A very popular approach to nutrition, it can also help preserve muscle mass during weight loss
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The intermittent diet, a term that indicates different food plans characterized by the alternation between periods of fasting or frugality at the table and others of ordinary food intake, can be an excellent alternative to lose weight and to take action against some risk factors for health, among which it is possible to consider diabetes and cardiovascular problems.
Entering into the heart of the peculiarities of this approach to nutrition, we remind you that there are different types of intermittent fasting. In this category it is possible to include the 16: 8 diet, but also the 5: 2 diet – followed by celebrities of the caliber of Jennifer Aniston – and that of the warrior.
All methods can prove effective. How to understand which one works best? It all depends on the conditions of the individual. For this reason, before starting the diet it is advisable to ask your doctor for advice.
Given this necessary premise, let's see how the intermittent diet affects body weight. The first thing to remember in this regard is the fact that, when we stop eating or take less food, our body is affected by several changes. The goal of the latter is to find the energy stored through body fat.
We also remember that, when fasting, insulin levels drop dramatically, with obvious advantages regarding the improvement of fat burning. Also not to be forgotten is the action of the nervous system which, thanks to norepinephrine, causes the breakdown of fat cells into free fatty acids, which can be burned for energy.
Generally speaking, when one wonders how intermittent dieting helps to lose weight, the lower calorie intake is at stake. Unless you compensate during the hours of the day dedicated to the regular intake of food, concrete results can be achieved.
As proof of this, it is possible to cite a study published in 2014 and conducted by a team from the University of Illinois in Chicago. The experts in question, comparing the effects of intermittent fasting with those of daily caloric restriction, noted positive repercussions regarding weight loss (results observed after a period between 3 and 24 weeks).
Useful for preserving muscle mass when aiming to lose weight, the intermittent diet should be conducted with a focus on high-quality foods (e.g. whole foods and unprocessed foods).
As far as calories are concerned, as specified above, it is advisable to eat moderately during periods of non-fasting, avoiding making in vain what is obtained thanks to those dedicated instead to abstaining from food or caloric restriction.