Post from RightEatingHabits.com – Can intermittent fasting increase your body’s fat burning capacity and help you lose weight? According to Brian Pilon, nutritionist and author of “Eat Stop Eat” - a natural weight loss program based on the principles of intermittent fasting, periodic fasting is an easy way to lose weight fast.
I recently stumbled upon Pilon’s natural weight loss program and was intrigued to find out more. After all, if ancient Greek sages, Hippocrates, Socrates and Plato had recommended fasting for health recovery, there must be some truth in what Pilon said about fasting as an easy way to lose weight.
Intermittent Fasting Has Spiritual Roots
Some form of food deprivation is an established spiritual practice.
Jesus fasted 40 days in the desert. Buddhist monks fast as an act of purification. And I assume Hippocrates, Socrates and Plato must have fasted since they recommended fasting for better health.
Personally, I fast for a day to two whenever I feel I have burst my calorie budget. I would instinctively go for very light meals the next day which means I still eat, but much less. I would opt for whole oats porridge for breakfast, a bowl of vegetable miso soup, or foods on the low Glycemic Load. How much I fast depends on how much I have over-eaten, and how my body feels. Brad Pilon, however, recommends a disciplined practice of intermittent fasting as an easy way to lose weight.. In fact, he recommends one to two full one-day fasts every week. In other words, Eat-Stop-Eat – wbich is the title of his eBook.
Intermittent Fasting Easy Way to Lose Weight Fast
In his eBook, Eat Stop Eat, nutritionist Brad Pilon says the discipline of intermittent fasting has enormous health benefits and is an easy way to help you lose weight fast. Let’s review what’s inside this natural weight loss program.
Key Points Mentioned In “Eat Stop Eat”
- No more counting of calories
- No more food restrictions on normal (non-fast days) – eat what you like
- Only need to go on one to two-day full day fasts every week (preferably water or liquid fasts, if health permits)
- Higher body metabolism by creating calorie deficit on fast days
- Muscle building with some weight training (muscle building is neccessary for fast weight loss)
“Eat Stop Eat” does NOT however, recommend
- Binge eating during rest of the week (on non-fast days)
- Binge eating after the fast to compensate for “eating loss”
According to Brad Pilon, fasting is similar to exercising in that they both reduce insulin and increase growth hormones. These two conditions will cause free fatty acids to be released into the bloodstream. Faster fat burning results.
The author also points to scientific research supporting the benefits of short-term fasting on the body’s metabolism and its ability to lose weight faster. He assures you that your metabolism will not slow down, you will not lose muscle, your workouts will not suffer, and you will not become a ravenous eating machine.
Intermittent Fasting A Healthy Discipline For Mind and Body
We often mistake intermittent fasting as starving.
It is not.
However, it does mean eliminating comfort foods from the menu. NO sugar, red meats, fat saturated foods, white breads and pasta, and processed foods. I notice I am always mentally more alert after a day’s fasting.
Personally, I believe fasting one to two times a week is a healthy physical and spiritual discipline to keep the body in good shape, and the mind and spirit in a state of clarity. Long periods of fasting may however, push the body into starvation mode, but this is unlikely to happen – as only short one-day fasts, once or twice a week are recommended. Depending on your personal preference and health condition, you may either opt for a full all-day fast once a week. Or eat one or two less meals few times a week. The idea is to reduce overall calorie intake.
Who Will Benefit From Intermittent Fasting?
Eat Stop Eat is a suitable natural weight loss program for those who want to …
- Be free from the obsession of counting calories
- Be free to enjoy the foods they like and yet lose weight
- Have control over what to eat
- Follow a natural weight loss plan (i.e. no diet pills or drinks)
- Put some discipline (and self-control) back into their eating habits
Who Won’t Benefit From Intermittent Fasting?
The “Eat Stop Eat” natural weight loss program is not suitable for children and those who are anemic, diabetic, pregnant, physically weak or with eating disorders. And certainly not for anyone who intends to stuff themselves with food on non-fast days!
If you are already eating healthy, occasional fasting to detoxify and give the liver a break does have enormous benefits. If fasting for a day seems too daunting, start with eating one meal less, then, two. Be sure to drink enough water though.
Fasting however, may cause some initial discomfort such as headaches (one of the body’s natural way of expelling toxins). Or hunger pangs. I find hunger is best curbed by eating high fibre meals such as vegetables, beans, and whole grains.
Is the Eat Stop Eat natural weight loss program worth a try?
I would say yes, because …
1. Intermittent fasting can help you”break” your addictions to food and excessive eating (Most of us tend to eat too much anyway).
2. Intermittent fasting will give your overworked livers and digestive systems a much needed rest. Liquid fasts are particularly effective in flushing out toxins.
3. Intermittent fasting is ideal for those who want to lose weight and yet, not follow strict food restrictions (The Eat STOP Eat does permit eating whatever you like, but only on non-fast days).
© Teresa Cheong, RightEatingHabits.com
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