More energy with intermittent fasting
Updated: Jul 2
Turn your nutritional clock, it's worth it – the 8 hour diet
Committing to a diet in order to lose weight, is not your thing? Mine neither…
My mantra though is “Let food by thy medicine” and if my nutritional intake influences my energy levels and moods, I am up for trying it out.
Intermittent fasting is no new trend and is rather rooted in old traditions.
For the past 5 years, I had periods where I would intermittently fast. For the past 2 month this became my routine! My window for food intake is reduced to 8 hours.
Best of all, I didnt have to completely change my lifestyle or buy fancy supplements that promise to lose weight quickly, which isnt my goal, but if it is yours, that’s great news. All you have to do, to start intermittent fasting is turn the clock a little.
Under normal circumstances, I can find myself like a lot of people probably, eating and snacking all day long. If I am not mindful about my food intake times, I might find myself eating the last meal in the evening at 10 pm and at 7 am the next morning the first meal of the day.
This means that there is no long break between meals, but it is precisely this length that is crucial in order to boost our metabolism, give our digestive system a break, lose weight and not muscle mass.
How does intermittent fasting work:
Everything is actually very simple. In order to prolong the natural, regenerative fasting period overnight, the time window in which to eat is simply limited. Instead of being able to eat from getting up to going to bed without restrictions, an exact number of hours is set. In practice it looks like this, you simply shift your breakfast a little bit backwards and eat a little earlier in the evening. So e.g. Breakfast at 10 am and supper at 6 am. But everyone can determine that individually.
So what are the advantages of a stricter meal time window?
The problem with constant snacking, among other things, is that the body only reacts insufficiently to the insulin release. The pancreatic hormone has the task of introducing the sugar in the blood into the body cells. However, the later it gets during the day, the less well the body responds to the insulin. If you eat around 10 pm, a clearly worse glucose response is triggered, which can lead to increased blood sugar levels, insulin resistance and finally to type 2 diabetes over a longer period of time.
Research has also shown that participants, although they could eat the same as normal, automatically chose higher quality foods the smaller they selected their time window. In addition, the body naturally digest and uses carbohydrates even better - compared to late meals shortly before going to bed, as they immediately go to the fat depot.
You could just try it out yourself, one morning you have a slice of toast with jam and a glass of orange juice, you probably find yourself feeling pretty good while having it and even half an hour later, however rather sooner or later you find yourself tired, energy is dropping and you feel for a mid-morning snack.
Now the next morning try to have e.g. an avocado on pumpernickel and an egg with a cup of herbal tea (I love moringa with milk…mmmmm) you shall feel more satisfied without needing a snack until lunch.
Better health, more energy and less weight
Studies show, participants, who ate in an 8 hour window were healthier and weighed less than those who could eat all day. Both groups were given the same food and ingested the same amount of calories.
Just like the risk of type 2 diabetes, which is reduced by a constant blood sugar level and the basic strengthening of the cardiovascular system, there is also another interesting finding: With intermittent fasting, the muscle mass is preserved - and is not reduced as is normally the case with calorie restriction. The metabolism does not slow down either.
Shedding a couple of kilograms is welcomed but losing weight as such is not my aim, however I have noticed better sleep and more energy during the days.
My mood is more constant throughout my cycle, even the week before my periods have been less brain fogged and more energetic.
There are no hunger attacks during the day. Some days though I experience tummy grumbling during certain times of the day.
Often in the past, almost resulting in a panic attack, thinking, where do I get my next food from….( I am no fast food eater) however knowing now that actually that little bit of noise in my tummy is the time, where my body naturally goes into healing and cleaning, I am welcoming that feeling. Often when it passes, it results into more energy.
The feeling of hunger is not to be confused with low blood sugar levels.
With so many positive side effects on health and well-being, intermittent fasting should be an attractive method for health promotion. Even with us being used to be able to eat at any time we want, it’s a mindful practice next time we feel hungry, to stop and listen to ourselves and ask how hungry are we really?
"Our medicine should be our food. But to eat when you are sick is to feed your sickness. Instead of using medicine, rather, fast a day. " Hippocrates
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