01/4How to effectively follow Intermittent Fasting
Fasting has been an age-old practice that is said to carry a number of benefits with itself. The practice of fasting not only helps in flushing out all the toxins from the body but also give a generous boost to the metabolism. Modern twists to this ancient practice come in different styles, forms and methods. Intermittent Fasting is one of them. You might have heard of this, as this style has gained popularity, especially among millennials in recent years, as it is considered less restrictive and offers more flexibility. Many people might argue that fasting is not a healthy option to inculcate in daily routine, but when done in the right manner, intermittent fasting can benefit your health in a number of ways. Here is how you can extract maximum benefits from this diet. (image credits- istock)
02/4What Is Intermittent Fasting?
The ratio of 16:8 is one of the most popular styles of fasting and is also known as intermittent fasting, a sustainable way to burn fat in order to lose weight. There are many diets that often set strict rules and regulations, but 16:8 intermittent fasting is easy to follow and can provide real results with minimal effort. It shows an effective result and can easily fit into anybody's lifestyle. Intermittent fasting involves eating only during an eight-hour window and fasting for the remaining 16 hours. You can repeat this cycle as frequently as you would like to. Start with once or twice per week to every day, depending on the nutritional needs and personal preferences. (image credits- istock)
03/4Benefits of the 16:8 Diet
16:8 fasting boosts metabolism, it cuts down the calories and this helps the weight loss process. Intermittent fasting can help keep the cholesterol in check when combined with a nutritious diet and regular exercise.
It manages food habits, controls calorie intake, and keeps the cholesterol level in check. These are the contributing factors to a healthy heart. The diet helps in reducing insulin resistance which helps in diabetes management.
It also helps to enhance brain functioning, improve concentration, protect against age-related memory loss and reduce the levels of cortisol in the body, which means less stress.
The intermittent diet plan helps prevent and manage diseases such as diabetes, certain heart conditions, some types of cancers, and some neurodegenerative diseases. (image credits- istock)
04/4Must have foods during intermittent fasting
One doesn't have to count and restrict the calories, as long as you eat healthily in the given 8 hour time frame. While the 16:8 diet does not specify what food to include and what to avoid, it is beneficial as it maximises the potential of the diet, if one sticks to healthy and nutritious options in the eight-hour window.
Balancing your meals with a good variety of healthy whole foods is very important. One must include food such as:
- Fruit: Apples, bananas, berries, oranges, pears, etc.
- Vegetables: Broccoli, cauliflower, cucumbers, leafy greens, tomatoes, etc.
- Whole grains: Barley, quinoa, rice, oats, etc.
- Healthy fats: Avocados, coconut oil and olive oil
- Sources of protein: Eggs, fish, legumes, meat, nuts, poultry, seeds, etc.
While fasting, avoid, junk as well as processed foods. One should consume water regularly throughout the day; this will help control the appetite. Try meditation during the fasting period, to allow hunger pangs to pass and exercise just before or during the eating window as it will trigger hunger and ensure that you are full.
With inputs from: Honey Thaker, Head Nutritionist - Fitness Science & Nutrition, Purenutrition.in