Many people have gone through various routines in a bid to lose weight or achieve better health. They’ve tried starvation, multiple exercise routines, and fitness tips from many experts. But what if there is a better way to reduce body mass without actually going to the gym or counting every calorie on your plate? The answer is called intermittent fasting. Many people swear by intermittent fasting for various reasons. You’ll get to know more about it and how it can positively influence your body.
Besides, it’s chiefly more about when you eat rather than how much you eat, though your food choices are still rather important for you to receive enough nutrients. Surely, you should opt for products that provide the body with essential vitamins. Yet, there are misconceptions about how it’s possible to savor a meal, skip a couple of hours, and lose weight. Well, if you’re asking how intermittent fasting can be a blessing in terms of health and wellness, read on!
What is Intermittent Fasting?
There are many ideas about the process involved in intermittent fasting. Some go as far as labeling it as a diet. This is wrong, though, because this method of fasting does more than tell you what to eat. It is more of a nutritional philosophy, on the basis of which some diets, including for example the OMAD diet, are based. It’s a pattern used to schedule meals to make the most of their benefits in your body. Also, it helps you make the right decision on when to eat instead of bossing the number of calories. To this end, most people who are keen on using it try different systems. Most times, what works is actually having an app like the BetterMe app. It helps to schedule meals and keeps you honest with your intermittent fasting plans.
If you’re looking to lose weight or achieve a leaner figure, fasting intermittently is a great way to do so. This is because there are crazy diets and fitness routines that could cut down on not only your fats, but also muscle mass. This isn’t the case when you fast intermittently. Here, your calorie intake is not a big deal. In fact, according to a 2011 study, concerned with intermittent fasting and daily calorie restriction: “Intermittent calorie restriction may be more effective for the retention of lean mass”.
Intermittent fasting is simply a schedule that helps you take some bad weight off. One of the best things about it? It requires little to no behavior. This is what makes it the surest way to lose excess fat.
Intermittent fasting benefits
There are many benefits associated with fasting for weight loss. But you’d be wrong to think this is the only reason why intermittent fasting is suitable for you. Here you can learn more about valid reasons why you need it, and the BetterMe app is a great tool that can ensure you get the best results.
1. It’s Easier Than Dieting
Perhaps you’ve done all you can to implement a diet, but nothing comes off. Well, following a routine that involves reducing portion sizes doesn’t always work, since losing weight or being healthier isn’t always food-related. You need to change when you eat, not how much. Fasting intermittently is easy once you understand the process. Apps like the BetterMe go the extra mile to help you. Its onboarding screen provides options that cover different parameters, which will help you and others looking to lose weight adapt faster to the fasting routines.
Furthermore, it’s easy to draw up a dieting plan, but it’s harder to implement it. You might have issues getting the food you want at particular times or have less motivation. On the flip side, an intermittent fasting schedule has the look of a big challenge. Yet, it’s simple to do. For instance, a diet mostly involves cutting back on foods that are considered ‘harmful’ and eating fewer carbs. It looks easy, right? But what happens when the food cravings set in? Eating as much as you want at set intervals is a simple and a much better option. Nevertheless, try to keep everything in moderation, since excess calories will only hinder the weight loss process.
2. Weight Loss
Intermittent fasting and weight loss go hand in glove. As another study proves, the less you eat at certain times, the more your insulin levels drop. Your body will break down more carbs into glucose which your cells use for energy. Glucose can also be converted into fat and stored for future use.
Whether you take on a 24 hour fast or a lesser one, with your insulin levels dropping, more weight is lost. Repeat this procedure for an extended period of time, and you’ll achieve a healthy weight. This way you’ll consume fewer calories than by trying to avoid certain foods. Additionally, implementation is key. You want an app like BetterMe with its easy onboarding options to help you out set up your intermittent fasting schedule. What’s more, it’s a tool that’s easy to use coupled with well-researched meal choices and when to eat them.
3. It May Reduce Adverse Health Condition Risks
Obesity is one of the critical factors in different types of adverse health conditions. Intermittent fasting, however, helps with weight management and insulin control. Therefore, by losing more excess weight, people will reduce the risk of heart diseases and diabetes. Besides, other benefits include lower blood pressure and improved cholesterol levels. However, it is important to remember that using intermittent fasting might be unsuitable for people having certain health conditions. That is why, before diving into a fasting routine, consult your doctor about how safe and useful it might be for you.
4. Fasting Intermittently is Less Stressful
Imagine starting your day knowing you’ve got a lot to prepare before eating. That’s the routine with dieting which can take up a good part of your day. Fasting, on the other hand, is simple, straightforward, and less stressful. Besides, the BetterMe app works wonders in terms of patterns and schedules. For instance, you can get up without a thought about what to make for breakfast. The BetterMe app can help you by suggesting the ideal meal.
Most times, fasting involves eating one less meal. So, you’re rid of any stress to cook at specific times during the day.
It’s a well-known fact that fasting limits your calorie intake, which is a great way to help you live longer and age slowly. Moreover, when your body is denied food for a long time, it finds a way to keep you going. A study conducted with rats shows that intermittent fasting can help animals live longer, which could also apply to humans. More so, it’s a process that has almost the same effects as reduced calorie intake. Everyone would appreciate a slow aging process, wouldn’t you agree? Fasting intermittently will see to that.
How to Implement Intermittent Fasting
After setting your mind on fasting, it’s time to implement the routine. BetterMe app comes with all the fasting options you need, including swapping plans when you feel uncomfortable. Health is the overall concern, so make sure you do the following before starting your intermittent fasting diet.
1. See an Expert or a Doctor
Your health is at stake here. Rather than jump into a fasting program, learn what’s right for your body. This way, you would know what you can handle. For instance, if you have a medical condition like diabetes, seek an expert opinion. Besides, if you’re under medication or feel sick during the process, consider stopping.
2. Choose Easy Options
This is necessary, especially if it’s your first time. BetterMe app has plans, varying from very easy to something a little bit testing. Depending on what you’re comfortable with, you should keep things simple. This also goes for meals. It’s not a strict diet so you can eat most of your usual meals. However, make sure you get enough nutrients and liquids and limit foods high in saturated fats, cholesterol, sugar, salt, etc. For instance, drinking diet soda is doubtfully a good idea, while staying hydrated is crucial. Of course, you want the best combination of meals to help you get the best out of your fast. BetterMe has you covered with excellent choices.
Your purpose for fasting is also essential and makes it easier to follow. For instance, your reasons for fasting can include weight loss, to avoid certain diseases like heart conditions, or to live longer. Whatever it is, the BetterMe app will make your choices simple to implement.
3. Figure out the Days and Times
You can base the times you eat on your schedule. This way, there are no lapses. More so, choose times you’re comfortable with. For instance, you might prefer eating your first meal at 1 pm while your second meal comes in at 8 pm.
The days of the week also matter. Most experts opt for weekdays. Perhaps it’s because the days are filled with activities, so you won’t have time to break your routine or think about food. This sounds good, but you can adopt other days to fit your needs. For instance, you can make do with time-restricted eating.
4. Don’t Be too Hard on Yourself
As with anything in life, lapses can occur. Beating yourself up for breaking a set routine is a common thing. However, don’t get too discouraged or disappointed. Thankfully, the BetterMe app can help you get back on track whenever you’re ready. Forgive yourself and get back fasting for better results.
Types of Intermittent Fasting
1. 16/8 fasting
BetterMe offers the ultimate, most popular, and effective type of intermittent fasting. It’s called the 16/8 fasting. With two options: skipping breakfast, eating only lunch and dinner + a small snack during the day or skipping the dinner, and eating only breakfast and lunch + a small snack.
2. Alternate-Day Fasting
With this routine, you can have normal eating days, coupled with your fasting days. It’s a system most people who want to lose weight use. Obese adults found that alternate-day fasting is beneficial in weight loss. A feeling of satisfaction accompanies this after four weeks. Surely, it’s as challenging as they come, but the results make for good reading. Weight loss without losing your muscle mass is a step in the right direction.
3. Weekly Fasting
You can fast intermittently weekly. This is particularly useful for those who are new to intermittent fasting. You can fast once a week or even a month. What’s more, you’ll notice the benefits immediately begin to show because a notable cut back on calories takes place. For example, you can take dinner on Thursday and don’t eat anything else until dinner on Friday. Yes, it’s 24 hours, but you’ll notice how beneficial it is to lose some weight without so much effort.
If you do choose to go the full 24 hours, you’ll need mental toughness to get through the time. You could have all types of feelings, maybe even think it’s unbearable. However, overall, surviving such moments without eating will help you last the course. Using the BetterMe app is your best bet to go through such routines that present much of a challenge to implement.
4. Daily Fasting
This type of fasting usually takes an 8-hour eating period. So, you get to decide the time to begin. For example, you can start at 9 am and stop at 5 pm, or 8 am to 4 pm. Either way, you should know what works for you. Use a time frame that allows you to spend more quality time with your loved ones. This way, you don’t miss out on events because you’re fasting.
Fasting takes place every day. This makes it easy to get into the routine you work with. For instance, you can use the BetterMe app to help you eat at certain times with relative ease. You’d be cutting out a meal from your day, thereby reducing your calorie intake consumed during the week. Weight loss is the ultimate result of daily fasting.
5. Overnight Fasting
As the name implies, you would fast for 12 hours. This time usually falls at nighttime, when you sleep, and makes it the most comfortable means of fasting to implement. You can set your BetterMe app notification to 7 pm and decide to fast until 7 am. At this point, you can take breakfast.
It’s also called autophagy fasting because of the 12-hour time frame, which mainly benefits your cells. Swipe through the fasting feature in the BetterMe app to set the appropriate time. A great advantage of this type of fasting is that it’s easy to start. Besides, it’s ideal for reducing calorie intake, as well as for weight loss.
Healthy nutrition recommendations for intermittent fasting
Intermittent fasting is not all about fasting. Depending on which type you chose to follow, there are different periods of fasting, likewise, there are periods when you are to consume food. As was mentioned in the beginning of this article, intermittent fasting is more potent for your weight loss and health improvement, when it is accompanied by proper nutrition. Although technically you are allowed to eat whatever you want, you will reach your goal faster when you adhere to certain healthy diet rules. As previously were already mentioned some of the foods you must avoid, here is what you should eat if you aim at better results:
Most fruits are quite low in calories and filled to the brim with vitamins and minerals, making a great addition to your dieting ration. Daily consumption of fruits will not only promote pound shedding but will significantly improve your overall health. Take for instance citruses. They are among the richest sources of vitamin C, and other antioxidants, which makes them an ultimate immunity booster and a great help in fat burning processes. It is very easy to incorporate fruits into your nutritional plan. You can eat them as a snack, for breakfast, as a part of desserts or in any other preferable way.
Ever since you were a kid you were probably taught to eat broccoli and spinach, which you may have not liked that much. Well, you’d better become friends with vegetables, as they are the inseparable and essential part of healthy nutrition. Just like fruits, they mostly are low in calories and rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber. The latter may help prolong the feeling of satiation, which is vital if you are sticking to the daily or 8/16 type of fasting. Filled with vital nutrients, vegetables may be the best addition to any meal, in terms of health benefits and with the prospect of weight correction. You can boil, grill, roast, steam, sauté, or the best variant – eat them uncooked.
Chicken and eggs
These two foods are rich in proteins that are essential for a healthy diet. Like fiber, they sustain the feeling of satiation for longer, making a great addition to your intermittent fasting meal plan. Another beneficial effect of protein is that it helps your body melt fat, while preserving the muscle mass. If you want to grow muscles, the consumption of proteins is one of the main things you should focus on.
Berries are a vitamin and antioxidant blast. Blueberry, strawberry, raspberry, blackberry, gooseberry, bilberry, goji berry, cranberry – you can choose whichever you like more, or mix them – both ways you will receive a great dose of nutrients, which will improve your health and help your body melt fat faster. They don’t require any preparation, although if you want, you can use them to make smoothies or in bakery and desserts. The best way to consume berries daily is to add them to your cereals or oatmeal at breakfast or sprinkle your yogurt with them. You can also add them to different salads, or basically, anywhere you want, as long as it fits your tastes. If you don’t have the opportunity to buy fresh berries, don’t worry, in any supermarket you can find a frozen berry mix, which has the same nutritional value and can be preserved for a long time.
Yogurt is filled with probiotics, which add to the good bacteria in your guts, improving your digestion and metabolic processes. It will significantly increase your overall health level while helping you slim down. One cup of yogurt for breakfast will kick-start your gastro-intestinal system and minimize the possible discomfort that otherwise may have occurred during the day.
Whole grains are the healthiest among all the grains. They are packed with fiber and minerals and make a great healthy substitution to the regular ones. You can consume products made from wholegrain flour instead of regular bread, crackers, muffins, and others.
Fish is filled with vital nutrients, including a lot of protein, vitamin D and B2, calcium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, and healthy Omega 3 fatty acids. It is safe to say, that fish is one of the main components of any healthy diet plan. You can roast it with vegetables, grill it, bake it, make a fish soup, or even eat some types of fish in a raw form.
Frequently Asked Questions About Fasting Intermittently
Can Women Fast Intermittently?
Both males and females can take on the responsibility that comes with a fasting diet plan. However, a 2005 study has proved that the results of fasting may differ from man to woman. What you want to do is figure out what works for you before beginning your fasting routine. BetterMe app offers a friendly user interface to help you make the best choice. You’ll find what suits your body type.
Is It Okay to Skip Breakfast When Fasting?
Perhaps you’ve heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Well, it is essential, but an intermittent fasting routine without breakfast won’t harm your chances of having good results. You only have to watch what you eat, especially if you’ve had a big dinner the night before
There you go! This information about intermittent fasting will help you get going. What’s more, the BetterMe app has all the latest features to help you make the most out of fasting. This way, you have an experience of how it works magic in your body.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!