At the time of writing this it is the month of Ramadan in 2018 for our Muslim friends and family and so in this blog post we're going to be sharing with you the power of intermittent fasting which is a tool NOT a diet.
Intermittent fasting doesn't tell you what to eat as it is a pattern of eating and not eating. It's not about cutting calories as its just changing when you eat and when you don't eat.
So why would you want to do this anyway?
Because it is one of the most important factors in weight loss because it triggers two main hormones in your body. One of the most powerful is the growth hormone which is anti-aging and the most powerful fat burning hormone.
There are six powerful fat burning hormones, growth hormone is the most powerful fat burning hormone to protect your muscles, to build lean body mass and also just to lose actual body fat.
Then you have insulin which is also a very powerful hormone in that it will actually help you store fat if you want to gain weight.
However, in the presence of insulin you cannot lose weight, it is such a dominating hormone it will block growth hormone. So it's the hormone that makes you fat and when you see someone with a fat gut, it means they have too much insulin.
So these are the two powerful hormones that you're going to influence…
…Now let's look at what's happening.
This tool or technique can really heal insulin resistance where you have the pancreas pumping out way more insulin then you need - five to seven times because what happens when you have too much insulin is the cells start blocking it and then your body doesn't get the return communication, so it's like talking to your child and they have ear plugs.
So, you're going to increase your volume because the person is ignoring you and there's no two-way communication. So if the pancreas doesn't get the feedback that the insulin is connecting it sends more insulin through the channel.
So you have a situation where you have resistance of insulin is not working, low insulin in the cell – low glucose - but then you have high amounts of insulin in other places which is very destructive. This can cause pre-diabetes and a lot of other problems.
So what we want to do is start where you're at i.e. maybe 5 meals a day and then graduate to 3 meals, then 2 meals per day over time. There's different levels of intermittent fasting, from not intermittent fasting to some serious fat burning. So let's say you start with five meals a day or six meals. Some people eat breakfast, lunch and a snack - some people do breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner, snack, which is a lot of people that do that.
The principle of intermittent fasting hormonally is that every time you eat you spike insulin. People have thought only when you eat carbohydrates you spike insulin. However, eating in general will increase insulin, regardless of what you eat, even a healthy snack.
So we have a situation where this person is spiking insulin all day long and our bodies are not designed to graze all day long. So we want to switch to 3 meals a day with no snacks – that’s the first step.
The ability to go from one meal to the next without being hungry involve eating more fat i.e. adding more fat to that meal.
So now you’re eating 3 meals per day and then if you want to take it to the next level and burn even more fat you want to do a pattern of 16 to 8.
16 hours of fasting with an eight-hour window of eating.
So let's say you get up in the morning and you're not hungry, well don't eat! Wait until you're hungry. The ideal situation is to go for at least four hours before you eat the first meal after you wake up.
So let's say you eat at 10 o'clock in the morning and you got up at 6am. So that means that your last meal is going to at 6pm, giving you an 8 hour window.
The real power of intermittent fasting is through the night when you’re sleeping and in the morning. This is when you really have the uninterrupted, serious fat burning, not necessarily as much between the meals but it is the factor.
So that's why we want 16 hours of fasting with an 8 hour window of eating when you have your three meals.
Now if we want to take it even further and really turn on the fat-burning, we want to go to two meals but we want a window of 20 hours of fasting.
Do you know what that would do to your waistline and your stomach?
So we go for 20 hours fasting and only 4 hour window of eating. So let’s say you want to get up and wait until around 12pm or 1pm to have the first meal and then have the next meal four hours later.
So let's say you eat at 1pm, then your next meal will be at 5pm. So you have four hours there where you basically ate but then you have 20 hours of serious fat burning. If we then add in high-intensity interval training like a boxing or muay-thai circuit at MMA Den in Battersea, then that is going to extremely increase the fat burning process.
Nonetheless, it is going to take some time to transition over to these different levels, so don't think it happens straight away.
If you've destroyed your metabolism through dieting or the HCG diet which is 500 calories or some other stress event, then what's going to happen is it's going to take some time to gradually move over to the next level i.e. from 5 meals, to 3 meals to 2 meals per day.
Eventually you will get comfortable but in order to not suffer headaches and have a lot of side effects between the different levels you’ll want to do this over time. For example, the transition between 3 meals per day to 3 meals per day with the 16 hour window of fasting could take up to 3 weeks.
Additionally, the transition from 3 meals per day with fasting to 2 meals per day with 20 hours of fasting could take between 1-3 months but then you’re really burning fat.