Will Intermittent Fasting Really Help Me Lose Weight?

Everybody thinks they should do intermittent fasting to lose weight but is that a fact or a myth?

There are so many conflicting and confusing recommendations out there that make it difficult to determine the most healthful approach to weight loss and nutrition. 

Myths and magical claims about weight loss, foods and superfoods, supplements and nutrition often dominate some people’s eating habits and indeed their lives. 

Following these myths or exclusively following certain styles of eating can make diets unbalanced, restrictive and take the enjoyment out of eating. 

Intermittent fasting.

Intermittent fasting has gained immense popularity, particularly the 5:2 diet, because it allows you to eat for a period without restrictions. 

Intermittent fasting alone doesn’t boost weight loss, but since people also tend to cut calories, it can help you shed pounds.

However, the researchers found that intermittent fasting does not work for everyone.

And further some people tend to cheat on their intermittent fasting diet without knowing it and eat portions that are too large in the feeding period.

The research team has found that the participants consumed 6 percent more on the first day, and 14 percent more at the unrestricted breakfast during the three-day trial. The findings show that the participants consumed more because they knew food would be restricted the following day, not because they felt hungrier.

Let’s dive in and separate the science from the silliness. 

Dieting and Fad Diets. 

What should an eating plan designed for successful weight loss and maintenance contain?

It should contain an adequate intake of all the foods needed for good health, should be satisfying and enjoyable, should help to reduce the risk of chronic diseases and must also be able to be maintained for life. Most fad diets fail to achieve these aims. 

An eating plan that is too restrictive, that fails to satisfy hunger, that causes fatigue or doesn’t fit in with family, social or economical aspects of an individual’s life is unlikely to be sustained for any length of time. 

Many weight loss diets encourage short-term changes in eating behaviour, rather than developing habits that can be sustained in the long-term. 

Here are some considerations for evaluating weight loss programs: 

  • Does the diet encourage permanent, realistic lifestyle changes, enabling it to be followed long term? 
  • Does the diet provide advice on supportive behavioural changes rather than merely advising what foods to choose or limit and when to eat? 
  • Are the recommendations based on published scientific evidence rather than the latest fad? 

Emotional Eating.

What about emotional eaters, does intermittent fasting help them to stop overeating?

We know very well that emotional hunger is not satiated by food and that emotional eaters tend to feel powerless over their food cravings. When the urge to eat hits, it’s all they can think about. 

I believe that intermittent fasting can encourage feelings of deprivation and when hunger strikes may lead to unnecessary binging. And afterwards, feeling even worse. Not only does the original emotional issue remain, but there are also feelings of guilt for overeating. 

So, WHERE to from HERE?

Whether it’s intermittent fasting or any diet the most important piece of the puzzle is learning to manage your mind , that is developing healthier thoughts and beliefs.

Let’s face it – you can have the best food in the house and plans and goals, but you will only use them if you have the right attitude.

Our brain tends to run on automatic pilot, and we are not even aware of our thinking.

Picture yourself at the end of a long day where you’ve been run off your feet.

What do you reach for?

  • Fresh air? 
  • A bath?
  • A walk? 
  • Or a glass of wine or some chocolate?

The reality is, what you believe causes you to have certain thoughts, and therefore, to act a certain way. 

Healthy thoughts are an important habit to develop and it’s not just about affirmations and gratitude journals. 

When you learn to catch your thoughts, question them, and manage them you can rewire your habits of thought.

So, to answer the articles question: “Will intermittent fasting really help me lose weight?”

I believe that there is no magical formula and your success will come from making lifelong behavioural changes and learning different thinking habits to support your healthy eating habits.

Rewiring your brain requires a dedicated approach to understanding the things that trip you up, and some repetition of a better, healthier behaviour.

Most people struggle to do this on their own and working with a professional coach can be an effective strategy to take control.

Irena Geller

Irena Geller is a Sydney-based health & wellness coach specialising in the 🍓food and 😃 mood connection. She loves helping professional women to find the motivation and energy to eat healthily and exercise regularly and be consistent with these habits.

Have you tried every diet you can think of and lost confidence in yourself that you can be successful?

If you’re ready to finally lose weight and feel more confident. Book a good-fit coaching session with me to see if we can work together.

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