What Is Intermittent Fasting

These days, intermittent fasting or IF is becoming an increasingly popular health and fitness trend. So many people out there have started following it for a better lifestyle, weight reduction and improved health. So many studies have been conducted that showed the powerful impacts it has on the body and the brain. Few studies even concluded that it helps you live longer.

What is Intermittent Fasting?

It is an eating cycle that has spans of eating and fasting. You aren’t told what to eat rather when to eat. Though a nutritious eating regimen, whole foods are recommended. IF isn’t a traditional diet but an eating habit or pattern. You have to fast for 16 or 24 hours, twice a week.

Is Intermittent Fasting Good for Your Body?

To answer this, let’s examine what happens at the hormonal and cellular level when you practice IF. Your body starts to adjust its hormonal level, so it can use all the stored body fat easily. Then, your cells start important repair processes and modify gene expressions. 

Few changes that occur when you fast are:

  • The Human Growth Hormone (HGH) levels increase drastically. At times, it even increases 5 times. This benefits fat loss and muscle gain.
  • The insulin sensitivity improves. Fasting significantly decreases when you fast. This helps in accessing your body fat easily.
  • Fasting stimulates your cells for cellular repair. An example of a cellular example is Autophagy. This process removes and digests old cells, including dysfunctional proteins which were collected inside.
  • IF helps in altering gene expression that protects you from many diseases and promotes longevity.

Do Intermittent Fasting Help in Weight Loss?

Most people follow it for weight loss. You reduce your calorie intake as you eat fewer meals. This directly impacts your insulin levels and hormones that help in weight loss. Moreover, fasting triggers production of norepinephrine which is a fat burning hormone. Even if you fast for a short duration, your metabolic rate increases 3.6 to 14%. Your calorie equation changes when you burn more calories and intake less calories. 

With IF, you need to exercise also, this has proved to be helpful in muscle gain and fat loss. In short, it can help in weight loss but don’t overeat in the allowed periods. 

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