Types of intermittent fasting: Which is best for you?
January 10, 2023
Which Type of Intermittent Fasting is Best for You?
Perhaps you’ve heard of Intermittent Fasting? It’s a pretty hot topic at the moment in the health and well-being industry, and with the regular promises of a complete transformation in mind, body and soul - it’s no wonder people are talking about it!
Intermittent fasting has become increasingly popular in recent years for its incredible range of health benefits. From weight loss to disease management, this type of time-restricted eating has become an effective tool for many people looking to improve their overall well-being.
But with trusted experts' opinions differing and contradicting articles overwhelming the matter, it’s difficult to know what’s right or wrong, where to start or what’s best for you on your unique journey.
At Fastic, we’re passionate about making intermittent fasting as easy and accessible as possible. That’s why we’ve put together this simple guide to some of the most common types of intermittent fasting so that you can choose the one that’s right for you.
Remember, everyone is different! - so, when deciding on a method that works best for you, you will need to take into account the following:
- Your current health condition and any contraindications
- Your short and long-term health goals
- Your lifestyle
Fasting can be beneficial for everyone, but it’s important to listen to your body and walk your unique journey. Luckily, Fastic is here to help you along the way!
So, with all that being said, let’s dive into each method.
Time-restricted fasting (TRF) is the most popular form of intermittent fasting, and the one that we focus on most here at Fastic. It involves limiting the number of hours that you eat each day. This method involves an eating window of generally 8 hours or less (1), depending on the experience, needs and goals of the individual.
This type of fasting is best for those who want to jump-start their weight loss journey or gain control over their eating habits. It can help to reduce cravings (2), increase energy levels (3), and improve digestion (4).
Overnight fasting is simply another form of time-restricted fasting, where you fast for at least 13-14 hours, usually from dinner until breakfast the next morning. This type of fasting is known to improve insulin sensitivity (5), reduce inflammation (6), and improve cognitive functioning (7). It’s perfect for beginners who want to start slow and ease into fasting while having very little impact on their lifestyle and eating habits, and we usually recommend it to newbies here at Fastic. Most fasters will use overnight fasting in their routine to make intermittent fasting more manageable - after all, when you’re asleep, you’re not so hungry!
Alternate-day fasting involves alternating between days of conventional eating and days of fasting, usually consuming less than 500 calories on the fasting days. While this method can help those looking to lose weight quickly (8), we would not recommend this to beginners, and it should be introduced into your routine slowly if you choose to. Personally, we believe that calorie counting can be difficult on your mental health, so we don’t specifically encourage this type of fasting. That being said, if you’re into it, the Fastic app will definitely help you track it nonetheless!
The 5:2 Plan
The 5:2 plan involves eating conventionally for five days of the week and fasting for two non-consecutive days, for example, Monday and Thursday, to allow yourself some time to recover and refuel. On these two days, you would consume around 500-600 calories. Similar to Alternate-day fasting, consuming less than 600 kcal per day would not be advisable to beginners. However, this method is great for the experienced faster who is looking for a routine that doesn’t drastically change their eating habits. Again, we don’t love the idea of calorie counting here at Fastic, so we don’t specifically encourage this type of fasting. But if you wanna give it a go, the Fastic app can help you track it!
Erratic fasting is a more flexible type of intermittent fasting, where you can skip meals and fast for different periods of time throughout the week. This could include skipping breakfast one day and dinner the next. Erratic fasting can be great for those looking to lose weight (9) and become more mindful over their eating habits while still being flexible around their lifestyle.
Eat Stop Eat
Eat Stop Eat involves fasting for one or two 24-hour periods in a week. This method of fasting, while seemingly extreme, can be incredibly beneficial (10) to those looking to improve their digestion, disease prevention and management, as well as weight loss due to the caloric deficit. Fasts of 24-hours or over are not recommended to those who have experienced any kind of eating disorder and should only be used by experienced fasters who have consulted their doctor.
The Warrior Diet
The Warrior Diet involves eating only small amounts of raw fruits and vegetables during the day and eating one large meal at night. Great for beginners, this type of fasting is ideal for those looking to gain control over their eating habits, improve their digestion and reduce cravings.
Short for One Meal A Day, this method of fasting is exactly that. Alongside adequately hydrating with water, you fast for the entire day, feasting on only one large meal at any time you choose. This meal would ideally be filled with nutritious micronutrients, plenty of protein and lots of volume to keep you full throughout your next fast. While this method would not be recommended to beginners, many fasters report benefits of improved digestive health, increased focus, weight loss and cellular regeneration (11).
No matter your goals and lifestyle, there’s an intermittent fasting plan that’s right for you. With Fastic, you will have the tools and support you need to make intermittent fasting simple and sustainable.
Interested in giving it a go? Download Fastic today and join the Fastic family to start your intermittent fasting journey!
Haven’t gotten the Fastic app yet? Download it for free on your App Store!