You may have heard all the buzz recently about the health benefits of intermittent fasting and how it supercharges your weight loss and fat loss goals. So, i thought that I would list some of the key health benefits for you here.
I’m Ian and I have been practicing fasting combined with the ketogenic diet for a while now. This form of fasting used in conjunction with a ketogenic diet has changed my life completely.
So, here is a quick rundown on 11 health benefits of intermittent fasting
- 1 Rapid weight loss / fat loss
- 2 Increased muscle gain
- 3 Speeds up recovery
- 4 Makes skin supple
- 5 Slows down aging
- 6 Stimulates Autophagy
- 7 Achieve ketosis faster
- 8 Balanced blood sugar
- 9 Decrease in oxidative stress and inflammation
- 10 Clearer mind, improved brain function and less brain fog
- 11 Increased fat burning during exercise
- 12 Final Words
Rapid weight loss / fat loss
This is the one that everyone talks about and is one of the main benefits. For example, eating all your meals within an 8-hour window each day while fasting for the other 16 hours, causes significant weight loss even without counting calories.
However, if you do this in conjunction with a ketogenic diet, you lose twice as much weight as those people who are still eating a bad diet while intermittent fasting.
Increased muscle gain
People always worry about losing muscle mass on an fasting diet. Well, there’s no need because a single 24 hour fast can increase HGH (human growth hormone) by up to 2000% in men and 1300% in women.
HGH pays a huge part in building muscle and the more you have of it, the more effect on muscle building it will have. Research also shows that the higher the levels of HGH that you have will lead to lower levels of body fat, a higher lean body mass and also improved bone mass.
Speeds up recovery
Your recovery time will be much quicker too from your workouts because HGH also aids in protein synthesis which in turn speeds up the repair of your muscles and helps recover faster from those hardcore workouts.
It can also speed up recovery of injuries too in conjunction with the proper rest and recovery programme.
Makes skin supple
The older you get the more your naturally occurring HGH levels lower. One research document showed that when subjects were given HGH supplementation, they lost fat, built muscle and their skin thickness improved.
Therefore, with naturally raised HGH levels from intermittent fasting, your skin will look younger.
Slows down aging
Fasting increases your stem cell production. The body turns stem cells into all kind of different cells as it needs them and uses them to replace old and damaged cells which in turn keeps you much younger on a cellular level. Stem cells are great for injuries, chronic pain, joints and your skin.
The term autophagy is from the Greek auto(self) and phagein (to eat). So, basically to eat oneself. This of course doesn’t mean that you eat yourself. It means that this is the body’s mechanism for repairing or replacing old or dead and broken-down cells when there is no longer enough energy to sustain them.
It’s basically the body’s way of recycling. On a cellular level, the cells are killed off when they become of no use and beyond repair. On a sub-cellular level, the cells don’t necessarily need to be killed off, they can be repaired so, the cells basically get an upgrade.
Achieve ketosis faster
Ketosis is where the body burns fat for energy when there is a lack of carbohydrates in our bodies. Ketones are created as a consequence. Ketosis is achieved through the ketogenic diet which restricts carbohydrates to a minimum and increases fat to be the primary source of energy from food.
When intermittent fasting, you normally start achieving ketosis after more then 12 hours of fasting once all the glycogen has been depleted from the body. If you are on a ketogenic diet then glycogen is going to be at a minimum anyway due to the lack of carbs.
Alternating between glucose and ketones which is what would happen if you were doing intermittent fasting whilst eating a standard diet can lead to lots of spikes in blood sugar which in turn leads to low energy, mood swings, brain fog to name a few.
If you are doing a ketogenic diet you will always be in ketosis whether you are eating or not so, you won’t usually experience any of those symptoms. Click here to see my favorite go to cookbook for lots of yummy keto recipes.
Decrease in oxidative stress and inflammation
Inflammation is one of the biggest contributors to disease, ageing and poor performance. By reducing inflammation, your body will run better and for longer. You may also notice issues which have plagued you for years, suddenly improve a lot.
Clearer mind, improved brain function and less brain fog
Once your body is fat adapted, your brain will run on ketones. We are used to our brains running on carbs and when we don’t eat, we suffer lack of focus, energy etc.
When doing a ketogenic diet and intermittent fasting, our body never needs to know those dips in energy as the body has an unlimited supply of fat which will power your brain.
Increased fat burning during exercise
Once the body has become fat adapted and sourcing all its energy from fat, the body will become a power furnace and the fat will just melt away.
During exercise, most people rely on carbs or glycogen to fuel their workouts. Only when this is depleted will the body start burning fat for fuel if you can even carry on.
If you are fat adapted and burning fat all day for energy, the body just keeps going and your workouts not only become more productive but, you are losing shed loads of body fat too.
These are just a few of the main health benefits of fasting and keto. Click here to read more about intermittent fasting and keto.
There are many more and I may create another post later and list some more of them.
Whether you have tried the ketogenic diet or not, it’s clear that not only is it great from weight loss and fat loss, it can have a whole host of health benefits. Give it a try for 2 weeks and see the difference for yourself.