What is Intermittent Fasting?

I have been intermittent fasting for some time now. I try to eat an early dinner, around 6 pm, and then eat again around 9 am. Intermittent fasting has been a way to help tackle my issues with sibo. My husband, who is also practicing intermittent fasting is doing the two-meals-a-day fasting approach. He was asked by his doctor to try this fasting to bring down his inflammation numbers. After starting this diet, his doctor has been pleased with the reduction of the high inflammation throughout his body.

What is intermittent fasting? Its a way to correct the long time thinking of snacking every 2 hours to keep your blood sugar level. That whole thinking process has created a lot of problems for our GI system!

Resetting Your Snacking Habit

Whether snacking is a long-time habit or a newly acquired one, it’s time to rethink this suggested way of eating. Intermittent fasting isn’t intended to be a quick-fix fad diet. It’s intended to balance our guts and brings with it a host of positive side effects! This WebMD article does a thorough job of introducing and explaining the benefits of a fasting approach. It’s an easy and helpful read. I’ll quote from one of the experts interviewed.

“‘If you’re thinking of intermittent fasting as a fad diet, I think it’s actually a pretty legitimate option,’ said Hannah Kittrell, a registered dietitian and manager of the Mount Sinai PhysioLab in New York City, a nutrition and exercise physiology clinic.

“‘The reason for that is it’s not completely cutting out any food groups,’ said Kittrell, who wasn’t part of the study. ‘It’s not telling you don’t eat carbs, don’t eat fat. It’s just modulating when you’re eating food.’”

Reasons Why Fasting is Helpful, it …

  • Allows your liver to start to use up stored glucose, and your body can burn more fat.
  • Increases your awareness for nutrient-dense foods (and snacks, if you need one).
  • Helps reduce the habit of snacking on empty-calorie foods.
  • Helps increase water intake.
  • Balances blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels.
  • Reduces inflammation.
  • Helps your body complete the digestive cycle, removing waste and toxins from your system.

(Read more of the benefits: 10 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Intermittent Fasting and New York Times’ The Benefits of Intermittent Fasting – Please note: that New York Times sometimes limits access and/or the number of times one can view an article.)

Ways to Do Intermittent Fasting

Each person is unique and will benefit from a personal approach to fasting. You can fast for just a few hours to start. You can try an overnight fast. You can fast for 12 to 16 hours or pick a specific day to fast. Look at these two resources below (and always consult with your physician before starting).

Seven ways to do intermittent fasting

6 Popular Ways to Do Intermittent Fasting

A Growling Stomach Might Not Be a Bad Thing

Before we sign off, here are helpful insights about fasting. We’ve often come to associate a growling stomach with a sign that we’re not balancing our health, blood sugar … whatever you want to call it. A growling stomach can actually be a good thing! It indicates we have emptied our stomachs, which induces waves of motion in your gut to clean up any debris, sweeping our intestines clean and pushing everything down! We want this. While fasting, we do not want to go too far or wait too long to eat, but a little stomach grumble can happen when you’re doing intermittent fasting, a good sign your body is doing what it is designed to do.

Remember that water intake and nutritious whole foods will make your fasting experience much more successful. Your body works well on foods that offer a good balance of healthy fiber, fats, and proteins—so you’re satiated—and you’ll be able to last through the fast. You may need to start with just 10 hours between dinner and breakfast. That’s fine, you can extend that period to longer times as you become accustom to it. I started with 12 hours and am now at a pretty solid 15 hours. I’m working on getting to 16 hours. Not there yet, but we need to have patience with ourselves.

With fasting, you’re working yourself into the habits of eating correctly. If you’re like me, you might have to work into a comfortable time for you. If you have any questions or if you would like help implementing this, email me at devi@simplywholebydevi.com!