Intermittent fasting is a well researched way to lose weight healthily and quickly while maintaining muscle tone and boosting health.
Intermittent fasting involves cycles of feeding and fasting. Contrary to what you might think, this is not a new fad or concept. Our ancestors fasted naturally when food was scarce or when they returned from a failed hunting trip. To this day, many religions and cultures use fasting as a way to cleanse the body and soul. There are multiple health benefits to intermittent fasting.
BENEFITS OF INTERMITTENT FASTING
– Reduces oxidative stress therefore slowing down the aging process
– Lowers insulin levels, reducing the risk of various diseases such as diabetes and Alzheimer’s
– Increases your body’s growth hormone production, helping you burn fat more easily and keeping you looking young
– Improves skin (reduces acne, eczema)
– Benefits from fat burning and muscle building workouts
– Boosts energy levels and productivity; fasting releases norepinephrine and epinephrine, which make you more alert
– Saves you money!
There have been many human and animal studies on intermittent fasting over the last 18 years. Animal studies began as early as 1943. There was an article comprising forty four different studies published by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2007 that explains a lot of these benefits.
THE FAT BURNING PROCESS
During intense exercise, your body burns fat for energy. The fat in your fat cells turns into free fatty acids (FFA) which your body uses as fuel. This process results in weight loss.
During intermittent fasting, your body goes into the same state where you body starts burning fat for energy. Doing exercise while fasting will help you lose weight even faster.
According to research, 24 hours of fasting will give you the most weight loss results. It is not recommended that you fast longer than a 24 hour period and no more than once or twice a week.
Fasting also means a reduced weekly calorie intake as long as you don’t binge on unhealthy foods after your fast.
If you have hit a plateau on your weight loss, intermittent fasting can help you boost your metabolism. Most diets are hard to maintain because they are not designed to be followed long term, but intermittent fasting is a healthy tool you can continue to use to speed up your fat loss results.
Intermittent fasting can help change your body chemistry so that your body stores less fat, naturally.
Insulin helps your body process carbohydrates and fats, but it also stores excess calories as fat. Over time, your body develops more and more insulin resistance. When this happens, your body needs to release more insulin to process the same amount of sugars and carbs. A higher level of insulin will cause your body to store more fat.
Regulating insulin sensitivity causes your body to release less insulin to process carbs and fats. Less insulin means that less fat will be stored. With higher insulin sensitivity, it will be more difficult for you to gain weight in the future.
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