This is the first of 4-part answers regarding questions on weight control. After the holidays some of you may consider fasting as a way to lose weight. Watch this short video, read more about intermittent fasting more below and check back next week for part 2 where I discuss using drugs for weight loss.
What is intermittent fasting?
Intermittent fasting is to reduce food calorie intake by eating only on alternate days, not eating certain days of the week, or restricting eating to specified times of the day. The US National Institute on Aging states that there is insufficient evidence to recommend intermittent fasting for general use.
Is intermittent fasting harmful to your body?
Intermittent fasting is generally considered safe and harmless. However, without the benefit of long-term studies, it is difficult to recommend it for the maintenance of desired weight. In some, it can produce intense hunger leading to food cravings and binge eating. That can undermine your desire to follow a lifelong healthy eating pattern based on variety, quality, and quantity of nutrients in a timely fashion.
How does intermittent fasting affect Diabetes Type 2?
If you are taking Type 2 diabetic medications, during fasting your blood sugar levels can dip causing extreme hunger and food cravings. If you become upset when you are already hungry, you could also experience irritability, palpitation, and confusion because of the stress response.
Will I feel any immediate side effects?
Intermittent fasting could cause constipation due to two reasons: reduced roughage from low intake of vegetables and lack of intestinal gas production that usually comes from the action of intestinal bacteria on vegetables. A healthy intestinal bacterial colony is necessary for a healthy immune system and for the nourishment of intestinal lining cells and the early morning colon shuttle that runs on gas. So, when there is no gas production stool cannot move out of the colon.
The best option to lose weight is lowering the intake of food energy by reducing portion sizes of grain-based foods during each and every meal.
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