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7 Common Intermittent Fasting Myths, Debunked

Separate reality from fiction in the case of myths about intermittent fasting.

If you’re working towards intermittent fasting—or contemplating working towards it—it’s essential to get the proper info.

With the info in hand, you’re extra prone to quick correctly. And while you quick correctly, you’re extra prone to expertise the fats loss, secure vitality, and diminished cravings which have made intermittent fasting standard.

Unfortunately, there’s a lot of misinformation on the market. You’ve most likely heard issues like: Fasting slows your metabolism… you shouldn’t drink water on a quick… or, fasting shrivels up your muscle groups. 

These fasting myths, nonetheless, aren’t based mostly in science. Instead, they’re based mostly on rumor, conjecture, and a misplaced reliance on typical knowledge.

Today we’ll be debunking the highest intermittent fasting myths. Why? So you can also make better-informed selections about intermittent fasting as a way for bettering your well being.

What Is Intermittent Fasting?

Intermittent fasting is the easy follow of taking common breaks from meals. These breaks can vary from 12 hours to about 36 hours, relying on the protocol you comply with.

The in a single day quick, additionally referred to as 12/12, is the only type of intermittent fasting. Other standard fasting protocols embody:

  • 16/eight: For 16/eight, you eat all of your day by day energy in an eight-hour window.
  • OMAD: OMAD stands for one-meal-per-day.
  • 5/2: This technique entails 5 days of normal feeding and two non-consecutive fasting days every week.
  • Alternate-day fasting: When you follow ADF, you quick each different day.

Most individuals follow intermittent fasting to drop some weight, however different advantages embody improved intestine well being, promotion of longevity, and enhanced cognitive operate.

What’s driving these advantages? Well, while you quick, it tells your physique to cease burning sugar and begin burning fats. This distinctive metabolic state is named ketosis, and it’s why the keto food plan is so helpful.

Simply put, each fasting and keto spur your metabolism to burn extra fats. Then you begin dropping physique fats, producing ketones, and cruising by means of the day with easy and regular vitality. Not dangerous!

Man seasoning meat and veggies on a grill

7 Myths About Intermittent Fasting

Now that you simply’ve realized what intermittent fasting is, it’s time to study what it isn’t. Let’s bust some fasting myths, lets?

Myth #1: Fasting decreases your metabolism

Some individuals fear that fasting lowers your resting metabolic fee (in different phrases, that fasting makes you burn fewer energy at relaxation). The concern is that while you begin consuming usually once more, you’ll pile on weight like a three-toed sloth.

This is what occurs on calorie-restriction diets, which contain consuming 50 to 85 p.c of the meals your physique requires on a long-term day by day foundation. Your metabolism adapts to the decrease vitality consumption, and it could actually keep that approach for years.

If you’ve ever watched The Biggest Loser, you’ve seen calorie restriction in motion. The contestants drop some weight, however they virtually all the time acquire it again. Inconveniently for viewers, they by no means point out that half on the present.

Does the identical occur with intermittent fasting? It seems not. In a 2005 research revealed within the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, non-obese individuals who practiced alternate-day fasting maintained a traditional metabolic fee for almost all of three weeks—all whereas burning extra fats.

Myth #2: You shouldn’t drink water whereas fasting

Some spiritual fasts, like Ramadan fasting, contain each meals and water restriction. Perhaps unrelated, plenty of claims have surfaced that no-water fasts are optimum for well being.

Unfortunately, since fasting has a diuretic impact, limiting water can result in harmful dehydration. That’s why physicians pay shut consideration to fluid consumption when supervising sufferers present process therapeutic fasts. Physicians additionally pay shut consideration to electrolytes like sodium and potassium, each of that are energetically peed out throughout fasting.

The takeaway? Drink water throughout a quick, and contemplate supplementing with potassium and sodium for fasts longer than 13 or 14 hours.

Man drinking water on a hike even though he is intermittent fasting

Myth #three: You can’t acquire muscle whereas fasting

Fasting doesn’t look like one of the best ways to construct muscle. After all, don’t you want to pound protein shakes?

Well, you do want protein, however you don’t want it 24/7. In one 2019 research, as an example, energetic girls working towards 16/eight fasting gained simply as a lot muscle and energy as girls consuming on a extra typical schedule.

Here’s the factor. Your physique works onerous to protect muscle in occasions of shortage. When you quick, you flip to physique fats (not muscle) for vitality wants.

Think about it this manner: If people burned by means of muscle throughout a quick, our ancestors would have been too weak to hunt!

Myth #four: Fasting makes you overindulge

After a quick, you’ll be hungry. This starvation, many assume, will drive subsequent overeating.

The proof, nonetheless, doesn’t help this concern. Most fasting research permit individuals to eat as a lot as they like—a follow referred to as advert libitum feeding. They eat their fill, and so they nonetheless drop some weight.

In reality, you’ll most likely eat much less, no more, on most intermittent fasting protocols. This delicate calorie restriction, in flip, promotes light weight reduction with out slowing your metabolism.

Myth #5: It’s for everybody

Intermittent fasting is standard proper now. In some circumstances, it’s being marketed as helpful for all individuals, on a regular basis.

But whereas fasting is secure and wholesome for most individuals, sure teams ought to steer clear. These teams embody:

  • kids
  • pregnant and nursing girls
  • underweight individuals

The above teams have to eat extra meals, not much less. The danger of nutrient deficiency outweighs any potential fasting advantages.

Those who’ve excessive blood sugar also needs to proceed with warning. While fasting will be therapeutic for this inhabitants, medical supervision is crucial to stop dangerously low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) from occurring.

Myth #6: Fasting saps your vitality

Food is gasoline. Without it, gained’t your vitality ranges plummet?

Eventually, sure. But while you quick intermittently, your cells faucet into an alternate vitality supply: physique fats. And there’s a lot of that to go round.

That’s proper. Even a lean individual (e.g., 150 kilos with 10 p.c physique fats) has spectacular fats shops to help vitality wants whereas fasting. If you do the mathematics, 15 kilos of fats interprets to over 60,000 energy of vitality!

In reality, many individuals report higher vitality once they train in a fasted state. It is smart, contemplating that blood is diverted away from muscle groups—and in the direction of digestive organs—after a big meal.

Woman focused at work at home office, busting the intermittent fasting myth that fasting saps energy and focus

Myth #7: You can’t focus whereas fasting

Think again to the final time you had been ravenously hungry. It most likely wasn’t your most zen second.

But for those who undertake a daily follow of intermittent fasting, you shouldn’t expertise this “hangry” state. When your cells adapt to utilizing physique fats for vitality, your starvation hormones stabilize.

Burning physique fats additionally produces ketones—tiny molecules that gasoline your mind with clear, environment friendly vitality. Promoting a state of ketosis, it’s been proven, improves focus, consideration, and focus in older adults.

The Bottom lINE

It’s wonderful what you are able to do in your physique, mind, and well being with this straightforward and versatile consuming technique.

Once you get previous misinformed intermittent fasting myths, you’ll understand that many individuals find yourself carrying out extra whereas fasting.

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