Intermittent fasting (IF) is the periodic restriction of eating with a typical pattern of 16 hours of fasting or non-eating and 8 hours of eating. Some of the benefits of IF include reduced body mass index, improved cholesterol levels, improved triglycerides, and improved blood pressure, as well as decreased insulin resistance. By lowering our insulin levels through intermittent fasting, our bodies are tricked into temporarily burning fat for energy, which leads to fat loss (Miller, 2018).
Before beginning an intermittent fasting lifestyle, it is important to speak with your healthcare provider or a trained professional (Miller, 2018). Following a program rather than going at it alone is also advised. Below I am sharing 5 tips for successful intermittent fasting so you can burn fat, maintain a healthy weight, and improve your overall health!
5 Tips for Successful Intermittent Fasting:
- Drink lots of water to curb your appetite. Staying hydrated will help you feel full and make fasting easier (Kelly, 2019).
- Focus on whole food nutrition and fiber during your eating window (Kelly, 2019). This will also help with keeping you feeling full throughout your fasting hours.
- Choose an eating window that fits your lifestyle and schedule. Standard practice is to fast from 8pm to noon, but if you work night shift this will not make sense for your schedule. Choose an 8 hour eating window that works for you.
- Stay consistent. Consistency will help you see the results mentioned above.
- Set realistic expectations. You shouldn’t expect to see weight loss overnight (Kelly, 2019). Intermittent fasting takes time but the benefits are worth it!
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Kelly, T.-A. (2019). Intermittent Fasting: Is it right for you? New Jersey Nurse, 49(4), 10.
Miller, L. (2018). Intermittent Fasting and Centralized Adiposity. Nutritional Perspectives: Journal of the Council on Nutrition, 41(3), 24–26.