popular forms of intermittent fasting are 1) The 5:2 diet and 2) The Eat, Stop, Eat method. With the 5:2 diet, you eat the way you normally would 5 days a week and eat only 500 – 600 calories on the remaining 2. It was created by Dr. Michael Mosley. And last but not least, the Eat, Stop, Eat Method involves fasting for a full 24 hours once or twice a week. This is the most popular form of intermittent fasting. It was created by fitness expert Brad Pilon.

Now I know what you must be thinking, Who in their right minds would practice any of these options? But before dismissing this info, you should know that IF comes with a whole heap of health benefits that may intrigue you, I know I was

Benefits of Intermittent Fasting For Weight Loss


Reduce Your Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

As you know, Type 2 Diabetes causes insulin resistance, which makes it difficult for the body to break down glucose. Intermittent fasting also greatly reduce blood sugar levels. According to this study, intermittent fasting has revealed to decrease blood sugar levels and insulin resistance. So, whether you have Type 2 diabetes or not, intermittent fasting can help you manage it and prevent it. Lower blood sugar levels also help to promote fat loss

Help You Lose Weight

A study shows that short-term starvation in people caused an increase in metabolic rate by up to 3.6%.  Another study shows that after 24 hours of fasting, growth hormone production increased dramatically by up 2000% from the baseline. In other words, testosterone levels increase dramatically from intermittent fasting. Which also makes burning fat easier. Intermittent fasting shifts your body into fat burning mode and makes stored body fat more accessible. If you work out in this “fasted state”, you can lose weight and burn fat much more quickly.

Activate The Process of Autophagy

Autophagy is process of breaking down cells and removing the waste in them that builds up over time. Intermittent fasting is shown to induce the process within us. When we fast, we essentially refresh our bodies and reduce our risk for diseases.

Help You Live A Long Healthy Life

A study done with rats showed that intermittent feeding increased their lifespan by up to 83%. Yes, rats and humans are completely different. However, if implemented properly, we can at least see that intermittent fasting can help us live a healthier lifestyle.


I was also skeptical of intermittent fasting, but I gave it a shot. My first attempt was doing the 24 fast from Saturday afternoon into Sunday afternoon. Because I didn’ calculate my calorie and macronutrient intake back then, I can’t attest to the weight loss aspect. However, I did notice a huge energy increase throughout the day. Normally, I would feel groggy, especially during the workday. I soon learned that it was because of my carb intake at breakfast, which can induce feelings of drowsiness. I mentioned earlier that training in a “fasted state” can result in quicker weight loss. However, it can lead to muscle breakdown, which is the enemy to fitness.

Thankfully, there are ways to avoid muscle breakdown so you can reap the benefits of fasted training. Today completes my second week of fasted training. Even though it’s short, I can see the results and so can my family. When it comes to intermittent fasting, you always want to work your way up to certain points, not just dive in. See what works for you, and then build up from that point on. Don’t fret if intermittent fasting’s not for you. This is just another means to an end. Intermittent fasting is not for everyone, however, if you try it, you might get to your weight loss goals faster. Every little bit helps, right?

Have you tried intermittent fasting for weight loss? What was your experience? Drop a comment below and let’s get a discussion going.

 

William Newsome

18 Comments

  1. Hey William,

    Thank you for sharing all this. Oddly enough I’ve read a few things recently on fasting and what you have here is some great incite. I’ve heard the back and forth things about how fasting isn’t good because it puts your body into starvation mode and it can stall your metabolism and etc etc…. and on the other end I’ve heard if you don’t your system won’t get cleaned out and it. I think I might try this. I’ll probably do the skipping breakfast one (16 hours no food). Skipping two days of eating or 500 to 600 calories for two days seems more challenging to me for some reason.

    Thanks again, William! This is some great stuff!

    • Thanks Scott. Yeah give the no breakfast a try and see how you like it. If it works out for you then you can build up the 24 hour one if you want

  2. Hi William,
    I never went searching for benefits of intermittent fasting. I just do it every week. I choose a day when I can go fasting.

    If I’m on a mission, I can do the 16-8 for 7 days straight. I feel so light and focus during that fasting period. It really surprised me that I have more energy when I fast. Do you experience this, too?

    • Hey Arief, yes I do actually. I was actually surprised when I first did it. The energy and the focus was definitely a welcomed benefit. I knew that when I went to work I would always feel tired, but I never knew it was from eating breakfast.

  3. I have had some success with the 5/2 diet in the past. It took a while to get used to not eating for a day purely out of habit but after a few weeks it was quite easy to go for a day without food. It got so easy that I usually wouldn’t feel hungry until early the following afternoon after a fasting day.
    I also researched the science behind the idea and it made a lot of sense.

    • Glad to hear Dean. If you’ve spent most of your life on the same or similar eating schedule, it definitely will take time to adjust to IF. I try to follow the 16/8. I’m still trying to do the 24 hours for Sunday, but I’m working on it

  4. Hi William, I want to write about intermitten fasting too but focus more on fighting against aging. From many articles I got the understanding that intermitten fasting is one of some ways to slow down aging process. Your article add my references about benefit of intermitten fasting. Thank you.

    • Hey Melani, you’re welcome. Because of its benefit for aging, intermittent fasting could also be a reason don’t have a full beard yet XD

  5. I wonder if it has anything to do with our evolution. Our ancestors spent thousands of years not knowing when there next meal would be, because they had to go and hunt for it – maybe we are still programmed to be most efficient when fasted in such a manner.

    Just a thought

  6. William, thanks for the informative post. I know the power of fasting if harness correctly one can really reap the benefits. what about fasting twice a week with equal gap I mean Monday and Thursday?

    • Hi Fred. That’s fine too. It’s all a matter of finding out which form of fasting works for you or maybe you can try different methods at different times

  7. Very good information. I have been blessed with a naturally high metabolism. All my life I have been slim and I am 57 now. I can eat and it just burns off. But sometimes I wish I knew what was keeping my metabolism this way. My eating patterns stay constant weekly. I am one of those ones in the study that eats breakfast. I am sure this will help someone who is trying to raise their metabolism.

  8. Hey Will, love the article. I’m a HUGE fan of intermittent fasting and have loved the results I’ve seen so far. I normally don’t lift weights when fasted because I feel like my performance/strength suffers, but if I do, I’ll usually take 10g of BCAAs beforehand to offset any muscle loss. Most of the time I’ll do some light or moderate cardio in the mornings while fasted to get the fat burning process started. Thanks for sharing!

    • I also use to take BCAA cause I was also concerned about the muscle loss. These days, I take HMB which I think is really effective. You should look into it

  9. Thank you for the best information. I am an Orthodox Christian follower. I have been fasting since I was 7 years old. This time I can stay for few hours and have my food then. But the only food I eat during fasting is vegetables only, no cheese, no chocolates, no butter, no milk and milk products in general, no meat( any type of meat). But when I grow up I become to fast as many hours as I can. Sometimes I can fast for 20 hours, as it is not allowed to eat after midnight. I always feel better and energised. Remember, the Orthodox church practices more than 210 of fasting days. I believe in practical, fasting is the best way to lose weight. It is hard to fast long hours in the beginning, but once you stick to it and make fasting practice you will get used to it.
    Thank you again,
    Abraham

    • I agree. It was also hard at first when I started it out, but I got used to it. It’s still a challenge sometimes to make it to the full 24 hours though. Since you’ve been practicing for so long, what has your results been like with intermittent fasting?

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