With the holidays now behind us, many of us may find ourselves with a few extra pounds to shed. But with so many diets out there, how do you know which one to choose? One that has been gaining popularity in recent years is intermittent fasting, a diet that has been embraced by celebrities like Chris Pratt and Halle Berry. But is it really effective? In this article, we’ll explore the basics of intermittent fasting, its benefits and drawbacks, and whether or not it’s worth trying in your quest to lose weight after the holidays.
What do Chris Pratt, Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry and Kourtney Kardashian have in common? All of them are crazy about intermittent fasting – a diet that turned the world of fitness upside down.
We asked the experts what it is. To understand if you should include this diet in your plans for 2022.
What is the point of intermittent fasting?
Unlike many types of nutrition, intermittent fasting gives you choices. You can decide when you don’t eat. There are two most common variations of this diet. 16:8 – you can eat whatever you want for eight hours, but starve the rest of the 16. And 5:2 – in this case, you eat in your usual mode for five days, and then reduce the number of calories consumed to 500 -600 on the other two days of the week.
“It doesn’t matter how you stick to this diet. The bottom line is that you begin to consume less energy. And therefore, your body begins to use its own nutrient reserves to produce it, says an expert. “Otherwise, the weight won’t come off.”
What are the benefits?
A recent study by the German Cancer Research Center found that intermittent fasting actually “helps you lose weight and improves health” and also removes fat from the liver. A study from the University of Southern California found that this diet reduces the risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and other age-related diseases. And although scientists stress the need for more testing, the results of those already conducted are encouraging.
Most people who are in favor of intermittent fasting say that it helps not only to lose weight in general, but also to remove belly fat. Yes, this is not scientifically confirmed, but this is exactly what those who dream of the perfect press need.
What are the disadvantages?
“There really isn’t any solid evidence for the benefit of this diet,” says the expert. And even if some studies have seen positive results in those who followed intermittent fasting, they were practically no different from the results of people who followed other diets. This type of fasting is not much better than its alternatives. (The expert also notes that this diet is contraindicated for some people: pregnant women, people with diabetes, cancer, or digestive disorders.)
The most effective diets are the ones that are easy to follow. And again, intermittent fasting is no better than other ways to lose weight in this regard. “After you stop sticking to this diet, will you start eating better? asks the expert. “I know people who say, ‘Now I’m going to overeat a lot for five days, but in the next two I’ll definitely compensate by eating right,’ but that’s not how it works.”
“In addition, for many people, not eating 16 hours is almost impossible,” says a nutritionist. She recommends not eating for 12 hours, part of which is during sleep. She says the 16-hour fast is especially hard for those who train in the morning or late at night. “It makes you feel unhappy and makes you crave overeating.”
Is it worth trying?
As you can see, this is not a miracle diet. But Lisa Sasson is not against intermittent fasting: “I have worked with people who need the realization that they can control their weight. And thanks to this food, they really felt it.”
Of the two most popular intermittent fasting options, Sasson leans towards 5:2. Such a regime, in her opinion, is easier to adhere to. Because you’re cutting down on food intake to just twice a week. But you must clearly control what you eat during these two days. And drink plenty of water.
If long periods without tasty food seem too painful for you, don’t worry: studies have confirmed that the usual calorie reduction we eat is just as safe and effective as intermittent fasting. And, most likely, soon everyone will go crazy on a completely new diet.
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