New trend: Intermittent fasting helps you lose weight
Intermittent fasting is currently touted as the best diet method. In fact, many people who want to lose weight can show good results. We asked experts how losing weight with intermittent fasting works and which advantages and disadvantages become apparent during the course of the diet.
Beware of the yo-yo effect
Many methods of weight loss are advertised, but most of these popular diets are of little use because the yo-yo effect makes you gain weight quickly, my scientists say. Nevertheless, there are always new weight loss methods that many followers find. A relatively new trend: interval fasting.
Special method for weight loss
According to experts, a permanent diet with fewer calories, accompanied by regular exercise, has the best chance of success in losing weight.
But if you want to go faster, special weight loss programs can also help. One of these is the so-called "interval fasting".
This method should not only help with weight loss, but also with high blood pressure, improve mood and improve mental performance.
But what is it about the diet that - like so many others - has found its way to Europe from the USA? In a message from the dpa news agency, experts summarized interesting facts about the topic.
A "nutrition appropriate for humans"
As the name suggests: a period of food intake is followed by a fast. For example, a 2: 5 regulation, i.e. fasting for two days and eating normally for five days, or a 16: 8 variant, i.e. fasting for 16 hours and eating eight hours, are possible.
"People are not originally used to constant meals," said Hamburg diabetologist and NDR "nutrition doc" Matthias Riedl.
Our ancestors were adjusted to phases of fasting due to their living conditions. It was only possible to eat when the hunt was successful or the harvest was ripe.
According to Riedl, a change between Lent and times of ingestion is therefore a natural way of life, so to speak "is the appropriate diet for humans".
Drink a lot on fasting days
According to the doctor, "the body is constantly in storage mode" because there are no more hunger phases in our everyday lives with regular meals and many snacks.
The possible consequences: being overweight and resulting diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases or dementia.
However, when hunger phases are built into everyday life, the organism learns to use its own reserves, which lowers insulin levels and stimulates fat loss. The body is relieved, metabolism and organs can regenerate.
The Constance sports scientist, author and health consultant Michael Despeghel advocates the 2: 5 method. He recommends that you only consume 500 kilocalories two days a week. The rest of the days are eaten as usual.
Even reducing the total weekly calorie count would have a good chance of losing weight sustainably with relatively little change in everyday life.
A major advantage of this method: The fasting days can be chosen according to personal circumstances.
Despeghel emphasized that on fasting days it was important to drink a lot, preferably water, tea and vegetable broth. Once a day there is a protein-rich meal that provides the body with a minimum amount of energy and thus prevents the muscle mass from being lost.
Positive effects on mood and mental performance
The Munich fitness trainer and nutritionist Hanjo Fritzsche, who lives according to the 16: 8 method and feeds normally eight hours a day, but only consumes water for the rest of the time, said according to dpa: "In the first few weeks, you think a lot Eat after. "
Some of them also develop headaches and difficulty concentrating. According to Fritzsche, after a familiarization phase you feel awake and can concentrate better.
According to Riedl, animal experiments show that temporary periods of fasting have a positive effect on mood and mental performance. The immune system also benefited in mice and rats, and even life expectancy increased.
The diabetologist said that intermittent fasting is in principle suitable for anyone who manages to hold on to the fasting periods and integrate them into their weekly routine. You should set yourself certain goals at the beginning, such as losing so much centimeter circumference.
You can get additional motivation by logging the initial situation and first successes.
Also ensure sufficient exercise
According to the experts, it is also helpful to accompany the intermittent fasting with sports and exercise. "Sitting increases blood sugar levels," says Despeghel.
In addition to reducing calories, exercise also strengthens general well-being. According to the fitness trainer Fritzsche, it is "one of the best fat burning strategies ever" to exercise soberly. Then the body is forced to use its reserves.
The fat burning is optimized and even stubborn fat deposits in the problem areas could be melted.
But even if the experts in the dpa report are consistently positive about interval fasting, there is also criticism.
The German Nutrition Society (DGE) wrote on its website: “The DGE does not consider this method to be useful for regulating weight in the long term. This does not result in a switch to a health-promoting diet. "
"Such short-term diets do not have a permanent effect and endanger a balanced nutrient supply," said DGE spokeswoman Antje Gahl.
"Losing a lot quickly and just as quickly returning to your initial weight or even more - that characterizes these diets and can lead to the so-called yo-yo effect," said Gahl in a message explaining why so-called flash diets are unsuccessful. (ad)