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The Most Popular Intermittent Fasting Methods

The Most Popular Intermittent Fasting Methods

There have been numerous research studies that prove intermittent fasting works for weight loss and delivers other health benefits as well. If you are considering it then there are different intermittent fasting methods that you can choose from.

All of the popular methods shown in this article will produce results for you. They have all been tested and people have seen good results from them. You may have seen some of these methods before. Some of them are best sellers.

There is a principle with intermittent fasting that you need to understand. The longer that you are able to fast the better results you will achieve. That’s why there are so many methods out there that have different eating and fasting windows.

When you are just starting out with intermittent fasting it is essential that you do not try to do too much. It is going to take time for your body to adjust to not eating all day so we recommend that you choose an easy method to begin with. Here are three of the most popular intermittent fasting methods:

1. Lean Gains 8:16

Lean Gains or the 8:16 intermittent fasting method is far and away the most popular. The reason for this is because it is most likely the easiest method to adopt. You have an eating window of 8 hours and a fasting window of 16 hours.

While you will see good results with the 8:16 method even if you eat what you want during your eating window, it is recommended that you change to a healthier diet if this is necessary. You will get better results when you do this. The important thing is that you feel full when your eating window closes.

You will probably already be fasting for 8 hours a day while you sleep so the adjustment to 16 hours of fasting is not as bad as some of the other intermittent fasting methods. This is a great method to get started with.

2. The Warrior Diet 4:20

If you want to see better fat burning results then you can look at the Warrior Diet. This is not for the feint hearted as there is only a 4 hour eating window and a 20 hour fasting window. With only 4 hours to eat it is unlikely that you will be able to consume more than one large meal or two small meals.

This is an intermittent fasting method that we recommend you consider once you have been on the 8:16 method for a while and your mind and body are used to the fasting concept.

3. Eat Stop Eat Fasting For Whole Days

This is another popular intermittent fasting method that produces good results. Here you will eat for a couple of days and then fast for a full day. In a week you are going to be fasting for 2 or 3 days.

Can you handle fasting for an entire day? It is not something that you should do to start your intermittent fasting journey as it will be extremely difficult for you to maintain. But after a while you can think about scaling up to this method.

So we recommend that you start with Lean Gains and 8:16 fasting and get used to this. You can then make the change to the Warrior 4:20 method and finally to fasting full days with Eat Stop Eat. Just start with the easiest method and work your way up.

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How To Be Successful With Intermittent Fasting

How To Be Successful With Intermittent Fasting

There are a number of things that you can do to maximize your chances of success with intermittent fasting. Too many people give up because they are not prepared for the challenges that intermittent fasting brings. You need to anticipate these challenges and have a plan for dealing with them.

Intermittent fasting is not easy so you will need all f the help that you can get. The first two weeks or so will be the hardest and it is essential that you keep going during this period. You should find that after this everything becomes a lot easier for you.

Set a Goal

What is your goal with intermittent fasting? How much weight do you want to lose and by when? Without a goal you will just approach intermittent fasting aimlessly which will not improve your chances of success.

Think about the real reason why you want to lose the weight. This needs to be something emotional and totally honest. You do not have to share this reason with others so if you want to lose weight to look good for a specific person then only you need to know this. The point here is that this real reason will act as inspiration for you to succeed.

Use the SMART process for setting your goal. This stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timed. You need to decide on the amount of weight you want to lose such as 50 pounds. It is also important that you set a time limit such as 6 months or a year.

Your goal needs to be achievable and realistic. There is no way that you are going to lose 100 pounds in 6 weeks for example. Even if you could do this it would be dangerous for you. Have a look online for what other results people have achieved with intermittent fasting and make your goal realistic.

Write your goal down on paper. There is something magical about writing things down. Think about how achieving the weight loss will make you feel. Visualize that you have already done this and look great. Note the strong feelings you experience and write these down on your goal statement.

The reason that these things help is that you can use your goal statement as a way to motivate and inspire you throughout your intermittent fasting journey. Read your goal statement every day and look at it whenever you need more motivation.

Go for a Calorie Deficit Diet

You will get much better results with your intermittent fasting if you choose a healthy, calorie deficit diet for your eating windows. Go online and look up the suggested calorie intake for your gender and build. Then choose a diet that will make you feel full but means that you will consume more calories than you need.

You do not have to do this straight away. Get used to intermittent fasting first by eating anything you want during your eating window.

Exercise regularly

You will get better results with intermittent fasting if you include a regular exercise routine. If you don’t exercise regularly at the moment there is no need to panic. Just gradually introduce some gentle exercise such as stretching and walking more. Do not go crazy here and go for intense gym sessions as this will be tough for you to maintain.

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Scale Up Your Intermittent Fasting

Scale Up Your Intermittent Fasting

If you want better results with your intermittent fasting then you need to consider scaling up. This means going for an intermittent fasting method that has a longer fasting time than the one you are currently using. Do not even consider doing this until you have spent at least a month from starting out and your mind and body are used to intermittent fasting.

The Dreaded Plateau

If you perform the exact same workout in the gym each time it will not be long before your body reaches a plateau. It gets used to the same exercise and these become largely ineffective. They do not take you to the next level. Unfortunately the same can be true with intermittent fasting.

If you have been using one particular intermittent fasting method for some time you may experience a drop in results. When this happens it is time for you to consider scaling up to a new method with longer fasting windows.

You will lose Water Weight fast

All of us have water weight. With some people this can be as much as 20% of their overall body weight. When you first start with intermittent fasting your water weight will be the first to go whatever method you choose.

This is great as you can look really good after losing your water weight. But most people want to go further than this and the best way to achieve that is to scale up your intermittent fasting. If you stick with the same method for a while you will lose some other weight on top of the water weight loss. But in time you will plateau and need to change for better results.

Start with the 8:16 Method

We would always recommend that you begin your intermittent fasting journey with the 8:16 method or Lean Gains. This gives you an 8 hour eating window and a 16 hour fasting window. This is the easiest method to start in our opinion and you should definitely see results with it.

The time that you stay with the 8:16 method is really up to you. If you are still seeing good results with it then stick with it until you don’t see good results. You may notice that you have not lost much weight at all this week compared to last week for example. This is likely to be the plateau point.

Try the 4:20 Method

This is known as the Warrior method and provides you with a 4 hour eating window and a 20 hour fasting window. You might think that this is a big jump to make but it shouldn’t be too bad if you have persisted with the 8:16 method for a while. You should start to see better results again when you scale up to 4:20.

Fasting for a Day or more

How do you feel about fasting for an entire day? If you think that you are ready to do this then you could go for the Eat Stop Eat method. Here you will eat for a couple of days and then go a day without eating. This means that each week you will fast for full days 2 to 3 times.

There are other methods where you can fast for up to 36 hours, 2 days at a time, 3 days at a time and so on. Migrate to these slowly having some experience of the less challenging intermittent fasting methods first.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Intermittent Fasting

Frequently Asked Questions About Intermittent Fasting

If you are considering trying to lose weight through intermittent fasting then you probably have a few questions about it. With so many people thinking about starting intermittent fasting there are many questions that arise. We have identified the most frequently asked questions about intermittent fasting and will provide the answers to you.

Where did Intermittent Fasting start?

Intermittent fasting did not start in one specific place. Many years ago our ancestors used to live by intermittent fasting. They had to hunt for food and some days they would eat and other days they wouldn’t if their hunt was unsuccessful.

Our ancestors didn’t know it at the time but they were intermittent fasting. If the hunt for food resulted in nothing (which it often did) then there would be no food to eat for that day. It was rare to see overweight people during these times.

The important take away here is that our bodies have a built in mechanism to deal with intermittent fasting. If they didn’t have this then our ancestors would not have survived. When you sleep for 8 hours a day you are intermittent fasting as you do not eat while sleeping.

Is Intermittent Fasting safe?

We could never say that intermittent fasting is totally safe for everyone. People are all different and their bodies react in different ways. There are some conditions where intermittent fasting needs to be practiced with caution or not practiced at all.

The good news is that most people can use intermittent fasting safely. There can be a few side effects with intermittent fasting but usually these are temporary. However, if you have a specific medical condition, are a pregnant woman or have a tendency with eating disorders then it may not be for you.

Always consult your doctor before starting with intermittent fasting.

Which Intermittent Fasting method should you start with?

One of the reasons that a lot of people fail with intermittent fasting is because they try and do too much at the start. It is commonly known that the more you fast the quicker you will lose weight. So people dive in to intermittent fasting methods where they have to fast for a whole day or more.

Intermittent fasting is not easy. Your mind and body have to become accustomed to it. If you try and do too much you are far more likely to quit. So we recommend that you start with probably the easiest intermittent fasting method which is Lean Gains or 8:16. You eat for 8 hours and fast for 16 hours.

It will take you time to get used to the 8:16 method and you will probably have some difficult days. But it is a lot easier to deal with than trying to fast for 24 hours if you have never fasted before.

What happens if you break the fasting rules?

If you eat during the fasting window then this is going to temporarily affect your results. What you definitely shouldn’t do is quit intermittent fasting if you break the fasting rules. Just start again the next day and be more persistent.

It is going to take around 2 to 3 weeks for your mind and body to accept intermittent fasting. Once you have got through this critical period then things should get easier for you. Any lifestyle change or new habit takes time so please accept that.

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Avoid These Intermittent Fasting Mistakes

 Avoid These Intermittent Fasting Mistakes

As you can imagine, with so many people taking up intermittent fasting these days there are a lot of mistakes being made. We have researched the most common mistakes that people make so that we can make you aware of these. You need to avoid these costly mistakes at all costs if you want to be successful with intermittent fasting.

Giving up too easily

We are not going to tell you that getting started and sticking with intermittent fasting is easy because it isn’t. This will be a fairly radical change in your life and you need to prepare yourself for the challenges that lie ahead.

You are going to experience some tough days during your fasting periods. So you need to have strong willpower and be persistent. The good news is that the bad days should subside fairly quickly. After a couple of weeks or so, your mind and body will get used to intermittent fasting. Things should get easier after this.

Unfortunately, too many people give up on intermittent fasting too quickly. They have a hunger pang during their fasting window and decide that this is too much for them to handle. A little persistence and inspiration through your intermittent fasting goals will put you back on track.

Some people break the rules of their fasting window and eat something to stave off the hunger. If this happens to you then just start again the next day. Don’t beat yourself up over this and use it as a reason to quit.

No Plan for Intermittent Fasting

If you just dive in to intermittent fasting without giving any consideration to it then you are far more likely to fail. People that have no plan for intermittent fasting often end up watching the clock continuously waiting for their next eating window. This is no way to live your life.

Anticipating what can go wrong on your initial intermittent fasting journey is very important. You can think about how you will handle these situations if they arise. Don’t be afraid to adjust your eating window if things are not working out for you. It is better to keep going with a different schedule than to give up altogether.

Too much Ambition

We know that you want to lose weight as quickly as possible and want to see results as fast as you can. You probably know that the longer you are prepared to fast, the faster the weight loss results tend to be.

But if you are too ambitious here and embark on an intermittent fasting method where you will need to fast for long periods (even days) then you are setting yourself up to fail. It is much better to start with the easiest method so you can get used to intermittent fasting. You can always scale up when you have reached this point.

Not Planning your Eating Window

It is very important that your eating window leaves you full for the onset of your fasting window. You need to plan what foods you will eat during your eating windows to ensure that you achieve this.

There is nothing wrong with eating anything and everything when you first start with intermittent fasting. Once you have got past the initial 2 to 3 weeks we then recommend that you look at your diet and change it to a healthier one. This will provide faster weight loss results and you will feel much better.

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Are There Side Effects With Intermittent Fasting?

Are There Side Effects With Intermittent Fasting?

Despite the weight loss and other great benefits of intermittent fasting it is possible that you can experience some side effects from it. Some people might not experience any side effects at all but you need to know that there is a possibility.

We believe in the benefits of intermittent fasting but we also want to be completely honest with you. You are going to be making a pretty radical change to your lifestyle so you need to be prepared for some side effects. The side effects that we will discuss may not last very long and some are more serious than others.

Grumpiness due to Hunger

How do you feel when you are hungry? Do you have a tendency to be irritable and grumpy? If this is the case then you may well experience this side effect when you start with intermittent fasting. You should be able to overcome this with time.

Excessive Fatigue and Brain Fog

Some people that participate with intermittent fasting report that they feel a lot more tired and fatigued than usual. In time, intermittent fasting should provide you with more energy. But in the beginning you could feel overly fatigued.

Another common side effect of intermittent fasting is brain fog. Things just don’t seem to be as clear as usual especially during fasting windows. Intermittent fasting can really benefit your brain and any brain fog should be temporary.

Obsessing about Eating

Because intermittent fasting is all about focusing on not eating this can lead to obsessing about what you can and cannot eat. If you have been on other diets and experienced this then you may well experience it again with intermittent fasting.

This is should not be a major side effect for most people and you can stop obsessing about food by doing some mindfulness meditation. Obviously if this really becomes a problem for you then you should stop intermittent fasting.

Low Blood Sugar Problems

This is where intermittent fasting can become dangerous for certain individuals. If your blood sugar levels become too low then this can lead to serious health problems. At a minimum level you can experience dizziness, nausea and headaches. Stop your intermittent fasting and seek medical advice if this becomes a real problem for you.

Disturbing your Sleep

There are some cases where intermittent fasting can cause disturbance to existing sleep patterns. Sleep is very important and if this is a question of just adjusting to the intermittent fasting then it should not be a problem. But if you cannot get the right amount of sleep when intermittent fasting then you need to stop and get advice.

Fast Weight Loss Menstrual Problems

Because intermittent fasting can provide rapid weight loss results it can also cause women problems with their menstrual cycles. This could be a temporary problem that just requires some time for adjustment. But if it persists then we recommend that you stop intermittent fasting and seek medical advice.

Constipation

Unfortunately, constipation is a fairly common side effect with intermittent fasting. This can be due to your body lacking in certain fluids, protein, fiber or vitamins. It is really important that you play close attention to your diet with intermittent fasting.

Remember that you are unlikely to suffer from all of these side effects and maybe none of them at all. Just be careful and check that none of them turn into serious problems.

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Intermittent Fasting 101

Intermittent Fasting 101

In this article we will provide you with an intermittent fasting 101. You will learn what intermittent fasting is and what it isn’t and other important facts. There appears to be a lot of misinformation about intermittent fasting so we wanted to set the record straight here.

Intermittent fasting has grown in popularity very quickly because it gets results. It is important that you know what to expect so we have covered the most important aspects about it in this article. We want you to get good results with it as well so use this information to your advantage.

Intermittent Fasting explained

A lot of people get nervous when they see the word “fasting”. This conjures up all kinds of negativity in their minds. Maybe they have heard of monks going without food for weeks on end. How can they possibly do that?

Well intermittent fasting is nowhere near as severe as that. You are already fasting when you sleep at night. There are also large chunks of time during your waking hours that you don’t eat or think about eating. When you start with intermittent fasting you will just reorganize these chunks of time when you fast.

You enter into a cyclical pattern of eating and not eating. There is a period of time when you will eat followed by a period of time that you don’t eat. It really is as simple as that. It will take you a while to get used to this new routine but after a short while it should become second nature to you.

You must decide on an Eating Window

Your eating window is the most important part of your intermittent fasting journey. This is the period of time when you can eat. So if you decide to start intermittent fasting using the 8:16 method (a very good choice) it means that each day you will eat for 8 hours and fast for 16 hours (8 of those hours you will be sleeping).

Fasting Window Rules

Your fasting window is the time that you must not eat. With some intermittent fasting methods you are allowed to eat small meals that do not exceed 500 calories. But with most methods you must not consume any calories at all.

It is critical that you abide by the rules of the fasting window and do not consume any calories. You can drink water and consume any other beverage that does not contain any calories such as herbal tea and zero calorie sodas.

Intermittent Fasting triggers Ketosis

The weight loss occurs during intermittent fasting through a body process called “ketosis”. This occurs when the body does not have any food to use as energy. If all the food you have eaten has been digested then with ketosis your body will look to your fat stores as an energy source.

The longer that you fast, the more that ketosis will work to raid your fat stores. In time you will lose weight as your fat stores start to diminish. Other diets use the power of ketosis to burn fat such as low carbohydrate diets and ketogenic diets.

Intermittent Fasting is safe for most people

For the vast majority of people, intermittent fasting is safe. We would always recommend that you consult with your doctor before getting started with intermittent fasting just to be sure. It is not always a good idea for pregnant women to do intermittent fasting for example.

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The Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting

The Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting

Losing weight is the primary benefit of intermittent fasting and the reason for its popularity across the world. But burning fat is not the only benefit that intermittent fasting can provide for you.

It is really important that you know and understand all of the major benefits of intermittent fasting. You are going to have some difficult days when you start out with intermittent fasting and if you keep these benefits in mind then it will help you to persist with it and prevent you from quitting.

So let’s take a look at the major benefits of intermittent fasting:

Burning Fat

If you stick with an intermittent fasting method you will lose weight. Your body will run out of food energy sources while you are fasting and it will turn to your fat stores for energy. This is a process called “ketosis”.

You are very likely to experience a boost in your metabolism when you participate with intermittent fasting. When your metabolism is higher you will lose more weight. Intermittent fasting also helps to reduce your insulin levels. If your insulin levels are too high then this can prevent you from losing weight.

Autophagy (Cell Repair)

By using an intermittent fasting method you will increase the cell repair activities in your body. This process is autophagy which breaks down the cells in your body so that it can eliminate waste cells.

Autophagy will also break down and metabolize dysfunctional and broken proteins in your body as well. With this kind of enhanced cell repair triggered by intermittent fasting you will have added protection against serious diseases such as Alzheimer’s and cancer. It will give you more of a chance of a longer and healthier life.

Insulin Reduction

There are far too many people that have type 2 diabetes these days. It is more common with people that are overweight. Diabetes means that your blood sugar levels are elevated and the cause of this is insulin resistance.

Studies have shown that intermittent fasting reduces the amount of insulin in the body. When this happens, blood sugar levels are stabilized. You are much less likely to suffer from type 2 diabetes when you have stable blood sugar levels.

Increased Brain Functionality

You may have heard that when you do something that benefits your body it is very likely to benefit your brain too. Intermittent fasting helps to increase your metabolism which should lead to better brain health.

Some studies show that intermittent fasting can boost nerve cell growth which in turn increases brain functionality. It can also assist with the increased generation of the brain derived neurotrophic factor which helps to prevent depression.

Reducing Inflammation

A common factor in those that suffer from chronic illnesses is that they have oxidative stress. As people age they are more likely to experience oxidative stress as well. The reason that oxidative stress is so bad is that it releases free radicals which can cause inflammation and have an overall negative effect on the body.

A number of studies have proven that intermittent fasting helps to develop the resistance in the body to oxidative stress. Several test show that when someone is intermittent fasting they reduce their inflammation in the body by a significant factor.

So keep these benefits of intermittent fasting in mind so that you can get through the tough times and experience them yourself.

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This 12-Second Trick Trains Your Brain to Be More Positive

Checking my Flipboard app this morning I came across this article by Sarah Ashley on Purewow.com which I think you'll find very interesting too...

Having a positive mental attitude is essential to physical and emotional health. Positivity helps us deal with (and bounce back from) setbacks more easily. Unfortunately, being upbeat can feel as daunting as climbing Everest. The good news is it only takes 12 seconds to shift gears from mumbling, “yuck,” to shouting, “yay!” from the top of a mountain (Everest or otherwise). Here’s how to trick your brain into being more positive—and why it works.  

First, let’s address the elephant in the room: negative thoughts. They are normal. In fact, humans gravitate towards negativity! According to neuropsychologist Dr. Rick Hanson, PhD, our brains react more strongly to negative feelings and better retain lessons learned from bad experiences (versus good ones). In other words, painful stuff imprints itself more easily on our brains. This negativity bias kept humans alive during our hunter-gatherer days, which is great. For the 21st century? We could all probably use a little less negative thinking in our lives. ...

Read on here: This 12-Second Trick Trains Your Brain to Be More Positive - PureWow

Is Intermittent Fasting Safe?

Is Intermittent Fasting Safe?

Everybody is different so it is impossible to say that intermittent fasting will be totally safe for you. The good news is that it is safe for the vast majority of people that participate with it. However, you need to be sure that it will be safe for you.

There are a few cases where intermittent fasting is either not a good idea at all or that caution will be required. It is important that you understand this and make the right decisions. Although intermittent fasting has a lot of health benefits you do not want to put yourself or your loved ones at risk.

Children

If you have a child that is overweight then intermittent fasting could help. But you need to understand that children need calories for their growth and development. It is also essential that they get the right amount of vitamins, minerals and proteins.

You need to be cautious about getting children involved with intermittent fasting. We are not saying that it cannot be beneficial but you need to do it carefully. If a child does not receive the right levels of proteins it can lead to a whole host of health problems.

Diabetics

If you are suffering from diabetes then intermittent fasting can help you but again you need to be cautious. Intermittent fasting can help you by stabilizing your blood sugar levels through the reduction of insulin in your body.

What you need to avoid is your blood sugar levels falling dangerously low during your fasting window. If you are currently taking medication to regulate your blood sugar levels then this is more likely to happen.

It is very important that you consult with your doctor if you are suffering with diabetes and want to do intermittent fasting. Your doctor should be able to recommend and intermittent fasting method that is safe for you. If not then you need to avoid it.

Pregnant Women

Most doctors will recommend that you do not participate with intermittent fasting if you are pregnant. A pregnant woman needs to feed herself and her baby. She needs to consume the right amount of calories here. Nutrients are also vital during pregnancy.

Some pregnant women have used intermittent fasting methods successfully. Usually they achieve this under strict medical supervision. So a discussion with your doctor is essential if you are pregnant and are thinking about intermittent fasting. You may have to wait until your pregnancy is over.

Eating Disorder Tendencies

If you have a tendency towards developing eating disorders then intermittent fasting may not be right for you. Fasting could trigger an eating disorder and if you develop an anxiety about eating then you need to stop fasting.

The trouble with intermittent fasting is that the focus is on not eating. To someone that is disposed to eating disorders this can mean that they start to ignore signals of hunger and it can be very dangerous.

Sometimes, intermittent fasting can lead to binge eating. You have fasted for several hours and now in your eating window you over indulge in food. A lot of eating disorders have this characteristic so intermittent fasting is not a good idea.

You must speak to your doctor before starting with intermittent fasting. They will know you well and any conditions that you have that can make this dangerous for you.

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