4 Benefits of Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss

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Fasting and Weight Loss, 4 Benefits of Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss, Dr. Nicolle

Hi! Welcome to Fit, Food, and Fun Fridays! Today we’ll talk about fasting and weight loss. We all have those times when we feel we need to immediately drop a few pounds. Although some weight loss methods suggest you jump on the treadmill and stop eating, this is not healthy advice. Not only can it make your life miserable, but it can destroy your energy levels and lead to other failures. There other ways through which you can safely and effectively accelerate weight loss by intermittent fasting.

 

Intermittent Fasting and How to Do It

Intermittent fasting is an approach to losing weight that involves a safe cycle between eating and fasting periods. If this kind of approach is properly done, you will not experience hunger or loss in energy while fast-tracking your weight loss efforts.

 

How are you going to do it? Well, one of the easiest ways is to simply follow a proper sleep cycle. For example, you eat your dinner at 6:00 in the evening, go to bed at a decent time, and do not eat anything else until you wake up for the next day at 8:00 a.m. This is already a twelve-hour effortless fasting. Exercising while on an empty stomach can be beneficial, so if you are going to work out early in the morning, eat lunch around noon and you have already fasted for almost 16 hours.

Fasting and Weight Loss, 4 Benefits of Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss, Dr. Nicolle

Here are four ways by which intermittent fasting helps accelerate weight loss:

 

1. It Prolongs the Natural Fasted Condition of the Body

When you’™re sleeping, your body enters a natural fasting state where it switches your body into its fat burning mode. This means that even when you are not doing anything but sleeping, your body is burning excess fat calories. When you wake up, the body starts to produce insulin, a well-known fat storage hormone that reverses your fasted state. As you continue practicing intermittent fasting, you will prolong the fasted state of the body for several hours.

 

2. It Helps in Appetite Control

Your body is adaptive and it can be trained to avoid eating early in the morning. This is how you can develop appetite control. This effectively teaches your body how to make use of its body fat more efficiently as an energy source.

 

3. It Stabilizes Your Energy Level

Once the body is already efficient in using body fat as its secondary source of energy, you will experience more stable energy levels throughout the day. With this stable energy level, you can take control of binge eating and food cravings.

 

4. It Supercharges The Body™s Capability to Detox and Repair

The body’s digestion process takes a lot of energy and attention. When you constantly eat and digest, the body has fewer resources and time to concentrate on repair and maintenance. When you practice occasional fasting, you’™re giving the body a chance to concentrate on other healthy processes that may help you with you quicker healing in the future.

 

As a word of caution, consult your doctor first before attempting any intermittent fasting. It is not intended to be a fix-all cure for weight loss; rather, it is just another tool in your kit bag to help you with your weight loss goals.

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Fasting and Weight Loss, 4 Benefits of Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss, Dr. Nicolle

 

I really wanted to talk about this topic today because the overweight and obesity epidemic is at an all-time high! We are a fat society and it’s killing us prematurely. Not only do I truly believe that you have the power to lose weight to improve your health, but the science also agrees! You can adopt healthy lifestyle practices that improve your health and enrich your life, which can in turn improve the lives of those close to you. You have the power to break the cycle of obesity so that you can leave a legacy of health to your loved ones.

 

I use lifestyle medicine as the first line of treatment, before medications, to treat lifestyle-related chronic diseases. Lifestyle-related chronic diseases include diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and some cancers, just to name a few. Lifestyle practices, such as eating a whole-food plant-based diet and regular physical activity, can help you lose weight, and maybe reverse some of your chronic diseases. In certain cases, these approaches may even outperform pharmaceutical therapy. But I always tell my patients that conventional medications may be appropriate at this time to prevent catastrophic illness, but over time, you can work to make the necessary lifestyle changes to possibly reduce and/or eliminate medications. Please remember to always consult your physician for your particular needs and circumstances prior to making any decisions whatsoever.

 

Weight Monitoring

Since weight management is very important in combatting chronic diseases, I recommend that you be mindful of your weight and its fluctuations, and that you monitor your weight AT LEAST on a weekly basis. I recommend a scale that includes a body composition monitor (*this scale cannot be used with a pacemaker or other implanted devices).

 

Physical Activity

Physical activity (or exercise) can improve your health and reduce the risk of developing several chronic diseases like high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and cancer, just to name a few. Physical activity can improve your mood, boost your immune system, and even help you maintain a healthy weight.

 

I often recommend yoga and resistance training for physical activity, but as you are aware, there are plenty of forms of “movement” that you can do! But for the basics, especially if you’re just getting started, yoga and resistance training are where I would start.

 

Yoga

Yoga can be a great way to improve your strength and flexibility, manage your stress, improve your heart health, and lose weight! I recommend using a grounded yoga mat to connect yourself with the earth and reduce inflammation.

 

Resistance Training

Resistance training is the mainstay for overall health. It not only has beneficial effects on reducing body fat, it also increases muscle size and strength. Check out some basic dumbbells/free weights that I recommend to everyone.

 

Another alternative for dumbbells/free weights are resistance bands. They are great for physical therapy, yoga, strength training, and excellent for traveling.

 

Remember, living a healthy lifestyle including eating a whole foods plant-based diet, regular physical activity, and reducing stress are the best ways to maintain a healthy weight. Let me know what you think in the comment section below.

 

Stay healthy,

 

Dr. Nicolle

 

PS. I am always asked what tools and resources I recommend to help you reach YOUR health goals. Here is the ever-growing, always updated list for you.

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4 Benefits of Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss

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