Intermittent fasting is not only an effective and easy-to-implement weight loss method, it also reduces metabolic adaptations during dieting that cause fewer calories to be burned on other diets.
A new study examined how effective intermittent fasting with breaks is compared to a traditional continuous diet in improving body composition and reducing metabolic adaptation. The results are published in the English-language specialist journal “Nutrition Reviews”.
The problem with conventional diets
Especially at the turn of the year, many people resolve to live healthier and lose weight. Many rely on continuous energy restriction (normal diet). However, such a diet can lead to a slowdown in metabolism, causing the body to burn fewer calories than normal, limiting the success of the diet.
In the new study, the research team examined the extent to which intermittent fasting can prevent this slowing of metabolism. For this purpose, a systematic evaluation of the available studies was carried out until July 2023.
Meta-analyses with random effects were carried out for intragroup and cross-group comparisons of anthropometric and metabolic results, the experts said. Ultimately, the team included twelve randomized studies with a total of 881 participants out of the original 1,469 data sets in the current study.
Physical Effects of Diet and Fasting
The within-group analyzes showed that both intermittent fasting and regular continuous diets were associated with significant improvements in body mass, fat mass, body mass index (BMI), body fat percentage and waist circumference, the team reports.
In addition, it was found that resting metabolic rate was significantly reduced after a conventional diet. It was also shown that the reduction in metabolic rate at rest after intermittent fasting with break periods was significantly lower than after a conventional diet.
Intermittent fasting reduces metabolic adaptation
According to experts, this indicates less metabolic adaptation during intermittent fasting with breaks. Therefore, intermittent fasting with breaks could be a viable nutritional strategy to improve body composition and reduce metabolic adaptation. (as)