All About Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting (IF) is one of the most popular trends in the health and wellness world. It may be a great way to lose weight and control eating habits. While some find it scary, studies point to its possible positive effects on the body. Intermittent fasting may have benefits that go beyond weight loss.
IF may be the answer for those wanting an easy way to improve their health. Keep reading as we tell you everything you need to know about intermittent fasting rules, potential results, and various methods.
What is Intermittent Fasting?
Intermittent fasting, or IF, is an eating cycle in which you switch between periods of fasting and eating. With IF, it’s more about the meal schedule than the food you eat. You can simultaneously follow a diet that is right for you to help maximize intermittent fasting’s benefits.
While IF may be a new buzz, the practice of fasting goes way back. Ancient hunters and foragers went without food for hours before they found something to eat. Most religions, such as Islam, Judaism, and Christianity, also have fasting traditions.
Benefits of IF
Intermittent fasting may have multiple health benefits that are supported by various studies. Here are the top ones:
1. Weight Loss
One of the most sought-after benefits of intermittent fasting is that it may help with weight loss. Not only may it lead to less calorie intake, but it may help you lose weight by lowering your insulin levels.
When you eat carbohydrates, your body stores glucose as fat. Insulin aids this process. Studies suggest that your insulin levels drop when you fast, causing your cells to use the stored fat as energy. Pair your IF with a healthy diet that includes whole nutritious foods like raw nuts and seeds and you may experience faster weight loss.
2. Lower Risk of Diabetes
Following intermittent fasting rules may lower your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. This benefit of intermittent fasting is related to the previous one. Being overweight may increase your chances of getting type 2 diabetes. Intermittent fasting may reduce this chance by helping you lose weight.
Intermittent fasting may also reduce other risk factors related to type 2 diabetes. Studies show that IF may improve insulin sensitivity. This is essentially what diabetes medications aim to do.
3. Better Heart Health
Intermittent fasting may also improve different aspects of heart health. Cardiovascular diseases are among the leading causes of death worldwide. These conditions have various markers that increase the risk of heart disease. One of the benefits of intermittent fasting is that it may improve these markers.
One review showed intermittent fasting may reduce blood pressure, cholesterol levels, triglycerides, and heart rate. These are all markers of heart disease. Other risk factors affected by IF may include blood sugar levels and inflammatory markers. However, these studies have been tested mostly on animal subjects, and more human studies are needed.
4. Better Brain Health
There is scientific evidence that intermittent fasting may improve brain functions. Studies on mice showed better memory and learning abilities after following the rules of intermittent fasting.
Other studies suggest that IF may reduce inflammation in the brain and may help prevent neurological diseases. Following this plan and adding some good saturated fats to your diet may help you avoid conditions like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
5. Lower Risk of Cancer
One of the notable benefits of intermittent fasting is its potential to possibly lower cancer risk by affecting metabolism. No study directly evaluates the effects of intermittent fasting on cancer. However, we know IF may already reduce risk factors associated with cancer, such as obesity, inflammation, and blood insulin levels.
Plus, recent animal studies suggest that restrictive diets may postpone the onset of tumors. Research also links fasting with chemotherapy by stating that short-term fasting may reduce the side effects of medications.
6. Lower Oxidative Stress and Inflammation
Intermittent fasting may also reduce oxidative stress and inflammation in the body. Oxidative stress causes various chronic illnesses through free radicals that may damage the DNA and lead to diseases.
Studies suggest that one of the benefits of intermittent fasting may be its ability to make the body more resistant to oxidative stress. Plus, research shows that intermittent fasting may help battle inflammation that contributes to diseases.
Rules of Intermittent Fasting
The rules of IF are simple. All you have to do is divide your day into two blocks. One block is when you eat, and the other is when you fast.
Stay hydrated throughout the day, and whatever you do, don’t break your fast during your non-eating hours. If your goal is to lose weight, exercise at the later stages of your fast to maximize fat loss and get creative with healthy recipes to fill your body with nutrients.
Intermittent Fasting Schedules
To reap the benefits of intermittent fasting, you have to pick a schedule that is right for you. Here are some IF plans you can follow.
This plan involves a 12-hour fasting window and a 12-hour eating window. It’s ideal for beginners since they can include their sleeping time in the fasting window.
This plan has a 16-hour fasting window and an 8-hour eating window. It’s also known as the 16/8 method. It’s great for those who have already tried the 12-hour fasting schedule.
The 5:2 Diet
This plan includes following a standard diet for 5 days and reducing food intake to 500-600 calories for the remaining 2 fasting days. There should be 1 non-fasting day between fasting days.
People on this schedule may reap intermittent fasting’s benefits by fasting entirely once or twice a week. This method can be challenging for beginners as it may cause fatigue and headache.
The Warrior Diet
Intermittent fasting rules in this diet are extreme. The fasting window is 20 hours, and you can only eat raw fruits and vegetables. There is a 4-hour non-fasting window when you will essentially eat your only meal. Those following this diet should pay extra attention to what they consume and eat lots of healthy fats like coconut oil.
Get Started on IF With Wildly Organic
Intermittent fasting may be intimidating, but it’s easier than it sounds. Now that you know about the benefits of intermittent fasting, you might want to try it yourself. Always talk with your doctor about your personal health and wellness before starting an intermittent fasting routine.
At Wildly Organic, we have a collection of raw and minimally processed products for those who are looking for nutrient-rich foods. Our high-quality ingredients are non-GMO, perfect for any diet, and most importantly, absolutely delicious! Shop now to get the most out of your intermittent fasting routine and enjoy free shipping on +$49 orders.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.