What are the Benefits of Intermittent Fasting (IF)?

Intermittent fasting has definitely been on trend these past few years. As we all know, losing weight or working on a healthy lifestyle is not as easy as these web articles make them sound.

However, with hundreds of different approaches to choose from, you can definitely find one that is better than the rest for you. One such approach that has proven to have worked on many people is intermittent fasting. 

But is intermittent fasting healthy to work on without dealing with any consequences? Hold on to this article to find out why intermittent fasting has been so popular and figure out all of its benefits. 

What is intermittent fasting?

Intermittent fasting is not actually a fasting method but is an eating pattern where you fast for a certain period of time while the rest you are allowed to eat anything. Intermittent fasting is one of the easiest ways to get your goal weight as you just have to sacrifice few hours a day rather than your favorite ice-cream flavor or even the diner you go to every day. 

You can practice intermittent fasting in a number of different methods and they are:

  • The 16-8 method

The 16-8 method means you should fast the 16 hours a day which is called the eating window while the rest 8 hours is where you can eat 3 or more meals per day.

  • The 5:2 method

This approach is the one where you eat normally the 5 days of a week while for the rest 2 days, you eat only 500 calories.

  • Eat-Stop-Eat

The eat-stop-eat fasting method is when you practice one or two days with 24-hour fasting while you eat normally the rest days. 

  • The alternate diet fasting

This approach allows users to fast the whole 24 hours or by eating only a few calories in the alternate days.

  • The warrior diet

As the name suggests, you can eat a huge meal once a day, mostly at nights while you eat only a few fruits or vegetables for the rest of the day. 

  • Spontaneous meal skipping

The spontaneous meal skipping means you skip your one or more meal spontaneously in a day. 

Benefits of intermittent fasting

Weight loss

Weight loss is actually a very difficult and frustrating journey. We look for new and easy steps and approaches that can be followed to aid easy and healthy weight loss.

Intermittent fasting makes you eat fewer meals resulting in the consumption of fewer calories. On top of that, intermittent fasting enhances hormonal functions on your body that enhances faster weight loss. 

Insulin resistance

By reducing the appetite significantly, intermittent fasting has been proven to promote insulin resistance. Type 2 diabetes has been extremely common in today’s world and the main factor of high blood sugar is the context of insulin resistance. Reducing insulin resistance helps lower blood sugar which results in preventing type 2 diabetes. 

Reduce oxidative stress

Oxidative stress is the imbalance of free radicals in the body resulting in cell and tissue damage. This stress is one of the reasons for aging and chronic diseases.

However, various research shows that intermittent fasting helps in inflammation and resistance to oxidative stress.

Beneficial for heart health

Having a healthy heart is the key to long life. There are various risk factors that are associated with deteriorating your heart disease.

Intermittent fasting has been proven to prevent various risk factors, such as blood pressure, blood triglycerides, LDL cholesterol, inflammatory markers, and blood sugar levels. 

Induce cellular repair process

Fasting improves the metabolic pathway, which is known as autophagy in the body. This induces cellular waste removal.

Increased autophagy results in providing various protections among various diseases such as cancer and Alzheimer’s diseases. 

Prevent cancer

Intermittent fasting has proven to have several beneficial effects on your body’s metabolism that leads to a reduced risk of cancer.

When tested on animals, it showed that intermittent fasting can reduce the side effects of chemotherapy significantly. 

Increases lifespan

One of the most amazing benefits of intermittent fasting along with all of the other benefits is extended lifespan.

Studies on rats showed that the intermittent fasting extended the lifespan of those rats by 83%. The study was performed by restricting continuous calorie intake.

Although this has obviously not been proven in humans, intermittent fasting has shown to have anti-aging capabilities. 

 

In conclusion

Intermittent fasting can be good for almost anyone who is trying to lead a healthy lifestyle. It is slightly easier to follow than other strict diet plans with exercises.

However, you need to choose the best approach of intermittent fasting for yourself.

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