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Intermittent Fasting: Meaning, Benefits & Side Effects

Here's everything you must know about intermittent fasting - its pros and cons.

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Intermittent fasting has gained a lot of popularity of lately. The reason is people getting obsessed about weight loss and shedding extra pounds of kilos. Have you ever wondered? Is Intermittent fasting actually a miraculous trick for instant weight loss or is it just a passing fad? Well, according to Mary Hyer, RD, LDN, CCRP, a cardiac rehabilitation dietitian at the Elfers Cardiovascular Center at Newton-Wellesley Hospital, intermittent fasting is not a magic cure for losing weight but the research on intermittent fasting is promising."

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What Is Intermittent Fasting? How Does It Work

In simple terms, intermittent fasting is a stretch in fasting time or we can say it is a simultaneous switching between eating and fasting on regular basis. According to some researchers, intermittent fasting not only promotes weight loss but also reverses some chronic health conditions.

Intermittent fasting is not about what to eat unlike a diet plan, instead it is about when to eat. People opt for either an eight hour or a 12 hour intermittent fasting regimen. In either ways, you have to starve yourself to achieve the desired results.

Intermittent fasting through a process called metabolic switching, in which body uses all the sugar stores and ultimately starts burning the fat reserves for energy production. Decrease in fats ultimately promote weight loss.

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If you are a newbie in intermittent fasting, you should definitely go through the following list of pros and cons to know is it beneficial for you or not.

Intermittent Fasting Benefits & Side Effects

Pros: Following is the list of pros or benefits of intermittent fasting.

  • Longevity

  • Weight loss

  • Low cholesterol

  • Control in blood pressure

  • Improved blood sugar

  • Control in age related disease

  • Improved brain health

  • Reduced inflammation

  • Improved heart health

  • Increased physical fitness

  • Control in diabetes and obesity

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Cons: Following is the list of cons or side effects of intermittent fasting.

  • Reduced physical activity: People who are on intermittent fasting are being advised to reduce physical activity.

  • Hunger pangs

  • Increased in side effects of medicines: Different drugs are advised to take after food and if taken on empty stomach, they may lead to many side effects.

  • Malnutrition: Most intermittent fasting programs often focus on the timing of food rather than food choice. This sometimes leads to malnutrition because people ignore the nutritious foods.

  • Overeating: People often hog after intermittent fasting. This may lead to overeating habits which is not at all good for health.

  • No guarantee of long-term benefits: Though the concept of intermittent fasting is not new and a lot of research has been already done but there is still no guarantee that if the benefits are long-lasting.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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