Is intermittent fasting meant for everyone? Here's all you need to know about the viral weight-loss diet
Intermittent fasting is touted as an extremely popular weight-loss diet, which may also improve one's healthspan. According to medical experts, the diet improves digestion, reduces inflammation, and protects against age-related diseases. Several celebrities including Gwyneth Paltrow, Terry Crews, Hugh Jackman and Sadhguru among others have sung praises of the 16:8 plan. In this health guide, we'll answer the most asked questions about the viral diet trend that has taken social media by storm.
What exactly is Intermittent Fasting?
Fasting is an important centuries-old tradition in many religions and cultures worldwide. Muslims fast during the holy month of Ramadan. Hindus fast during Navratri. Buddhists also fast on several occasions. They all believe in one thing - fasting allows our body to heal and release harmful toxins. Today, new varieties of fasting have put a spin on this ancient practice. Intermittent fasting is one of them!
There're four different types of intermittent fasting, but the 16:8 one is the most popular. It follows the principle of time-restricted eating. You have to fast for about 16 hours and in the remaining eight hours, you can take two or three meals, but in small portions.
Since most people already fast for eight hours while they're sleeping, this method isn't very difficult to follow. You can simply extend the overnight fast by skipping breakfast and not eating until lunch.
If you feel that the 16/8 method is a bit too hard for you, you can switch to the 14/10 method, which involves 14 hours of fasting.
Benefits of intermittent fasting
Majorly helps with weight loss
Improves insulin sensitivity
Improves brain and heart health
Reduced risk of cancer
Drawbacks of intermittent fasting
Urge to overeat
Intermittent fasting is not safe for everyone. People who are pregnant or at risk for hypoglycemia or other chronic diseases should avoid following this diet plan. You should consult your doctor or nutritionist before making a major change in your everyday diet. Irritability, low energy, persistent hunger, temperature sensitivity, and poor work and activity performance are some other not-so-pretty side effects of the diet.