Results From A Month of Intermittent Fasting
“When you eat is just as important as what you eat,” is a statement I heard on a podcast and was immediately intrigued.
I had obviously heard of intermittent fasting (who hasn’t these days?) and have even done a few trainings in my group health coaching membership, Fit By Bit explaining what it is, how it works, the proposed benefits, etc.
But until hearing that statement, I was only drawing on what I had learned (from both educational purposes but also learned from client experiences).
For whatever reason, hearing that statement sent me down the proverbial rabbit hole exploring intermittent fasting for myself, and thus began my experiment with a month of intermittent fasting.
For some background info, you may also hear intermittent fasting referred to as time-restricted eating, and while they’re technically different ways of eating, I’m lumping them into the same thing here – their differences are beyond the scope of this blog post.
And so you have some context, here’s what I did for my intermittent fasting: I tried to eat between the hours of 12pm and 8pm. I still had my morning coffee between 7am-8am (with creamer and my collagen supplement).
Literally that simple.
Most days – I’d guess 90% of the days – I stayed within the 12-8 time frame. A few days I was a human and went AWOL :p
There are plenty of people who will tell you this isn’t true intermittent fasting protocol, that’s fine… I’m not worried about protocols. My goal was to experiment on myself with the idea of intermittent fasting and see what happens.
Some of the more common proposed benefits of intermittent fasting have to do with resulting insulin levels – the idea that when you don’t eat for longer periods of time, your insulin levels are able to return to ‘baseline’ and therefore better regulate, resulting in a whole host of beneficial downstream effects.
There’s also talk of intermittent fasting being good for your guts – they get a break and get a chance to do metabolic clean up.
Intermittent fasting has also been shown to help with aging – more of the metabolic clean up stuff (again, remember I’m lumping time-restricted eating and intermittent fasting together here).
If you’re interested in researching any of these further, I HIGHLY encourage you to do so – it’s truly fascinating when you begin understanding the various mechanisms in our bodies and how they work together.
In summary, all these benefits are great! And if they’re true of intermittent fasting, great! But I didn’t “feel” or notice any of them, nor do I think I will as I continue intermittent fasting.
You read that right, even after my month of intermittent fasting experimentation is over, I plan to continue doing my version of it.
The number one, most noticeable and effective thing about intermittent fasting that I found was: I stopped eating the shit I normally eat after 8pm.
That’s hands-down the single most effective thing it did for me.
Think about it … anytime you go to eat something after 8pm, do you think to yourself, “hmm.. a big salad sounds amazing right now?”
If you’re like me, you’re thinking about how good some popcorn, and chocolate, and cheesecake and that bag of Reese’s hiding in the back of the cupboard sounds.
So by having a self-imposed “no eating after 8pm” rule, it meant the stuff I usually turn to for late night snacks was a no-go.
It also meant that I planned ahead more in terms of my meal timing – when I ate, what all I would eat, etc. I knew if I didn’t eat enough at dinner I’d be hungry later and, if after 8pm, wouldn’t be ‘allowed’ to eat anything. So I made sure to eat enough of the better-for-me-stuff (dinner) so I wasn’t hungry and susceptible to giving in with the Reese’s.
Because I was able to set a self-imposed rule and was able to cut out some of the junk I eat (for no reason), I’m sticking to my 8pm rule. Not for life… not with zero exceptions… but as my norm, I’m going to be done eating food by 8pm.
I’d call my not-true intermittent fasting a success! If you’re curious about trying it for yourself and want to talk it through (after consulting your physician of course) email me and we’ll chat!
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