By: Gabrielle Deveaux, Registered Dietitian (RD)
Intermittent fasting has gained popularity in recent years for its potential health benefits. The common types are alternate-day fasting, monthly fasting, time-restricted eating, and reduced calories for two days of the week. This week, Mint Nutrition Clinic is focusing on intermittent fasting as a weight loss tool, and our registered dietitians and nutritionists mention many truths and myths about this topic.
The Truths and Myths
Studies have found that intermittent fasting may cause improvements in insulin sensitivity, blood pressure and triglycerides (cholesterol levels), and may decrease body fat and reduce inflammation. However, although it has been shown to be an effective weight loss strategy, research has proven that it is as equally effective as a regular calorie-reduced diet. For some, fasting is more satisfying than a daily calorie restriction, and it can be easily incorporated into a weekly routine.
It is important to note that despite the many potential benefits, there are some limitations with the current studies that could have influenced these findings, including high drop-out rates. This suggests that it may be difficult to stick to this diet for the long-term. Other things to consider are potential negative effects of fasting, such as low energy, hunger, and interrupting the social aspect of eating. Also, this diet is not recommended for those with diabetes who are taking insulin or anyone with a history of an eating disorder.
If intermittent fasting seems suitable for you, work with our nutritionist or registered dietitian for an individualized plan.
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