Guest Blog by Katalin Csehek
I gained some extra kilos during the holidays… It’s not that I became fat, but on one hand it made me feel clumsy, on the other hand my new skirt, that I’d bought before the break,…well, it didn’t fit me anymore. Awkward, isn’t? And, if it wasn’t all over, I couldn’t even talk about it. It was so, so annoying!
The Intermittent Fasting saved me and my skirt.
Intermittent Fasting means that twice a week we eat the last meal of the day till 7pm, and the day next we start eating only at 11am. Or the last meal is finished by 6pm and the day next we can start at 10am.
It sounds so much easier for me just skip one meal twice a week than restrict the variety of my choices throughout the entire week.
WHAT IS BEHIND INTERMITTENT FASTING?
Dr M. Mosely (The Fast Diet: Lose Weight, Stay Healthy, and Live Longer with the Simple Secret of Intermittent Fasting)explains:
It takes most people eight to 12 hours for their body to burn the sugar stored as glycogen. Now, most people eat three or more meals a day consequently they never deplete their glycogen stores. This way you teach your body to burn sugar as your primary fuel and effectively shuts off your ability to use fat as a fuel.
Therefore, in order to burn fat naturally, without spend hours in the GYM, the length between the two meals must be at least eight hours, ideally 16! For instance you could restrict your eating to the hours of 11am and 7pm. This equates to a daily fasting of 16 hours—twice the minimum required to deplete your glycogen stores and start shifting into fat burning mode.
WHY IS IT SO BENEFICIAL?
One of the primary mechanisms that makes intermittent fasting so beneficial for health is related to its impact on your insulin sensitivity. While sugar is a source of energy for your body, it also promotes insulin resistance when consumed in the amounts found in our modern processed food diets. Insulin resistance, in turn, is a primary driver of chronic disease—from heart disease to cancer. Mounting research confirms that when your body becomes accustomed to burning FAT instead of sugar as its primary fuel, you rather dramatically reduce your risk of chronic disease. Becoming fat adapted may even be a key strategy for both cancer prevention and treatment, as cancer cells cannot utilize fat for fuel—they need sugar to thrive.
In short, fasting increases insulin sensitivity along with mitochondrial energy efficiency, thereby retarding aging and disease, which are typically associated with loss of insulin sensitivity and declined mitochondrial energy. Two additional mechanisms by which fasting benefits your body include:
- Reducing oxidative stress – Fasting decreases the accumulation of oxidative radicals in the cell, and thereby prevents oxidative damage to cellular proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids associated with aging and disease.
Increasing capacity to resist stress, disease and aging – Fasting induces a cellular stress response (similar to that induced by exercise) in which cells up-regulate the expression of genes that increase the capacity to cope with stress and resist disease and aging.