The benefits of intermittent fasting

It’s the current fad diet that everyone is talking about. Does it work? Can it improve your health and well-being? Let’s dive into it. 

Have you staked on the COVID kilos? Or perhaps, you are struggling to lose weight? Intermittent fasting could be the key to help you shed those pesky kilos. The pandemic has taken its toll on all of us, mentally and physically. With lockdowns finally at an end, you have probably found yourself not where you were two years ago- health wise or fitness wise. Stress, as well as stay at home restrictions, have unfortunately resulted in many people experiencing weight gain. But the doors of freedom have now swung open for us all. It’s time to ditch those COVID kilos.

Intermittent fasting explained

Intermittent fasting is a pattern of dieting that involves fasting for long periods and then eating in a specific time frame . There are no restrictions on what you eat (yes, you can eat chocolate), only when you eat. An example of intermittent fasting would look like this: in a 24 hour period, you would fast for 16 hours and allow for only 8 hours of eating. Ideally, you would eat a main meal in that 8 hour period instead of continually snacking.

The science behind it

A growing amount of research suggests that intermittent fasting is a more beneficial and healthy way of losing weight because (to put it simply), back before technology and the world as we know it today, hunter- gatherers had no access to food the way that we do now.

The cellular and molecular level changes in your body when you are fasting, your body will also adjust its hormone levels so that stored body fat is used more readily. Additionally, during this process, your cells will also begin repair processes.

Changes in your body during intermittent fasting include:

  • Human Growth Hormone (HGH) Grows 5-fold which assists with fat loss and muscle gain
  • Insulin levels drop dramatically, making stored body fat more able to be used
  • Cellular repair begins, as well as autophagy (cells regenerate new healthier cells)
  • Gene expression where a gene in a cell is turned on to make proteins and RNA. This benefits our immunity.

Intermittent Fasting methods

  •  Eat-Stop-Eat: Fast for 24 hours for once or twice a week. An example of this would be fasting from dinner on one night until dinner the next night.
  • The 16/8 method: This is also called the Leangains protocol where you might skip breakfast and restrict your eating to 8 hours (for example 11–7 pm). Outside of these times you would fast.
  • The 5:2 diet: Consists of consuming 500–600 calories on two different days during the week (for example Monday and Friday) and eating normally on the remaining days.

Consulting your General Practitioner

Intermittent fasting is not suitable for everyone so you need to always consult your doctor before beginning any new diet. Please be aware that this method of dieting is not suitable for everyone, especially if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

If you’re considering losing weight and need expert guidance, visit our Weight Loss Clinic in Cranbourne and see how you can reap the benefits of our 12-week weight loss program.