Intermittent fasting (IF) is a highly effective tool for weight loss. However, like all tools, it must be employed correctly if you wish to get the job done quickly and correctly. In this article, we’ll look at 5 pointers that will show you how to get the best out of your IF.
• Ease into it
This is probably the most important point of the lot. Intermittent fasting is a style of eating that most people just aren’t accustomed too. We are creatures of habit who eat throughout the day with nary a thought about whether we are hungry or not.
Food is treated as therapy instead of fuel. We eat because we’re bored instead of because we’re hungry. When you adopt the IF way, you’ll only be allowed to eat during the eating windows.
16 hours of fasting can be tough. So, you’ll need to slowly ease into in. When you’re starting off, your eating window may be 10 hours long. As you get accustomed to it, you can shorten the window till you reach 8 hours which is the recommended duration.
• Choose a method that suits you
There are different types of intermittent fasting. The 16/8 style requires you to fast for 16 hours, while the Warrior style requires you to fast for 20 hours and so on. There are different methods of IF, but the principle is the same. You fast for longer periods than you eat.
Choose a method that agrees with you and tailor it to suit your lifestyle. If you’re a late sleeper, you may wish to start your eating window later in the day. If you start too early, by the time it reaches nightfall, you’ll be feeling famished and have hunger cravings that you struggle to battle. So, be aware of your daily habits and fit the IF protocol in accordingly.
• Hydrate often
This goes without saying. You need to drink water often to accelerate the fat loss process. Skip the energy drinks, coffee, tea, etc. and stick to water for the duration of your fat loss journey. Your body only needs water. Every other fluid you consume is optional.
• Maintain a caloric deficit
Even with intermittent fasting, you need to be at a caloric deficit to see weight loss. To calculate how many calories you need to consume a day, you can use this online calorie calculator: https://www.freedieting.com/tools/calorie_calculator.htm
Intermittent fasting gives you more flexibility and you’ll be allowed to consume more carbs because the insulin spikes will be limited to the eating window and your blood sugar levels will be stable throughout the fasting period.
However, you still need to be consuming less calories than you expend, if you wish to see progress in your weight loss journey.
• Cheat days follow the windows too!
Some people have cheat meals. Others have cheat days. Whichever way you decide to go, always remember that you’ll still follow the eating and fasting windows even on your cheat days.
This will prevent your body’s blood sugar levels from spiking wildly. So, eat and have fun and enjoy the foods you love, but just do it within your eating window.
Observe these 5 pointers and your weight loss will be smoother with intermittent fasting. You’ll also avoid the pitfalls that trip most other people up. IF is a vehicle that will get you to your destination much faster on this uphill weight loss journey. Use it.