16:8 intermittent fasting is a time constrained eating pattern. In this, people fast for 16 hours and consume food in the remaining 8 hours in a 24 hours cycle. People believe that this method works by supporting bodies internal clock i.e. circadian rhythm. People who follow this method usually take their daily calories during the middle of the day. There is no boundation on the type and amount of food that a person eats during the remaining 8 hours. This makes the method easy to follow.
People may choose any of the windows to follow – 9 am to 5 pm, 10 am to 6 pm & 12 noon to 8 pm. In this time frame, one can have their proper meal and snacks as per their convenient time.
Recommended food to eat
A balanced diet comprises -Fruits and Vegetables Whole grains including brown rice, oats, barley Lean protein sources like fish, nuts, cheese, eggs Healthy fat from olive oils, coconuts, avocadoes nuts and seeds
Fruits and vegetables are rich in fiber, which helps in feeling full. Regular drinking water can help to reduce calorie intake. This plan allows having tea and coffee during 16 hours of fasting. Fluid intake keeps the body hydrated.
Intermittent Fasting is useful
Fat loss & Weight loss – Studies suggest that intermittent fasting leads to greater weight loss and fat loss in men with obesity. It helps in boosting metabolism.
Prevention of diseases – This method is helpful in preventing conditions like type-2 diabetes, heart conditions, neurodegenerative diseases.
Increases lifespan – Animal studies suggest that intermittent fasting may help animals to live longer.
Limitations of fasting
This method is not suitable for everyone because of some of its limitationsA person may feel weakness, tiredness, hunger in starting stage of the plan. One may end up over eating due to excessive hunger after 16 hours of fasting. Acidity or gastric reflux as a result of over eating.
Some research shows that intermittent fasting is more beneficial to men than women. It could negatively affect female fertility. Individuals who have a history of disordered eating should avoid intermittent fasting. It is not suitable for a person with depression and anxiety. This fasting is not suitable for pregnant ladies, the one who is on breastfeeding, females trying to conceive.
People who want to do intermittent fasting should speak to their doctor first before starting especially if they are on any medications.