Quick guide to intermittent fasting and the safest and most delicious way to break it

Guía rápida para hacer el ayuno intermitente y la forma más segura y deliciosa de romperlo

You've probably heard of intermittent fasting as a religious practice.

And maybe you've also experienced it when your doctor told you to stop eating for more than 8 hours to take a blood test.

But here I am going to share with you about intermittent fasting, a practice that has become popular since science has been able to demonstrate that it offers important health benefits .

Among them the possibility of losing body fat.

Due to its simplicity, it is an excellent option for those who want to lose weight without complicating their lives with complicated eating systems to follow.

If you dare to try it, with this quick guide you will be able to learn what it is, different ways to practice it, strategies to stay firm until the end and how in supplementation you have a healthy and delicious ally to complete it.

What is intermittent fasting?

Intermittent fasting is a period where you do not consume any food , alternating with a period when you do eat. Spot.

But… is it that easy?

Well yes, although to practice it in a healthy way and obtain all its benefits there are protocols that I will tell you about later.

To understand it well, take into account that the nutrients in your food are the fuel that makes you function in your daily life.

Every time you eat, you take in more energy than you can immediately use. Therefore, your body stores what is left over to access it when required.

Well, fasting begins the moment your body consumes the nutrients from your last meal .

When you do not eat foods rich in glucose (commonly known as sugar), the body begins to use its own reserves that are stored as glycogen in the liver and muscles, from where it obtains the energy it needs.

Well, as the time of not eating lengthens, glycogen is depleted and that is when you enter ketosis , a natural state that occurs when the body is fed almost completely by the fat you have stored.

And that's when you can potentially start losing fat .

Intermittent fasting has its variants

Intermittent fasting is about alternating periods of normal food intake with prolonged periods where your food intake is very little or none. For this reason, we decided to explain graphically the different protocols that you can execute to get the most out of this practice.

Intermittent fasting has its variants

To fast or not to fast?... There is no dilemma here

To determine if intermittent fasting suits your lifestyle and which is the best variant for you, you must consider some important aspects.

Because your body is not going to behave the same if your goal is to lose weight or if what you want is to relieve symptoms of a chronic or inflammatory disease.

It is not the same if you have insulin resistance or what you want is to reduce your high cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

That is why before starting, it is best to consult with your doctor or nutritionist.

You should discard it if your body fat index is less than 18.5 BMI, you are pregnant, breastfeeding or under 18 years of age, because these are stages when you need to get more nutrition.

And if you suffer from type 1 or type 2 diabetes, gout, high uric acid, or take prescription drugs, medical supervision is non-negotiable.

But where there is no dilemma is that if you practice it properly, combined with healthy eating habits, you can gain a lot to improve your health and transform your figure.

Helps you lose weight

Intermittent fasting has been shown to offer good results for controlling body weight.

So much so that almost 14% of adults in the United States practice it for that purpose.

The equation is simple. To lose weight, you need to burn more than you eat or, conversely, eat less than you burn.

And intermittent fasting is one way to make it happen.

Some studies have been carried out on fasting during Ramadan, a month during which Muslims, by faith and belief, practice daily fasting from sunrise to sunset.

The results showed some weight loss in the participants' body fat stores . It was reflected that it was most likely due to water changes in the body and the decrease in intestinal volume.

Other studies did not show significant weight loss. But it is estimated that it could have been due to overcompensation of food after fasting.

What can be concluded from this study?

You should be careful, because if you decide to do intermittent fasting, but when you finish you eat to the extreme or in an unhealthy way, you will not see any results.

Protects you against aging

Believe it or not, eating is a way to stress the body.

Yes, I understand if this statement seems crazy to you because for many that is the most comforting and delicious time of the day.

But it turns out that your body needs energy to digest and absorb food.

And in the process of metabolizing nutrients (when your metabolism transforms the food you consume into energy), it creates free radicals and other potentially harmful byproducts that cause your body to become stressed, which promotes aging.

Here it is not about you thinking that eating is going to make you older, because there are other determining factors such as bad habits and genetics that have the highest percentage of incidence in the aging process.

However, caloric intake appears to affect the rate of aging and reduced food intake (fasting) could slow that process.

And if it's about increasing longevity and controlling chronic diseases, a recent study conducted by the American Journal of Cardiology on a population of Mormons suggested that in these groups who fast regularly for religious purposes, the risk of disease could be reduced. coronary heart disease and diabetes.

Take care of your brain

Fasting can also protect the brain from age-related neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.

Scientists compared calorie restriction in older people with a higher intake of fatty acids (known to improve brain function), and showed that reducing calories by 30%, over three months, significantly improved memory.

The researchers suggested that the brain benefits of calorie restriction may come from lowering insulin and inflammatory C-reactive protein levels.

It could regulate your cholesterol levels

Fasting has also shown that there may be favorable changes in good cholesterol (HDL) during intermittent fasting.

This is because large and infrequent meals are eaten.

However, it should be noted that when regular eating patterns are resumed, cholesterol levels return to the baseline.

What can you consume during intermittent fasting?

During fasting you should not consume calories from food or drinks, but there are some healthy actions you can take to stay strong and receive all its benefits:

What can you consume during intermittent fasting?

You can also take nutritional supplements , especially if you exercise while fasting, as aerobic conditioning may be slightly decreased.

How a protein like Fit & Slim can help you finish intermittent fasting

Imagine that you are about to end your fast and you feel like a winner because you overcame the worst part.

But stay alert because that could be the most challenging moment and when you must call on all your strength.

Because if you let your guard down, you could end up diving into a binge on food full of fats, carbohydrates and sugar, which will make you lose all the effort you have made.

But don't lose calm because there are ways to prevent that from happening.

The Harvard Medical Publications website reported that just as consuming protein at breakfast helps reduce appetite for the rest of the day, you'll get the same effect from breaking intermittent fasting.

Thus, an ideal option is to drink a high-fiber protein shake during your post-fasting meal, as it will give you a feeling of satiety that will prevent you from exaggerating your calorie intake in the following hours.

You should also remember that while intermittent fasting doesn't come with strict eating rules, you'll maintain your results longer if you eat plenty of protein, healthy fats, and some complex carbohydrates.

In fact, work from the lab at Yale found that after fasting, if you eat low-carb and high-protein, the activity of genes that increase fat burning is further amplified by eating.

But if you go back to eating a high-carbohydrate diet, the activity of many of these genes decreases.

Final recommendations

Depending on the length of your fast, you may experience stress, headaches, constipation, or dehydration.

But it is usually normal and passes in a short time, if you take the appropriate measures.

Staying hydrated is particularly important and will also help alleviate any headaches or constipation.

And very important. Guarantee yourself enough hours of quality sleep, because otherwise it would be a disadvantage for your body's recovery.

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