Intermittent fasting, often shortened to “IF,” is taking the modern
world by storm. Why is it becoming so popular? Largely due to the increased
knowledge surrounding the ketogenic diet. Since the keto dies utilizes long
lasting fuel sources of fat, protein, and ketones that keep you full and
energized for hours on end, it becomes easier to fast. You can naturally go
longer periods between meals, which not only increases weight loss but also
benefits your health. Surprisingly to many people, intermittent fasting has
even been shown in studies to increase lifespan and decrease the speed of aging!
Yet, despite the many benefits of intermittent fasting, many people
have concerns. They worry that they will go hungry, deprive their body of
nutrients, or that it is just another crash diet that damages your metabolism.
Thankfully, none of these are true! In this chapter, we will ease any concerns
you have on intermittent fasting, explain the process, and make it easy for
you to implement in your daily life if you so choose. Going on the vegan
ketogenic diet doesn’t require intermittent fasting, but if you are attempting
to lose weight it can be a wonderful way to boost your metabolism and fat
With intermittent fasting, you are not depriving yourself of nutrients,
you are simply going longer between meals. This means that a person who
is practicing fasting will consume the same number of calories as a person
who isn’t fasting. Both people may consume twelve-hundred calories a day,
but while one person eats it between three or four meals, the person who is
intermittent fasting eats those calories in only one or two meals.
By going longer between meals your body will begin to burn its own
fat as a fuel source, as it is naturally designed to do. During the past, humans
would naturally practice intermittent fasting when they were working in the
fields, hunting, or traveling. Yet, in modern times we almost always have
quick and easy access to food. This causes us to consume smaller meals in
rapid succession so that our bodies are always being forced to digest
something. But, by stretching the time between meals you can give your
body a break from digestion, allowing it to burn body fat and heal its own
cells, overall improving your health.
Many studies have been conducted on intermittent fasting, and have
found it to be much safer than dieting. Not only is it safe, but it is also
beneficial for the human body. Along with being perfectly safe, there are
multiple ways in which you can practice intermittent fasting. By having
options, you are able to choose what best works for you, ensuring that you
are satisfied, energized, full, and happy.
However, while intermittent fasting has many health and weight loss
benefits, it is best to wait until you have been fully in ketosis for a month or
two before you begin practicing fasting. This is because when you first begin
the ketogenic diet your body is not yet used to utilizing long-term fuel
sources, which leads to hunger and fatigue until your body adjusts. Once
you are well-acquainted with the process of ketosis you will be able to go
longer periods without hunger or fatigue, as your body will be fully satisfied
with the nutrients it has already been given. By this point, when you are well
adjusted to ketosis, is the best time to practice intermittent fasting, as it
often comes naturally. Since you feel less hungry you are likely to go longer
periods without eating despite not actively attempting to fast. This natural
fasting process signals that you are well into ketosis and able to easily
practice intermittent fasting purposefully.
One of the easiest and simplest ways in which you begin practicing
intermittent fasting is by skipping meals. This method of fasting should be
followed naturally. For instance, if you eat a large breakfast and find you are
still not hungry at lunchtime, simply skip lunch. You can eat again at dinner
or have a snack in the late afternoon. By doing this your body will become
accustomed to intermittent fasting, which is possible due to the protein, fat,
and ketones fueling your cells. You won’t have blood sugar crashes or
fatigue. You simply will feel full, satisfied, and energized. Once you do notice
yourself having hunger pangs again allow yourself to eat, it is as simple as
Most people don’t skip dinner, as then they might get hungry in the
middle of the night. Instead, most people have success with either skipping
breakfast or lunch. Say you eat dinner one night at 6 pm, and then skip
breakfast the next day. When you eat lunch at noon that has given you a
natural eighteen-hour fast. And, just because you skipped lunch doesn’t
mean you will miss out on food or nutrients at other times, as you can enjoy
especially large and calorie-dense meals when you are not fasting.
Remember, this type of fasting should be natural. Don’t push yourself
to begin fasting too soon after starting the ketosis process or before you are
adjusted to fasting. Simply eat when you are hungry and don’t eat when
you’re not. There is no need to eat because it is a meal time if you are not
hungry, so simply allow yourself to skip it if you want. It is okay if you, later
on, decide to eat before your next mealtime, you can have a snack.
Another quick and easy fast to accomplish is the twelve-hour fast. With
this fast, you simply go half of the day without eating and fit all of your meals
in the other half. This is easy, as you can begin and end the fast whenever is
most convenient. For instance, you might begin the fast at 7 pm after dinner,
and break your fast at 7 am when it is time for breakfast. Many people
naturally don’t eat between dinner and breakfast, and since you will be
sleeping this fast is easy to maintain and fits into a busy daily life.
Feel free to experiment with this fast so that it works best with your
daily life. You can either shorten it or lengthen it to your preference, and
move it to the time of day or night that is easiest to maintain.
Known as the Lean-gains diet, a sixteen-hour fast is another popular
option. With this type, you fast for sixteen hours of the day and eat your
meals in the eight remaining hours. This can look many ways, but it is
common to begin the fast after dinner and stop it at lunchtime. For example,
you might finish your dinner at 7 pm. If this is the case, then you will want to
eat your next meal at 11 am.
This fast is beneficial, as the longer fast will allow your body to burn
fatter and better heal its own cells. Many of us are walking around every day
ignorant of the damage happening at a cellular and biological level. Yet,
with longer periods of intermittent fasting, such as with the sixteen hours
fast, you can allow your body the chance to rest from the task of digestion
and instead focus on healing itself.
Of course, you can shorten this fast if sixteen hours is too difficult for
you, never force yourself to go into a fast or continue a fast if you feel the
need to eat. Eat whenever you feel the need! In fact, many women will
shorten this fast to be fourteen hours instead of sixteen, as it can be easier
on their body, especially if they already struggle with their menstrual health
and fertility. It is important to keep in mind that long periods of fasting (such
as sixteen or more hours) can alter a person’s menstrual health cycle. For
some people, this alteration is an improvement in health, and for others, it
is not. It all depends on the individual person, so listen to your body and do
what it needs.
You will find that it is easy to turn this fast into a habit. While some
people only fast two or three times a week, other people may fast on a daily
basis. They simply are not hungry in the mornings, so they naturally fast for
fourteen, sixteen, or even eighteen hours. This regular fasting has many
benefits, but it shouldn’t be forced. Allow yourself to take small steps toward
fasting, instead of diving headfirst into it.
It is important to remember that when you are between fasting
periods you must eat all that you require. You will know how much fat and
protein you need to eat from your keto macronutrient calculation, and it is
also important to consume foods high in micronutrients, such as
While fasts sixteen hours and shorter are the most common, some
people go more extreme with their intermittent fasting and will last for up
to a full day. While this is possible, it is important for people who practice
longer and more extreme fasting to never have two fasting days back to
back. For instance, you wouldn’t want to do a fast longer than sixteen hours
on both Wednesday and Thursday. Instead, have some space between the
fasts, you might try them on Tuesday and Thursday instead. This allows you
to fuel your body with nutrients after one fast and before another, ensuring
you are provided with all the macro and micronutrients your body requires.
Take intermittent fasting one day at a time, listen to your body, and be
kind to yourself. If you follow these rules, then you will be able to naturally
follow intermittent fasting at a healthy rate while also consuming the
amount of food you need.