Intermittent fasting truly works wonders in getting you from flab to fabulous! The data says it all. But it's sort of hard to be consistent because it does demand a lot. Yet, certain people don't seem to struggle with intermittent fasting.
The answer lies in their schedule - not saying you need to mimic them. For you, the answer simply is getting a schedule that fits perfectly into your mundane routine, like the perfect puzzle - with obvious lifestyle changes, of course.
So whether you're a busy professional, a parent with many responsibilities, or want to keep your weight in check, there's a perfect fit for you.
Today's article uncovers the different IF schedules to see which screams "you" best. So read on and discover more.
Different Intermittent Fasting Plans to Choose From
There are a plethora of ways to go about intermittent fasting. This section will explain some methods to fast and get maximum results.
The 12-Hour Fasting Schedule
Many attest to this being the easiest IF method. It is also the most common. That is because you can opt for syncing most of your fasting hours with your sleep hours.
There's also the fact that there are absolutely no rules; you can easily customize it to suit your needs. For example, you can decide to eat your first meal by 9 a.m. and your last meal for the day by 9 p.m. So you will fast from 9 p.m. to 9 a.m. It feels like the most natural way to embark on a fast.
If you're new to intermittent fasting, the 12-hour intermittent fasting schedule should be your go-to plan. It is flexible and easy to carry out. You don't need long days without food but still have the desired results.
The 12-hour intermittent fasting offers a balanced eating and fasting window.
The 16:8 Fasting Schedule
This is another popular and easy intermittent fasting method. It gives you a whole 8-hour eating window. So you get to abstain from food for 16 hours and only 5ake in food within 8 hours. However, you can take water and other non-calorie-containing beverages during the 16 hours of fasting.
You can choose to eat dinner and skip breakfast if you are on the 16:8 hour eating window. In this schedule, most people eat two meals. So, for example, they may take just lunch and dinner or breakfast and lunch.
The good thing about this plan is that it is easy to carry out and gives you the best results. It also comes with no special timing rules. So you get to choose when is your 8-hour eating window and your 16 hours fasting period.
18:6 Fasting Schedule
You must have already guessed how this schedule works, and yes, you're right. It involves having a 6-hour eating window and an 18-hour fasting period. This schedule is often referred to as one of the big deals in intermittent fasting. It takes great determination to carry it out. You don't need anyone to tell you how much results you will get and how fast it will show.
However, this level of the game isn't something you jump in to start playing. Instead, you must study your body type and get expert advice before you embark on this long and strenuous journey.
It is already common knowledge that this schedule is taxing. As such, it is unsuitable for certain people to participate. For example, those with medical conditions who are underweight or pregnant should stay clear of this fasting schedule.
Other Fasting Schedules
Aside from the ones explained above, there are several preset fasting schedules. First is the OMAD (one meal a day) fasting schedule. As the name implies, you get to eat once in 24hrs.
Furthermore, there is also alternate-day fasting. This involves skipping food for a complete 24hrs. Some people may choose lighter foods on these fasting days, while others prefer water or non-calorie beverages. There is also the 24 hrs week fast, and as said earlier, the list goes on and on.
How to Choose a Fasting Plan That Fits Your Lifestyle
Fasting is an exercise that focuses on setting your body on the right path of health. However, if you don't choose the schedule wisely, you may end up with some health condition instead of your desired result.
For this reason, making the right plan choice is the first step to getting the most out of your fast. So here are a few factors to consider when choosing a fasting plan.
You shouldn't fight with your fasting schedule. You should prioritize creating a schedule that doesn't feel like a non-stop struggle. Even in extreme cases, it's wise to account for your body getting used to your IF schedule. So, how do you know if your fasting is too taxing?
You may notice severe tiredness and fatigue during and after the fast. You may also struggle with sleep and feel stressed out during this period. If you notice any of this, you should consider changing your plan.
Embarking on any journey without a purpose will make abuse almost inevitable. For this reason, you must go under your fitness before choosing a plan. What do you want to achieve? And how long do you want to take this fast? Answering these questions will help you pick a schedule that best suits your goals and lifestyle.
This has to do with your personal it inerary. Where will you go during the day? What type of work do you do? Are you a sit-at-home parent or a heavyweight laborer?
Some specific activities require you to be well-fed so you don't pass out or get dizzy. As such, you must choose a fasting plan that allows you to rest while fasting, so the only activity you do is in your workouts and sleep.
Benefits of Choosing the Right Fasting Schedule
Aside from weight loss, here are some perks of choosing the intermittent fasting plan that fits your lifestyle.
- Maintains a Healthy and Functional Brain: The 12-hour fasting plan allows your body to tap into the energy in fat. This energy source becomes a great way to boost mental health. In addition, the 12-hour fasting schedule helps your brain to function optimally and aids in lowering the rate of cognitive decline and brain damage.
- Better Heart Health Condition: The rate of heart conditions gets heightened by LDL cholesterol and high-fat content in the blood. However, 12-hour intermittent fasting helps to reduce these factors and, as such, improves heart conditions.
- Detoxification: Your body works tirelessly to remove every toxic substance you've been given. But there is also the work of digestion. So your body uses a lot of energy to carry out these critical tasks. However, during a 12-hour fast, your body concentrates more on detoxification and does it with better focus.
Intermittent fasting is so popular amongst fitness enthusiasts, and the science does back its rise in popularity. Not only does it favor weight loss, but it is also proven to help in various brain and body functions. As such, everyone suddenly wants to give a shot at intermittent fasting.
But remember, what is worth doing is worth well. So, it is vital to make the right choice of fasting plan. This will help you to avoid diving to the deeper end of the fasting pool where you can't breathe.
Thankfully, some crucial points have been outlined in this post to guide you in choosing a plan that fits your lifestyle. If you take them seriously and get expert advice, you can get the most out of your fasting. Good luck!