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 Intermittent fasting
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136 Posts

Posted - August 21 2018 :  06:22:14  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Has anybody tried this? I'm looking to reduce a little belly fat (ahem) and bring down inflammation and normalize hormone levels. Hoping also for a boost in energy and maybe better sleep.

Thoughts? Experiences?


212 Posts

Posted - August 21 2018 :  11:43:49  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The answer is always run more miles (and eat normally).
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735 Posts

Posted - August 25 2018 :  08:56:50  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The science behind caloric restriction with optimal nutrition is voluminous and fascinating. The benefits are astounding, very real and well documented. The observations of beneficial impact are noted down to the gene expression level. It is way more than a means to drop a little weight. I know that you are aware of this since you mention inflammation and hormones and not just weight loss.

If we knew what was good for our physical selves then we’d all be doing some form of calorie restriction in earnest (CR) except for one thing: It’s real tough for us humans to do! Our bodies are wired with programming that essentially says: “Holy Cal! There’s food available therefore I MUST EAT IT NOW!” .. . and so we do. (I know I sure do!!)

Intermittent fasting (IF) is one approach. When I first tried it my main objective was rapid weight loss more than great health. After 12 days I was ready quit.

I alternated between fasting one and two days then ate normal on the feeding (ad libitum) days. I found I was still feeling weak and energy depleted when it was time to resume fasting and I didn’t like it!

Today I favor just restricting calories and increasing exercise for weight loss, then use the occasional fast day(s) to get back on track when I slip a little off my pre-planned weight loss schedule. That works best for me.

I’ve met people who are practicing serious long-term caloric restriction in hopes of increasing life span. To generalize them as a group I’d say they tend to be energetic, driven, highly educated, academically-oriented people. They are quick to point out that although CR does increase lifespan in some species there is insufficient evidence collected to date to prove that it works in humans too.

What the data does prove is that CR can increase the human “health span”. Another observation: All the accomplished CR practitioners I know are very very slender (i.e., almost emaciated looking and sporting BMI's well below 20). I’m not sure I’m real comfortable with that.

Here’s where Intermittent Fasting may come to play: The data suggest that with intermittent fasting a human can attain almost the exact same serious health benefits as traditional caloric restriction. But, by consuming a lot of calories on the feeding days the subject can actually maintain a “normal” body weight without sacrificing those benefits. That’s why I suggest that IF, as a form of CR, gives the practitioner additional elements of control and maybe it can help make the practice of CR more palatable.

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136 Posts

Posted - August 28 2018 :  09:35:27  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks for your input, with all the good information in there.

Today is day 8 of my new IF regimen. I try to restrict my eating hours to between 10 AM and 7 PM (so 15 hours of fasting rather than the more traditional 16). I may try to extend it to 16 if I feel that would be beneficial but I think 15 hours is good enough, for now. What I found so far is that I am much more conscious of what I do eat when it's time to eat, without counting calories. I used to eat more sweet things but I don't have much time to fit them in during the 9 hours so I believe that is a huge benefit to my health right there.

What it boils down to is I end up skipping my usual sweet, less-than-nutritious breakfast and my first meal tends to be savory and has protein. After that, I'm not really hungry for a while so I'll have a snack around 3 or 3:30 and then dinner at 6:30. I work out in the morning and it hasn't been a problem to work out on an empty stomach.

My body probably needs a few more days to adjust but so far, I feel pretty good.
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