Intermittent fasting suggests eating your meals in a limited amount of time per day, leaving your body for a major part of it in the state of “fasting”. The most popular routines include 8-16 hours (8 for eating, 16 fasting), 7-17, and 4-20.
The concept of fasting for longer periods of time has deep roots in many cultures and beliefs, but the idea of having a specific time window for eating, arguably, is embedded in our behavior. This method’s advocates claim that intermittent fasting isn’t new at all, and actually is the natural way human beings have been feeding themselves for years. Researches went as far as proving that in ancient times, and still in isolated tribes today, in some cases, humans aren’t even used to eat on a daily basis – and mostly get to eat when they’re hungry or able to find a nutrition source.
Though it may seem extreme to some, the idea of “fasting” doesn’t leave your body without any fuel resources, on the contrary – the body adjusts and teaching itself to work on other energy storages, such as its fat tissues. That’s why many who are practicing it properly, and with appropriate supervision, report on fat loss and other physical benefits. Additionally, they state that they experience better clarity of mind and longer periods in which they can concentrate better, a rise in the general level of energy throughout the day and an overall feeling that they are less hungry.
Yet, many find the idea of limiting your “eating window” very challenging, and one may experience some difficulties while transitioning into intermittent fasting at first. It’s important to say, your body will need some time to adapt, especially if your previous diet was based mainly on short-term energy sources, like carbohydrates. Furthermore, the transition should be made gradually, and depending on your physical state, goals, and even gender, you should consider this fasting only a few times a week or every other day – according to your physician’s recommendation.
Regardless if you choose to welcome this routine into your life or not, it’s safe to say that all physicians and nutritionists, cross disciplinarily, agree that eating clean and healthy is key for both your longevity and quality of life. Likewise, the importance of keeping active on a regular basis has been proved time and again, and the combination of maintaining a balanced diet with a regular fitness regimen is the secret for a happy, long life.