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Fasting is NOT new
Since the beginning of all time we have been intermittent fasting. Whether for religious reasons or possibly quantities of food supply or simply food prep and storage issues…intermittent fasting is NOT a new concept.
Although…Millennials will have you believe that they invented intermittent fasting by simply turning “skipping breakfast” into a thing. Sorry kids, YOU did NOT invent intermittent fasting.
Fasting is NOT starving
I LOVE TO EAT! Do you honestly think I would deprive myself of glorious and beautiful food? Um…NO.
There is a difference between Intermittent fasting and starving.
Starving is not knowing where or when you will eat food. LITERALLY. Literal starving could be for a myriad of reasons, but the bottom line is there is NO choice but to starve.
Intermittent Fasting is systematically scheduling your meals for better metabolic health. You KNOW what your next meal is going to be…you just chose to schedule it.
Food Industry & Marketing
In the past 100 years marketers, farmers and the government subsidized programs have pushed the “eat for health”, “eat for weight loss”, “eat more and eat cheap” for their benefit.
The more we eat the more they sell. It’s a vicious cycle of cheap food in large quantities that is easily accessible. It sounds like a win-win for everyone, right?
WRONG! Just look at us.
- Fatter than ever.
- Can’t sleep.
- Hot flashes left and right.
- Weird rashes and horrible acne.
- Chronic aches and pains.
- Crippling anxiety and depression.
The diet industry is making billions trying to tell people to eat less….and the food industry is making food cheaper and cheaper in larger quantities.
It’s just absurd!
The whole “calories in, calories out” model is totally broken. The good news is that we are starting to wake up.
There, I said it.
It’s sacrilegious to even utter the words “skip breakfast” in polite society. However…if you look at the history behind the meal of morning breakfast it’s fueled by the food and farming industries.
They want you to believe that eating breakfast is the most important meal of the day. They say that…“It revs your metabolism” or “Kids need a balanced breakfast to do well in school”….studies show that’s completely false.
Watch this when you get a chance…
(BTW…I checked out her website. She’s fabulous and $7,500 for 3 months to work with her. YIKES!)
The studies actually have proven that your brain focuses more when it’s not working to break down all the food you consume. Digesting and breaking down the gallons of sugar laden breakfast cereals, juices and pastries is a lot of work…and not the best fuel.
How does Intermittent Fasting work?
Intermittent fasting is not a type of diet, it’s a cyclical pattern of the timing of your eating. In a 24 hour span there is a window of time to eat and a window of time to not eat.
Think of that last bite of food you have at night. What time is it when the last bite of food leaves the fork and enters your mouth? That time is when your eating window closes and your fasting window starts.
Then think about sleeping all through the night. Those are fasting hours. Through the night you are fasting.
SEE…you are already intermittent fasting!! Rock Star!!
Now think about the first bite of food or calories you have the next morning. The minute food or calories hits your mouth you have broken your fast. Also known as “Break” “Fast”.
What are the numbers?
You will start to see numbers as it relates to fasting. 16:8, 18:6, 20:4, etc. The first number is the number of HOURS FASTED. The second number is the HOURS EATING.
A 16:8 is…16 hours fasted and an 8 hour eating window. This compartmentalizes the day into your eating time and NOT eating time.
That does NOT mean eating continuously for 8 hours! We will talk about this in another blog post.
Another key is that YOU decide what your numbers are for the day. You get to decide when your eating window will open and when it will close. So, when that window closes at night that means KITCHEN IS CLOSED!
For example, you finish your last bite of dinner/food at 7pm. You will wake in the morning and skip breakfast. Only have water, plain coffee or tea until your first bite will be at 11am. That’s 11am-7pm eating window. 7pm-11am is your fasting window. This is known as 16:8.
Continue the cycle. Dinner finishes around 6:30 with the last bite of your meal crossing your lips no later than 7pm. Intermittent fasting doesn’t change what you eat, it changes when you eat.
The 2016 Noble Prize in Physiology or Medicine was won by Yoshinori Ohsumi, PhD. for his work on Autophagy. This is a cellular “self-cleaning” that occurs when you’re NOT digesting food.
16 hours in the fasted state is about the baseline or benchmark for Autophagy and intermittent fasting. Of course there are many variants as to when the benefits of fasting kick in.
It is thought that around 18-24 hours in a fasted state is when effective autophagy kicks in. You can read more about the science behind Intermittent Fasting and Autophagy from Dr. Jason Fung here.
Going out with friends or maybe nothing is going on and you want to eat earlier? Be flexible with your Intermittent Fasting schedule.
If you would rather eat earlier in the day you can move your eating window to earlier in the day. 7am-3pm is preferred by some people. That means kitchen closes at 3pm.
Having a morning meal and then having your dinner at 2:30pm. Skip your evening meal altogether. You have simply shifted the eating window to accommodate your schedule while still holding on to the window of time in which you will consume food.
When I’m following a 16:8 I eat my first real food/keto-ish meal at noon. Then I might have a handful of nuts or some olives around 3:00pm. Dinner for me of real food/keto-ish food is around 7:30pm. Window closes for me at 8pm.
Simply stated….12-8pm is my eating window and 8pm-noon is my fasting window.
I’m flexible too. Sometimes it’s 10am-6pm, 12-5pm, 2pm-7pm or even 5pm-6:30pm. NEVER do I fast less than 16 hours. Almost never do I have an eating window more than 8 hours.
For more benefits of fasting I stick to a 18:6 routine most days. Sometimes I fast longer. AND…about once a quarter I do a 72 hour (3 day) fast. More on extended fasting in another blog post.
A Simple Tool..
I find it’s helpful to track my fasting. There are free apps to download. The app I like is called ZERO. I also find it helpful to physically write down my fasting window, eating window and thoughts about it all.
Time to eat…YOU decide
I know it seems like I am always eating and cooking and making desserts. I am NOT always eating. However, when I do eat it is in my eating window, always delicious, flavor full and enjoyable.
YOU decide when you are eating and when you are fasting. I can not be more clear on this…there is a time to eat and a time to intermittent fast.
21 day Keto & Fasting Jump Start Program
If you’re new to low carb and fasting and need someone like me to hold you accountable I have a one on one program. The Kellie Kitchen Accountability Coaching Program…for details click here.
I’ll teach you how to eat delicious food and intermittent fast to lose weight, look great and feel AMAZING.
However, if you’re a “Do It Yourself” kind of person I have created a workbook to take you through the 21 day Jump Start Journey.
MEDICAL DISCLAIMER…Please note that I am not a medical or nutritional professional. I am simply recounting and sharing my own experiences on this blog. Nothing I express here should be taken as medical advice and you should consult with your doctor before starting any diet or exercise program. I provide nutritional information for my recipes simply as a courtesy to my readers, this should never be construed as medical advice.