• drsheenu sanjeev

Role of Intermittent Fasting in Weight Loss

As we all know, the science behind

weight loss is constantly changing and evolving. Though intermittent fasting does seems to be a new kid on the block in recent years, this is popular way of reducing weight.

What is IF (Intermittent Fasting)

Intermittent fasting is a diet regimen that cycles between periods of no eating, with either no food or significant calorie reduction, and periods of have it all eating.

The root of IF comes from the traditional fasts that are observed all across the world for various religious reasons. In India, the we all are familiar with the traditional fasting, that are observed in for various festivals and occasions.

How Intermittent Fasting Works

Intermittent fasting gets body into a mode, in which body adjusts it in such a way that it burns fat and promotes muscle mass. There are various researches been done on knowing how exactly this works. Based on certain researches it said, that calorie restrictions in this cyclical manner, basically get the body in a mode which reduces the parameter of fat gaining and insulin response in the body due to food.

People who promote this diet believe that burden of cyclical no eating zones, helps the body into a immune response which promotes the cell repairs and produces positive metabolic changes like reduction in triglycerides, LDL cholesterol, blood pressure, weight, fat mass, blood glucose.

Types of Intermittent Fasting

Fasting on alternating days with a certain frequency in a week or any other time frame, is most common method for Intermittent Fasting.

There are basically three types of Intermittent fasting (with a many other variations)

Whole Day Fast: Generally people who opt for this type of Intermittent Fasting (IF) follow a 5:2 days approach per week. For 5 days there is not restriction on food and for 2 days, either no food only water or food with lesser than 25% of caloric needs of the person who has opted for this. Other variation which is gaining traction these days is doing whole day water fast with sodium intake every 3rd day and so on.

Alternate day fast: As the name suggest in this method of IF, people who follow this do a fast every alternative day. Now in this fast also, fasting can be done by having no foods or restricting the caloric intake to 25% of the daily caloric requirement. Days other than fasting will have not restrictions on caloric intake.

Time-restricted: Time restricted eating, like eating only for eight hours in a day with no food for 16 hours. In time restricted IF generally it not suggested to have multiple eating and fasting zones, rather the emphasis is given on stretches of eating and non eating. Popular time restricted IF is 16:8 fasting, in which you only eat in a window of 8 hours only and you fast of rest 16 hours.

In the end we can safely conclude that shot term fasting will lead to various changes in the body which will promote fat burning and may lead to muscle gain (though this is dependent on various other things like eating protein).

A word of caution for all of you who wants to following this method to reduce their weight. IF has been showing promising results in weight loss, it still not 100% proven method of losing weight. People who are having medical issues or are on medications should always consult their physicians before they adopt this diet.

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