May 04, 2017

If you are on the hunt for a new diet to try out, chances are, you’ve come across idea of intermittent fasting before. It’s one of the hottest new trends out there in the nutrition world and many people are jumping on the bandwagon.

But, is intermittent fasting right for you? What do you need to know about this type of diet set-up?

Let’s go over some of the key things that you should know and remember about intermittent fasting so that you can choose whether this will be your next protocol.

The Premise

The idea behind intermittent fasting is that you will supplement periods of eating with periods of fasting. There are a few different ways that you can set this up.

Some people choose to fast every other day, taking an EOD approach as it’s called. They’ll fast for 24 hours and then eat for 24 hours, repeating the cycle as the week goes on.

Others choose a slightly less aggressive approach and simply implement a ‘fasting window’ into their day. With this approach, they’ll generally fast for about 16 hours, however some may choose to go a little less, fasting for just 14 hours while some may choose to go longer, fasting for 18 hours. After that time period is up, they’ll then have an ‘eating window’ where they consume food for the remaining hours of the day.

Generally the fasting will take place from after dinner around (8 or 10PM) until around lunch or early afternoon the next day (noon or 2PM). This allows you to eat during the later hours during the day when you’re awake and can enjoy your food.

The Benefits

So what benefits does intermittent fasting bring? Here’s a quick run-down.

  • Improved insulin sensitivity

Research illustrates that intermittent fasting enhances blood glucose control insulin sensitivity, so improves how your body responds to glucose. This may also help with preventing type 2 diabetes.

  • Greater appetite control

You might think your hunger would be increased while fasting, but endorphins will set in and you’ll be amazed at how low it becomes. Most people have to remind themselves to break the fast.

  • Ease of maintaining a target calorie intake

Since you are only eating a few meals a day, this makes it very easy to sustain reduced calorie intakes required for fat loss purposes. No more ‘mini meals’ of only 250-300 calories each. Now you can finally eat a satisfying meal during the day.

  • Higher growth hormone levels

Studies also indicate that growth hormone levels may rise during the fast, which could help you maintain lean muscle mass and burn fat faster as well.

  • Less meal planning/prep

If you lead a busy life and hate having to take time to stop and eat during the day not to mention prepare all those meals, intermittent fasting may be for you. Now you won’t have to worry about that. You’ll prepare just two or three meals a day, two of which will likely happen while you’re at home.

Taking Precaution

So now that you see the benefits of intermittent fasting, you may be thinking this is the plan for you. Hold up though. One thing that you do want to safeguard yourself against as an active individual is lean muscle mass loss.

Go too long without an incoming source of protein and you may notice that your body starts moving into a catabolic state.

The best way around that?

Simply supplement with some Branched Chain Amino Acids. By using our BCAA5000™ product for instance, you can help put an end to catabolism and ensure that you stay feeling strong and energized while you fast, all without disrupting the benefits that fasting provides.

So as you can see, intermittent fasting does offer some great benefits to consider. If you don’t mind going for hours without food and want a diet that makes food prep easy, it may just be the one for you.

References:

Ho, Klan Y., et al. "Fasting enhances growth hormone secretion and amplifies the complex rhythms of growth hormone secretion in man."  Journal of Clinical Investigation 81.4 (1988): 968.

Barnosky, Adrienne R., et al. "Intermittent fasting vs daily calorie restriction for type 2 diabetes prevention: a review of human findings."  Translational Research 164.4 (2014): 302-311.