Intermittent Fasting | Popular Fasting Variations

Intermittent Fasting | Popular Fasting Variations

16:8

This is a smooth transition from the 21 Day Challenge which involves skipping breakfast and restricting your daily eating period to 8 hours, such as 12–8 p.m. Then you fast for 16 hours in between. This method takes advantage of the overnight fast. You can also adjust your window depending on your schedule for the day and when you eat your most important meals. This method should be very doable for long term sustainability.

20:4

Perhaps after a month or two of doing 16/8, you can sprinkle in some days of fasting for 20 hours and eating within a 4-hour window. It is good to keep the body guessing in order to make you more metabolically flexible. This 4-hour window could be one big meal or two small ones. This way of eating could also be used on a daily basis if 16/8 wasn’t achieving your body/health goals.

OMAD

This could be a transition from 16/8 or 20/4 which would consist of one meal a day which could be at any hour of the day (ex. Dinner to dinner). Sometimes individuals don’t like to squeeze all their calories in a 1-2 hour time frame and I would just make sure you do not eat too late and close to bedtime. I would say this is geared for weight loss and probably not for someone who is looking to gain muscle. This is not for everyone but could be great for sedentary people who want to lose weight. If you’re not working out at all or do it only a few times a week then you don’t really need to eat more often either. OMAD is not ideal if you’re an older person or someone trying to build muscle. The elderly should eat more often (16/8) because it’s harder for them to maintain muscle.

ALTERNATE DAY FASTING

(36 hour fast): This involves fasting for approximately 36 hours. For example, if you eat dinner on day 1, you would fast for all of day 2 and not eat again until breakfast on day 3. For some people, this might be a bit extreme but if you have plateaued in your weight loss journey perhaps adding in a few 36-hour fasts would help. Also, I recommend fasting on days when you have a busy schedule and aren’t sitting at home. Drinking water with minerals is highly recommended too

5:2

For five days per week, you eat normally and don’t have to think about restricting calories. Then, on the other two days, you reduce your calorie intake to a quarter of your daily needs. This is about 500 calories per day for women, and 600 for men. It might even be easier to have the 2 days be a complete fast (just water, tea, and coffee) as opposed to just eating a little because that might drive more hunger. You can choose whichever two days of the week you prefer, as long as there is at least one non-fasting day in between them.

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Intermittent Fasting | Using Yoga and/or Meditation to Beat Stress

Intermittent Fasting | Using Yoga and/or Meditation to Beat Stress

Yoga is defined as physical, mental, and spiritual discipline that’s been originally practiced by Hindu in ancient India. So if you are experiencing too much stress right now, do not get overwhelmed by your situation, just do some simple yoga or meditation to cope with stress effectively. I consider yoga a form of movement meditation.

We have to accept that stress is our constant partner as we go along with our changing environment. Therefore, we must be ready to experience and pass through it when it comes. Also, our response to stress will greatly define our condition as it is only us who can make things better or worse.

One of the best ways to fight stress is to identify your stressor. By doing so you will become more aware of the things that cause you stress and therefore you will be able to apply the appropriate solution. Yoga can help you in this phase. It will help you reflect on which things are giving you stress. Also, it will help discipline your mind to achieve complete serenity which can alleviate anxiety and stress.

Hatha yoga is considered one of the best choices to relieve stress although any type of yoga can be of great help in terms of stress management. Hatha yoga is characterized by specific postures and series of movements that can increase flexibility and strength in the body.

Furthermore, its breathing technique can dramatically help you stay present and quiet your mind which in effect gives you strong control over your body and mind. Your body will then respond positively by producing constructive moods that alleviate stress and overall well-being.

Below are simple meditative procedures that can help you control stress.

  • Sit and rest against the wall to relax. (perhaps on a block if your hips are tight)
  • Position your hand and legs in your most comfortable sitting position.
  • Be still and feel the tranquility brought by silence. Surrender completely and if you have thoughts that is completely normal just let them pass.
  • Focus your concentration on your breath with a soft and gentle rhythm.
  • Stay passive and concentrate more on your breath until you are completely captivated by it. Remain in that state for about 10 Minutes.
  • **Meditation takes time to get used to and it is not easy or else everyone would do it. We live in an environment of constant stimulation which makes it even more important to have times of silence and self-reflection.

    Intermittent Fasting | 3 Keto Wonder Foods

    Intermittent Fasting | 3 Keto Wonder Foods

    Your Keto Wonder Food #1: Eggs

    I don’t know about you, but I’ve always had a softness for eggs. They’re compact, they’re pretty straightforward, they’re definitely easy to prepare, and they are loaded with nutrition.

    Eggs (mostly the yolk) are packed with all sorts of vitamins and nutrients, and they really don’t pack many calories on a gram per gram basis.

    For the longest time, eggs were demonized in the United States and elsewhere as these cholesterol bombs.

    Well, it turns out, after decades of research, that it’s sugar and processed carbs that are making us sick and fat. Not eggs. And definitely not dietary fat. Interesting how things change, right?

    This is why it’s a good idea to add eggs to your eating routine. Maybe you like them boiled, maybe you like them sunny side up, it doesn’t matter. This is a great keto food.

    One to two eggs should be fine. They fill you up and they make you feel fuller for a longer period of time.

    Your Keto Wonder Food #2: Avocado

    As I’ve mentioned earlier, avocado is not exactly a “default taste” for most people. It’s not like you wake up one day and you just say, “I can’t wait to enjoy a plain avocado.” That rarely happens.

    Either you eat avocado in the form of ice cream, or you turn it into guacamole. But as a fruit by itself, added into a salad of greens, that takes some doing. It definitely takes some getting used to.

    But if you really want to take your keto diet to the next level and scale down your carb intake dramatically, load up on avocado. It’s loaded in fat, but it also has dietary fiber and is loaded with vitamins. It’s really good for you.

    And it is actually easy to get used to because it’s very versatile. You can mix it with all sorts of greens. You can mix it with eggs.

    Your Keto Wonder Food #3: Cauliflower

    I include cauliflower here knowing full well that it does have carbohydrates. This is why it’s a good idea to use moderate amounts of cauliflower. Maybe you can prepare it once every other day, or a little more frequently. Here a few more keto vegetables to try – spinach, zucchini, lettuce, asparagus, and kale.

    *Be aware that some vegetables might not react well to your gut microbiome and cause inflammation. If that is the case stick to grass-fed animal proteins and healthy fats.

    I include cauliflower here because a lot of us veterans of the standard American diet are used to eating a significant amount of carbohydrates every day. In my case, I used to eat a lot of rice and pasta.

    Cauliflower saved my life as far as my Keto diet goes. Why? Instead of loading up on brown rice, red rice, or plain steamed white rice, I make cauliflower “rice.” You can turn it into “fried rice” or you can serve it plain fried or sauteed. It has roughly the same consistency as rice, but it’s 92% water and a high % of Vitamin C.

    Now here are some daily tweaks to keep in mind. I don’t expect you to master all of these the first time you try them. Usually, it takes a while to get used to them, but eventually, they will become second nature to you as long as you give them enough focus and importance.

    Intermittent Fasting | Fitness Apps

    Intermittent Fasting | Fitness Apps

    The pace at which life moves these days hardly leaves room for a fitness regime. Either people are rushing between a tough work routine or are bound to spare time for social obligations. The last on the list comes a fitness plan- and making time for the gym makes the majority of the people sigh.

    Fortunately, technology has stretched its wings, allowing the work stricken population of the world to stay in shape- by just access to a good fitness app.

    Here are a few fitness apps that are worth taking a look at…

    1. Workout Trainer

    Workout Trainer by Skimble is a collection of thousands of workouts with step by step video and audio guidance. The timed instructions are helpful for you to understand and get aligned with.

    Whether your goals are six-pack abs or just the usual condition of body, Workout Trainer has something in store for everyone. This app also comes with a customized library where you can make your own workout routine which can also be shared online. Workout Trainer app requires a premium subscription for additional features like exercise routines, HD videos, and adblocking. Overall, it is a good value for the price. For Android and iOS.

    Pros:

  • Large database
  • Easy to use
  • HD videos

    Cons:

  • Ads are an interference
  • Have to pay additionally for new features
  • 2. Nike Training Club

    Nike Training Club joins the fitness world like a pro. With an aesthetically pleasing and comprehensive 100+ workout plans varying from exercises for mobility, endurance, strength, and conditioning. Workouts of 15 minutes and longer allow you to plan your own work routine. AppleTV and Airplay support provides visual instructions, as well as features several famous athletes including Ellie Goulding, Rory McIlroy, and Serena Williams. This application comes with an additional benefit of syncing Run Club with Nike to automatically system your training profile. It allows you to experience a complete view of your fitness. Your profile can also be shared online with friends and Nike community. For Android and iOS.

    Pros:

  • Keeps you motivated
  • 100+ workout plans
  • Celebrity training clips
  • Cons:

  • N/A
  • 3. Freeletics

    Freeletics features multiple workouts including high-intensity interval training. This application is divided into four platforms- BodyWeight training, Fitness Gym, Running Bodyweight, and Nutrition. Simply said, the app includes everything that pushes you towards your fitness limit. From jump squats, sprawls, burpees, pull-ups, and sprints- the program covers it all.

    The comprehensive and well-shot videos demonstrate each exercise, which is great as it keeps you motivated. For the paid subscription you get access to “coach” for different workouts fitting your health and fitness goals. With another additional subscription, you get access to Nutrition guidance. This provides a weekly list of nutrition complementing with your workout plan. This serves a dual purpose and adds more value to your investment. For iPhone & Android users.

    Pros:

  • Professional
  • Includes intense workout training
  • Worth the price
  • Cons:

  • N/A
  • 4. Daily Burn

    The Daily Burn app can be compared to your personal YouTube channel. One of the most detailed applications for fitness, it comes with more than 500 videos of workouts taught by the most professional trainers. Videos range between 15 minutes to one hour. Depending on your investment, you can select the appropriate workout for yourself. If you feel bored with your current plan, you can always subscribe for new videos. This application also includes a variety of twenty programs- from yoga to cardio to complement your walking regimen.

    Each video can be streamed to FireTv, Roku, Apple Tv, Android, Chromecast, iPhone, iPad, and desktop. The goal is simple: access the right workout at the right time. Daily Burn is slightly more expensive compared to the other apps, however it features all the right content you need to get in shape and is recommended as a good value for the price. For iPhone & Android users.

    Pros:

  • Nutrition guide
  • A good approach to fitness
  • Customized workout plans
  • Good customer support
  • Cons:

  • A personal trainer on subscription
  • Tad bit expensive
  • 5. Runkeeper

    Runkeeper is a golden oldie. A fitness tracking application that has been supporting many with their fitness goals for a long time. This application allows you to custom plan your fitness goals and develops your own plan. Once you have created your customized workout routine you can track your walks, runs, and cycling sessions using the GPS system of your phone. It gives you all the boost you need to stay motivated and on track with your fitness routine. By helping you track your progress, it allows you to analyze how well you are doing. You can share your progress online to have your friends cheer you up. It is compatible with iPhone and Android

    Pros:

  • Accurate tracking
  • Simple interface
  • Syncs with Fitbit and Pebble
  • Includes apple watch
  • Cons:

  • Expensive in-app purchase
  • 6. Yoga Studio

    Yoga Studio by Gaiam comes with a library of 70+ meditation and yoga classes that are timed between 10-60 minutes. These yoga sessions are designed to add strength, relaxation, and flexibility to your routine. It aims at building your focus, increasing stamina, and duration of mindfulness. For more advanced yoga you can custom plan your classes in the library. There are more than 300 poses available with 20 pose blocks. You can also download these videos on your phone and play them whenever you have time. It removes the need of the internet which adds more flexibility to your fitness routine. Yoga Studio was developed with the goal of maintaining a more “anywhere, anytime” fitness plan. With sessions as small as that of 10 minutes, it allows you to take a break from your stressful work routine in order to restore the lost balance of your mind and body.

    For Android and iPhone users.

    Pros:

  • More than 300 yoga poses
  • 70+ videos
  • Customized library
  • Relaxation and meditation sessions
  • Cons:

  • N/A
  • Fitness apps remove the bridge of time and space, by allowing people to exercise whenever they have time. With a price much less than that of the gym, there is instant access to professional training and trainers.

    With health routines so upside down, fitness applications help improve health and lifestyle. Fitness at a click away adds more variety and flexibility to life. Whatever your health goals may be, there is an application in accord with it. Those mentioned here can help you select the right one, most suitable for your needs without an expensive gym membership.

    Intermittent Fasting | Clean Eating: Should you care about calories?

    Intermittent Fasting | Clean Eating: Should you care about calories?

    Does the body have some mechanism to count calories? Does the body have sensors to detect calories? No and No 🙂

    Consider two foods of equal caloric value. On the one hand, you have a sugar cookie, and on the other is a plate of lettuce. The calories are identical. OK. So what?

    When you eat those two foods, does your body somehow measure these calories? No.

    The metabolic effect of those two foods is completely different.

  • Sugar cookie will stimulate insulin and no other satiety hormone
  • Lettuce will not stimulate insulin and you will feel fuller.
  • To understand weight loss, we need to understand what our body ‘cares’ about.

  • The answer is clearly not ‘calories. The answer is ‘hormones’, predominantly insulin.
  • Hormones run everything in our body
  • Our body gains or loses fat according to detailed hormonal instructions from our brain.

    The rise and fall of insulin is the main stimulus to weight gain.

    So, foods that stimulate insulin are typically more fattening (cookies). Those that do not (broccoli) are typically not fattening at all.

    Since our body is not likely to learn the language of ‘calories’, we need to learn the language of ‘insulin’, by translating food into insulin effect instead of calories.

    We need to start using the common language of the body – Insulin.

    What’s the most powerful way to control your insulin levels? Start intermittent fasting and eat whole foods that aren’t processed 🙂

    Carbs vs Fats

    Are you a carboholic? I ate this way for a good majority of my life! I realized that if I wanted to lean out and lose those extra 10-15 pounds I needed to replace pasta (refined carbs) with something else.

    So I got into eating salads but it wasn’t filling me up?! Do you have this issue?

    So I made a small tweak – I started adding fats into my salad which helped fill me up and gave me prolonged energy!! Why is this??

    When you are no longer consuming a lot of heavy, refined carbs, the body’s engine will convert to burning fat. It will either burn the fat you have eaten or the fat stored on your body. You are essentially “training” your metabolism to use fats more often and more efficiently!

    On the other hand, when you eat a large plate of carbohydrates, this is followed by an immediate spike in your blood sugar levels. Which causes a sudden release of insulin, which triggers the body to start absorbing the glucose from the blood and potentially storing it as fat.

    And in turn, that then leaves you with a low blood sugar level (and the corresponding low serotonin) which makes you feel tired, energy-less, and hungry. In turn, this leads to snacking behavior.

    Fats on the other hand release much more slowly into the bloodstream, providing you with a steadier and longer-lasting supply of energy without the crash.

    How to Lose Weight With Intermittent Fasting

    When you are eating all day, it will be more difficult for your body to gain access to your body fat to use as energy. Only after most of your glycogen is burned for energy then does your body turn to its stores of fat. So these two compartments of energy are not burned simultaneously.

    First, you need to empty the glycogen storage (fridge) before using your fat storage (freezer). You either burn sugar or fat, but not both. If you continually fill up the fridge 3-6 times a day, then you will never start burning the fat in your freezer. The old method of “calories in, calories out” pretends that all calories are stored equally and burned equally, even though you have two compartments of storage (glucose and fat).

    So the key is to have periods of fasting so your body can gain access to your fat stores instead of always relying on glucose for energy. Balancing out your fasting and feasting times is one key to helping you lose weight.

    In order to ease yourself into fasting, I recommend pushing back breakfast an hour every day until you get to noon or 1 pm. Then this will be your first meal of the day. Doing it this way you take advantage of the overnight fast and are simply pushing back your first meal of the day.

    Along with fasting for a portion of the day here are a few other tips:

  • Eat high-quality, minimally-processed foods. (fish, meat, eggs…)
  • Reduce the amount of carbohydrate in your meal, particularly sugar or simple carbs such as soft drinks, candy, juice, sports drinks, chocolate, cakes, breads, buns, pastries, potatoes, french fries, ice cream, and breakfast cereals.
  • Avoid packaged goods.
  • Buy at local farmers’ markets.
  • You don’t need to count calories.
  • Stop eating when you feel satisfied, healthy, and 80% full.