Read This Before You Start Fasting for Weight Loss
You have other options.
BY Sarah Rense | May 16, 2017 | Fitness & Health
Intermittent fasting, or feeding heavily in between periods of not eating, does work as a weight loss technique. That's promising, especially as Intermittent Fasting (IF) is one of the more recent somewhat-controversial dieting trends to crop up. The flip side is that IF does not produce better results than other calorie-restrictive diets, according to a new study—no matter how much harsher fasting may seem than eating lean.
The study, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, divided 100 obese adults into three groups: an alternate-day fasting group, a calorie restricting group, and a control group. The fasters consumed about 500 calories total on fasting days—25 percent of recommended daily intake—and 125 percent of recommended daily intake on feast days. The restricting group consumed about 75 percent of recommended calories every day. Despite the different approaches, weight loss at the end of one year for the fasters was "not significantly different" than for the restrictors (nor did they have better heart health); the fasters lost 6 percent of their body weight, the restrictors lost 5.3 percent.
Beyond that, alternate-day fasting might not be practical. The fasting group had an almost 10 percent higher quitting rate than the restricting group, even though they were allowed to eat richly on off days. They also cheated more on their fasting days, exceeding the 500-calorie limit they were given. "I think that there's some hope that this alternate-day fast, or modified fast, would be a better or easier strategy, but ... the dropout rate is kind of alarming," study co-author Eric Ravussin told CNN.
Essentially, pick your poison: intermittent fasting or a calorie-restrictive diet. A normal diet might seem more accessible, but there are a whole lot of benefits not regarding weight loss that has cropped up in studies about intermittent fasting, including decreased risk of heart disease, better cholesterol, and increased lifespan. Or, combine the two. Fasting one day a week plus limiting calories the other six days produced the best weight loss results for obese women in one study. There's a small-scale approach as well: Fasting before a morning workout effectively burned more fat than working out after eating breakfast, as a recent study found, and had promising effects on the metabolism.
However you go about it, on whatever timeline you choose, feast and famine and feast again works for weight loss. It just might not work better than other approaches.
From: Esquire US