Intermittent fasting is a diet plan that limits when you eat instead of what you eat.
With many more taking up the plan, Express.co.uk explores how it works.
Nutritionist Hebe Mills, founder of Hebe Mills Nutrition, is an associate nutritionist.
She runs her website and Instagram account where she posts recipes and wellness tips after being diagnosed with gluten intolerance and IBS. She gave Express.co.uk her professional guidance.
Intermittent fasting diet: Does it really aid weight loss? Nutritionist on benefits
What is intermittent fasting?
Hebe said: “Intermittent fasting is a concept where participants alternate between eating and fasting and eating in specific time periods.
“It doesn’t restrict what you’re eating, it just dictates a time period when you are able to eat. “
Can I eat anything whilst doing it?
“There aren’t any rules as such regarding the type of food you’re eating when intermittent fasting however I would recommend seeing a registered nutritionist before starting to ensure you’re fasting safely and effectively and getting the most out of your diet whilst doing it.
“I would recommend eating whole foods and still adhering to a healthy, balanced diet to ensure you are nourishing your body with a range of nutrients during the ‘eat’ period.
“Try and focus on unprocessed foods and ensure you’re consuming plenty of fruit and vegetables to meet your 5-a-day and to hit fibre targets.”
Will it help me lose weight?
“Studies have shown that intermittent fasting can aid weight loss however it’s important to remember that different diets work for different people and fasting isn’t suitable for everyone.
“Consult with your GP before trying it. The problem is, restricting your body for long periods of time can lead you to over eat during the time period that you are able to so it’s important to fast in a way that isn’t too restrictive.
“The 16/8 method requires participants to eat within an 8 hour time period over 24 hours and to fast for 16 – this is relatively attainable if you are open to pushing breakfast back to mid-morning (11:30) and to have dinner at 7pm.
“If you are looking to lose weight, a Registered Nutritionist will be able to help you devise a healthy and sustainable meal plan to adhere to whilst intermittent fasting in order to help reach your goals.”
What are the benefits?
“Intermittent fasting has been linked to reduced risks of chronic diseases such as type II diabetes and high blood pressure; and lowered risk of cancers associated with obesity.
“Studies have also shown it can help to regulate blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity, improve mood and manage stress levels, improve our gut microbe and that the consequential decrease in calories consumed over a 24h period can lead to weight loss. “Personally, I think the greatest benefits are the restoration of hunger signals and the sustainability of the diet.”
Hebe recently have advice on how to get the most out of the keto diet plan.
She said: “It’s important to try and include a variety of foods while embarking on the diet to ensure you’re getting a range of nutrients.
“Focus on foods with a varied nutrient profile including.
“The best way to lose weight is to follow a diet in which you are in a calorie deficit – exercising and reducing the number of calories you are consuming on a daily basis will lead to weight loss and doesn’t require giving anything up.
“Including lots of fruit and vegetables in your diet will naturally make you feel fuller during meal times and will help you to exercise portion control.
“For example, if you’re having a spag bol for supper, why not include some veggies in the Bolognese, have a smaller portion and give yourself a large serving of broccoli on the side to make sure you feel full after eating.”
Source: Read Full Article