Now that you are not eating all those carbs, you don’t crash anymore and it is no longer necessary to eat all the time to prevent it from happening.
In our natural environment we would never have had consistent access to food, even on a daily basis. There would have been long periods of time, days even, where we would not have had anything to eat at all and our bodies are perfectly designed to deal with that. Fasting is a term which just means going without food and we all fast every day while we sleep. Breakfast was named appropriately because it was the meal in the morning to ‘break the fast’ from the time you had your last bite to eat in the evening. So now, all we do is start to extend that fast a little bit at a time and start to eat less frequently throughout the day.
The concept of intermittent fasting is to extend the window through the day during which you don’t eat and restrict your calorie intake to a shorter window in the day. This does not mean that you have to eat less calories, but that you just eat them over a shorter period of time. The typical ratio most people shoot for is 16 / 8 hour fast. So, if you have your last bite at 8 pm, you go through until noon the next day before eating again. Then you eat all your calories before 8 pm that night again. Very soon you will find that 2 meals a day is plenty. You may also want to extend those windows to 18 / 6 and even 20 / 4. I have basically reached the stage where I only eat one meal a day at around 3 pm and then I have a small snack of something like biltong and macadamia nuts between 6 and 7 in the evening….. and I NEVER feel hungry.
There are tremendous benefits associated with intermittent fasting, the main ones of which are listed here:
- It reduces inflammation and oxidative stress.
- It helps balance blood sugar and insulin sensitivity – this leads to reversal of Type 2 Diabetes as well as improved weight control and mental clarity amongst other things.
- It boosts production of Human Growth Hormone (HGH). This improves healing and and recover, improves skin tone, reduces arthritis significantly, and generally enhances anti-aging.
- It results in higher blood leucine levels in the body. These are Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs) which have an anabolic effect and aid in the building of lean muscle mass which means your muscles are more toned in general and recovery from injury or extensive physical effort is greatly improved.
The video below gives you a great overview of the concepts. Get your head around them this week and dabble a little, if you like. We’ll revisit this more seriously next week.