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  • Writer's pictureStacey Murtagh

What is Intermittent Fasting?

Updated: Sep 28, 2020

I'm sure many of you have heard of Intermittent Fasting which essentially is a way of timing when you eat throughout your day. Fasting for health is highly encouraged in Ayurveda, which is something I personally follow and works very well for me.

For those who may not know, I have previously been diagnosed with SIBO (small intestinal bacteria overgrowth) and visceral hypersensitivity (a form of IBS). From the benefit of being my very own health coach I was able to go on a low fodmap diet and introduce regular fasting to my diet. At first this was 4 hours in between each meal during the day.


It's important to note that it's not for everyone. I coach on a bio-individuality basis, which means we are all different therefore certain diets and ways of eating will not work for everyone. I encourage you to find the best diet and eating pattern that works best for you as an individual.

The key benefits of fasting include:

  • Support weight loss.

  • Giving rest to your stomach, intestines and digestive organs.

  • Increase Energy levels.

  • Helps to cleanse and rejuvenate the body.

  • Empowers you to develop strong willpower and enable you to concentrate better - helping you experience clarity.

How to FAST

Select a time period that you can commit to. Ideally you should aim for a 16 hour fasting period, which would mean you then have an 8 hour eating period. Therefore, you could break your fast at 10am and have your last meal before 6pm. It's important that although you are skipping a meal, you should still maintain the calorie intake you need for your day. Do not overeat, but do ensure you are consuming the nutrients and calories you need for energy in your day. You do not want your body to go into starvation mode, but equally it's important to listen to your body and sense when it needs fuel (hunger). You can also work up to a 16hr fast starting with at least 10hrs in between your last and first meal. Essentially fasting will allow your body to digest properly and function at it's optimum level. Alternatively another fasting option could be that you ensure you leave 4 hrs in between each meal and no snacking.


Breaking your FAST


Before breaking your fast, you can consume as much water as you like. Our organs need hydration, so ensure you drink water each morning upon waking. You can also take some lemon and hot water should you find the start cause you any nausea.


Stay light with your meals. I tend to have porridge or weetabix providing me with good fibre intake. I also drink Kifir to nourish my gut health.


Take the opportunity to plan your meals, filled with nourishment that fills your soul.


IMPORTANT

Please talk to your Doctor before starting any fasting program, especially if you have a health condition or take any medication. DO NOT fast if you are pregnant, nursing or underweight.

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