Is intermittent fasting the best way to lose weight?
The short answer is yes!
But, if you’re here for the facts instead of the short answer, don’t worry, I got you covered.
Before we begin, let’s make sure we’re clear on what intermittent fasting is exactly.
Basically, it’s two periods:
1) Eating window
2) Fasting window
During your eating window, you’ll eat all your food for the day.
That means breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks.
During your fasting window, you’ll ONLY drink water and other 0 calories beverages.
Examples of 0 calorie beverages include black coffee, sugar-free tea, and diet sodas.
Zero calorie options are allowed during fasting hours because they won’t spike your insulin.
As long as your insulin isn’t spiked, you won’t get kicked out of the fasting state. (More on this below)
Sounds simple enough, right?
It really is!
But why does it work so well?
Why does fat melt off your body FAST like a burger patty on a George Foreman grill?
Allow me to go over that.
Fasting and Insulin Levels
When you eat, you spike your insulin levels.
When your insulin levels are spiked, you’re instantly kicked out of fat burning mode.
On the other hand, when your insulin levels are low, your body uses your stored body fat for energy.
That means that the longer you go without eating, the more fat you burn.
For example, if you and I eat the exact same thing today, but I eat all of it in 5 hours, and you eat it throughout the entire day, I’ll end up burning more fat than you.
Again, this is simply because I’m allowing my body MORE time to use stored fat for energy.
Ideally, if you have a lot of fat to lose, you’ll want to go as long as possible before eating everyday.
This will MAXIMIZE your fat burning abilities.
But, Alex, won’t I get hungry?
Listen to me, bud, “hunger” is more mental than anything.
Look at it this way, have you ever had a really stressful day or event take place in your life where you didn’t even think about food?
…Or perhaps you were simply so busy that the thought of eating didn’t even cross your mind?
Of course you have.
The fact is that we’re not really hungry most of the time.
Instead, we trick ourselves into believing that we are simply because we haven’t eaten in a couple of hours.
The mind is a very powerful thing, my friend.
How much should you eat?
The easiest way to calculate how much to eat in order to lose weight is to multiply your ideal weight by 10.
For example, let’s say I want to weigh 170 pounds, I’ll simply multiple 170 by 10.
I’ll then know that I’ll need to eat 1700 calories per day until I reach that goal.
It’s that easy.
How many hours should you fast?
The most popular intermittent fasting schedule is the 16/8.
With this option, you’ll fast for 16 hours straight (8 hours of sleep included) and then eat your food in an 8 hour window.
An example of an 8 hour window would be 12pm-8pm.
You can schedule your eating window for any time you’d like.
Whether you want to eat from 8am-4pm, or 12pm-8pm, or 4pm-12am; it doesn’t matter.
As long as you fast 16 hours straight, you’ll reap the benefits.
With that said, even though the 16/8 will result in quick fat-loss; longer periods of fasting will burn fat much quicker.
However, if you’re new to fasting, eating just one hour per day, and fasting for 23 hours, might be a little extreme.
Simply start with the 16/8 fasting schedule, and then add an additional hour of fasting each week.
Do this until you reach the 23/1 fasting schedule.
Keep in mind that you’ll be eating one HUGE meal during that one hour in order to get all your calories in for the day, so plan ahead.
So there you have it, my friend.
You now know why intermittent fasting is the best way to lose weight and how to do it.