- University of Florida researchers put 19 people on an alternate-day fasting program for 3 weeks, drawing blood before and after the diet. The postdiet sample revealed that the participants' cells had begun making more copies of a longevity gene—known as SIRT3—that both helps protect against damaging free radical molecules and improves cells' ability to repair themselves. (LIVE LONGER!)
- In animal studies, scientists at the National Institute on Aging it was learned that the diet boosts proteins that strengthen neurons crucial for learning and memory. (IMPROVE MEMORY).
- The same study also suggests the diet produces some of the same positive changes in the cardiovascular system as long-term exercise. (HEART HEALTH++)
- Fasting is particularly helpful at burning fat. Glucose stores are typically depleted after 10 hours; and once depleted in the liver your body is forced to use fat as fuel. This diet burns nearly 15% more fat than a typical calorie restricted diet. The body hangs onto muscle and doesn't contribute to the diet related plunge in metabolism.
- Eight clinical trials of more than 600 obese patients, led by Krista Varady, a nutritional scientist at the University of Illinois, found reliable 2-3 lb/week weight loss over a 3 month period.
- In a trial funded by the NIH, intermittent fasting was found to be much more effective than everyday dieting at maintaining weight loss (MY NEMESIS). AND, the approach is sustainable.
I'm not a "in moderation" kind of woman so this approach seems a better fit than weighing and measuring and limiting different foods or calories. I would rather be told NO EATING ! than "You can eat a little bit..." Having one day with no food is much easier for me to accept especially since it falls the day before my weekly weigh in; when my motivation to restrict (and/or trepidation) is high. The research validates my choice, strengthens my resolve and gives me hope for the maintenance part that will follow. This is not a diet; but rather a life-style habit. Once the decision is made there is no more thought necessary... Tuesday is FAST DAY... Done.
I know I'm not following the intermittent; alternate day fasting; or alternate low cal (500 calories/day) as some protocols offer. The reason is that I can make it through a day without eating, where some patients in the trials could not - which is why minimal food (500 cals) was added... They wanted these people to be able to stay on program; the only reason for the added food.
I'm going to keep following this plan through the Spring and see where it leads me. I hope I will continue to have positive results! Weigh in tomorrow!