Use these fasting tips to get through your intermittent fast without stress or hunger pangs! Scheduled eating is easy when you break it down step by step, here’s how.
In this article:
- Ancient Religious Fasting Tips Hinted at Scientific Importance of Fasting
- What is Intermittent Fasting?
- Benefits of Intermittent Fasting at the Cellular Level
- Intermittent Fasting Schedule for Beginners
- 7 Tips for Starting Your First Fast
Healthy Fasting Tips for Starting Intermittent Fasting
Ancient Religious Fasting Tips Hinted at Scientific Importance of Fasting
How can you lose weight without dieting? Mini-fasts or intermittent fasting is another “old” concept that is “new” again. Think about it this way: Paleolithic man almost certainly did not have access to daily 2,500-calorie diets rich in carbohydrates and fat.
For millennia of human history, our ancestors regularly missed food for short periods and experienced nothing like the sort of metabolic diseases our society suffers from today, e.g., diabetes, chronic fatigue, and most importantly OBESITY.
It was not until the advent of the industrial revolution and the subsequent creation of the food industry that humans began to eat daily, calorie-rich diets.
What is Intermittent Fasting?
Intermittent fasting is not technically a form of starvation at all, but rather a temporary state of very low or no caloric intake. Almost all mammals who walk the earth today are highly specialized organisms whose metabolic systems are highly adapted to periods of IF.
Also known as “scheduled eating,” intermittent fasting is an effective strategy for shedding excess weight, as well as reducing your risk of chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease. Benefits include increased insulin sensitivity and mitochondrial energy efficiency.
“Intermittent fasting (IF) is simply the practice of skipping food intake for specific periods of time.”
Benefits of Intermittent Fasting at the Cellular Level
On the cellular level, the main target of IF is our mitochondria– the tiny metabolic engines that power every cell in our bodies. Mitochondria convert the chemical energy potential in food into electrical and mechanical energy for our bodies.
Mitochondria are very dynamic–always changing in size, population and energy potential in relation to our exercise, diet and lifestyle.
Intermittent Fasting Schedule for Beginners
Intermittent fasting (IF) is simply the practice of skipping food intake for specific periods of time, generally 18-36 hours a couple of times per week. Increased food intake may result after periods of IF, so there may be no overall reduction of calories.
Dr. Michael Mosley, in his book The Fast Diet: Lose Weight, Stay Healthy, and Live Longer with the Simple Secret of Intermittent Fasting, advocates a 5:2 strategy, calling for eating regularly five days a week and fasting for two. On the fasting days, he advises cutting down to a quarter of your normal daily calories.
For most of us, that equates to about 600 calories for men and 500 for women.
Not ready to commit 100% yet? Try skipping breakfast, and avoid eating at least three hours before you turn in for the evening.
This will restrict your eating to an 8-hour window or less.
7 Tips for Starting Your First Fast
1. Hydration for Intermittent Fasting
Mini fasting specialists say staying well hydrated will make the fasting periods much easier to get through. First-timers should pay attention to tips on water fasting to beat hunger pangs while drinking liquids.
Drinking water during your fasting period will save you from the perils of dehydration and avoid turning dehydration issues into stumbling blocks for your fasting attempts.
2. Sleeping Through the Night of 24H Fasting
Throw yourself a bone and aim to fast through the night. That way you are sleeping for at least eight of those hungry hours. After all, what better way to beat a difficult challenge than by sleeping through it? T
3. Rewire Your Thought Process
Experts urge first timers to think of fasting as taking a break from eating, not as a period of deprivation. And won’t it be nice to stop worrying about what your next meal will be and when? Fasting is much more a mental game than it is just avoiding eating. One of the best fasting tips you will ever get is to think of your fasting period as a form of meditation, focusing on giving your body a break from food
4. Keeping Busy is One of the Best Tips on Fasting
Don’t commit to a fast when you have nothing going on. Successful fasting doesn’t work well when you are lounging on the sofa wondering what’s in the fridge. Instead, hit the gym, meet a friend for a walk, or tackle that garage clean-up job you’ve been meaning to get to. Successful fasting doesn’t happen when you have nothing to do because you will end up centering your attention on your hunger.
5. Opt for Supervised Fasting with a Doctor
As with any big diet change, it’s best to touch base with a trusted health care provider. You may have a medical condition that isn’t conducive to intermittent fasting. Medical specialists and physicians avoid making blanket recommendations for fasting for everyone. If you are suffering from a metabolic illness or is currently healing from a condition, it is best if you talk to your doctor before attempting to fast.
6. Start with a Short Fasting Schedule at First
You can start with a simple intermittent fasting 16/8 diet first instead of committing to 24 hour fasting periods. When we talk about a 16/8 intermittent fasting schedule, what we mean is eating for an 8-hour window per day and forgoing food for the next 16 hours.
You can also choose to go for a 5/2 fasting schedule which involves eating normally for five days of the week and fasting for the remaining two.
7. Avoid Gorging on Food for Better Intermittent Fasting Results
Yes, it is an achievement if you make it through your first week of intermittent fasting. It is easy to reward yourself and de-stressing by feasting after all the days of starvation/famine but it is better if you hold your horses before indulging.
Feasting after a fasting schedule can be bad for your fasting body and pave the way for fat to creep into your body. You can break your fasts by eating whole foods, shunning high fructose foods, and eating less but more consistently throughout your non-fasting schedule.
Don’t forget to download, save, or share this handy infographic for reference:
Fasting can help rejuvenate your cells. Complement your intermittent fasting regimen with our cellular health tablets for improved cellular regeneration and health.
Intermittent fasting poses a set of challenges for any would-be dieter. With the right fasting tips, you can power on through the hunger and reap the rewards of staying focused on fasting.
Have you tried intermittent fasting before and what challenges did you encounter? How did you beat them and finish through your first attempt at fasting? Give us your fasting tips in the comments section below.
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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on February 20, 2017, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.