Lisa Fischer

Intermittent Fasting

Hi, KATV viewers: Here is my website link to what I have learned about Intermittent Fasting. Enjoy! Let me know about your successes if you try it. lisafischersaid@gmail.com

My struggles aren't carnal; they're caramel. And chocolate and ice cream. That's why Intermittent Fasting works.

I need to see a show of hands who believes that they're gonna die if they don't eat every three hours? I mean, health experts have shoved that (along with tons of unnecessary food) down our throats for years. I'm always the one to burst people's bubbles, I feel like. So here I go again. It's a lie. There is no scientific evidence to prove that eating six times a day does anything magical with your metabolism. In fact, the opposite seems to be true. By going WITHOUT food for a certain period of time each day, you'll see your metabolism improve. My friends, allow me to introduce you to intermittent fasting. Those of us who drink the kool-aid (within our feasting window, of course) call it IF. Jason Fung, MD, a Canadian physician who has led the way with the health benefits of IF, was quoted in a NY Post article with some scientific information about fasting. And it's not what you think.

"'Your basal metabolic rate goes up [while fasting],” Fung says. “In the caveman days, as soon as you had nothing to eat, the body would give us more energy. The body revs up metabolically.' Not eating might also make you mentally sharper, as it allows blood to be made available to the brain that might otherwise be kept busy digesting a Big Mac. Fasting also lowers blood sugar and can help prevent diabetes by better controlling insulin, the fat-regulating hormone. Ultimately, Fung argues that obesity is not really about calories — but hormones."

So how do we unleash those hormones? You guessed it. By fasting. By abstaining from food for at least 16-18 hours a day, you reach something called autophagy. Autophagy is a magical thing that allows the body to recycle its junk and do a cellular clean-out. Joseph Mercola, D.O., is someone I respect with his non-traditional medical opinions. This one falls in line with us intermittent fasters. Here is his take on fasting:

"Intermittent Fasting — Another Way to Boost Autophagy

Fasting is another biological stressor that produces many beneficial results, including autophagy. In fact, some of the benefits associated with fasting — such as a reduced risk of diabetes and heart disease — can at least in part be attributed to this process.

While there are many different kinds of intermittent fasting schedules, if you're insulin resistant, my personal recommendation is to fast every day by scheduling all of your eating within a window of approximately 8 hours or less. For example, you could restrict your eating to the hours of 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. This equates to 16 hours of daily fasting.

I used to recommend skipping breakfast, but I've since realized that it probably doesn't matter which meal you skip — breakfast or dinner — as long as you skip one of them. Some really struggle without breakfast, so play around with it and find out what works best for you.

Eating between the hours of 8 a.m.. and 4 p.m.. may work better for some people, and this schedule actually has an added advantage, because you're now fasting for several hours before going to bed. I'm convinced that it's best for most to avoid eating three hours prior to bed, as the last thing you need to be doing is producing energy when you don't need it.

There's compelling evidence showing that when you supply fuel to your mitochondria at a time when they don't need it, they leak a large number of electrons that liberate reactive oxygen species as free radicals.

These free radicals damage your mitochondrial and eventually nuclear DNA. There's also evidence indicating that cancer cells uniformly have damaged mitochondria, so eating too close to bedtime is not a good idea. I personally strive for six hours of fasting before bedtime, but at bare minimum, avoid eating at least three hours before going to bed."

I, personally, have a goal to fast at least 19 hours a day. That's my average, actually. I have downloaded the Zero app, (the Vora app is good, too) and it tracks my fasting/feasting schedule. I typically fast from about 6:00 p.m.-1:00 p.m. the next day. Only black coffee or unsweetened tea or water with lemon or lime are allowed. Then when I open my "feasting window," I eat whatever my body wants. All of the things I never permitted for years, I now enjoy. In moderation. So the years I was hardcore gluten-free, now I'm enjoying it. And at the time of this post, I have been intermittent fasting for 3 1/2 months and have lost 13 pounds. And I haven't been on a diet. Gin Stephens wrote "Delay Don't Deny." It best explains the philosophy that I follow. I eat what I want just in a shorter time window than all day. In fact, some people call it "time restricted eating."

For further reading, read the books by Dr. Fung. He calls intermittent fasting the cure for obesity and Type II diabetes. His books are "The Obesity Code" and "The Complete Guide to Fasting." As a medical doctor, he has seen so many overweight people, and he realized that the "calories in/calories out" method doesn't work. He also says that you have never seen a reunion show for the TV show "The Biggest Loser." He says that is because of caloric deprivation leads to lower metabolism and those people all gain their weight back and then some.

Another resource includes a podcast called The Intermittent Fasting podcast. Both Gin Stephens, the author mentioned above, and Melanie Avalon are the hosts. I listen to the new episodes every Monday when they drop (that's audio talk for "are available." I like being the cool kid with the lingo.)

Call it what you want, either IF or time restricted eating, but just try it. Try it for a month. Maybe two. But the first week, you'll have some hunger and a headache. For the headache, just eat some Himalayan salt or put some in warm water. It will help with the headache which is usually from electrolyte imbalance. And you might even gain weight the first two weeks. Don't worry about it. Your body is trying to adjust to burning fat for fuel and not the glycogen stores in your liver. Then email me lisafischersaid@gmail.com, and let me know about your progress. I've had this conversation going both on the radio and on my Facebook page. It's been so fun to see people try this WOE (way of eating) and succeed.

The three books I recommend are The Obesity Code by Jason Fung, MD; Gin Stephens' books, Delay Don't Deny and Feast Without Fear.

DISCLAIMER: I AM NOT A MEDICAL DOCTOR. NOT EVEN CLOSE. SO THIS CANNOT REPLACE THE ADVICE OF A HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL.