Ready to give up on intermittent fasting?
It’s certainly not always easy.
It can be tough, especially in the start or if you’re not sure how to do it correctly. Online, you may find conflicting advice.
However, intermittent fasting is extremely beneficial to health, fat loss, the immune system (1) and satiety.
It’s worth it to stick with it.
Here are the types of intermittent fasting and The 7 Most Common Intermittent Fasting Mistakes and how to fix them.
The most common type of intermittent fasting is called 16:8. This simply means that you fast 16 hours per day (including through the night), and eat only during an 8-hour window during the day.
For example, some eat from 11 am to 7 pm, and then fast and only drink non-carb/non-calorie drinks from 7 pm through 11 am the next day.
Another type of fasting is called 5:2. With this type, you would eat regularly 5 days of the week and fast for 2 24-hour periods during the week.
Other types restrict calories as low as 500 calories 1-2 days per week.
Intermittent fasting isn’t necessarily easy at first.
You may feel hungry. Or, you may have a tough time simply breaking long-established eating habits and routines.
However, just like starting a keto zone lifestyle, it’s toughest in the beginning and then becomes much easier as you see results and as your body gets used to it.
So, don’t throw in the towel too soon!
The Fix: Get through the tough first two weeks. And make sure to fix any mistakes below before you ever give up!
If you’re fasting 16 hours per day and eating 8 hours, it’s important to still eat adequately during the eating time.
If you eat too little day after day, you may begin to feel chronically fatigued or overly hungry.
While it is necessary to restrict carbs to stay in the Keto Zone while increasing fats, this doesn’t mean total calories should be too low.
For example, fitting 1500 calories (with just 20-40 grams net carbohydrates) into the 8-hour eating window can help you lose weight while still feeling satisfied compared to only eating 800-1000 calories during that time.
One of the benefits of intermittent fasting is the ability to continue to lose weight and not plateau while not feeling “starved.” (2).
The Fix: If you feel hungry or believe you’re eating too little calories, add more fats. Try using fat bombs for snacks.
On the other hand, it’s possible to eat too much, even in just 8 hours.
Carbohydrates: If you’re unable to restrict carbohydrates during eating times, you will not stay in the keto zone or lose weight as effectively as you would with carb restriction.
Calories: If you grossly overeat calories, even with carbohydrate restriction, you may sabotage your body. Most women lose weight effectively with around 1400-1600 calories per day, and men at 1800-2000 calories per day, with restricted carbohydrates. More can be added for active individuals.
If you eat significantly more than your body needs, you will likely not reach your weight loss goals.
The Fix: Cut down on portions, especially of carbohydrates. Allow time between your meals for digestion and the sensation of hunger again. Drink fluids adequately to avoid thirst that may seem like hunger.
Thankfully, one of the best things about Keto Zone eating and intermittent fasting is that you usually don’t need to “count” calories. The eating style and consumption of high-fat foods typically limit calories effortlessly and without hunger.
A hallmark of Keto Zone eating is choosing whole foods and high-quality ones over processed foods.
In fact, one main goal is to reduce inflammatory fats, like soybean oil, and foods that are detrimental to health.
Processed foods can promote inflammation throughout the body. Inflammation contributes to most modern chronic diseases, deteriorating mental health, and obesity (3).
The Fix: Choose single-ingredient foods (eggs, meats, vegetables, olive oil, etc.), and you’ll vastly decrease your exposure to inflammatory processed ingredients.
When choosing commercial foods, avoid soybean oil and other highly inflammatory fats. Follow these steps to optimize grocery shopping.
It is imperative to drink water and other healthy fluids throughout your eating window and beyond.
In fact, it’s a great idea to drink non-calories, non-carb drinks even during the fasting window.
This serves two purposes:
The Fix: Drink healthy non-carb drinks include water, green tea, black tea, bone broth, and coffee with MCT oil powder. Include these at any time, during your fasting or eating window.
As you work on becoming healthier, it’s important to beware of diets that cause too much stress.
Chronic mental stress is detrimental to health, even if it’s for a healthy reason.
It is important to keep a healthy, big-picture outlook, and not let your eating plan become so strict that it increases the stress on your mind and body.
This does not mean to become undisciplined.
Keto Zone eating and intermittent fasting require discipline.
The Fix: Most of the time, stick to your eating window and your grams of net carbs per day.
But, if it’s a really special night like your anniversary, and you can only get into the restaurant you want to go to most at 7:00 pm (outside your eating window), don’t miss the opportunity for the sake of your window.
The more you make your eating schedule and lifestyle work to support your life and whole body health, the more successful you’ll be.
Stay disciplined 99% of the time. And, go out for your anniversary and enjoy it that one time per year.
This intermittent fasting mistake usually occurs when you combine different fasting styles.
If you use the 5:2 method in which you fast for 2 days per week, and then also use the 16:8 method with 16 hours of fasting per day, and then add in 2 days that are restricted to 500 calories each (total), you’re likely going to be hungry.
Oftentimes, this much fasting and restriction leads to hunger. Enough hunger to begin to disturb sleep.
Good, consistent, adequate sleep is extremely important to overall health and brain health.
The Fix: If you find yourself so hungry that you’re having a hard time falling asleep, or staying asleep, make sure you’re not combining too many fasting styles, and that you’re eating enough during your eating window (add more fats if needed).
Intermittent fasting is both effective and healthy. And while it’s not easy in the beginning, it typically becomes a welcome eating style and even comfortable after 1-2 weeks. If this is not the case, you may be making one of the most common intermittent fasting mistakes. Read through them, and apply the necessary fix for full Keto Zone and Intermittent Fasting benefits.