Sure, with juice cleanses, powdered meals, and meal replacement bars are taking over the diet industry, there are bound to be some fads that are pervasive. One example of a ubiquitous diet relies on not eating anything at all: fasting. There are a few types of fasting, and the benefits vary accordingly. Fasting is usually a tough thing to do, but with some of these methods, you can get all of the benefits of fasting without the passing out hunger, and other negative symptoms associated with fasting. Read on for more information about different types of fasting and their interests!
Many health benefits come with any fasting. However, fasting can be difficult to do and even dangerous for some people–making the risks outweigh the benefits. Due to the adverse impacts that fasting can have on some people, nutritionists have developed diet plans that mimic the low-fat, low-calorie diet of someone who fasts regularly.
FMD work in cycles–where you eat under certain restrictions for the fasting mimicking diet for three to five days, once or twice a month. They’re easily doable for the average person and provide some of the great benefits that fasting does–with much less personal risk! Laboratory animals who completed FMDs showed signs of decreased risk for diabetes, cancer, and autoimmune disease, aged less quickly, and had higher levels of cognitive function.
This is one of the more attainable ways to fast. Intermittent fasting works by restricting eating or fasting only sometimes. The two major types of intermittent fasting are variations on the 5:2 diet and time-controlled consumption, where you only eat eight or 12 hours out of the day. The 5:2 diet plan is the more popular of the two diets and goes like this: eat like normal for five days, and then eat only 500 calories a day on two non-consecutive days of the week. For time-controlled eating, the most famous period of consumption is noon-8pm, but you can choose a time frame that works well for you (although experts suggest taking the time earlier in the day when your blood sugar is higher.) Outside of the eight or the 12 hours, it is greatly encouraged to drink lots of black coffee, tea, water, and even diet soda. Researchers have clinically proven that using intermittent fasting can reduce your caloric intake, help you lose weight, and lower your systolic blood pressure, making it an easily completed addition to your daily routine.
Intermittent fasting can be a tremendous fat-burning tool, can help your skin’s health, and confer a variety of other health benefits. It’s exceptionally good at burning fat, though. Your body naturally enters the ‘fasted’ state 12 hours after your last meal, which is rare for anyone to get to on a three-meals-a-day pattern.
Like most wacky ‘biohacking’ trends, this one popped up in Silicon Valley as a way to increase cognitive function, performance, and attention spans. Extended fasts generally last for anywhere from three to seven days. CEO’s, programmers, and others have water-only fasts to increase productivity at work. Bulletproof, a coffee and health product company, have company-wide, 36-hour fasts every Tuesday. Tuesday is the most productive day for the company! Extended fasting, though, can be harder for women, and can have health repercussions, especially for those that have or have had eating disorders.