Intermittent fasting (IF) has become a very popular method for losing weight and improving health. Advocates of intermittent fasting claim that it lowers diabetes risk by decreasing insulin resistance, enhances growth hormone production, which is good for anti-ageing and improves cognition through the release of dopamine.
Intermittent fasting is a way of eating that focuses on WHEN you eat and not so much on WHAT you eat. It involves going without food for a determined period of time. Popular approaches are the 16:8, where you fast for 16 hours (say between the hours of 7pm and 11am), and then eat within an 8-hour window or the 5:2 method where you restrict calories to about 500 calories for two days a week and eat normally the other five days. Others prefer a 24-hour fast once or twice a week and there are a few other variations. As trendy as fasting has become, is fasting beneficial for everyone and more specifically, should women be fasting? It seems the answer is a little more complicated than a simple “Yes” or “No”.
The simple answer is this; how often you eat all boils down to whether or not your body uses GLUCOSE or FAT for energy. Our bodies can run on either of these two fuel sources. What you eat determines which one you use. People that consume a high-carb/low-fat diet will invariably be burning glucose for fuel. Let’s call them sugar-burners. Those following a low-carb/high-fat diet will be burning fat. These people we will call the fat-burners. Each of these fuel sources has a very different effect on one’s body, especially the hormones that regulate hunger and satiety. Read the rest of this entry