What Is Intermittent Fasting?
Intermittent fasting is one of the most popular meal plans in the world today.  Essentially it is cycling between fasting and eating (feeding window).

There are studies that show that this can cause weight loss, improve metabolic flexibility and protect against various diseases.

This article will help you understand what intermittent fasting is and if it is
a good meal plan for you.
Intermittent Fasting: What Is It?
Intermittent fasting is a way of eating that has you cycling between feeding periods and fasting periods.  

This type of meal planning doesn’t guide you on which types of foods to eat, but instead when you should eat your food.  

There are many different intermittent fasting meal planning methods, but the most common is that you fast for 16 hours and combine your eating to an 8 hour feeding window.  

Now most people already fast every day for about 6 to 8 when they are sleeping so the simplest way to introduce intermittent fasting is to extend that fasting period either before you go to sleep or when you wake up. 

One example would be to skip breakfast and have your first meal of the day to be at 12 (noon). 
Intermittent fasting while on paper seems like it is hard to do most people find it very easy since they are already fasting for half or more of the 16 hours every single day already.  

Many people report having more energy during this type of meal planning. 

The most common obstacle you will encounter is Hunger. It isn’t extremely common, but it can happen for some and usually it is just in the beginning while your body is getting used to not eating at your normal meal times. 
 
During the fasting period there is no food allowed, but you can drink water, coffee, or tea. 
Should You Fast? 
Our bodies are very well equipped to fast for extended periods of time and isn’t unnatural for the body to do.
 
Some potential benefits to fasting is a reduction in blood sugar and insulin levels as well as an increase in human growth hormone. This may help to lose weight and be an effective way to restrict calories. It can also improve different risk factors.

For many though the reason they follow an intermittent fasting style of meal planning is because it is convenient for their lifestyle. It is simple and makes their life simpler and that is why it works for them.  
Other Intermittent Fasting Methods: 
Here are a couple more popular methods of meal planning using intermittent fasting.
 
Eat-Stop-Eat: This method has you fasting for a full 24 hours one time or two times a week.

5:2 Diet: With this intermittent fasting method you pick two days of the week and only eat 500-600 calories for those days. Then go back to eating a normal 3 meals a day.

Even though Intermittent Fasting doesn’t restrict the types of foods you eat it is highly suggested that you choose healthy foods to eat. This will significantly increase the success you will have with this type of meal planning.

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Resources: 

K Y Ho, JD Veldhuis, M L Johnson, et al. Fasting enhances growth hormone secretion and amplifies the complex rhythms of growth hormone secretion in man. Journal of Clinical Investigation 1988 Apr; 81 (4): 968-975

Hartman ML, Veldhuis JD, Johnson, ML et all Augmented growth hormone (GH) secretory burst frequency and amplitude mediate enhanced GH secretion during a two-day fast in normal men. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology Metabolism. 1992 Apr; 74(4): 757-65

Rona Antoni, Kelly L. Johnston, Adam L. Collins and M. Denise Robertson (2014), "The Effects of Intermittent Energy Restriction on Indices of Cardiometabolic Health," Research in Endocrinology, Vol. 2014 (2014), Article ID 459119, DOI: 10.5171/2014.459119

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