Can Intermittent Fasting lead to weight loss? We separate myths from facts

Intermittent fasting, or IF for short, is often coupled with calorie restriction for fat loss reasons. Intermittent fasting is a word used to describe a practice in which a period of fasting is alternated with a period of non-fasting.

Ancient Egyptians believed fasting helped them cope with a variety of health issues. While some people believe that fasting is a great way to lower cholesterol, some severe side effects to be aware of have put doctors on edge recently. One of Islam's five pillars is daily fasting, which is especially important during Ramadan. Between the hours of dawn and dusk, Muslims abstain from all food and drink to develop self-control and compassion for those less fortunate.

Photo by Andres Ayrton from Pexels
Photo by Andres Ayrton from Pexels

Related to the same, many are interested in what happens to the body quickly, especially from a health standpoint. Consequently, what are some of the most common myths and facts regarding intermittent fasting?

Myth #1: Fasting causes your body to enter a condition of hunger, which may be hazardous

There will be changes in how the body utilizes energy, but it will not get hungry. The body has been designed and evolved to withstand brief periods of fasting. Furthermore, many studies have shown that fasting may have a beneficial impact on one's well-being.

Myth #2: Fasting increases stress

Unlike long-term fasting, which usually produces physical stress, short-term fasting has little impact on cortisol levels, the hormone associated with stress. Fasting may help keep cortisol levels low, which regulates immunological function, controls blood pressure and causes your body to burn calories.

Myth #3: Fasting makes it challenging to focus

According to the data available today, it does not seem that IF harms cognitive performance. In reality, studies have shown that fasting for short periods, whether during Ramadan or for medical reasons, may improve cognitive skills, boosting faster learning, attention, and memory.

Photo by Alex Green from Pexels
Photo by Alex Green from Pexels

Fact #1: Carbohydrates and sweets are easier to handle when fasting

When you fast, your body makes better use of insulin, allowing it to eliminate sugar from your circulation more efficiently than average. When used in conjunction with other treatments, IF may significantly reduce blood glucose levels.

Fact #2: Fasting has been shown to enhance long-term brain health

Fasting promotes the production of a specific protein known as a brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which is essential for developing the nervous system. Both Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease are associated with neurological dysfunction, and this powerful protein may effectively protect brain cells from these abnormalities.

Fact #3: Fasting may be used to detoxify the skin

While you accept a break from eating, your brain is ready to devote additional resources to other regeneration processes. This assists the body in eliminating pollutants and controlling the functioning of other organs, such as the liver and kidneys, which may aid in cleaning the skin and hair.

Photo by Alex Green from Pexels
Photo by Alex Green from Pexels

Fact #4: Fasting may help in the elimination of extra body fat

Intermittent fasting acts as a highly effective way to lose weight when combined with a healthy diet. The quantity of weight lost depends on the individual's age, gender, and calorie intake. Ramadan is a great time to start a weight-loss program, but it is essential to maintain consistent good eating habits throughout the month to achieve and maintain an optimum weight.

Fact #5: Fasting has been proven to be helpful to the heart in studies

Several studies have shown that intermittent fasting may decrease blood pressure, enhance insulin sensitivity, raise heart rate variability, and lower cholesterol levels - all of which lessen the risk of developing cardiac diseases and heart attacks in the long run.

There are numerous misconceptions about intermittent fasting (IF) and food consumption. Moreover, the majority of these statements are untrue. Before making any decisions on your metabolic and overall health, it is critical to consult with experts or conduct some primary research.

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