SINGAPORE: Prior to now two years, intermittent fasting has turn into one of many prime weight reduction traits worldwide.
In most intermittent fasting regimens, you keep away from meals for a sure variety of hours of the day and eat usually inside a specified time.
So can it assist return you to your preferrred weight and physique mass index (BMI)?
That’s what Talking Point host Steven Chia wished to see after he gained about two kilogrammes from ingesting bubble tea over a month, for a current investigation into the results of bubble tea.
There are a number of intermittent fasting variants: Quick for 16 hours, eat inside eight hours; quick for 20 hours, eat inside 4 hours; eat one meal day by day, inside a two-hour window; eat three meals as regular on sooner or later, quick the following day; and eat usually for 5 days, then restrict your consumption to 500 to 600 energy for 2 days within the week.
After a dialogue with doctor Zulkarnain Abdul Hamid, who started intermittent fasting three years in the past and misplaced greater than 20 kg within the first 12 months, Chia settled on the 16:8 routine.
After eight weeks since December, he misplaced 3 kg and his physique fats dropped from 24.1 per cent to 18 per cent. So he determined to proceed with intermittent fasting and has now misplaced about 5 kg.
However there are some issues to notice for these contemplating intermittent fasting. For instance, people who’re pregnant, beneath 18 or have a low BMI ought to keep away from it. Listed below are seven different pointers:
1. EXERCISE PORTION CONTROL
You could nonetheless watch what you eat, although it’s simpler stated than carried out.
“It may be fairly difficult when consuming out, particularly if you’re attempting to interrupt quick,” acknowledged Mary Chong, who researches weight reduction weight loss program interventions and consuming behaviour in adults and infants. “A method is to ask for half the portion.”
One other manner is to make use of smaller plates. There may be proof to recommend that the sizes of plates, bowls and even spoons “can unconsciously affect” the quantity individuals eat.
“(On a) massive plate, meals tends to look … much less, (which) encourages individuals to pile on extra issues,” she stated. “On smaller plates, meals seems to be better in quantity, and so that may assist by way of lowering consumption.”
To stop snacking, Chia eliminated snacks from the communal areas at dwelling, like the tv space. “(Snacks are) a temptation ready so that you can simply dig in,” he stated. “Out of sight, out of thoughts.”
2. PRACTISE MINDFUL EATING
Importantly, one mustn’t solely chew correctly, but in addition eat mindfully.
In line with Chong, an assistant professor on the Nationwide College of Singapore’s Noticed Swee Hock College of Public Well being, aware consuming means “taking note of the meals you eat” and to the “feeling of fullness you get from the meals”.
She stated: “Our mind takes about 20 minutes to register that we’re full after consuming. So you possibly can decelerate, you then’ll … concentrate on the sense of fullness. And that may assist stop overeating.”
3. DRINK BEFORE EATING
Chong stated it is usually vital to remain hydrated throughout intermittent fasting, as individuals “typically mistake thirst for starvation”.
It’s good to drink a glass of water or take “some clear soup” earlier than every meal to fill the abdomen, she added. This normally helps to scale back starvation pangs and management the meals parts.
Throughout his experiment, Chia drank extra black espresso than regular — with out sugar — within the mornings. “That was the one factor I might drink to type of assist stave off the starvation,” he stated.
4. BALANCE YOUR MACRONUTRIENTS
Promoting artistic Corey Cruz, a moderator of the Intermittent Fasting Life-style Fb group, famous that followers of this weight loss program routine must have extra protein to maintain themselves via the fasting durations — however carbohydrates are crucial too.
“It’s not about chopping stuff out fully,” she stated. “I don’t deprive myself of issues. Plenty of us in my Fb group ascribe to the 80-20 proportion rule, which is 80 per cent wholesome, 20 per cent simply treats.
“So we’re going to have a cake (or) a pizza … You need to combine (intermittent fasting) into your life-style, in any other case it’s not sustainable.”
5. LETHARGY AND MOOD CHANGES ARE NORMAL
Cruz stated she misplaced 15 kg via intermittent fasting and train however warned that it’s “fairly regular to not really feel nice” in the course of the first few weeks, as one is “used to consuming so many occasions in the course of the day”.
Early in his routine, Chia felt extra drained than regular, and his daughter Lucy stated he was “very cranky” at occasions. The 15-year-old suggested youngsters whose dad and mom take up intermittent fasting to “be affected person”.
She added: “You’ll get used to it. And so they’ll in all probability get used to the intermittent fasting, in order that they’ll turn into much less cranky — simply have to attend some time.”
WATCH: Intermittent fasting made my dad cranky — Lucy and Steven Chia spill the beans (8:07)
6. DON’T GO TOO FAR
Weight change may additionally take greater than a few weeks, so one mustn’t overdo the intermittent fasting.
Chong stated: “There’s an actual hazard of changing into malnourished if one … (is) taking calorie restriction to an excessive or consistently omitting sure meals teams.”
It might result in nutrient deficiencies, a weakened immune system, poor wound therapeutic, lack of muscle mass and even changing into depressed.
7. THINK ABOUT HEALTH, NOT DIETS
Chia requested Verena Tan of the Singapore Institute of Know-how’s dietetics and vitamin division if there was a perfect weight loss program — ketogenic, paleo, vegan or gluten-free — to pair with intermittent fasting to speed up weight reduction.
She didn’t advocate following any trending weight loss program, although she weighed up the professionals and cons of every.
In principle, a keto weight loss program, which is a low-carb and high-fat weight loss program, might assist an individual to succeed in the “fat-burning stage” sooner if mixed with intermittent fasting. However this mixture “hasn’t been studied or confirmed to work”.
The uncomfortable side effects, nevertheless, embrace complications, dangerous breath, muscle cramps and complications.
A paleo weight loss program doesn’t include processed meals, so one eats what’s pure. However that additionally means no cereals, grains or dairy merchandise, and one of many well being dangers is decrease bone density.
A vegan weight loss program, comprising solely meals made out of vegetation, is taken into account to be an “moral” and “wholesome manner of consuming”.
Research have proven that it “does enhance a number of the threat components for power illnesses”, akin to glucose ranges and levels of cholesterol, cited Tan.
WATCH: The complete episode — Intermittent fasting: A two-month experiment (22:33)
However it may be unhealthy relying on the forms of meals chosen, for instance sugar-sweetened drinks and potato chips. There may be additionally the chance of vitamin and mineral deficiency if meals usually are not deliberate correctly.
As for a gluten-free weight loss program, it’s designed for individuals with coeliac illness, who can not digest merchandise containing wheat, rye or barley, akin to bread, pastries and muffins.
“However for individuals who aren’t gluten-sensitive … a gluten-free weight loss program doesn’t enhance well being,” stated Tan. “To enhance well being, my take-home (message) could be that much less is extra … Much less energy, much less processed meals and fewer time spent consuming.”
Watch this episode of Talking Point here. The programme airs on Channel 5 each Thursday at 9.30pm.