Monday, March 30, 2015

Intermittent Fasting System

The diet you follow whilst Intermittent Fasting will be determined by the results that you are looking for and where you are starting out from as well, so take a look at yourself and ask the question what do I want from this?

If you are looking to lose a significant amount of weight then you are really going to have to take a look at your diet more closely, but if you just want to lose a few pounds for the beach then you may find that a few weeks of intermittent fasting can do that for you.

Although there are several different ways you can do intermittent fasting we are only going to look at the 24 hour fasting system which is what I used to lose 27 pounds over a 2 month period. The basic method is to fast twice a week for 24 hours, it makes sense to do this a few days apart and it is easier if you pick a day when you are busy so that you do not become distracted by feelings of hunger. Initially you may feel some hunger pangs but these will pass and as you become more accustomed to intermittent fasting you may find as I have that feelings of hunger no longer present you with a problem. You may find that you have great focus and concentration whilst fasting which is the opposite of what you would expect but many people experience this.

Whilst fasting you can and should drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration, tea and coffee are okay as long as you only take a splash of milk. If you are concerned that you are not getting enough nutrients into your body then you might consider a juice made from celery, broccoli, ginger and lime which will taste great and get some nutrient rich liquid into your body. Although if you can manage it then it would be best to stick to the water, tea and coffee.

Whatever your diet is whether its healthy or not you should see weight loss after about 3 weeks of intermittent fasting and do not be discouraged if you don't notice much progress at first, it's not a race and its better to lose weight in a linear fashion over time rather than crash losing a few pounds which you will put straight back on. After the first month you may want to take a look at your diet on non fasting days and cut out high sugar foods and any junk that you may normally eat. I have found that intermittent fasting over the long term tends to make me want to eat more healthy foods as a natural course.

If you are intermittent fasting for bodybuilding then you may want to consider looking at your macro nutrients and working out how much protein and carbohydrate you need to eat, this is much more complicated and you can find information about this on several websites which you will need to spend time researching for the best results.

There are many benefits to intermittent fasting which you will notice as you progress, some of these benefits include more energy, less bloating, a clearer mind and a general feeling of wellness. It's important not to succumb to any temptation to binge eat after a fasting period as this will negate the effect gained from the intermittent fasting period.

So in conclusion just by following a twice a week 24 hour intermittent fasting plan for a few weeks you will lose weight but if you can improve your diet on the days that you don't fast then you will lose more weight and if you can stick to this system then you will keep the weight off without resorting to any crash diets or diets that are just impossible to stick to.

Simon Dawes is an exponent of intermittent fasting and uses this system daily in his life more information can be found at []

Article source:  EzineArticles

Monday, March 23, 2015

Intermittent Fasting Results: What You Can Expect

Intermittent fasting is a feeding pattern which alternates between periods of fasting and controlled eating. It is a simple dietary method divided into many types. One of the intermittent fasting methods is alternate day fasting, whereby a person takes a normal diet on particular days of the week and fasts on some. During the fasting days, one does not fully abstain from food but rather reduces calorie intake to 1/4 of the normal diet.

The other fasting type is whereby eating is restricted to a certain time window within a day. This means restricting eating between an 8 hour window eating period, which means a person eats once in every eight hours. Some people however reduce the span to either six, four or even two hours according to their convenience. The longest time that a person can stay without food on intermittent fasting is 36 hours. If practiced accordingly, it can result in a number of positive health effects.

For instance, intermittent fasting promotes general good health. It significantly reduces cravings for snack foods and sugars. The practice normalizes insulin as well as leptin sensitivity. Insulin resistance contributes to many chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer and heart infections. Intermittent fasting will therefore protect the body from such infections.

Intermittent fasting results in improved brain health. Fasting helps the body to convert stored glycogen into glucose to release energy. If the fasting proceeds for some time, continued breakdown of body fats induces the liver to secrete ketone bodies. These small molecules are by-products of fatty acids synthesis, and the brain can use them as fuel. Research also indicates that exercise and fasting results in genes and other growth factors which are essential in recycling and rejuvenating the brain.

This type of fasting also boosts body fitness and loss of weight. Combined fasting and exercise increases effects of catalysts and cellular factors so that breakdown of glycogen and fats is maximized. Exercising while hungry therefore forces the body to burn stored fats for significant weight loss.

The program is also known to prevent cognitive decline. Research was conducted in 2006 on mice, in which water maze tests were used to assess cognitive functions of mice on normal diet and those on intermittent fasting. It was discovered that mice put on intermittent fasting experienced slower cognitive declines, which too applies to human beings.

Intermittent fasting will also boost muscle building especially in men. This is because after eating, the energy gained will be used to sustain a workout session. But if training is done while fasting, the body utilizes stored body fats to sustain the exercises. Eating after the session ensures that the energy gained is utilized in replenishing the body in the best way. This assists the muscles to quickly recover and build up.

In conclusion, intermittent fasting is a healthy practice but it could result in depression to people who cannot fully sustain it. It needs commitment and perseverance to move through the changes in diet, since only consistency will achieve these positive results.

Thanks for reading.

How would you like: better control over your hunger, an easy way to lose fat and build lean attractive muscle, increased insulin sensitivity, reduced inflammation, increased growth hormone, a super efficient way of eliminating toxins, the freedom of being able to eat whatever you want without any guilt?
With Intermittent Fasting, all this and more is possible. To find out how, visit my website []

Thanks again,

John "The timing of breakfast isn't important" Mulry

Article source:  EzineArticles

Monday, March 16, 2015

What Are the Benefits of Fasting?

In the United States the percentage of obese people is growing. Currently 35% of Americans are obese. Experts predict that soon 50% of the people in the U.S. will be obese. There are many reasons for this but there is one main reason. People eat too much food.

When looking for a car to drive, people want a car that is the most efficient at using gasoline. That way you can get a lot more miles out of each gallon that you put in. When it comes to eating, they want the opposite. They want a metabolism that is as fast as possible so they get the smallest amount of energy from the greatest amount of food.

So people want to put as much food into their mouth as they can. The cause of this is a lack of happiness so they are trying to get more happiness from eating. It is easier to fast for a short time than to try to eat less food all of the time. Many people have lost over 100 pounds just by fasting on weekends.

Some say that you should not fast if you do not change your diet after the fast. This is like saying that you should not bathe if you are just going to get dirty again. This is also a sure way of losing weight. If someone eats nothing for 3 weeks they are going to lose weight. This is just one benefit of fasting.

Another physical benefit is that while fasting (drinking only pure water), the body gets rid of toxins at a faster rate. Now some people say that the body cleanses itself everyday. This is true. But if the rate of toxins going into the body, is faster than the rate of toxins going out of the body, the toxins build up in the body. Holistic healers call it toxemia when there is a lot of toxins in the body. They say that toxemia is the cause of most health problems. The fast gives the body a chance to catch up on cleansing.

Intermittent fasting is when the fast is less than 24 hours. Many recommend this because you do not have to go without food for over a day. Another thing that fasting helps with is that you can get better sleep since you do not have any digestion going on. Also during a fast your digestive system gets a vacation.

Since many people do not have the best diet, they can have problems with their colon like constipation. During a fast, the colon gets a rest and vacation. After this rest, the colon will work better than it has in many years. The way that this whole thing works is that the body is always trying to heal itself and cleanse itself, but people prevent it from doing its job. Fasting gives the body a chance to do its job.

Also during the fast, you save time and money. You do not have to spend all this time shopping for food, preparing the food, eating the food and cleaning up afterwards. You also save the money that you would have spent on food. This goes back to the example of wanting a fast metabolism to so you can buy and eat as much food as possible. Many wise men have fasted like Mahatma Gandhi, Buddha, Jesus, Moses, Muhammad and Pythagoras. They knew that fasting has immense benefits even though it is not easy to do. Here is an article that has quotes about fasting from 7 different medical doctors (MDs). See The Many Benefits of Fasting.

The author, Chuck Bluestein, was a chemist for the U.S. federal government. He believes in educating instead of medicating when it comes to health.

Article source: EzineArticles

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The Truth About Fasting

The benefits of fasting have been big news lately. But how effective is it? Most people are interested in it as a weight loss tool, and indeed you can lose weight using it, but in reality it has many benefits beyond weight loss, and some of them are quite miraculous.
It has been known for many years that it extends the life of mice, worms and flies rather dramatically, and even appears to extend the life of monkeys. Does it extend the life of humans? Many people are convinced that it does, but the truth is that we're still not sure, although it looks hopeful.
There's no doubt, however, that it has health benefits in relation to heart disease, cancer, dementia, and even your mood and well-being. It can't be called a cure, but it does set the stage for healing by allowing vital parts of your body to rest and recuperate. There's no doubt that excess eating puts a burden on your body, and that it needs an occasional rest. Indeed, studies have shown that if it doesn't rest, it forgoes much of the repair and regeneration needed for optimal health.
Glucose, Glycogen and Fat
Your body needs energy to run properly, and it gets this energy from the food you eat. Food is turned a form of sugar called glucose. Your cells (and particularly the ones in your brain) need a constant supply of glucose, and if it gets low you begin to feel fatigued and weak.
Glucose circulates in your blood after you eat, and it is used up fairly rapidly as you go about your everyday tasks. If not replenished, it is, in fact, depleted in a few hours. This creates a problem: how do you maintain a good supply? Glucose itself can't be stored, but it can be turned into a form called glycogen that can be stored in your muscles and liver. From here it can be drawn out and used as needed. It is usually good for about 10 to 12 hours.
What happens when it is depleted? The body then turns to the fat cells that are stored throughout your body. They can be broken down and converted to what is called ketones. This is, of course, what dieters look for, namely, the loss of fat cells. But you have to be careful if you remain in this stage for too long. The body soon begins to break down protein; it can also be converted to glucose through a rather complicated process. And this causes the loss of muscle - something you don't want. Indeed, in most diets, a fair amount of the weight loss comes from muscle loss along with depletion of water (leaving you dehydrated). So don't be deceived.
Weight Loss Through Fasting
As I mentioned earlier, you can lose weight by fasting, but most doctors and dieticians do not recommend long fasting periods because they can have an adverse effect on your overall health. In addition, it is difficult for most people to fast for long periods of time. A better alternative is what is called intermittent fasting in which you fast on certain days of the week, and eat normally on the others. One form of this is alternate-day fasting. In this case you fast (or restrict your calories) on one day and eat normally the next. This works well for some people but Dr. Michael Mosley of BBC has put forward what he calls the 5-2 fasting diet. In this diet you restrict your calories only two days a week. He suggests 500 calories for women on these days and 600 for men. This is much easier for most people to do, and it appears to give the same results as more extended fasts. But weight loss is not the most important benefit of such a diet, so let's look at the other benefits.
Health Benefits of Intermittent Fasting
It may be hard to believe but there are tremendous benefits to intermittent fasting. The main thing it does is rest many of the vital parts and organs of your body so they can do their job better. Some of these are:
It rests the digestive system. This, in turn, helps many other parts of the body.
  • It reduces blood sugar. This decreases the production of insulin, and makes it more sensitive and effective. Furthermore, it rests the pancreas.
  • High blood pressure is controlled.
  • Detoxification occurs. Fasting helps clear out your body and detoxify it. For this it is important to drink lots of water.
  • It increases your energy and makes you feel better.
  • It helps protect you against heart disease and stroke.
  • It helps rev up your immune system and as a result it fights excess (of chronic) inflammation.
  • It reduces oxidative stress caused by free radicals in your cells. 

Some Surprising and Different Benefits
One of the hormones in your body is called IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor 1); it helps your cells grow and is particularly important in growing children. As you reach adulthood, however, it decreases significantly. This is important, since as you grow older it appears to have adverse effects: it accelerates aging and can even lead to cancer. So it's not something you want high levels of when you're older. And studies have shown that intermittent fasting decreases it.
Also, in your brain is a protein referred to as BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor). It is important because it has been shown to help stem cells turn into new neurons. This takes place in a section of the brain called the hippocampus, which is critical in relation to memory and learning, BDNF has many effects: it appears to protect against dementia and Alzheimer's disease, and it also acts as an anti-depressant, suppressing anxiety.
Finally, intermittent fasting also helps increase autophagy, which is a system in the cells that gets rid of damaged molecules that could lead to serious neurological diseases.
Diabetes comes in two forms: diabetes I and diabetes II. We will be mainly concerned with diabetes II. As we saw earlier, all cells use glucose as fuel. But it can't get into the cells without insulin. Insulin is produced in the pancreas according to the amount of glucose in the blood; it's role is to allow the glucose to enter the cell. Most of the cells in your body have what are called insulin receptors that bind to insulin that is circulating in your blood. When a cell has insulin attached to its surface it allows glucose in, so it obviously plays an important role in your body. But too much can be detrimental. Insulin increases your hunger, promotes the storage of fat cells, and it has been linked to diabetes and heart problems.
One of the major problems associated with insulin is what is called insulin resistance. In this case the pancreas produces insulin, but insulin receptors on the cells no longer work properly, and don't allow glucose to enter as they should. With no place to go, the glucose continues to circulate in the blood, and the cells soon begin to starve. The body realizes that something is wrong and the pancreas produces more insulin in an attempt to get sucrose into the cells, but this causes the pancreas to overwork, and it eventually begins to wear out. The result is diabetes II.
Studies have shown that intermittent fasting improves your insulin sensitivity. This in turn allows your body to do a better job of controlling your blood glucose levels after meals, and therefore helps rest your pancreas. Both of these are important in relation to the prevention of diabetes II.
Rules for Fasting
  •  It is best to use a 5 - 2 approach, with regular meals 5 days a week, and two days of restricted food (500 calories for women, 600 for men).
  • Stay hydrated. Drink Plenty of water; it helps flush out toxins.
  • When not on fasting days (and even when fasting), keep your nutrition maximized. In particular, eat sufficient vegetables, fruits and whole grains.
  • Remember that 12 hours of fasting is needed for the effect. From 12 to 18 hours is best. It plateau's beyond 18.
  • You can exercise during fasting periods, but don't overdo it.
  • Be careful of fasting if you are diabetic. 

Barry Parker is a professor emeritus (physics) at Idaho State University who now spends most of his time writing. He is the author of 28 books on science, health writing, and music, and he has written for the Smithsonian, Encyclopedia Britannica, Time-Life Books, the Washington Post, and numerous magazines such as Flyfisherman, Astronomy Magazine, and Sky and Telescope. One of his books is "You Should Write a Book: Writing it With Style and Clarity, Publishing Beautiful Pages, Selling Thousands of Copies," It is based on a course he taught at ISU for several years, and is available through his website He is also the author of "Feel Great Feel Alive" which is on health, fitness and self-improvement, and he is CEO of Stardust Press. While at ISU he did research on the DNA molecule and on Einstein's Theory of Relativity. His latest book is "Learn from Yesterday, Live for Today, Hope for Tomorrow."

Article Source: EzineArticles

Monday, April 21, 2014

Eat Well and Stay Slim

My Eating Philosophy - To Eat Well and To Stay Slim
If you care to find out why I write this blog, you may realise I have eating problem and yet I overcome it by short term fasting. 

I've eaten a lot over the Easter holidays... at least eating much more than I normally do. However I'm still keeping one meal a day. See my Yummy Easter summary below. So apart from the four meals below, I ate nothing else over the holidays.  This means one meal every 24 hours.  But I don't restrict what I eat, I simply eat whatever I love to.  

There is another fitness philosophy called Eat Well Every Other Day.  Meaning you eat a restricted amount of calories on day 1 and on day 2 you eat whatever you love to.  

If you want to explore my option of staying fit, there is a book called Eat Stop Eat. Don't worry, I'm not asking you to eat one meal every 24 hours like me.  If you follow the ESE way of short term fasting, you only have to do a 24-hour fast twice weekly.  Well, if this looks possible, give it a try.  Or there is another book called The QOD Diet: Eating Well Every Other Day which is also worth reading.

If you want to eat well and at the same time stay fit, short term fasting is an interesting topic to explore.  There are many options.  Don't limit yourself to the options I suggested.

My Yummy Easter

Today is my last day of Easter Holidays.  As my recent leg pain has restricted my mobility, eating has become the highlight of my holidays.  Not only eating, but eat well.  

Eat well to cheer up a sick person.  Not bad at all.  Here's my yummy Easter summary.

Day 1 (April 18, Friday) - German buffet lunch, featuring knuckles and sausages
Day 2 (April 19, Saturday) - Dim Sum buffet lunch, 18 varieties totaling 20 dishes
Day 3 (April 20, Sunday) - Sichuen spicy special lunch set
Day 4 (April 21, Monday) - Solo luxury dim sum lunch

Food Blog and Fasting Blog
I have a food blog and a fasting blog.  The two blogs seem conflicting but they are tightly related.  I fast, so I eat less food than a normal person do.  Why I do this? You can find answers in this blog.  Less is more.  As I eat less food, they become more important in my life.  So I have a blog to record what I eat.  I eat less, but eat well.  Take a look at my 20-dish dim sum buffet,  which demonstrates how well I eat at the same time stay slim.

Easter 2014

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Why Short Term Fasting Works Well For Women

There are many weight loss programs out there but men and women may not experience the same results.  Some programs work better for women such as short term fasting.  In the first instance, let’s don’t be afraid of the word ‘fasting’, as we are not talking about fasting for a day or a week.  It is a matter of extending the time in between meals which won’t be a big deal to most people.
When man and woman get married and moved in together, both living busy lives, eating out is kind of unavoidable, may be 2 or 3 times a week.  At home they may cook relatively healthy meals and generally eat breakfast and dinner together.
This somewhat normal life in time will make a difference between man and woman in their body weight.
After a few years of marriage, most men may remain similar in weight but women may put up 15% or even more in weight. Why does this happen?
Something wrong with the metabolism?  Stress at work? Pregnancy? Or rare hormonal disorder?
Well, women usually put on weight because of eating too much.
More specifically, wives put on weight because they eat the same amount of their husbands
They are eating almost everything in the same size servings.
When they would go to the restaurant and order the same meal, men didn’t get the ‘Big Guy’ serving size, while women got the ‘slim girl’ serving size…both plates looked identical.
When husband made them healthy omelets, he didn’t make one for himself then a half an omelet for the wife, he simply made two omelets.
This is the plight of women. 
Most serving sizes in restaurants are too big for the average man, let alone a woman who is 4 inches shorter and 40-60 pounds lighter.
And, for the most part, when eating at home people usually don’t ‘downsize’ the portion sizes for the smaller person.
Even if we tried, we generally end up at some middle ground that is still a little too much for an average sized woman. Let say a man stands 6’2” weights 200 lbs and his wife stands 5’6” weights 135 lbs, both eating the same amount of food day in and day out.  The weight problem will bother the woman much faster than man.
This is why short term fasting works so well for so many women. It gives them a chance to play a little catch up. Or more correctly to play a little ‘fall behind’.  Allow an extended gap in between meals, such as 12 hours or 18 hours, once or twice a week.  In fact there are many variations in doing short term fasting and that women can try and work out a way to tie in to their life styles.
Short term fasting allows woman to eat at a restaurant without having to leave 1/3 of their food on the plate.
When eating at home with their family, they don’t need to cut their chicken breast in half and giving it to the dog.
It is a dietary custom/portion size equalizer.  If you want to find out more about short term fasting, there is an ebook called Eat Stop Eat fully focused on the topic.  

Sunday, March 23, 2014

My 5-Day Spiritual Fasting Experience

I’ve recently gone through a 5-day spiritual fasting, however not quite successfully.

Many things in life are easier to know than to do.  Even I’m an experienced faster, I would give myself a marginal fail.

Although spiritual fasting has a religious origin, I don’t do it out of religious reason.  I’m recently facing health problem and many things in life seem to be out of control, hence the fast.

I started the fast after Sunday lunch.  Monday and Tuesday I had a cup of white coffee in the morning, a glass of fresh orange juice for lunch and milk for dinner, and of course water throughout the day.  Wednesday I had water only.  I failed on Thursday morning as I felt so weak and that I still had to work, so I grab a little cereal bun.  I then do water fasting through Friday evening.  I broke my fast with a pear, a banana and a few slices of salmon sashimi.  Raw food is a good idea to break fast as it’s easy for the relaxed body to pick up the digestive work again.

Although many people do salt water flush** in the morning, I did it twice on Wednesday night and Thursday night.  I was successful even I did it at night because I had been in a fasted state for a few days, it didn’t matter I did it in the morning or at night.  As I had to go to work in the morning, I found it convenient to do it in the evening.

After the flush, my body had a wonderful feeling of relief and comfort.  Although I do intermittent fasting all the time, bloating is still occasionally bothering me.  The relief feeling was really good.  Mentally I tried to stay calm with everything and try not to get angry with things that I normally will. 

For anyone fasting, the purpose should be to become a better person, to recharge one's spirit. Try to avoid conflict with other people; try to improve your character; try to find your own connection to a higher power. In that sense, I would give myself a pass as well.

However I grade myself an overall marginal fail not because I ate a tiny breakfast on Thursday, I also didn’t manage to maintain that refreshed spirit for long.

Fasting in Ramadan is an amazing spiritual exercise. When we're fasting, we're in a spiritual zone. But once our fast ends, it's all too easy to lose what we have gained. And that was my case.  So I’m planning to re-do this exercise again.

If you have had a successful spiritual fast, congratulations, I’d like to hear from you and share your experience.  For others who want to do this exercise, do try to keep the spirit of your fast alive throughout the year. If you got rid of bad habits, don't go back to them. If you've just ended a lengthy fast, try to keep fasting a few days every month. Keep up whatever spiritual practices you did (as much as you can) during your fast. Let us not be angels during our fasting days and devils the day after our fast is finished.

You don’t have to worry if you fail.  There are few things in life that you succeed in the first time.  Keep up the spirit and try a few shorter fasts to start with and you’ll be there.

**Note:  Salt Water Flash  cleans up our entire digestive system and is generally part of a Lemonade Diet, aka Master Cleanse, usually done in the morning with an empty stomach. Do not do it until you have a good understanding of it.  Click here to find out more about Master Cleanse Lemonade Diet