I know there always seems to be a new diet trend or diet food infiltrating the get-healthy mode we often find ourselves in; especially this time of year! With all the candy and treats and home cooked comfort foods coming our way the next couple of months, many of us are welcoming the sweater weather for more reasons than just their soft, cozy, comfort (wink, wink).
So, have you heard about Intermittent Fasting (IF) yet? I recently had someone asking me about it and one question was, “Well, how long do you do it for”? And my answer was, “Forever”! It’s a lifestyle change not a quick fix. And that brings up the question, it is a trend or … a way of life we have veered from in our land of overabundance? IF mimics the cycles of feast and famine that our ancestors, who didn’t have access to 24-hour mega-grocery stores and fast food chains, experienced as they had times of plenty and times of little.
From what I’ve been researching, our bodies were not made to handle food intake all day long; and into the night for some. Our bodies were designed to have plenty, then to burn fat when there wasn’t plenty of anything. Instead, we find ourselves eating plenty all day long. Then we snack in the evenings and get up early to enjoy a cup of coffee loaded with sugar and cream (guilty pleasure!). This leaves our bodies no time to get to burning off the fats. We feed it carbs at close enough intervals that that’s all it ever has to burn. This goes against the way our bodies were created to work.
I should introduce the Elisabellatte right here! Well, I’ll just tease y’all to check back for the Maple-Butter-Latte-Of-Your-Dreams Recipe coming soon!
I hope you don’t mind just a quick breakdown of Intermittent Fasting because that’s what I’m posting today! This past year I have been experiencing some health problems due to long-term low-dose carbon monoxide poisoning. Well, before we knew the source of my ailments I had two doctors recommend IF to me. So, I have really dug in to the research because I wanted to be well again. I wanted to feel good and put an end to all that ailed me! Here is what I have learned…
First of all, a lot of people get turned-off by the word “fast”. For some it’s a religious practice. For others it’s a time of torture we prescribe ourselves after the new year! The word “fast” rarely conjures up happy emotions in the majority of us. But, that is just because we’ve been doing it wrong! Long-stretched super-restrictive fasts are not healthy for our bodies. Especially in women who live with thyroid dysfunction, hormone imbalances or adrenal fatigue. For some of us, restrictive fasting puts undo stress on our bodies counterproductive to any of our health goals. So, cast your worries aside – I would never promote that kind of fast! WooHoo!! Keep reading and I’ll share some IF options with you!
Some IF’ers will fast 1-2 days a week, then eat normally the rest of the week keeping to below 500 calories on fast days and consuming a healthy amount of wholesome foods on the non-fast days.
Some IF’ers will fast one day and not fast the next and tick-tack back and forth.
My kind of IF’ing seems the most logical to me, and comes with a host of health benefits, especially for women! I eat during an 8-9 hour window each day and fast the rest of the day. My typical day looks like this: Eat from 10am to 7pm and fast from 7pm to 10am. Basically, with this form of IF you are just expanding your current overnight fast! I could probably handle squishing it down to an 8-hour window but for now, my 9-hour window is working well for me. *Note: always listen to your body. How do you feel after you eat a certain food? Or fast a certain way?
Some of the benefits of Intermittent Fasting include increased energy, weight loss, hormone balancing, heart heath, and so much more. I’m going to let the experts do the talking:
One thing that I think is important to point out is that IF is not about reducing calories. It is only schedule within which you should consume a healthy amount of foods. Limiting junk foods and sticking to whole nourishing foods and healthy fats is always a good idea, but especially while you are IF’ing. Trying to reduce your caloric intake will actually backfire on you and put your body in fat-hoarding mode rather than the more desired fat-burning mode!
So eat up! Enjoy a good meal – preferably with good company. Then enjoy a nice fast. Let your body rest and heal and rejuvenate for all that lies ahead for you tomorrow!