Intermittent Fasting

SevenOfNine

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Jan 13, 2015
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Since there was a little talk on another thread about different methods of intermittent fasting, I thought it might be an idea to start a thread on it.
:)

If you're familiar with some IF concepts, which are you more likely to prefer, if any?

Personally, I'm torn between two options:
1. The "5:2 Diet": Eat at or close to maintenance for 5 days per week, and on 2 days (they can be consecutive or non-consecutive -- many people find non-consecutive far easier to accomplish) eat 500 calories.
2. The "Leangains" Method: Fast for 16 hours a day with an 8 hour feeding window. The idea being that it's easier to spread your daily caloric allowance over a smaller feeding window.

There are heaps and heaps of other methods out there, but for me personally, the above options seem like the most sustainable. But no matter the method, the theory behind all of them is pretty similar: Over a period of time (each day for Leangains and each week for the 5:2 diet for example) you keep yourself in a caloric deficit without feeling too deprived of yummy things.

Obviously IF isn't going to work for everyone, just like the "5-6 meals a day" diet that's been popular in the fitness world for ages isn't going to work for everyone.

I was just wondering what others on the forum thought of the concepts, and thought it might be nice to start a discussion.
:)
 

Joe Classy

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I've seen the documentaries regarding this type of dieting. Based on my own internet research (but focusing on actual documented studies) it seems the proposed benefits of the 5-2 studies were done in mice and does not readily translate across to humans. By benefits I mean the cancer-prevention and accelerated weight loss etc.

Maintaining a 5-2 intermittent fasting should (in theory) help you lose weight (on par with calorie reduction) as overall calorie intake (providing you don't double-load on the 5 days). If this is the lifestyle change to lose weight, why not I guess. But it depends what else you change and what your goals are. Just be careful that while a 5-2 might be easily achievable whilst taking duromine, once off it, it may be much harder.

In fact I have a co-worker who swears by the 5-2 as he, not long back, started this. However he also purchased some exercise equipment for home-use and from all reports regularly uses it. But in his eyes it was the 5-2 diet shift, not the increased exercise ;)

Whilst I love all the theories and idea's - depending on the life you live, the work you do, some of these just won't suit you. What if you need to take clients out for lunch? "Oh I don't eat on this day". What if you're in the middle of a meeting at 10am and you open up one of your small meals, grilled chicken and cucumber mix ,and start crunching away? "Oh, i need my 6 small meals a day".

Sure, you should have the confidence and ability to address these situations. But with 'life' in general structured around 3 meals, isn't the simplest change to eat properly (type of food & quantity)? So when you take a client to lunch you don't have the main-size creamy pasta dish, but one of the salads on the menu or a protein-based dish or simply the entree size of the pasta.

If you can't tell, I fall into that "general" category. 9-5 working hours, main break for lunch. So for me the change in what and how much i eat has been the driving force for weight loss (and exercise of course). But I can readily believe the others may work for people with other lifestyles.

This has good links to various research papers:
 
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SevenOfNine

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Yeah, I wouldn't have assumed that the 5:2 diet would be suitable for those who need to take clients to lunch. That wouldn't work at all.

For me personally, since I'm a carer for my grandmother, my meal times are entirely up to me and whatever I need to do for her on any given day, so I'm much more flexible diet-wise.

Before Duromine -- actually for most of my life -- I'd always had a small feeding window anyway, for some reason I've always been more comfortable eating between 3-10pm only. Add calorie counting and attention to macronutrients and you've got the Leangains method with a slightly shorter eating time, haha.

While on Duromine, I've been keeping approximately the same feeding window, just because it's what has felt natural since leaving school. The only change has been the attention to calories and macros, so perhaps that's the way I should continue unless my circumstances change and I have to adapt to a new schedule.
:)

In contrast, my partner finds it easier to stay less hungry by eating many small meals throughout the day. Luckily for him, his workplace is totally fine with that.

There's no way I'd suggest that an approach consisting solely of "Don't eat for two days per week and BAM! You'll lose weight" would work without looking at what you're eating on the other five days of the week. And I'd be very wary of anything that tries to tell me that just managing my calorie allowance a little differently will totally change my susceptibility to illnesses without proof in humans!

At the end of the day, whether it's IF, 3 meals a day or frequent small meals, it's still food intake vs energy expenditure, so I suppose it doesn't really matter which meal frequency/timing we choose, as long as it fits our schedules and our bodies.