The Basics of Intermittent Fasting

The Basics of Intermittent Fasting
Many diets rely on the theory of fasting as the core of the process. This includes avoiding foods during certain times, skipping meals, restricting your diet to certain foods or consuming no solid foods. The concept behind intermittent fasting is nothing new, if you consider that our early ancestors had to “fast” while chasing down their next meal or finding edible foods.

The general concern with fasting is the potential impact on the human body, such as stress on the gastrointestinal system and metabolism. Also, practiced as part of a diet, people who fast often regain any weight lost and sometimes more (Anson, 2003). These issues are not necessarily due to the intermittent fast, but rather with the way people diet by restricting foods for long periods of time and failing to stay appropriately hydrated.

What is Intermittent Fasting?
Understanding the difference between fasting and intermittent fasting can help explain why many diets fail: the practice of an all or nothing approach. Long-term fasting, in which a person fails to eat or restricts required nutrition for long periods of time, can be harmful to the body. Most experts agree that people should consult their medical providers before starting any fast because if done inappropriately, fasting can lead to damage of the gastrointestinal system or circadian rhythm (Mattson, 2014). As an alternative to a full fast, intermittent fasting involves limiting food intake for shorter and more specified periods of time. The practice is done in brief intervals, such as two days of fasting each week (known as the 5:2 diet), only eating once in a 24-hour period, or eating early in the day and fasting till an evening meal.

What Does Research Indicate?
Studies of fasting— from experiments on animals to longitudinal studies of people dieting—and its effects on the body have varied. In one particular fasting study with rats, researchers used extreme food restrictions, to the point of impacting organs. They concluded with a recommendation that humans avoid taking intermittent fasting to this level and instead work with their physicians to develop plans where food intake is reduced for only short periods of time (Anson, 2003).

Additional animal studies have found that controlled fasting may improve the subject’s health indicators including blood pressure, insulin sensitivity and inflammation. Although results were reported in reference to animal subjects, researchers believe the improvements were due to the cells’ ability to handle stress better as a result of fasting (Mattson, 2014). The author also cited a few studies indicating that intermittent fasting may have a positive impact on helping to lower the risk of certain cancers as well as potentially protecting brain cells against diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

Although studies in this area lack conclusive results that negate the cost benefit analysis of fasting on the human body, most studies agree that fasting is a natural experience that may help our bodies adapt. They caution that although weight loss may be achieved from intermittent fasting if done correctly, fasting should done for brief periods of time and only after consulting with a physician to ensure that this approach is medically appropriate.

References
Anson, RM (2003). Intermittent fasting dissociates beneficial effects of dietary restriction on glucose metabolism and neuronal resistance to injury from caloric intake. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, FASEBJournal.

Mattson, MP (February 4, 2014). fasting: molecular mechanisms and clinical applications. Cell Metabolism, 19, 1932-7420: 181–92.

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  • Manish Renu

    Anuj has been the best trainer that I have hired till date, I have taken help from many trainers in the past with minimal or no result however with Anuj, I have had a different experience altogether. He is pretty knowledgeable, gives you honest & right suggestions and keeps you motivated in order to achieve the overall fitness goal. His workout & diet plan for me helped me in losing close to 7 kgs within a month. I would highly recommend people struggling with their fitness to at least have a word with him and see how it goes. I'm sure with his guidance and support you can definitely achieve your fitness goals. ..

  • Shradha Robert

    I finally took the plunge about 6 months back and the skeptic in me decided to get a personal fitness trainer through an app called Urban Clap. Of all the potential trainers that I received calls from, Anuj sounded the most professional and aware. Still a little hesitant, i decided to meet him to chalk out a plan and do some expectation setting. He came across very confident, courteous and passionate about his craft; someone who was extremely well-informed and knew exactly what he was talking about! There's always science and logic behind his explanations; be it the exercises or nutrition which for me makes him that much more reliable and his instructions that much easier to follow. Now after 6 months, in spite of a few misses on my part in the form of a sudden illness and sometimes sheer inconsistency and a lack of will, I've managed to shed about 14 kilos! Always ready to guide & motivate and also be strict wherever needed, whether it was training physically with him or simply following his carefully designed diet and exercise plans remotely, he has invariably been a great support. Here's wishing Anuj and SPT lots of success in the days to come! Cheers!! ..

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    Hi, so finally i am writing this, b4 i start lemme tel you this guy "ANUJ TYAGI" , he is a great human being before a fitness trainer . I met him when i was struggling with my fitness issues and had no one to actually guide me or tell me about how a body functions (how a body functions, what it needs and more over exercises that one has to perform ) . Just one amazing day i have asked him after finding his big poster in "DRONACHARYA THE GYM" , about how he built such an amazing physique starting that day and now ,its been almost a year he is my fitness expert . And i can proudly say he is a good soul and he has the vision to motivate to get fit because for initial few months i was being coached for free, i wasn't paying anything and after spending a good spam of 3 months , i have realized this guy should be my trainer because he knows what a body need and how it works and that too with out any Suppliments or steroids . I can proudly say he helped me to gain the physique that i have now . Three months TRANSFORMATION period , i cant forget that , be it diet , protein or exercise , he guided me with everything. Thank you so much much for being there and supporting me and hope to get trained by you soon...

  • Rishabh Kumar

    I was in a doubt to hire a trainer from a website as I have always taken training from the Gym itself. Anuj Tyagi proved me wrong by providing me well balanced meal plan and workout schedule as per my needs. He is the most humble trainer that I have spoken to. Appreciate the way he explains everything. I learnt much more from him online than I ever did during my Live PT sessions in the gym...

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    This May sound cliche coming from a brother but believe me if you are looking for genuine guidance w.r.t. your fitness goals then Anuj Tyagi is the right person for you. He is extremely focused when it comes to his client's transformations. For Anuj, it is not only about getting slim/shredding weight or bulking up those heavy muscles. He believes in total fitness. He will prepare your training and diet plan as per your goals. And if you follow his prescribed regime then I am sure you will be healthier........ ...

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