In recent times, the fasting known as intermittent fasting became more and more popular. Some diets tell you exactly what to consume or calorie amounts, but this is focused on when you eat during the day. Meaning, short-term fasting and windows of time for eating and vice versa, but let’s see details below.
Such a way to consume food means you eat fewer calories because you are time-limited. Also, there will be fewer diabetes risks, weight gain risks, and fewer heart issues risks. Still, studies have claimed that this fasting is more efficient for men in some cases, but women can do it better with a different adjustment to it.
This is the guide and keeps on reading.
What exactly is intermittent fasting?
This type of fasting is like a scheme with cycles when you don’t eat anything and hours when you eat normally.
Commonly seen are the alternate days fasting, or daily 16 hours fasts, or even full day of all hours fasting just twice a week.
Most diets are not about tracking calories and macros, and here is the same time, much better for the outcome as well. There are no special requirements on which foods or lifestyles pair here.
A lot of people use this for weight loss and fat percent adjusting.
This will also lessen the heart disease and diabetes risk, keep muscle memory good and affect mental health better.
Also, this makes you spend less time in the kitchen and you will plan all meals easier and better, or faster.
In a nutshell, intermittent fasting is a pattern of consuming food that means short-term fasts on regular basis, it is popular, beneficial, proven to be safe, and prevents many diseases.
This fasting affects both genders differently
Some proofs show that this fasting is not the same for men and women, so here is why.
The blood sugar in women got worse after 3 weeks of such fasts, and for men, it was better.
Many stories say women who got some changes in this regard noticed it in the menstrual cycles and fasting – it was related.
These shifts happen because females are very sensitive to a lot of calories or too little. If they have a low intake of calories, the part of the brain (hypothalamus) is affected. This halts the production of t, the hormone gonadotropin, a hormone of the main 2 reproductive hormones, FSH and LH.
If these hormones do not get in touch with the ovaries, there are irregular periods, bad bone state, infertility and more. Other studies cannot compare much, but rat tests showed that 6 months of such fasting reduced the ovaries and made irregular menstruation.
So, women have to modify the approach to keep their health during such fasts.
In a nutshell, this fasting is not very great for women in comparison to the effects on it for men. Women must fo shorter fast periods, in fewer days.
Not all is gloom, and here are the health improvements for women after fasting
This fasting is not only ok for weight loss but for health too, here is how.
1. Healthy heart
Heart issues are a main problem in the world, and hypertension with high LDL and high triglycerides are the main risks for heart issues.
A study of 16 obese women and men, told us that fasting lowers the blood pressure in just a month and a half, by 6%.
This same study said fasting lowers LDL by 25%, and an amazing 32% for triglycerides. Still, some proofs give a link between better LDL and fasting too. A study of 40 average-weight people said in just 4 weeks of this fasting during Ramadan, there was no LDL reduction, surprisingly.
More rich studies said the extreme methods are much beneficial and needed for experts to understand stats and the effects on the heart.
This fasting is great to balance the sugar levels in the blood and prevent diabetes. Just like cutting calories, this fasting lessens diabetes risks. This is done by less insulin secretion and less insulin resistance to sweets and similar.
Another study of random parameters said over 100 obese and overweight women fasted for 6 months and got lower insulin by 29% and less resistance by 19%.
Also, fasting for a year lowers insulin by 31%, blood sugar by 6% in those at risk for diabetes.
Still, this fasting is much better in men than women.
Another minor study showed the sugar control was a tad worse for women within the first month, but for men, there were no issues. This is a side effect, but it is not so bad as it sounds. Women will also get no diabetes risk and this is a good trait of fasting.
3. Losing weight
This fasting is great to slim down, and short-term fasting is good for fewer calories too.
Studies said this fast is great and similar to classic calorie cut for short-term slimming.
A study in 2018 said overweight adults lost weight this way by 15 pounds in 3-12 months.
Another study said this fasting cut the weight by 8% in overweight people in just 24 weeks. Also, their waist size was reduced by 7%.
Long term effect of this fast is yet to be witnessed. For the short term, this is good for slimming and depending on how much you want to slim, you make the modifications.
4. You eat less food
This will narrow your stomach and make you crave amounts less.
A study shown for younger males said this means they ate 650 calories less, within a restriction of 4 hours window.
Another study with healthy males, 24 total, and women too, saw effects long-term during 36 days of fasting. They ate more calories on some days, but their total calorie dropped by the whole 1900!
Other fasting benefits
Studies have shown this fasting eliminates inflammation and weight gain risks due to it
A study of 2 months showed this fasting reduced depression and binge anxiety eating in obese people
This fasting prolongs life and lifespan in rats by a whopping 33-83%, but for humans, we yet will see.
Keeps muscle tissues
This fasting is better to preserve muscles in comparison to long-term calorie cuts. More muscle mass means you burn more calories when you rest too.
On another note, health benefits in general from this fasting are studied and will be studied more before definite statements. And this fasting helps females to lose fat tissue and be healthier.
The best intermittent fasting for women
For diet reasons, not one method is perfect for everyone. In general, women need adjustments:
Meaning you fast 12 or 16 hours, 3 days a week. They can be connected on random days throughout the week.
2. Eat stop eat
This is the 24-hour method of a full day and night fast 2 times a week tops. Start with less for start, 14 and 16 hours.
3. 5:2 method
This is the calorie cut by 25% of the total daily intake (500 cal on average) for two days a week. Other days you eat normally. Pause a day between fasts.
4. Modified alternating day
Fast every other day, and eat normally in-between days. Eat tops 25% of the calorie intake on days of fasting.
5. 16:8 method
This means you fast 16 hours, and eat only in the 8 hours in that day., women need to start 14 hours first and increase over time.
Whatever the choice, eat good foods at least on days of no fasting. If you binge on fast foods and sugars, what is the whole point?
The best fast way for you is the one you feel best with. The best for women is maybe the 5:2, crescendo, and modified alternate-day too.
How to start
This is simple. You surely did this before and never knew it too. Sometimes you are busy to eat or purposely skip a day. Right?
Choose a day when you can, no need to be strict. Sometimes skip a meal if you need to eat literally. If you feel bad during this, stop the fast.
Side effects and precautions
Some altered versions are safe for women and good proven too.
Some studies have shown side effects like mood swings, lack of focus, lack of energy, bad breath, hunger, insomnia, and such. Some women said their menstrual cycle changed. If you got serious health problems, consult an expert first.
Women who must consult an expert or doctor have the following:
- Eating disorders
- Fertility problems
If you try to conceive, you MUST consult a doctor before this fast.
This fast method means short window time fasts and same periods of eating.
Women need o start with 14 hours at first, or try the 5:2 way.
The benefits are less risk of heart problems, diabetes, and less body fat too. But, be careful with the intensity because it could make fertility issues and blood sugar problems.