One of the benefits of intermittent fasting is that it helps the body use up stored fats.(Shutterstock)
One of the benefits of intermittent fasting is that it helps the body use up stored fats.(Shutterstock)

Looking to lose the post-Diwali weight? Try intermittent fasting for quick results

A week of festive bingeing needs a serious detox. Here’s how to do it right.
By HT Correspondent | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON OCT 24, 2017 08:44 AM IST

While there are many ways to shed the kilos, one that has gained popularity over the years is called intermittent fasting. In simple words, it means following a diet that involves regular short bursts of fasting. There are various ways of doing intermittent fasting: the 5:2 diet, the eat-stop-eat diet and the 16/8 method.

Fasting has been a big part of Indian culture for centuries. However, scientists started exploring the importance of fasting only by the 1930s. During that time, an American scientist found that fasting significantly reduced calories and helped mice live longer, healthier lives.

One of the benefits of intermittent fasting is that it helps the body use up stored fats. Here’s how: when you fast or eat nothing for long stretches, the body’s sugar level lowers and the amount of carbs stored also reduces. Then, your body uses up the body fat for energy.

Depending on your need and lifestyle, you can pick the method that works best for you.

1) 5:2 diet: In this diet, you are allowed to eat only 500-600 calories on two days of the week, and on the rest of the days, you can eat normally.

2) Eat-stop-Eat: You can opt for one or two 24-hour fasts each week.

3) 16/8 method: You can skip breakfast every day and eat during an 8-hour feeding window, such as from noon to 8pm.

Benefits of intermittent fasting:

1) Helps you lose belly fat: Intermittent fasting enhances hormone function that helps with weight loss. Short-term fasting increases your metabolic rate and helps you burn more calories.

2) Lowers risk of type 2 diabetes: Intermittent fasting helps in insulin resistance and lead to an impressive reduction in blood sugar levels.

3) Helps you live longer: Research from University of Chicago scientists revealed that intermittent fasting can “delay the development of the disorders that lead to death”. When practised regularly, intermittent fasting helps people lead healthier lives.

For any diet to work you need to stick to it. The same applies for intermittent fasting. (Shutterstock)
For any diet to work you need to stick to it. The same applies for intermittent fasting. (Shutterstock)

Here are some things to keep in mind while trying intermittent fasting:

1) Quality of food: Even if you are allowed to eat well, make sure to eat mostly whole, single ingredient foods.

2) Calories: Calories count. During the non-fasting period, make sure that you eat normally.

3) Consistency: For any diet to work, you need to stick to it. The same applies for intermittent fasting.

4) Patience: Allow your body to adapt to this new form of diet.

Follow @htlifeandstyle for more.

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