Intermittent Fasting for Beginners: 3 Tips to Start Fasting
Updated: Nov 16, 2022
Intermittent fasting is a controversial approach to fat loss. To be clear, it is not a diet but an eating schedule. If done incorrectly it can cause more harm than good. But when done correctly, it can provide many health benefits beyond fat loss.
Research has shown that fasting may increase human growth hormone, which is important for keeping us lean and preserving muscle, improve insulin sensitivity, and improve mitochondrial function e.g. our energy production. It is also a great way to improve gut health.
I often recommend some form of intermittent fasting to my clients to help them improve gut health with digestive rest and to support fat loss. However it’s important to learn the correct way to do intermittent fasting!
Here are three tips to successful intermittent fasting;
1. Do not skip breakfast. Simply push back breakfast. Intermittent fasting works best if you are not severely restricting calories. Often, when we skip a meal we decrease our calories too significantly, and the fat loss benefits are short-lived. My recommendation is to continue eating three meals a day in a shorter window of time.
2. Listen to your body. A 16 hour fast may not be appropriate for everyone. Depending on your stress level, your health history, your activity level and your goals, you may respond better to a shorter fast. At minimum, everyone should and can do 12 hour fast on a daily basis. But beyond that will be very individual and may require some experimentation.
3. Avoid too much caffeine during your fasting window. Yes, I may get flack for this, but caffeine on an empty stomach can be very taxing to your adrenal hormones over time. Take it from me! I’ve experienced it myself. While this is not the case for everyone, I recommend waiting to drink coffee until you are breaking your fast or close to breaking your fast. Going for five hours on coffee alone may not give you the results you want.
Ready to implement intermittent fasting into your schedule? My FASTer Way to Fat Loss program is a great introduction to intermittent fasting for your body type. With weekly trainings from me, a weekly meal plan, daily at home workouts, and access to an exclusive app, you will learn how to use strategies like intermittent fasting for fat loss.