What is Intermittent Fasting?

What is Intermittent Fasting
Caroline Hedges

Caroline Hedges

Writer, thought-provoker, and a female of an undisclosed age. She writes about health, cosmetic surgery and wellness with wit and honesty.

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Let’s get real – if you are a person who eats (so, everyone), chances are you’ve heard the term “intermittent fasting.” If you’re a person who likes food (like me, also probably everyone), this idea might sound less than fun. Fasting does mean not eating food, after all. Intermittent fasting was one of the most searched for health terms of 2019, and millions of people have been trying it out as a way to lose weight, maintain a healthy lifestyle, and feel better overall. So, it can’t be all that bad, right? Let’s talk more about what it is and why it works.

The Intermittent Fasting Cycle

Unlike a conventional diet, which limits or specifies what you can eat, intermittent fasting is better described as an eating pattern, since it involves monitoring and controlling when you eat. Basically, people who fast intermittently cycle through periods of eating and fasting.

There are many popular strategies or fasting patterns to follow, but common ones include the 16/8 method (where you eat all your calories in an 8-hour window daily and fast for the other 16 hours), the eat-stop-eat method, (where you fast for two full 24-hour periods each week) and the 5:2 method (where you eat normally for 5 days a week, but only consume 600 calories or less on the other two days.) 

These practices restrict your calorie intake, which is the best-proven strategy for weight loss, but the benefits of these methods take us all the way back to the beginning of civilization – think about how hunters and gatherers must have eaten! Humans are biologically capable of surviving without food for much longer than modern humans typically do, but tapping into our prehistoric eating habits might just make us healthier today.

Intermittent Fasting and Weight Loss

Intermittent fasting aids in weight loss because of the way fasting affects the body. Human growth hormone levels increase, insulin decreases, and more fat-burning hormones are released, all of which positively impact weight loss. Fasting not only boosts your metabolism, but it also has other benefits to the body and brain, like reducing inflammation, preventing heart disease and cancer, and even extending lifespan. Many people who have tried it also report that it greatly simplifies healthy eating and lifestyle – intrigued?

before and after weight loss illustration chalk board in Virginia

Supervised Weight Loss Programs

MedHealth360 offers medically supervised weight loss programs that allow you to try intermittent fasting, all while being monitored and advised by healthcare and weight-loss professionals! The program includes a complimentary consultation, personalized plan, coordination and support, and ongoing care as you continue your quest for better health. The MedHealth360 diet and nutritional counselors can help you figure out how to best make intermittent fasting work for you with a plan that is specifically catered to your body and its needs.

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Want to learn more about intermittent fasting?

For those wanting to learn more about intermittent fasting and the MedHealth360 weight loss program, we invite you to arrange a complimentary consultation with Dr. Chang or one of the MedHealth360 practitioners to explore whether you would make a good candidate. Contact us online or at 703-729-5553 to arrange an appointment. Dr. Phillip Chang is a board-certified plastic surgeon in Northern Virginia near Leesburg, Virginia, and an expert in a wide variety of cosmetic treatments.

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