EVIDENCE BASED NUTRITION

Fasting Diet: How To, What To Eat​

The secret to succeeding with a plant based diet is simple, you find more whole foods derived from plants, and you eat it.

But the problem is, not all plant based foods are created equal. In fact, people commonly follow unhealthy plant-based diets containing low-quality plant-source foods that could potentially be more harmful.

A plant based diet is definitely NOT for everyone, but it may be exactly what you need to live healthier and more energetically.

This article reviews the healthfulness of specific plant foods, the right foods to eat and the best way to follow a plant based diet.

What Type Of

A plant based diet is a type of diet that consists predominantly of whole foods derived from plants.

Limited amounts of meat or meat-based products are allowed but fish and seafood is often the preferred choice.

Animal based products such as eggs and milk, including milk based products, are also allowed but is consumed at a moderate amount.

Starchy carbohydrates make up the bulk of the diet and milk in your coffee is recommended.

A vegan diet is a type of diet that consist of food only derived from plants. Unlike a plant based diet, animal or animal based products including fish, eggs or milk are not allowed.

Summary:

Decreasing the consumption of meat, particularly red meat, and increasing the consumption of fish and plant derived foods have a protective effect on cardiovascular disease.

Completely eliminating all meat and animal derived food products does not add further benefits and maybe inferior to just reducing meat intake.

Why Going Plant Based Is Better

It is widely accepted that reducing meat intake, particularly red meat, having more plant based foods and fish is more beneficial for health. Here we discuss whether you should completely eliminate all meat and animal products or just reduce the quantity.

Firstly, vegetarian diets seem to confer many health benefits. It’s been shown to lower your blood pressure (#), your “bad” LDL and total cholesterol (#), and it may reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease by 10% (#).

Furthermore, you exclude red and processed meat, which have been linked to higher risk of cardiovascular disease (#) and colorectal cancer (#).

However, excluding meat completely from the diet has it’s disadvantages. In fact, vegetarian diets have been found to decrease HDL (the “good cholesterol”) which is thought to be protective of heart disease (#). This is most likely due from excluding foods high in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids such as salmon.

Quite interestingly, recent studies looking at ischaemic heart disease (IHD)(####) found that people who occasionally ate meat, ate fish but not meat, consumed eggs & dairy but no meat, and vegans had a 20%, 34%, 34% and 26% decrease in risk of IHD when compared to frequent meat eaters.

Quite interestingly, in recent studies looking at ischaemic heart disease (IHD)(####), it was found that people who occasionally ate meat, or are fish but not meat, or at eggs & dairy only had a 20%, 34% & 34% decrease in risk of IHD, respectively. Vegan diets decreased risk by 26%.

These studies suggests that limiting meat and increasing plant base foods can be protective of health (particularly cardiovascular disease), but completely eliminating all meat and animal based products may actually be less protective for health.

Summary:

Decreasing the consumption of meat, particularly red meat, and increasing the consumption of fish and plant derived foods have a protective effect on cardiovascular disease.

Completely eliminating all meat and animal derived food products does not add further benefits and maybe inferior to just reducing meat intake.

The Disadvantages Of Going Plant Based

Fasting works through restricting your eating to create a caloric deficit to aid weight loss and there are two types of fasts:

The first type is a continuous energy restriction (CER) which involves limiting your food across a whole day without focus on timing of food intake.

The second type is an intermittent energy restriction (IER) and is commonly known as intermittent fasting (IF).Unlike a CER fast, this involves limiting eating to certain times of the day or certain days across a week.

In addition, individuals following IER don’t typically limit their eating during periods of non-fasting.

Despite common belief in the media or countless anecdotes, a fasting diet does not inherently yield better results compared to a continuous energy restriction. (4, 5, 6)

Summary

There are 2 types of fasting diets; a continuous energy restriction (CER), and an intermittent energy restriction OR intermittent fast (IF). Both types give the same results.

The Bottom Line

Fasting works through restricting your eating to create a caloric deficit to aid weight loss and there are two types of fasts:

The first type is a continuous energy restriction (CER) which involves limiting your food across a whole day without focus on timing of food intake.

The second type is an intermittent energy restriction (IER) and is commonly known as intermittent fasting (IF).Unlike a CER fast, this involves limiting eating to certain times of the day or certain days across a week.

In addition, individuals following IER don’t typically limit their eating during periods of non-fasting.

Despite common belief in the media or countless anecdotes, a fasting diet does not inherently yield better results compared to a continuous energy restriction. (4, 5, 6)

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Read Next:

The Ultmate 2020 Guide To A Plant Based Diet

The Ultmate 2020 Guide To A Plant Based Diet

Top Plant Based Foods You Should Eat

Top Plant Based Foods You Should Eat

Best Way To Follow A Plant Based Diet: How to start.

Best Way To Follow A Plant Based Diet: How to start.

Written by Henry Lau 
Qualified Nutritionist and ISAK Accredited Anthropometrist

BSc: Food Science & Nutrition
PgDipSci: Nutrition
ISAK Level 1

Discover what type of food or diet is right for you with this simple 30 second quiz.

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EVIDENCE BASED NUTRITION

Fasting Diet: How To, What To Eat

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What is a fasting?

Fasting is an eating pattern where you have periods of restricted food intake and eating – where you are able to eat normally in limited to a time frame known as your ‘eating window’.

Furthermore, fasts can range from a day, multiple days or multiple weeks.

How does fasting affect your weight loss and health?

  • You could lose between 4% to 16% of your current body weight (1)
  • It can reduce your fasting insulin levels by -0.89 µL/mL (2)
  • It can lower your ‘bad’ LDL-cholesterol by 7 – 32% (3)

Summary

Fasting is an eating pattern where you have periods of eating and fasting. This can help aid weight loss, lower your bad cholesterol and improve insulin levels.

How does fasting work?

Fasting works through restricting your eating to create a caloric deficit to aid weight loss and there are two types of fasts:

The first type is a continuous energy restriction (CER) which involves limiting your food across a whole day without focus on timing of food intake.

The second type is an intermittent energy restriction (IER) and is commonly known as intermittent fasting (IF).Unlike a CER fast, this involves limiting eating to certain times of the day or certain days across a week.

In addition, individuals following IER don’t typically limit their eating during periods of non-fasting.

Despite common belief in the media or countless anecdotes, a fasting diet does not inherently yield better results compared to a continuous energy restriction. (4, 5, 6)

Summary

There are 2 types of fasting diets; a continuous energy restriction (CER), and an intermittent energy restriction OR intermittent fast (IF). Both types give the same results.

Is fasting right for me?

Before you jump on a fasting diet, you need to find out if it’s right for you and you can find out through our simple quiz here.

To begin, if you are someone looking for a simple way to lose weight through a method of caloric restriction, then this could possibly be for you.

However, conventional ways of fasting do have drawbacks and quite often, it doesn’t address many inherent physiological issues of weight loss including:

  • Weight plateaus (usually after 2-3 weeks or longer)
  • Body composition – making sure you are losing actual fat and not water or glycogen (storage form of carbohydrates in our body).
  • Training & performance issues
  • Full weight regain which affects 75% – 95% of successful individuals.

Summary

Fasting is a simple and easy to understand way of reducing your calories to aid weight loss. It does have it’s drawbacks if not done properly, including: weight plateaus,  training & performance issues, and loss of lean body mass which could lead to weight regain.

Modified Fast: How To, What To Eat

A protein sparing modified fast coupled with a well programmed refeeding & training regime would address all of the issues above.

In addition, you would be aiming to lose 10 to 20 lbs of weight in the first 2-3 weeks and then subsequently 0.5 to 1.5% of your body weight per week until the set goal has been reached.

Furthermore, you would lose no or minimal muscle mass, be able to maintain performance and have opportunities for ‘free meals’.

This would be appropriate for someone who is:

  • Looking to get really lean – single body fat percentage.
  • Have an upcoming special event.
  • Been stuck on the same weight.
  • Been losing weight too slowly.

Summary

Typical weight lost would be 10 to 20 lbs in 2-3 weeks followed by a subsequent loss of -0.5 to 1.5% of your body weight per week.

In short, it’s ideal for people who want to get lean (particularly for upcoming events) or if your weight is stuck, and it overcomes the physiological barriers to weight loss.

Modified Fast: How To, What To Eat

Part 1: The most simple but difficult aspect of this diet is the fasting portion.

In the first stage, periods of fasting, you will follow a very low calorie diet consisting of lean proteins, a small amount of fat and carbohydrate, unlimited amount of vegetables (and other zero calorie foods), some basic supplements and nothing else.

Your protein intake will be set depending on your body fat percentage and activity.

Here are some lean protein options:

  • Skinless chicken or turkey breast: 1-2 servings per day
  • Lean tuna: limit to 2-3 servings a week
  • Whey protein: 1-2 servings a day
  • Low fat yoghurt: recommended 1-2 servings a day

Common Vegetables Options To Avoid:

  • Potato or kumara: high in carbs
  • Carrots, radish, peas or parsnip: moderate amount of carbs
  • Corn: high in carbs
  • Fruit: limit to 1-2 servings a day

Common Zero or low calorie food options:

  • Culley’s BBQ Sauce Range
  • Zero sugar or diet drinks
  • Weight Watcher’s Jelly
  • Plain popcorn
  • Low fat stews or broths

Your protein intake will be set depending on your body fat percentage and activity.

Get a tailored Protein Sparing Modified Fasting Plan FREE

Hello it’s Henry here. This part of the program is very simple to follow and only represents just 5% of my entire weight loss & coaching program. Yet, you can still expect to lose 10-20lbs by simply following this for 2-3 weeks.

Get your free custom protein sparing modified fasting plan here.

Part 2: The most important part of this program is the eating period.

Modifications to the traditional fast would be planned diet breaks depending on activity and body fat percentage. The length of fast, type and length of the diet break plus the refeeding protocol will be set depending on body fat percentage and activity level.

This is vital for three things:

  1. Continued weight loss
  2. Ensuring you lose the RIGHT type of weight
  3. Maintain performance and energy.

Summary

Planned diet breaks, refeeding protocols and free meals must be periodically structured into your diet to aid long term weight loss, performance & energy.

These are highly variable and depends on activity & your body composition.

Coming off a diet.

This stage has been eluded by most people who attempt to diet and is where 9 out of 10 of people REGAIN ALL WEIGHT LOST.

  • As a result, we aim to ‘reverse diet’ in order to restore your food intake back to ‘normal’. Furthermore, the reverse dieting protocol will depend on your body fat percentage and activity:
    Training will be provided on adding flexibility to your diet e.g. eating out, eating ‘unhealthy food’
  • Flexible recipes and food options will be provided
  • Skinfolds will be taken
  • Training is a MUST

Get a tailored Protein Sparing Modified Fasting Plan FREE

Hello it’s Henry here. This part of the program is very simple write up as it only represents just 5% of my entire weight loss & coaching program.

Written by Henry Lau 
Qualified Nutritionist and ISAK Accredited Anthropometrist

BSc: Food Science & Nutrition
PgDipSci: Nutrition
ISAK Level 1

Find out what will work for you this 60-sec quiz designed by qualified nutritionists and get your custom plan.

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