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Focused Nutrition: Intermittent Fasting


Some of you may know that I'm working on a nutrition certification from Precision Nutrition. I've been excited to start for a long time and am now just getting started in earnest. However, I thought you might be interested in some of the studies I've been researching outside of the PN program as well. One of my goals is to share what I'm learning with you as I go.


Some of the data I've found interesting are about Intermittent Fasting (IF). There is significant evidence that IF not only helps us lose weight, but also prevents many age-related diseases, and may even slow the aging process.


Here are just a few of the facts that I gathered from Centennial Health's "Intermittent Fasting for Women Over 50" published in November 2021:


  1. Starting in our 30's, our bodies (men and women) begin to lose muscle mass (sarcopenia), and as we are losing muscle, we are gaining fat. Muscle is metabolically active tissue and requires more calories than fat, so the more muscle you have, the more calories you burn. To increase metabolism, we need to increase lean muscle mass -- this becomes more difficult as we age. "From a metabolic standpoint, fasting gives your digestive system a much-needed break." (p. 12). IF also raises the level of human growth hormone (HGH) that helps preserve lean muscle mass.

  2. The authors of an article published in 2020 in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) concluded that IF may be able to help prevent many age-related diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, and cancer, and could play a role in slowing the aging process itself.

Furthermore, IF:

  • is flexible

  • is intuitive

  • targets belly fat

  • preserves lean muscle

  • is inexpensive

  • blunts the insulin response

  • works quickly

  • is sustainable

There are several different plans and of course you should start with what is easiest and change your plan, if you like, as you go. Some of the plans are:

  • Time- Restricted Eating

  • Alternate Day Fasting

  • Whole-Day Fasting

  • One Meal a Day

I will be adding more information about IF in the next few blogs. I hope you will find it helpful. And I will share tips that I learn as I progress on my PN course.


Wishing you all the best,

Julie

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