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Why intermittent fasting is not a silver bullet for weight loss

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The last 15 months have not been kind to our bodies. A more sedentary lifestyle and the pursuit of something to mitigate the horrors of deadly pandemics around the world have forced us into biscuit tins and takeaway delivery apps. In the first three months of the pandemic, the British were reported to have gained 1.6 to 6.5 pounds.

Recognizing the possibility of damage, we have begun to take action toward the resumption of society. According to a survey by the British Nutrition Foundation, 6 out of 10 of us have changed their diet at least once in the past year to improve their health. Some of us will turn to one of the most popular and trendy diets of the last decade: welcomed for intermittent fasting, health benefits and their ability to shift pounds. It was.

However, there is increasing uncertainty as to whether it will work.

New academic studies show that intermittent fasting every other day may not be as effective. Switching between a normal diet day and a fasting day reduces your ability to lose fat compared to a “traditional” diet that limits your daily calorie intake. Instead of stopping eating altogether for days, you can lose weight by reducing a small amount of calories each day.

James Betts of the University of Bath first devised his work 10 years ago. “It’s interesting to see fasting become more popular with the general public and many studies published in scientific journals, but I’ve always missed the question of whether the benefits of fasting are simply due to weight loss. “I will,” he says. “I wanted to know if there were any special benefits of fasting,” he says. He admits that the concept of calorie restriction, which causes changes in the body’s metabolism, often cited as one of its benefits, is theoretically plausible – and what he thinks will be supported by the results. .. But it wasn’t. “Any meal is a meal,” he says.

The principle of intermittent fasting is simple. Limit your calorie intake to 500 or 600 calories a day at certain times (most commonly two days a week) and eat the remaining five as usual. However, you have a variety of options, from fasting every other day with zero calories passing through your lips on a particular day to the following diets: 16: 8, you don’t eat a significant portion of the day.. “It’s like buying a car. You can go from an SUV to a sports car,” says nutritionist Duane Mellor.

The idea is to reduce your calorie intake, stimulate your body to survive in a lesser life, and replicate the way our ancestors survived in a hunter-gatherer society. Theoretically, intermittent fasting means changing hormone levels to stimulate weight loss, lower insulin levels, and release the fat-burning hormone norepinephrine.

The diet law is considered more achievable than other methods because it bans your favorite foods for a short period of time, rather than feeling miserable about avoiding your favorite foods all the time. .. It’s even digitized by Noom, an app that is alleged to help you track calorie-restricted days and guide you through intermittent fasting journeys.

John Gaskel is one of those who turned to intermittent fasting and tried to change the blockage weight. A 42-year-old woman from Crosby, who had previously succeeded in fasting (just drinking water), turned out to be unsustainable. He currently uses a 20: 4 intermittent fasting plan and eats in a four-hour time frame each day. “Do you miss the latte? Of course,” he says. “Do you miss chocolate biscuits with coffee? Of course I do. But with a little discipline, I will enjoy them in the future, of course I will.” After a month of dieting He lost £ 11 and is now the 17th £ 5.

“Studies on various weight loss diets show that no diet is better than everything else, so it depends on what works for the individual,” says Brigitte Beneram of the British Nutrition Foundation. I will. “In order for intermittent fasting to work, we must adhere to the calorie restriction on“ fasting days ”and not go outboard on“ non-fasting ”days. Otherwise, you won’t run out of calories to lose weight. “

“There is an interesting mechanism in research, and there is good science to show that energy intake is a bit lower under continuous limits than at intermittent limits,” says Meller. “But you’re seeing weight loss in people who really don’t need to lose weight.” Betts and colleagues’ intermittent fasting has been tested in people who are already lean individuals – people classified as overweight. The cohort is still waiting to report the data.

Beneram points out that the study was conducted for only three weeks, but a long-term study comparing different diets found that all had similar results when compared over the course of a year. I did. “The success of any diet depends on your ability to stick to it, and different approaches work for different people,” she says.

“There is no magic. I thought there was no magic about intermittent fasting,” Meller adds. “This is just one way to achieve energy limits.” The various flavors of intermittent fasting are about finding an acceptable way for individuals to decide when and how to reduce. He says. “There are some theories that could reset the microbiome, but the biggest effect is that you can’t eat those biscuits when you’re watching a cooking show because you only eat 8 hours a day.” He says.

Therefore, the secret trick that is thought to unleash your body and burn pounds seems to be actually the oldest trick in the book. You lose weight by consuming less calories than usual. No more, no less.

But if intermittent fasting is probably not for everyone and not as effective as initially thought, is there one best way to shift the blockade pound? “The simple answer is no. It all involves changes that you may stick to,” says Meller. “That’s the goal. The way you reach that goal depends on the person.”

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