For the longest time, health experts and dieticians have recommended that you eat five to six mini-meals a day in order to rev your metabolism and boost your fat burn. However, a fairly new study suggests that fasting may actually provide more benefits, suggesting that going periods of time without eating could put you closer to your weight loss goals than we once thought. But does it really work? According to research published in 2013, it does, but only if it is done correctly.
What Research Says
A group of researchers from the University of Manchester conducted a study on 115 overweight women between the ages of 20 and 69. Some ladies had their calories reduced by 25 percent intermittently (two days a week), whereas the rest of the participants had the same reduction, but it was daily.
Researchers found that those who fasted two days a week lost more body fat and had better insulin sensitivity than those who experienced calorie restrictions daily. Furthermore, the first group also maintained these positive benefits when their fasting was reduced to just one day a week, which occurred for 30 days, three months into the study.
Benefits of Intermittent Fasting
Live Science outlines the benefits of intermittent fasting to include the reversal or prevention of various diseases, like cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. They also suggest that this type of eating offers higher levels of physical and mental functioning like our ancestors enjoyed years ago. Additionally, it helps fend off stress and its harmful effects, leaving you healthier as a result.
Based on this new research, you might want to give intermittent fasting a try. This means going for 12 to 18 hours without food one to two days a week, which basically means either skipping dinner or breakfast as most of your non-eating hours will be while you are asleep. Of course, if you have sugar issues, you may want to check with your doctor first to make sure this is going to be safe for you.
Have you tried meal fasting in the past? If so, did it work for you? Share your experiences with other readers by commenting below!