In recent years, more and more women have been adopting the practice of intermittent fasting in their endeavor to lose weight. While this method has been proven to provide many health benefits, it also exposes you to certain dangers. This article looks at some of the things you should and should not do when you fast intermittently.
Benefits and Risks of Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is an effective way to lose weight because it reduces calorie intake and increases basal metabolic rate. In a study published by the National Institute of Health, the basal metabolic rates of subjects went up by about 0.56 kilojoules per minute from the first to the third day of fasting. Besides helping you lose weight, intermittent fasting can also boost your immune system and prevent cardiovascular diseases, neurological problems, cancer, diabetes, and aging.
Some women complained that intermittent fasting had caused them to stop menstruating, enter into early menopause, and experience raging premenstrual syndrome. Then again, there are also women who said they benefitted from it, experiencing reduced mood swings and brain fog. Intermittent fasting has also been linked to other health risks such as eating disorders, increased cortisol levels, and inflammation. Here are some dos and don’ts to consider.
Do Keep Track of Your Hormone Health
Since intermittent fasting puts stress on your body, it can easily result in a hormonal imbalance. As such, it is important that you check the state of your hormones and stress levels before you begin.
Do Focus on Fats
To make sure that you will not experience a big calorie deficit, you should follow a diet that mainly consists of nutrient-dense fats. These fats can be found in properly raised animals, organic dairy, unsweetened coconut products, nuts, eggs, avocado, and olives.
Do Start Slow
To get the best results from intermittent fasting, you need to ease into it. Get yourself fat-adapted first with a high-fat diet for three to four weeks. Then, you can start doing intermittent fasting a few days a week. If you do find yourself experiencing adverse reactions to the fasting, then slow down and take a couple of days off the schedule before recommencing.
Don’t Go on a Diet
Dieting while you are fasting intermittently can lead to failure, bingeing, hormonal issues, and health problems. When it is time to eat, you need to eat.
Don’t Workout Intensely
Avoid working out intensely until you know how your body reacts to intermittent fasting. After you have adapted to the change, you will feel better during workouts. Then, you can start to increase your workout intensity.
Intermittent fasting may not work for everyone. If it makes you feel tired, weak, or dizzy, or you just do not like it, then consider alternative methods of weight loss.
Jane Sandwood is a professional freelance writer with over 10 years’ experience in many different fields. She decided to move into freelancing to take advantage of the flexibility and work-life balance it offers. Sally has a particular interest in health, fitness, and nutrition which is where she currently focuses much of her work.