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Intermittent fasting is the key to a healthy weight loss journey, here’s how

Intermittent fasting is a great way to embark on your weight loss journey. You can lose upto 6kg in a month with this.
intermittent fasting
If you are on an intermittent fasting diet, you will eat for only some hours in the day. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Karishma Chawla Updated: 5 Jan 2024, 14:46 pm IST
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Intermittent fasting is an alternative to full fast. It involves alternating cycles of fasting and eating. What is intermittent fasting? It is restricting your daily eating to a narrow window of time—let’s say six to eight hours.

If you have been wondering how to do intermittent fasting, and the best intermittent fasting routines to follow, here are all your answers!

In any case, we get into an intermittent state of fasting overnight automatically. If you go to bed at around 10.00 pm at night and you don’t eat breakfast until 7.00 or 8.00 am in the morning, you are in a fasting state in any case. If you can extend this state by another six to eight hours, then you will be able to see an even better effect. This basically means that if you finish eating your dinner by 7 PM seven, your next meal will be around noon the next day. 

Also Read: Can intermittent fasting improve heart health? Let’s find out

What is Intermittent fasting?

Intermittent fasting weight loss is more of an instinctive methodology. As and when your body is ready to align with it, you will excel in it. It is also a natural concept to the body. For example, when you feel unwell, it is quite natural to lose your appetite. And considering our ancestors were hunters and gatherers and ate only when they were able to hunt down animals or found fruits and nuts—our body is quite capable or well adapted in handling IF.

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Intermittent fasting might be a good way to lose weight, but it’s not for everyone. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Here’s what you can and can’t eat while doing intermittent fasting 

Intermittent fasting weight loss depends on what you eat during your eating window and how you fast. During the fasting period, only water is allowed. Tea, coffee or any other beverages are also not permitted. Some other types of IF may include tea, coffee and other non-caloric beverages. 

This is an excellent way of losing fat by helping the insulin–the fat storage hormone–to function more efficiently by keeping it down and preventing blood sugar spikes and inflammation. Also this method of fasting helps in healing the body by giving a break to digestion and redirecting the blood flow to the parts of the body that needs healing and care. 

Intermittent fasting also stimulates BDNF. BDNF or brain-derived neurotrophic factor is a protein that plays a key role in creating new neurons and protects existing ones. It connects one neuron to another and is therefore important in that communication–a process that’s vital for thinking, learning and brain function. The gene that turns on BDNF is activated by intermittent fasting.

As much as the focus is on when you should be eating, I would want to call your attention and encourage you to eat balanced meals. 

Also Read: 5 reasons why is intermittent fasting not working for you!

What should you eat while following Intermittent fasting?

1. Complex carbohydrates:

Complex carbohydrates such as jowar, bajra, rajgira, quinoa, oats and brown rice are great.

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2. Lean protein

Lean proteins such as eggs, chicken, fish, dals, pulses, nuts and seeds should be eaten.

3. Healthy fats

Fats such as coconut oil, ghee, olive oil, avocados, nuts and seeds would be good.

4. High-fibre fruits and vegetables

High fibre fruits and vegetables such as berries and avocados are great.

5 Good lifestyle

Adequate water, exercise, sleep, and rest are a must.

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It is important to understand that indulging into high-caloric foods such as high sugar, high fat, refined flour and processed foods during the eating window will still lead to inflammation and result in yoyo in the fat percentage rather than a sustained weight loss effect. 

How much weight can you lose in a month with intermittent fasting

In doing the fast correctly and ensuring that it is aligning with your mind, body and soul–you can expect a good weight loss of anywhere between 2 to 6 kgs a month with excellent inch loss and increase in energy levels and brain function. 

Having said that it is equally important to keep other factors such as age, physical activity levels, medicals, and stress levels in mind while considering weight loss. 

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About the Author

As a celebrity nutritionist, Karishma has built and evolved her decade long practice with a clear focus on the gut microbiome and hormones as a way to help raise metabolism in order to make your body work for you to achieve a healthy weight. And as a lifestyle and functional medicine coach, Karishma helps you understand your lifestyle triggers and guides you to find that much coveted mind-body balance. ...Read More

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