Does intermittent fasting burn fat or is it just another fad? There’s so much information out there about intermittent fasting, it can make your head spin. And honestly, I don’t really pay too much attention to fads. I’ve been a health nut for years, and when I used to look at certain diets like Atkins or Keto, I’d think to myself, oh that’s funny…I already eat a low carb diet, and these are just branded versions of my own eating plan.
But I no longer eat a low carb diet, cause I’ve learned that restrictive dieting just won’t last long for me. In my experience, restricting myself like that causes me to overeat on my cheat days, going SO far beyond my calorie budget that I ruin it for the week…I also used to eat in my sleep a lot. I know it sounds kind of crazy, but I now believe that diet restrictions cause weird behaviors that cause us to overeat at some point.
It wasn’t until I started doing intermittent fasting, that I lost 3% body fat, and 12 pounds of weight. Oh, and I threw out the whole low carb diet, and started eating chocolate, ice cream, pizza, burgers, fries, and so much other amazing stuff.
But let’s talk about whether intermittent fasting actually burns fat or not, and what you can expect to happen if you implement it into your daily life. I’m not gonna go into those trendy terms like “ketosis” either. The reason I started doing intermittent fasting is cause I wanted to burn fat…it’s as simple as that.
I wasn’t interested in any kind of terminology or definitions. I just wanted to burn fat and get lean. And I did… I burned a LOT of fat, which was shocking to me. And I attribute a LOT of this to intermittent fasting. Let’s get to it.
What IS Intermittent Fasting?
In order to understand how it burns fat, we need to first understand what intermittent fasting actually is. It is NOT a diet and it has nothing to do with what you it. It has everything to do with WHEN you eat.
In its most basic form, intermittent fasting is simply when you do not eat food for an extended time frame. That’s it. Personally, I fast for the first 4 to 6 hours of my day. Usually I wait even longer, because I really love to have a huge desert in bed as I’m going to sleep. I don’t get hungry or think about food much throughout the day because I drink coffee and sparkling water, which keeps me from getting hungry.
By the way, eating this way is SO much easier than it was in the past, when I would be eating 4 to 6 small meals per day. The amount of energy I had to put into THINKING about what meals I was going to prepare with the appropriate amount of calories was just insane and overly complex.
As far as fat burning goes, intermittent fasting causes an increase in fat mobilization, while it boosts the growth hormone, and it has a long list of health benefits. I know you want to learn about its fat burning benefits, but its mental benefits are worth mentioning.
It can boost mental focus, trigger new brain cells to grow, and cause autophagy which is the improvement of cellular repair.
Why Does Intermittent Burn Fat?
Because it helps you reduce calorie intake throughout the day, it’s easier to actually burn fat with intermittent fasting as opposed to other ways of eating.
Your body actually goes into fat burning mode during the period that you aren’t eating at all. By having a fasting period each day, your body gets to focus on fat burning. Then when you eat, your body is focused on repairing and growing.
When you go many hours without food, your body will exhaust its sugar stores, and then begin to burn stubborn fat away. There’s a term for this called Metabloic Switching. The reason Intermittent fasting works is that you’ve extended the amount of time that your body uses to burn through the calories you ate during your last meal.
Because you’ve extended this amount of time between eating and not eating, you start to burn body fat during the non-eating hours. In short, you’re going to eat all your food in a smaller window of time, and you’re going to have a longer window of time when you don’t eat at all.
There are studies conducted with groups side by side. One group eating many small meals throughout the day while the other group does intermittent fasting, and each study demonstrates that the fasted group beats the small meal group in various categories, and most importantly in overall improved body composition.
So, if your goal is to burn fat and get lean and chiseled, then intermittent fasting can do wonders for you. With the proper calorie and protein intake, combined with exercise, you WILL see fat strip off your body.
The Easiest Way To Do Intermittent Fasting
I’ll be honest. I was a little afraid to do intermittent fasting at first, because for years, I was eating many small meals per day. It was ingrained into my head that eating small meals throughout the day was the best way to burn fat and get into shape. But I never started noticing real fat loss happening until I began intermittent fasting.
The easiest way I know of to do this is to use your sleeping hours as part of your fast. I just wait 4 to 6 hours after waking up to eat. But for me, I even like to extend that time so that I don’t eat until about 5pm.
I have a decent sized meal at that time. Then a few hours later, I eat a HUGE dinner. Then right before bed, I eat another decent sized meal, and normally before bed, I’m craving something sweet.
To actually burn fat while doing intermittent fasting, you need to calculate your calorie deficit and protein intake first. You can find those calculations at this article right here.
Once you understand those numbers, you’re set to start burning fat quite easily.
My first meal is usually between 400 – 600 calories. My second meal is always 1000 calories or more. And my last meal I eat in bed, is usually between 400 – 600 calories also. That’s not required. You can change up these numbers, but I love having a huge dinner.
Check out this article here to see a day in my life of intermittent fasting and what I eat.
Intermittent Fasting Makes Eating Enjoyable!
I sort of mentioned this in the last section, but I’ll bring it up with more clarity here. The problem with eating the way I USED to eat is that food was never very enjoyable when I had to eat 5 to 6 small meals per day.
If you think about, is it really all that fun to have to sit down and think about preparing a few eggs, or egg whites, and a piece of toast, and maybe some greens, and that’s about it? And then you have to think about the next meal a few hours later. And so on and so on.
I don’t enjoy that way of eating. I want to eat and enjoy the foods I eat, whether I’m in a restaurant with friends, or preparing my own food at home. Most of the time I prepare home cooked meals. And if I DO eat out…I enjoy much more satisfying meals.
You get to eat so much more of the foods you actually want to eat, WHILE burning fat at the same time. It’s almost like a no brainer eating plan in my opinion.
I must stress though, that I do NOT eat low carb anymore. I don’t think intermittent fasting would be nearly as enjoyable if I was on a restrictive low carb diet. I’ve learned that it’s all about eating at a calorie deficit if you truly want to burn fat and lose weight. You can learn how to do this right here.
This method is exactly what my own best friend did to drop 30 pounds in just a few months. And for the longest time, he (just as I did), believed that the only way to burn fat and lose weight is to eating a low carb diet.
Then, he threw out the low carb method, and started eating at a calorie deficit, and it changed everything. Now he eats pizza, tacos, sweets, and whatever else he wants. You can do the exact same for yourself.
YES – Intermittent Fasting Burns Fat Wonderfully
So, does intermittent fasting burn fat or is it just a fad? It absolutely helps in burning fat. Not only does it do that, but it’s so much more fun to eat huge filling meals that eating several small meals per day.
As I mentioned earlier, I got more lean and defined doing intermittent fasting than I ever did with any other eating method. I dropped 3% body fat and 12 pounds in just a few months by following this, along with a calorie deficit and a powerful workout. You can do the same easily.
By scheduling specific hours of the day when you don’t, you will burn fat in ways that are much easier to do and more effective than the popular methods of eating multiple times a day. It’s very simple to implement this into your daily life, even if it seems hard. I think the term “intermittent fasting” is much scarier than it actually is.
Just think of it as changing the time of day you eat. If you just swap out certain hours of eating with hours of not eating, and understand how many calories you need to eat per day to lose weight, you will notice your body go into fat burning mode in ways you never saw before.
What is your experience with intermittent fasting? Which method do you use and why do you use it? As I mentioned, I personally just wait 4 to 6 hours after waking before I eat, but maybe there are other methods that are even more effective that I don’t know about. Please share your comments or questions below. I’d love to hear from you. Thanks so much for reading.