In this post I am going to explain you in detail what is intermittent fasting. How you can start doing it? and then I am going to give you a idea about intermittent fasting diet plan, And then it’s benefits and side effects. And what precautions you should take?
What Is Intermittent Fasting?
“It is not a diet but a dieting pattern.”
It is a pattern of scheduling your eating and fasting cycles.
Simply, There is time window where you can eat and a time window where you have to fast. Now the time window will depend on you that how longer you can fast. Now we will discuss only about the most popular pattern which is 16/8.
In this pattern, You have to fast continuously for 16 hours. And in next 8 hours you have to take all the meals for a day i.e. Breakfast, lunch and dinner etc.
How Can You Start Doing Intermittent Fasting?
You can not jump in to it and start doing intermittent fasting for 16 hours a day directly. For that you have to give your body enough time for adapting to the new way of eating.
To start doing intermittent fasting. You should first reduce your carbohydrates intake gradually and increase your fat intake accordingly. As a result you will not feel hungry for longer duration.
Now you will think what is a logic behind that, Because both of them give me energy so why should i do that.
To clarify your doubt, lets understand it by a simple example. Now assume Carbohydrates as Petrol and Fat as Coal.
In this example both petrol and coal are sources of energy. Petrol burns spontaneously and vanishes early but coal burns slowly and lasts longer than petrol. Hence if you include more fat in your diet then you will be able to extend your fasting period.
Once you get used to doing it, Then you can gradually increase your fasting window time from 16 hours up to 24 hours. Also you will get more results when you will prepare your own customized intermittent fasting diet plan.
Now Let’s Understand What Is HUNGER??
In the morning when you wake up. Hormone called as Cortisol have a big spike. Which is a adrenaline hormone also called stress hormone that will make you little hungry.
But if you keep going and ignore it, And don’t eat anything. Then as time passes you will not feel hungry. It is all because of Cortisol and it’s not a real hunger.
But if it is a strong hunger then as time passes you will start feeling stomach pains. You start getting Light headed, You feel weakness, you feel grouchy then don’t force yourself anymore.
Because these are the signals from your body to eat something. So I hope you understood the Hunger in detail.
How HUNGER Affects:-
Now when you feel slight Hunger which might be due to stress hormone. You start eating and that is what causing you to gain unwanted body fat. So you need to identity the difference between hunger due to stress and genuine hunger.
Intermittent fasting is also misunderstood as you can do fasting once after every 2 to 3 days. But This is not the correct way of doing it.
Intermittent fasting works like a shock to your body. So I will recommend you to do it for 2 days continually, And give it a break on 3rd day.
But again start doing it from 4th day and give it a break on 6th day likewise.
If you do it as above, It will be more beneficial. Because if you do it every single day then your body will adapt to it very fast. And you will not get the desired results.
“EAT ONLY WHEN YOU GENUINELY FEEL HUNGRY.”
Intermittent Fasting Diet Plan:-
Ideally there is no specific food which you should eat while doing this fast, Because as i said above it’s not a diet but a dieting pattern.
You can eat whatever you want but be sure that when you break your fast. You are not crossing threshold of your daily maintenance calories.
Let’s Start Counting Your Calories:-
So now you may be thinking that how can i know, how much are my daily maintenance calories…..Right???
For that you will find lots of free tools such as Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE) calculator on Google.
OK, Now you will think I know my daily maintenance calories but how will I count how much I am eating…Am i right?
So I will suggest you to take help of any application available on internet such as MyFitnessPal, Healthifyme etc.
And keep tracking your food for few days. By some time you will get a better idea of how much food you should eat, To stay in your threshold of daily maintenance calories.
Earlier, I said that you can eat whatever you want. But if you are seriously doing intermittent fasting for achieving some desired results.
Then i am sure that you don’t want to ruin your efforts and hard work, Only for the sake of good feeling of your tongue.
So here is the list of food which I think you should add in intermittent fasting diet plan while breaking your fast.
Ideal Intermittent Fasting Diet Plan While Breaking Fast:-
- A best quality protein powder if your budget permits you.
- An organic or Pasture-raised meat especially if it is grass fed and Not Genetically Modified.
- Fishes like salmon, Tuna, Sardines etc.
- These Best Sellers in Grocery & Gourmet Food are also a good choice to include in your diet.
- The foods that contains healthy fats like avocados, Coconut water, Grass fed cheese,Nuts like pecans, pistachios etc.
- Also You can eat fruits like Low Glycemic berries,Green leafy vegetables,Squash,Sweet potatoes etc.
- Try to eat salad made of lettuce,Bell pepper, Tomato, Cabbage, Kale and Olive oil.
- Try to eat foods that contains complex carbohydrates and are also high in fiber such as Oats, Brown Rice etc.
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Bad Intermittent Fasting Diet Plan While Breaking Fast:-
- Try to avoid foods which contains high carbohydrates like bread and pastas.
- Limit your sugar and alcohol intake as it can ruin good things you are doing.
- Avoid fast foods like pizza, burger and cold drinks which contains lots of sugar.
- foods which have high glycemic index such as sugary foods, Soft drinks, white bread, potatoes, white rice etc.
- Instead of these unhealthy foods, Try these Best Sellers in Grocery & Gourmet Food.
How Intermittent Fasting Helps For WEIGHT LOSS?
Primarily if you are not doing any diet. Then glucose is the main source of energy for your body. Whenever you eat something, Your body creates glucose from it and your insulin level increases.
Then your body use required energy from it and stores remaining energy as a fat. This is how you start getting obesity.
Now when you start doing Intermittent fasting what happens is that you consume absolutely no food for 16 hours. By this time your insulin level drops and whatever glucose stored in your liver is finished.
Now to carry on the activities you are doing, Your body needs energy. So it starts to take energy from reservoir. And this reservoir is nothing but a fat stored on your body.
This is how you start losing stored fat, But to achieve more results it’s very important to break your fast with a low carbohydrates containing food.
Reduce Carbohydrates In Intermittent Fasting Diet Plan:-
Your aim should be to keep insulin level low. Because whenever you eat more carbohydrates while breaking your fast, Your insulin level goes very high.
And then again your body starts to use glucose as a source of energy. And it will take lot of time to settle until your glucose finishes hence your efficiency of fasting drops.
The best way to keep your insulin level low, Is to drink apple cider vinegar half an hour before breaking your fast.
Try to break your fast with a food which contains high healthy fats. And good amount of protein and very less amount of carbohydrates. Try to consume carbohydrates from green vegetables.
I will suggest you to prepare your intermittent fasting diet plan as per your choice. You can take help of above listed foods.
Precautions While Doing Intermittent Fasting:-
- Keep yourself well hydrated. And for that take 1 teaspoon of sea salt/Himalayan pink salt and electrolytes to maintain sodium level of your body.
- Do not avoid carbohydrate completely as your body needs good amount of fiber otherwise you may suffer from constipation.
- You must know what you will eat when you break your fast. Because if you are outside, And you don’t carry your food with you. Then you might end up eating wrong food.
- If you have any type of diabetes or any sort of food disorders. Then please consult with your doctor before doing intermittent fasting.
- You are not advised to do this fasting, If you are a pregnant woman or a child below 8 years.
Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting:-
- It helps to lower your insulin level.
- It increases Human growth hormones which is useful for Building your muscle mass and reduce stored fat.
- As you do not eat anything your metabolic system gets a rest. And it enhances your cellular repair process where your stronger cells eat old and weaker cells.
- As your body gets time to repair your system it results in increased longevity.
- Easy to be in caloric deficit to achieve weight loss.
- It also helps to increase your focus, Less inflammation, You will get a better Sleep.
- You will have less food cravings and hunger.
Side Effects Of Intermittent Fasting:-
- Initially when you start doing Intermittent fasting you may have difficulty in sleeping.
- You can feel food obsession.
- Initially while breaking your fast you tend to eat more which results in over eating.
- Unless and until your body adapts to this fasting pattern you may have low energy levels.
- Cold, headache, high stomach acid etc.
All the above listed Side effects are temporary. Because once your body adapts to fasting these symptoms goes away and you feel better control on your Hunger. You will get good quality sleep and most importantly lose lots of body fat.
Lastly, If you want to see long term effects of intermittent fasting. You should try to do it for at least 4 months otherwise if you do it for a month.
You will get the faster results and you stop doing it then after few months again you will gain more weight than you actually lose.
Let me know in comments that whether you found this article helpful or not. Any suggestions or queries are most welcome.
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