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Fast facts: The pros and cons of fasting

22 March 2023
Fast facts: The pros and cons of fasting -  fasting

There are many different ways to fast, from fasting with water, dry fasting, and time restricted fasting to detox fasts and OMAD (the extreme practise of eating One Meal A Day). But for this article we’ll be looking at the most popular form of fasting, Intermittent Fasting, or IF for short.

The reason for its popularity is because it’s not just a fad diet that’s impossible to stick to, but rather a habit or strategy that works on periods of eating and periods of non-eating, or fasting, throughout the day. To some extent, we all fast while we’re asleep, but generally a fasting period, where nothing but water, tea or coffee is consumed can last between 12-20 hours or longer. Let’s look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of IF before we adopt this periodic way of eating.

PRO’S:

  • Almost anyone can benefit from fasting, regardless of age, gender or weight;
  • No foods ore ‘off limits’ or illegal during periods of eating;
  • Fat loss and less hunger;
  • Clearer and improved complexion of skin;
  • Less bloating and better digestion;
  • Promotes well-being and mental clarity with more focus and productivity;
  • A better relationship with food;
  • And even a reduction in Type 2 diabetes symptoms.

CON’S:

  • Headaches or periods of dizziness, heart palpitations and nausea;
  • Insomnia;
  • Not recommended for certain people who are unwell, undernourished, pregnant, or who have eating disorders, as it may lead to binge eating;
  • It is hard to stick to, especially if you’re family is eating supper in front of you while you’re fasting;
  • It can cause over-eating due to long periods of hunger which can lead to weight gain if over eating happens regularly;
  • And IF is not recommended for children as they are still learning healthy eating habits and fasting can affect their growth hormones.

Which such strong advantages and disadvantages of Intermittent Fasting, it may be something to think long and hard about before letting your tummy grumble for hours on end and resisting temptations to go to the nearest food store to stuff your face with anything you can get your hands on!

 

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