27 April 2014

Fasting for Weight Loss: 4 Options for Intermittent Fasting

27th day on Slim-Possible-April Challenge. This is what I had for breakfast today. Dim sum. This is my all-time favorite after pasta. No, not really. My favorite food is food.

Options for Intermittent fasting, fasting for weight loss

I'm a stay-at-home (SAHM) and sticking to diet plan is hard when your entire kitchen is at your disposal 24 hours a day. As a SAHM, I have a completely sedentary lifestyle, I can't get dedicated to my workout so I tried to focus more on my diet. I tried to create a calorie deficit for weight loss. First, I tried water fasting. But after one success and millions failure, I tried juice fasting. But I can't get rid of thought on foods, so I resort to low carb diet. No potatoes, no white rice, no white sugar, or white flour. To avoid drinking sugary beverage maybe easy but it's hard to cut rice out of my diet completely because I'm Asian and rice is a staple food. So to be a bit flexible, I allow myself to eat anything I want, including white rice and white flour (products made with it such as bread, cake, cookies, crackers, pretzels, doughnuts, bagels, and muffins) but no more eating after 2 pm. I've decided to do a daily intermittent fasting throughout this Slim-Possible-April Challenge, which is no solid food after 2 pm. But again, this diet plan deliver no success so far. I can't stop eating and I'm not even hungry. Feeding the kiddos little snacks and tasty treats is hard. I often end up eating what they eat! And other time it started with food cravings which when I allow myself a small bite will eventually evolve into overeating or maybe worst - episodes of binge eating. 

I know it's so annoying to hear me rant about failure after failure. Even to the hubs, he's already tired to hear about my diet plan, this diet strategy and that, but to see no success. He thinks my major failure is lack of discipline. He advised against fasting. Fasting leads to overeating, according to him. But fasting has always had a special place in my weight loss plan. Fasting cleanse out your body and most important I believe fasting can help break your unhealthy relationship with food.

There are several option of intermittent fasting suggested by Rob excerpt from his blog Fitness Through Fasting. You can practice this right away to build experience, strength and confidence. 

 Intermittent Fasting options are as follows:
fasting for weight loss

1. Daily Intermittent Fasting
As in Catholic Lent Fasting and Muslim Ramadan, here you would fast from sunup to sundown – approximately 12 hours daily. The fast is broken each night with a light meal, preferably of lean fish or poultry, small portion of carbs (4oz baked or sweet potato, brown rice, multigrain pasta) and steamed veggies. The eating window remains open until dawn, but for most of that time you will be sleeping.

Twelve hours to eat, twelve hours to fast… and so the cycle continues each day. I strongly recommend that you do NOT eat anything after 10PM. Just because you have twelve hours daily to eat doesn’t provide license to overeat. You can get up in the AM, have a light breakfast (oatmeal with skim milk, three egg whites and four ounces of ground turkey is my personal favorite), and then fast for the next 12 hours.

Remember this motto: Progress, not perfection. In other words, certain days you may feel great and want to fast for another few hours. That is fine. But try not to exceed 16 hours of fasting each day, so as to not interrupt the Daily (IF) cycle. 

Estimated Weekly weight loss: three to five pounds. The key to successful weight loss with Daily IF is to eat clean meals; keep the consumption of fat and sugar low.

2. Every Other Day Intermittent Fasting
Another form of intermittent fasting is to go for an entire 24-hour cycle every other day. Example: You fast from 8AM Monday morning to 8AM Tuesday morning. Eat lightly on Tuesday. Wake up on Wednesday at 7:30AM and have breakfast. Start the fast at 8AM until the same time on Thursday… and so on.

Estimated Weekly intermittent fasting weight loss: two to four

3. Half Week Intermittent Fasting Information
Fast for 3.5 days weekly. Example: Fast from 8AM Monday to 8PM Thursday. You can return to regular eating for the rest of the week.

Fasting would resume the following Monday at 8AM – repeating the same cycle.  This system requires caution, however. Since one does not eat for 84-hour periods, it will be necessary to follow the breaking a fast instructions, listed towards the end of this book.  

Estimated intermittent fasting weekly weight loss: three to five pounds.

4. Seven Day Intermittent Fasting
Fast for an entire seven days, return to your regular diet for seven days, and then fast for another seven days. Similar to the Half Week method, you will need follow the breaking a fast instructions.  

Estimated weekly weight loss: Five to 20 pounds during initial 7-day fast and five to seven on subsequent ones.

These are some interesting books on fasting. Do check it out!

When my willpower fail, it's very easy to say that dieting is not worth it. It's very easy to give up completely, very easy to call it quit. But it's OK to fail. Just like Zig Ziglar once said, "You clearly understand that failure is an event, not a person, that yesterday ended last night, and today is your brand new day." 

If you are in the same boat with me, let me tell you this. Your weight loss momentum might gone, your weight loss plan maybe failed, you screwed up your eating plan, your exercise plan gets all messed up but we have only two choices: First, keep walking backwards. This will surely take us even further away from our goals; Second, to accept our lack of perfection as normal. Learn to forgive ourselves, and take two positive steps down the path that brings us closer to the future we want. So I choose to keep working on it! I believe it will get easier over time. 

Tomorrow will be a brand new day. Good night for now.

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  1. This is what happens during a small fasting period between meals during the day. An even bigger boost in HGH occurs between dinner and breakfast the next morning, as long as you do not snack in between. A 12 hour overnight fasting period works wonders for boosting HGH levels and fat loss. Ladies diet plan is different from the men to read the ladies diet plan visit the blog Eat stop eat. Thank you for this nice article

  2. @Ben Miller, I appreciate you take some time to drop comments and share your thought about IF. Thanks also for suggesting to me the links. I'll check it out later.


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