Every Diet I Have Tried Has Failed Over Time.
Sometimes, I start to feel a little desperate and am willing to take drastic measures to lose weight by summer or Christmas, or whenever. I tell myself, and it is true, if you start in January and go on ANY diet and stick to it, you will lose weight. Well, that is not entirely true. Have you heard of intermittent fasting?
I heard someone say recently, “Isn’t that the way our mothers dieted”? Oh my gosh, I am certainly one of those mothers and the answer is yes and it worked!
I heard that if you are getting older it is harder to lose weight ( that’s me). If you have an insulin intolerance, losing weight is very difficult ( that’s me), or if you go on a quick weight loss diet, you will gain it all back, it is just a matter of time ( that’s me).
Like many women, I really didn’t have a weight problem in my first 40 years of life. It even seemed after babies I could lose what I wanted in a short period of time. I have even taught a weight loss class that was offered by a medical clinic and it was awesome.
I am not going to bore you telling you about all the different diets I have been on and paid for over the years. We simply don’t have time.
It seemed to be something that would work for me. I could pretty much eat what I want but had to fast (or starve) until it was time to eat. Well, I am not kidding when I say, I bought SIX books on Intermittent Fasting and have them on my Kindle. I just counted again, and it is indeed six. You would think I would be this awesome expert and really skinny being I bought them a year ago. You can go ahead and chuckle. I am neither skinny or an expert.
Intermittent fasting isn’t new. Many claim this is how our ancestors ate all the time. Recently Intermittent Fasting (IF) became popular around 2013 and still seems to be gaining momentum as an eating plan that not only helps people lose weight but is resulting in many health benefits as well, we will look at some at these later.
There are at least five or more variations of IF, but if you start reading about all of them, it gets pretty overwhelming about what to eat and when, which plan is most effective, and what is safe?
We are going to focus on three plans today that consistently appear in most publications. There is no perfect plan, you have to pick the one that best meets your personality and lifestyle
- The 16/8 method: Fast for 16 hours per day.
With this method, you fast for sixteen hours and eat during an eight-hour window of each day. Eight hours is a long time to eat! When you consider that during that 16 hours you should be sleeping, it sounds a little better. Most resources say you can just eat “normally” during the 8 hour time span. Hopefully, eating normally isn’t eating a crazy amount of high-calorie foods. Try to include a few fruits and vegetables. This is actually my first choice for IF.
- The 5:2 Diet: Fast for two consecutive days each week. Made popular by a British doctor, Michael Mosley, the 5:2 diet is probably the most popular diet for some good reasons. There is flexibility when choosing the two days, so it allows for people who like a strict schedule, and for unexpected social events. You eat normally 5 days of the week while eating 500-600 on the two fasting days. Again it is important to not load up on junk food on the five normal eating days.
- Alternate-Day Fasting: Fast every other day. There are no hard fast rules on what to what to eat on your “eating day”, but on the fasting day, you are limited to 500 calories. The 500 calories can be split into two small meals. What I find appealing about this plan is that if I eat the 500 calories in the afternoon, I will be extending my overall fasting time. Once you have passed the 12-hour mark from dinner the night before, you are truly in a fasted state and you begin to rely on stored body fat for fuel.
If you are an exerciser, you can continue your usual routine. If you don’t exercise, there is no need to start a new rigorous new plan, but certainly going for a walk will not hurt. However, you might want to get used to your eating plan and then gradually add in exercise.
Along With Losing Weight, Research has Linked Intermittent Fasting to Many Health Benefits:
- Improves mental clarity and concentration
- Lowers blood sugar levels
- Improves insulin sensitivity
- Increases energy
- Lowers blood cholesterol
- Helps prevents Alzheimer’s Disease
- Decreases inflammation
Included in all methods during the fasting time are coffee, tea, water, and pretty much any no calorie beverage. Best of all, there are NO forbidden foods. Wine, chocolate, and dessert can all be on the table!
Remember the plans can be flexible to meet your personality and schedule.
Lose weight, belly fat and increase metabolism