Plant-Based Intermittent Fasting for Vegans
If you have been paying attention to anything in the world over the last several years, there is a good chance that you have at least heard of something that is called intermittent fasting. The intermittent fasting diet comes in several different forms, some of which include doing a 5:2 diet, 16:8 diet, as well as several different variations as well.
Well, the thing about intermittent fasting is that it works. This means that it has become the newest weight loss craze and has been growing in its popularity faster than any other diet before it. And just so you know that this is a real thing, next time you go outside, just look for the person stomping around the neighborhood who hasn’t eaten in the last 14 hours and is noticeably ‘hangry.’
So what is Intermittent Fasting?
In its simplest form, intermittent fasting is a way of losing weight that revolves around timing when it is that you eat, and when it is that you don’t eat. To put it simply, you are limiting the time that you have to eat to a certain number of hours every day, being sure that you don’t eat during the other times of the day. While it can be very tempting to start scoffing down any and everything when your ‘eating window’ does open, for the most part, you are typically going to want to only eat healthy foods that are going to actually aid your cause.
Here are the most popular intermittent fasting timeframes that people are doing:
- 5:2 Fast: This is where you are going to eat regularly for 5 days out of the week, followed by only eating 500-600 calories on the other 2 days of the week.
- 16:8 Fast: This is where you only allow yourself to eat during a predetermined 8-hour ‘eat window’ during the day, followed by a 16-hour fast.
- Eat-Stop-Eat Fast: This is when you simply stop eating for an entire 24 hour window, but only 1 or 2 times per week.
- Alternate Day Fasting: This is when you eat roughly 500 calories on your alternate day, eating normally on every other day of the week.
The Main Benefits of Intermittent Fasting
You may be wondering why someone would put himself or herself through the torment of only being able to eat during certain hours of the day, or limiting what they eat to an extreme point on certain days. Well, once you are aware of the benefits that come along with intermittent fasting, you may want to jump on the bandwagon as well.
Here are the top benefits of intermittent fasting:
Intermittent fasting helps you lose weight quickly
If you are a vegan who is looking to lose weight quickly, than vegan intermittent fasting is exactly what you have been looking for. While there are experts who are still trying to figure out exactly how intermittent fasting works so well, the majority of them feel that it is due to the fact that you are simply consuming far less calories and fats. Others however, seem to think that it is because of the restricted eating times.
Intermittent fasting will improve your focus and your mood
While there are some studies that have proven that you may be somewhat crabby during the first few weeks of starting an intermittent fasting diet, all of these effects are going to start wearing off over time, and you should start to notice that both your mood and focus will start to improve.
This is mainly because intermittent fasting helps increase your body’s production of DBNF, a protein that your brain uses, which is linked to improved cognitive function, as well as an elevated mood.
Intermittent fating helps reduce your risk of disease
Among the many health benefits of being on an intermittent fasting diet, there is also strong evidence that suggests intermittent fasting is able to help reduce your risk of contracting various diseases, assuming that you are eating wholesome, healthy foods and living a somewhat healthy lifestyle.
Intermittent fasting will increase your endurance and energy
Research has shown that when you are on an intermittent fasting diet, you are going to boost your mitochondrial biogenesis, which means that your cells are going to start creating more mitochondria. This means that you will essentially be giving your body’s cells even more energy throughout the day, which will in turn give you more energy throughout the day.
Intermittent fasting can potentially increase your lifespan
Studies done at Harvard University have discovered that those who regularly use a intermittent fasting diet, are able to potentially increase their lifespan due to some very complicated science stuff. Essentially, if you have not been treating your body as well as you should, maybe it’s time to start checking out a vegan intermittent fasting diet plan.
How to get Started on a Vegan Intermittent Fasting Diet
Doing an intermittent fasting diet when you are only eating vegan foods is one of the fastest ways that you can lose weight ever. While it is going to be a very difficult process for you, the end result is going to be nothing less than spectacular.
Here are some of the basic steps to get started with you vegan intermittent fating diet:
- Before you get started, you are going to want to take some time to create yourself a sustainable guide. This means that you will need to take a look at every aspect of your life, including the hours you work, your habits, what you do for fun, and everything in between. When do you tend to snack? How many tines per week are you skipping breakfasts? Are you able to go for longer periods of time without eating anything without getting crabby? For most, starting with the 16:8 intermittent fast schedule is going to be the easiest, usually with their eat window being between 12pm – 8pm.
- Be sure that you ‘ease’ into your new lifestyle. You do not have to go straight to the deep end on this one. If you do, you may actually trick your body into thinking it is actually starving to death. In fact, if you need too, start with a 10 or even 12 hour eat window before you go straight to the 8. Or if you have decided that the 5:2 intermittent fast is best for you, maybe you should start with a 6:1 in the beginning.
- When it comes to fasting, one of the main benefits is that you are not going to have to plan out your meals. However, if you are going to be eating a completely vegan menu, you may need to make sure and find the extra nutrients and fiber that are going to help minimize your amount of hunger and any type of malnutrition while you are fasting.
- Before you start your intermittent fasting diet, you should pick a definitive end date as well. This can be in 2 weeks or 2 months. The whole point here is to make sure that you are able to take a second to reflect on the results that you have gotten from your vegan intermittent fasting, as well as make sure that it is worth it to you. If you decide that this is not the right eating plan for you, you can simply start looking for other options.
Is Vegan Intermittent Fasting for You?
While everybody is going to have a different reason for becoming a vegan and trying intermittent fasting, here are some of the top reasons why you may want to consider becoming a vegan intermittent faster.
- You are a vegan who is looking to lose weight and increase your muscle tone. When you are a vegan intermittent faster, you are going to experience very fast weight loss. This makes it much easier for you to burn fat and achieve the body of your dreams
- You are a vegan looking to boost your gym workouts. Studies have shown that vegans who are on an intermittent fating eating routine are more likely to have an elevated amount of growth hormone by up to 500%, meaning that vegans can gain much easier when in the gym.
- You are a vegan looking to establish better eating habits. There are many vegans out there who simply eat foods that are not healthy for them. When you are on a plant based intermittent fasting diet, you are essentially forcing yourself to eat healthy and develop healthy eating habits.
Who Should Never Try Vegan Intermittent Fasting
Now that you know exactly whom vegan intermittent fasting is intended for, there are also those who vegan intermittent fasting is not for. Here are the people who should never even think about going on a vegan intermittent fasting diet.
- Any vegans who are either breastfeeding or pregnant. If you are currently a vegan that is either breastfeeding or pregnant, you should definitely not be doing any type of experimentation with diets or other fasting methods. Keep in mind that your baby is growing larger every day and you are their only source of consistent nutrition.
- If you are a diabetic vegan. While studies have shown that fasting is able to help with the symptoms of diabetes, most doctors recommend that diabetics do not do any type of fasting ever. If they do, it can greatly influence their blood sugar levels, potentially causing even more problems.
Whenever you a new type of diet such as vegan intermittent fasting, there are several different things that can happen. You may quickly fall in love with your new eating schedule and have it become the easiest thing that you have ever done. On the other hand, you may discover that trying to revolve all of your eating around an intermittent fasting schedule is a little bit more than you are ready to handle. And as if that weren’t tough enough, being that you are trying to go onto a vegan intermittent fast only complicates the matter more.
Not only are you going to have to plan out your meals much more precisely in order to get all of the nutrition that your body requires on a daily basis, but you are also going to need to combat the lack of flavor that comes along with a vegan diet. So now you are only able to eat certain foods during certain times of the day.
Yes, it can sound like one of the hardest things that you can do, the end results are going to be more than you can even imagine. Imagine how you are going to feel when you have lost all of your extra weight, have finally achieved the muscle tone that you have been trying to achieve for the last 6 years, and feel better than you have ever felt. As soon as this happens, all of your hard work and dedication will have paid off and you are going to feel like a champion.
Just remember that when you do start a vegan intermittent fast, that you first visit you doctor and let them know exactly what it is that you are planning on doing. This way, they will be able to help you and give you advice on how to make sure you are successful in your vegan intermittent fasting endeavors. Plus, when your doctor is helping you on your vegan intermittent journey, as soon as something goes wrong (ideally it will not though), they will be right there to help you fix the problem.
Another thing to keep in mind is that Rome was not built in a day, and neither is your new diet. Give yourself time to adapt to the new eating restrictions and eat windows. As mentioned earlier in this article, start with an easier intermittent fasting diet, taking baby steps to get to the intermittent fasting diet that you would ultimately like to end up at. When you do this, you are essentially going to ensure that you reach your goals much quicker than if you try to jump straight to the finish line.