Intermittent Fasting, A Comprehensive Guide
by Callum Allan on May 17, 2023
Intermittent fasting is a well-known term that is becoming increasingly popular among people who prioritise an active lifestyle. It is surrounded by a lot of buzz and different opinions, which can make it confusing for beginners to decide whether it's a good idea or not. Thus, in this blog post, we will provide a comprehensive guide for active lifestyle enthusiasts who want to understand the basics of intermittent fasting to make an informed decision.
Intermittent fasting is not a type of diet, but rather an eating pattern that involves cycle periods of eating and fasting. There are several ways of practising it, but the most popular ones are the 16/8 method, alternate-day fasting, and the 5:2 diet. The 16/8 method, also known as the LeanGains method, involves restricting your eating time to eight hours and fasting for the remaining sixteen hours of the day. The alternate-day fasting method involves consuming a very low-calorie or no-calorie at all on alternate-day intervals. Finally, the 5:2 diet involves eating normally for five days and restricting calorie intake to 500 or 600 for two non-consecutive days of the week.
One of the central benefits of intermittent fasting is weight loss. This is because, during the fasting period, your body breaks down stored fat to use as energy, which might lead to weight loss. It also helps to reduce insulin resistance and inflammation, which are the two major risk factors for diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and cancer. Additionally, intermittent fasting has been found to promote brain health and improve cognitive function.
For Active lifestyle enthusiasts, intermittent fasting can help to improve exercise performance and increase muscle mass. Studies show that it can lead to an increase in the production of growth hormone, which helps to stimulate muscle growth and repair. Intermittent fasting also enhances the body's ability to burn fat, making it an excellent option for athletes and bodybuilders who are looking to get lean and boost their performance.
As a general rule, it's essential to maintain good nutrition during the eating period while practising intermittent fasting. It is best to opt for foods that are rich in nutrients, vitamins, and protein. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes are excellent choices, and it's also recommended to limit the consumption of processed food, sugary food, and alcohol.
In conclusion, intermittent fasting can be an effective way for active lifestyle enthusiasts to improve their overall health, reduce the risk of chronic diseases, and boost physical performance. It is essential to consult with a doctor before adopting any new eating regime, especially if you have pre-existing conditions. With proper nutrition, regular physical exercise, and good sleep, intermittent fasting can become an excellent tool to enhance your overall well-being.