As I mentioned in my chronic inflammation and weight loss post, my doctor recommended intermittent fasting. I didn’t realize, at the time, just how many different types of intermittent fasting there are. Researching intermittent fasting can be a bit like falling down the rabbit hole. There is so much information. As you consider making changes to your way of eating, be sure to understand the different types of intermittent fasting. Here are a few things I’ve learned along the way.
Types of Intermittent Fasting
You may want to start fasting for both your physical and mental health. Intermittent fasting has provided great results for many people looking to lose weight and naturally become healthier, and it can do the same for you. However, you need to know about the types of intermittent fasting to help you decide which one to try for the first time. Understanding what contributes to obesity, as well as different fasting styles, can help you make the right choice for your health and your body.
The 16/8 fasting method is one of the most popular types of fasting. It is also referred to as the 8 hour diet, because it involves eating within an 8-hour window while fasting for an additional 16 hours. While it may initially sound like a long time to go without food, you may spend a good portion of this time sleeping.
If you had your last meal at 6 PM, you would be ready to break your fast by 10 AM. You would then have the opportunity to eat your meals between the hours of 10 AM and 6 PM, giving you enough time to eat a hearty breakfast, lunch, and dinner before beginning your fast all over again.
OMAD, or one meal a day, fasting is also known as whole day fasting. In this fasting type, you fast for 22- 23 hours, then consume one meal in the remaining 1-2 hours. Many people choose to use dinner as their meal of the day, but it can be any of the three meals. with this way of eating, it can be difficult to consume enough calories/nutrients in one sitting, which is why some people extend their eating window to the two hours.
The Warrior Diet
On the Warrior Diet, you consume raw fruits and vegetables during the day and eating one huge meal at night. It is a way of eating that cycles short windows of feasting with extended periods of little food intake. This way of eating encourages consumption of small amounts of raw fruits and vegetables, some dairy products, hard-boiled eggs, and non-calorie fluids during the 20-hour “fast” period. This diet cycles through phases, including a phase of high fat food intake and a phase that alternates high carb and high protein days.
I personally couldn’t get behind this way of eating, because it is not research or science based.
The 5/2 fasting method has started to increase in popularity over the years. During the weekdays, you would eat as you usually would without fasting for extended periods. However, during the weekend or at least two days per week, you would only have around 600 calories per day.
Restricting calorie consumption is not for everyone, but it can work if you are motivated to see results. When trying only to consume around 600 calories, it is essential to drink lots of water for hydration purposes and consume low-calorie food options, such as string cheese, eggs, and roasted vegetables.
Eat Stop Eat
Eat stop eat is another intermittent fasting option to consider trying. With this method, you will fast for a full 24 hours at least once or twice per week. On the other days of the week, you get to eat what you want, but in moderation. It does not mean that you should binge on all your favorite junk food.
However, you can have meals throughout the day without going too many hours without having something to eat. Sticking with this intermittent fasting method is a bit more challenging, but if you are motivated enough, you can get through it and reward yourself with a delicious meal at the end of your fast.
Alternate Day Fasting
Alternating days provides you with more flexibility to eat what you want. You would essentially eat whatever you would like to consume one day, fast the next, and then go back to eating what you want the next day. When you are fasting, you could keep yourself motivated by remembering that you will get to have the meals you want to have on the following day.
Intermittent fasting is known for providing many health benefits. It can help lower cholesterol, assist with weight loss, and even improve mental clarity. These are four of the intermittent fasting options worth trying to see which one you prefer the most and would like to stick to for a while. There are several types of intermittent fasting, which one is your favorite?
Which Intermittent Fast is Right For You
I’m sure I’ve probably missed a fasting method or two, so I may come back and add to this article. At the end of the day, you should work with your health care professional to determine which intermittent fast is right for you. I’ve personally chosen to combine OMAD and Keto, as it seems to give me better glucose management and controls the symptoms of inflammation better for me.