Intermittent Fasting: Why It’s Not As Scary As It Sounds
It is safe to say that most of us are aware of the benefits of caloric restriction. it is also safe to assume that none of us want to live our lives feeling stressed out and deprived when it comes to food.
Fortunately, there is a way to enjoy delicious foods and still stay healthy and fit: intermittent fasting.
Although most people hear the term fasting and immediately assume it is too hard, too restrictive, or downright miserable, the truth might surprise you. The key word to focus on is intermittent.
What Is Intermittent Fasting?
The first and most important thing to understand about intermittent fasting is that it is not a diet. We repeat: intermittent fasting is not a diet.
Rather, intermittent fasting is a way of eating that incorporates regular periods of fasting into your normal schedule. This is not a long stretch of starving yourself or depriving yourself, but rather conforming to a set range of times that you consume your meals and snacks.
As opposed to other diets, intermittent fasting is not focused solely on what you eat or caloric restriction. While we know certain foods are healthier than others, this practice focuses more on timing.
When we eat, our body is busy digesting the food, absorbing nutrients, and dealing with rising and falling insulin levels. Fasting gives the digestive system a break, allowing it the chance to complete a variety of other actions, including fat burning.
The fasting state does not begin until roughly 12 hours after you consumed your last snack or meal.
Benefits of Intermittent Fasting
There are a host of potential benefits that can result from intermittent fasting including:
- Improved skin tone
- Weight loss
- Stress reduction
- Cellular regeneration and repair
- Boosted immunity
- Increased energy
- More time (think of all the time you spend cooking and preparing meals
- Other possible benefits include improved life span, improved cognition, and a reduced risk of heart disease
Scientifically speaking, weight loss is the benefit we have the most proof for. In a recent study, participants showed a loss of 3 to 8 percent over a 3 to 24-week range. This is notable compared to other methods of weight loss.
Other studies show that intermittent fasting results in less muscle loss than traditional forms of caloric restriction.
How Does Intermittent Fasting Benefit Weight Loss?
Intermittent fasting often leads to a decrease in calorie consumption, but there is more to it than that. This style of eating actually changes the patterns of your hormones by increasing levels of norepinephrine (a fat burning hormone) and decreasing grehlin (known as the hunger hormone).
Intermittent fasting also increases levels of human growth hormone and lowers insulin levels. These combined effects lead to a 3.6 to 14% increase in the metabolic state according to studies.
Basically, intermittent fasting makes the body more efficient. The hormonal changes it causes help the body access stored fat more easily and improve insulin levels.
What Happens to Your Body During Intermittent Fasting?
Digesting food – which most of us do a minimum of three to five times each day — demands an enormous amount of energy from the body. When you give your body a break from the digestive process, it can use this energy for other tasks.
Simply put, the body has two basic states: the fasting state and the fed state. In the fed state, the body is digesting and absorbing food.
The fed state occurs immediately after eating and lasts for approximately three to five hours. In this state, it is difficult for the body to burn fat since insulin levels are high.
Around 12 hours after eating, your body enters the fasted state. Here, insulin levels are lower and your body will be better able to burn fat.
Because it takes 12 hours to enter the fasting state, it can be difficult for our bodies to reach it. Intermittent fasting increases the amount of time your body spends in the fasted state.
Is Intermittent Fasting Safe?
Research supports the safety and effectiveness of intermittent fasting. Better yet, many experts actually say it is what our bodies were designed for.
As hunter-gatherers, our ancestors did not have predictable access to food as we do now. Our ancestor’s bodies dealt with this food scarcity by adapting to function without food for longer periods of time.
For this reason, one could argue that intermittent fasting is actually more natural than the standard three meals and snacks that we are used to every day.
How Do I Get Started With Intermittent Fasting?
If you are interested in trying intermittent fasting, one option is easing yourself into it. Perhaps you choose one day a week or even one day per month to begin.
It is also important to remember that this is a lifestyle, not a trend or fast weight loss method. Also — just as with any dietary, exercise, or supplement changes — it is important to double check with your doctor before embarking on your intermittent fasting journey.
How Can Isagenix Complement Your Intermittent Fasting Routine?
While intermittent fasting is quickly gaining recognition among fitness enthusiasts and health conscious individuals throughout the world, Isagenix has long known the advantages of intermittent fasting.
In fact, the science supporting intermittent fasting is exactly what prompted Isagenix to incorporate Cleanse Days as a foundation of their systems.
Why Should I Include Isagenix in my Intermittent Fasting Routine?
Utilizing proven science, high-quality ingredients, and a commitment to customers, the Isagenix line takes intermittent fasting to the next level.
One of Isagenix’s star products when it comes to intermittent fasting or just healthy eating in general is Cleanse for Life. This proprietary, scientifically formulated blend is brimming with phytonutrients designed to nourish the body and support its natural detoxification abilities.
Isagenix also takes the guesswork out of intermittent fasting with its convenient, easy to follow routine — Cleanse Days and Shake Days.
Cleanse Days utilize the power of intermittent fasting, while Shake Days focus on providing your body with nutrient dense, protein-packed shakes and healthy meals and snacks. Together, Shake and Cleanse Days make a powerful combination.
If the thought of intermittent fasting is still overwhelming or you just aren’t sure where to start, remember that Isagenix prides itself on having an experienced, supportive team behind you to help you along every step of your health and wellness journey.
Try not to let the term “fasting” scare you away from the multitude of benefits intermittent fasting has to offer.
While intermittent fasting on its own is entirely possible, Isagenix has created a variety of products to make it even easier. Many of our products were specifically designed to complement the intermittent fasting process, making it easy, safe, and convenient for you to take control of your health.
Have you ever heard of intermittent fasting or tried it? Do you have any favorite Isagenix products you like to incorporate into your fasting routine? We would love to hear your feedback or answer any questions you have.