I’ve yoyoed between gaining and losing five to ten pounds several times in the past five years. While that might not seem like a lot of weight, at 5’1’’ five to ten pounds makes a difference. I’ve told myself it’s not a big deal. It’s all part of the aging process and having kids, right? I’m a mom twice over and in my mid 40s. Since I’m still relatively slim, I’ve waxed and waned between accepting the few extra pounds and wanting to take them off. I don’t need to take them off. Overall, I’m in good shape. I eat healthy foods, exercise several times a week, and have low blood pressure and normal cholesterol levels. If I am going to do anything, it certainly isn’t going to be anything drastic. My pants becoming a bit tougher to button lately pushed me toward the try to take off a few extra pounds direction. The thought of having to buy new clothes was more of a motivator than anything else. Also, I don’t want this to become a weight gain slippery slope…five to ten pounds now, five to ten pounds in a few years, and so on. I’ve heard a lot of good things about intermittent fasting from friends, so I thought I would give it a try.
Although there are several ways to intermittent fast, I’ve chosen the fasting for sixteen hours and eating for eight hours a day option. Basically, I eat between 10am to 6pm each day and I fast for the remaining sixteen hours. I still eat three meals a day; I’ve just shifted when I eat them. It’s not that hard. I usually feel hungry about fourteen and a half hours into the fasting cycle, so I drink water and that staves off my hunger until 10am. I don’t feel dizzy or lightheaded. I’m not even excessively hungry. I’ve heard intermittent fasting reduces inflammation and can ward off some diseases. While I’d like to believe that is true, I take those claims with a grain of salt. I may be a bit of a skeptic, but I just don’t think the intermittent fasting trend has been around long enough to be able to substantiate such claims. I tried intermittent fasting because I wanted to see if it could help me take off a few extra pounds without making major dietary and lifestyle changes. Plain and simple.
So, does intermittent fasting work? I’ve been trying it for a month and my honest answer is I don’t know. I have taken off two pounds. Not bad. By condensing three meals into eight hours, I have essentially stopped snacking. I’m just now realizing how much I used to snack late at night and between breakfast and lunch. So, have I lost two pounds because I cut out snacking calories or because of the timing of my meals? Reduced snacking calories seems to be the more likely answer. Some claim they have never felt better than when they were intermittent fasting. Honestly, I don’t feel any different. I am realizing just how much I used to eat when I wasn’t even hungry though. I also like the extra time skipping breakfast before work saves me in the mornings.
For now, I will keep on the intermittent fasting track. While I haven’t found that it has lived up to all the hype, it has helped me take off a couple pounds. Since I’m not looking to lose much weight, I am okay with slow and steady progress. On a scale of one to ten, I’d give intermittent fasting a solid rating of 7. Not bad. Not outstanding. It’s okay. If you are considering intermittent fasting, please check with your doctor first to see if it is a healthy option for you. Don’t expect weight loss miracles if your doctor gives you the green light. I’m thinking intermittent fasting may be more of a slow and steady wins the race kind of regimen.