The body gets carbohydrates, protein and fats from varied food groups. These macronutrients need to be broken down first to be distributed and used efficiently all throughout our body. However, the breakdown of food or metabolism varies among individuals and the timing or body clock for these processes can be greatly influenced by the kind of work schedule and lifestyle.
In this era, healthier home cooked meals and regular eating time are so rare. Work schedules are so erratic that the body’s rest and restoration time gets mixed up with food break down, absorption or distribution. As such, it seems recent studies showed a connection to poor gut health, food and toxins accumulation in the stomach resulting to discomfort, stomach problems, excessive body weight, fat deposits leading to serious cases of obesity and cardiovascular diseases.
To help remedy the growing trend of food related medical problems, a diet focused on balancing the time for food intake and body metabolism has gained popularity.
Intermittent Fasting is a kind of weight loss regimen composing short periods of unrestricted eating following a time of no food intake or considerable low amount of calorie consumption. The benefits include changes in the body composition and decrease in body mass or weight. Calorie restriction is not merely the key player in this diet plan nor weight loss as the major target outcome. In fact, this practice has been viewed by many across the world and religious beliefs to be a form of cleansing or detoxification. The period of no food intake enables the body to fully digest and process the nutrients first before going into the time of unrestricted eating again. It has been practiced so long ago by specific religious sectors and have been proven to be tolerable, safe and beneficial to attain a healthy whole being.
Fasting methods may cover a period of normal eating and abstinence on specific frequency in a week or on a daily basis. As there are many that had been formulated for convenience and compliance, here are the basic methods in an intermittent fasting regimen.
Whole-day fasting or known as the 5:2 diet. It actually involves five days of normal eating with one or two nonconsecutive days a week of only water intake plus one meal spread out the day but preferably during the midday. The rest of the week covering the five day period of non-restrictive eating is where fruits and vegetables are highly recommended.
Alternate-day fasting involves a cycle of 24 hours food restriction with only water intake and another 24 hours of eating whatever you want and in a frequency that suits you. This method clearly presents high chances of adherence since the time or eating is not greatly affected and it does not involve confusion on the right food choices while being on the diet regimen.
Time-restricted feeding is the most popular type of intermittent fasting regimen. The meal plan is set upon a period of eating and fasting all throughout the day. It is continuous all throughout the week in comparison with other methods and preferred by many because of faster weight loss results. There is only a designated time frame of eating where flexible food choices can be tailored for availability and economic reasons. All throughout the day and especially outside the eight to four hour window of feeding option, drinking anything but water showed greater results than those that still take in alcohol or other beverages.
When compared to traditional calorie restriction diets, intermittent fasting has been known to help you lose that excess fat but retain muscles for better body shapes. With that principle, many experts promote this method as well for control of cholesterol or triglycerides in normal weight patients with medical issues and most especially in overweight patients.
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