Intermittent fasting for health - the 16:8 method

How does 8 hours of guilt  free eating sound?

What if it also made you feel better too?

Too good to be true ?

I was more than a bit sceptical and spent several days scouring the internet for scientific evidence.  There is a lot of information and personal testimonials out there, very few of them were negative.  So, I decided to give it a go.

I had already dismissed the 5:2 diet when it became popular several years ago - that really would not have suited me. I really could not cope with being hungry for that amount of time. That reason also ruled out the 24 hour intermittent fasts.  But, the 16:8 sounded doable.  Most of the fast happens whilst I am asleep!

Even better; in the 8 hour eating window I can eat what I like.  Although I wouldn't recommend a 'man vs food' approach to food during the 8 hours of eating time.  I had already started thinking about and changing what and how I was eating to better help my illness.  Deciding to fast made this more focussed.  Eating a well balaced diet in conjunction with the 16 hour fast, is not only good for my health but I have noticed that my waist line is better off too.

For me, eating between 11 and 7 is the best way to incorporate my lifestyle.  I very much enjoy a quiet breakfast after the children go to school, this has now become brunch.  Waiting until 11 to break my fast has not been a problem.  The two extra hours are filled with housework, my physio exercises and preparing a really nice meal to break my fast.  I have always favoured the inverted pyramid way of eating, which means that I eat the bulk of my calories in breakfast and lunch, preferring to eat a light meal such as soup in the evening, thus avoiding bloating before bed.  With the 16:8 fasting I don't have a bloating problem anymore.  This may be because there is a good period of time between my last meal and going to bed or more Likely my body making more efficient use of my food intake.

Now for the science bit ....

Apparently during fasting the body uses up bad cells and makes new healthy ones - great news for anyone with an auto immune disease.  There is a lot of evidence on the internet, both scientific and anecdotal as to how this works and I would suggest that you do you research before you begin just to make sure that this is right for you

From a weight loss point of view, it is documented that fasting uses up old fat stores, meaning that in theory, one could loose weight whilst sleeping.

And now the important bit .... Does it work?

I lost just over a stone in 2 weeks - I was not overweight to begin with but as I approach 50 my body is inclined to store fat around my middle - my favourite trousers are remarkably more comfortable now.  I have been on the fasting diet for 6 weeks and have not noticed any more significant weight loss after the initial 2 weeks.  I am inclined to believe that my body has settled at its ideal weight.   

As for the health claims - I have to stand on the side of caution, so as not to land on the 'miracle cure' band wagon.  As with most things, different people will see different benefits.  For me, my symptoms are much reduced and my energy levels are inreased, both to the point where I feel confident enough to leave the house without a chaperone (oh, and I am decorating my home too!)

Is it worth a go?


Before changing your diet or lifestyle  - ALWAYS:
Do your research
Be prepared
If in doubt speak to your doctor