Wednesday, 4 January 2017

Intermittent Fasting: Basics

                           Image result for intermittent fasting

 So, there’s a lot of buzz around about intermittent fasting these days. Let me tell you with immense pride that intermittent fasting is not a new thing discovered by man. My grandfather almost for all his life practiced intermittent fasting that is he did not had any breakfast ever in his life. He straight away had lunch in noon and dinner in the evening. He passed away in year 2005 at the age of 105. I remember him as a lean and energetic person. He walked straight without any support to the hospital during his last days, and never had any cardio, or diabetic issues, in his entire life. This is the benefit of intermittent fasting.

What is intermittent fasting? It basically means periodic eating at set intervals. That’s all. We all eat to keep ourselves alive. Or some of us are alive to eat only. So we don’t eat all 24 hours a day. We eat at regular intervals as breakfast, lunch dinner and in between the snacking time is inevitable. Intermittent fasting moots the idea of eating in a fixed frame of time. There is a concept of fed and fast state, which needs to be understood first.

Fed State: it is a state when we have had a meal. In the fed state the body has to digest what we have eaten. When body is digesting food our insulin levels are high and our body stops its process of fat burning once the insulin is released.

Fast State: the fast state starts 12:00 hours after you had the last meal. Before the Fast state, there is post fed state where body absorbs the nutrients from the food and provides energy to vital organs, tissues, cells. After the post fed state, the next stage is Fast Stage. In this stage our body doesn’t have food to get energy from, so it finds other ways of energy. Here starts the role of aft accumulated in our body. Body digest the fat for energy, as a result we shed our body fat. The longer we remain in fasting state the greater is the fat loss. And again when we eat after fasting the fat burning process stops and insulin levels are again high to aid digestion, this process continues as a cycle.

Now, having discussed about the basic terms lets get straight in Intermittent Fasting.

It is true that we fast everyday. When we sleep, we are in state of fasting. So if you slept for 10 hours in night it’s a 10 hour fast. In intermittent fasting what we really do is we increase our fasting time. Say to begin with we can fast for 12 hours and in the next 12 hours we feast. For instance you eat our breakfast at 9:00 A.M and then you eat till 9:00 P.M. so basically from 9:00 P.M to 9:00 A.M the next day you are fasting. It is quite simple and we do it regularly, of course if you are not into mid night snacking.

Now, comes the real intermittent fasting, this is called 16:8 fasting. What you are going to do is, you fast for 16 hours and then feast in remaining 8 hours. It is like this you have your first meal at 12:00 and your second meal at 8:00 p.m. and from 8:00 P.M to 12:00 P.M the next day you are fasting. It is that simple. Eat two times a day within a gap of 8 hours and don’t eat anything outside this window of 8 hours.

I have myself tried this regime and I have lost 7 kilos in one and a half months without any significant loss in muscle mass. This I have achieved without making any changes to my diet and workout schedule.

The idea of Intermittent Fasting itself can give you nightmare as it is polar opposite to the prevalent notion of eating three squares a day. But very truly the benefits of it are far more than the horror of being starved. One thing which is above all is health is our top most priority, which should not be and could not set aside for any other consideration. Trust me starting intermittent fasting is more difficult than practicing it. Since intermittent fasting is not a diet plan but it is change in pattern of eating. It is not about what to and how much to eat, but it is when to eat, you can freely eat whatever you want (add, except junk food).

Idea of intermittent fasting is great and you should definitely try to give it a try for your own benefits. 

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