Intermittent fasting is where you allow your body a significant amount of time to have a break from digesting food. The period is around 12 - 14 hours and is easiest to do overnight.
Why do intermittent fasting?
The concept of fasting has been widely used since records began. Digesting food takes a lot of energy. Our bodies are supposed to have a period of complete rest where our parasympathetic nervous system is allowed to focus on repair and growth. It also uses this time to process all of the metabolic waste that we have accumulated throughout the day. When we let this happen for around 12 - 14 hours each night, it has been shown to have numerous health benefits. Besides reducing the oxidative stress on the body, fasting also helps the body deal with all types of stress at a cellular level. Is is also beneficial for:
Balancing blood sugar
Regulating insulin resistance
Supportive to neurological function
Supportive to the liver
How to do intermittent fasting
The easiest way to begin intermittent fasting is to do time restricted eating. Pick a time after your evening meal where you will not eat anything for the rest of the evening. 7- 8pm is a good cut-off time. Do not eat anything or drink anything other than water or herbal tea for twelve hours, until 7 - 8 am. If you can do this at least three or four times a week you will really support your blood sugar balance.
As your blood sugar balances out over time, you can stretch the window out to 14 hours for more benefit. To reap the rewards of intermittent fasting, try to fill your meals and snacks during the day with an many nutrient rich items as you can
It`s not for everyone...
If you have a history of eating disorders, intermittent fasting may not be the right choice for you. It could trigger symptoms of unhealthy habits around food.
If you suffer from extreme blood sugar drops then now is not the time to do this.
If you have gall stones or problems with your gall bladder, fasting could increase the risk of gallstones
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding then you should not do this.
If you are extremely fatigued or have adrenal issues then now is not the time to try this.
If you are recovering from an illness you shouldn`t do intermittent fasting until you are strong again.
Thrive Clinical Nutrition and Naturopathic Health Eve Morley BA hons. NT. FNTP. AMNNA. Soc Nat
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