5 Ways to Start Intermittent Fasting

April 08, 2021

5 Ways to Start Intermittent Fasting

You may have heard of this new rising diet trend called intermittent fasting. It is known to help with weight loss and to improve your metabolism. Here are five ways to try intermittent fasting.


1. 16/8 Method

This intermittent fasting plan involves fasting every day for about 16 hours and restricting your eating time table to about 8 hours. This method is actually simpler than it sounds. You can accomplish this method by simply skipping out on breakfast and not snacking on anything after dinner. For example, you can eat a late brunch at around 11 am and then have your dinner at 7pm. You will then avoid eating anything until the next day 11 am again - so then you've fasted for about 16 hours. You are allowed to drink liquids such as water, coffee, and other zero-calorie drinks to reduce feelings of hunger. Another way about this 16/8 method is to not skip any meal - you can include all three meals, just make sure it's within the 8 hour time frame. Another key point to note is that it's important that you eat mainly healthy foods during your eating window. This fasting won't work if you eat junk foods or foods that are high in calorie.


2. 5:2 Diet

For this intermittent fasting method, you will have five days of the week to eat how you normally do, while restricting your calorie intake to about 600 for just two days of the week. On those days, it is recommended that women take in 500 calories and men 600.


3. Eat Stop Repeat

This method involves a 24 hour fast once or twice a week. For example, if you finish breakfast by 8 am then you won't eat until the next day at 8 am. You can start your 24 hour fast at any time - breakfast, lunch, or dinner - you just need to choose a 24 hour time frame and keep it consistent. During the fast, you can drink liquids such as water, coffee, and other zero-calorie beverages, but no solid foods.

In addition, during the eating window, you need to make sure that you only consume your normal amount. In other words, you can't try to over stuff yourself to prep for the next fasting period, otherwise this diet may not help you if your goal is to lose weight. A potential downside of this method is that the 24 hour fast may pose a huge challenge for many. One way you can help your body ease into this method is to start with a 16 hour fast first and then move up slowly.


4. Alternate Fasting

For this intermittent fasting method, you will fast for 24 hours every other day. There are many different versions of this method as some people allow for about 500 calories intake on the fasting days while others do not allow any except for zero-calorie beverage intake.This method is definitely on the extreme side and is not recommended for those just starting intermittent fasting. You may often feel hungry several times a week with this method which may be unbearable and not sustainable long term wise.


5. Warrior Diet & Spontaneous Method

The Warrior Diet method basically involves eating small amount of raw fruits and vegetables during the day and then having one huge meal at night within a four hour eating window. This method's food choices are quite similar to those required in a paleo diet.

Another method is the Spontaneous Method which is just as the name suggests - spontaneously skip a meal here and there throughout the week. You can try this method when you're just not feeling hungry. Skip a breakfast here and there or skip a dinner whenever you are too busy to cook. Basically spontaneous fasting is when you skip one or two meals a week and making sure that you eat only healthy foods during the meals you don't skip.


The Takeaway

The bottom line is that intermittent fasting is a weight loss diet that may work for many, but not necessarily for everyone. If you do decide to try intermittent fasting, make sure to keep your diet healthy and remember to portion control. You can't incorporate this method thinking you can still binge eat as much junk foods as you want during your eating window and expect to lose weight or improve your overall health. So do your research, find out which method works for you, and be balanced!