There are different approaches to do intermittent fasting. For example, the 5:2 diet, 12-hours fasts, 16-hour fasts, 20-hours fasts. While each approach has its own share of benefits and risks, the Eat Stop Eat approach appears to be easier to follow.
Remember, if you can follow a fasting method without significantly affecting your daily schedule, you will likely stick to it for longer durations. Simply put, following an ideal fasting method should not be a “daily” uphill struggle.
Intermittent fasting is virtually everywhere – celebrities swear by its benefits, scientists are exploring new “potential” benefits every other day, and health magazines have it mostly in the headlines.
Interestingly, some nutrition experts go as far as to say that the unprecedented popularity of IF may actually harm its growing reputation. They fear it may end up like any other fad.
Their concern is understandable and to some extent, rational. That said, there is enough evidence to back the benefits of intermittent fasting, at least when you do it for a short period.
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What is Eat Stop Eat? Learn the Basics
Eat Stop Eat is the brainchild of fasting expert Brad Pilon.
During his graduate studies at the University of Guelph, in Guelph Ontario, Canada, Brad conducted research on the benefits of short-term fasting. He used the findings of the research to write the book, Eat Stop Eat.
In the book, Brad explains that fasting 24 hours once or twice a week is one of the most effective ways to lose extra pounds.
You can eat normally during the non-fasting days but you have to refrain from any solid food or calorie-containing drink during the fasting days.
That way, you will create a calorie deficit, which over time can help you lose weight.
For example, if you normally consume 2,000 calories per day, following Eat Stop Eat for two days a week results in a calorie deficit of (2×2,000) = 4,000 calories per week.
One pound of fat loss requires a calorie deficit of 3,500 calories. Thus, you will likely lose more than one pound by following Eat Stop Eat for 2 days a week.
Is Eat Stop Eat the same thing as ADF? Read to find out: Alternate Day Fasting: Everything A Newbie Needs to Know
Benefits of Eat Stop Eat
If you search Eat Stop Eat review in Google, you will find hundreds of positive reviews from people who have practiced it.
In one such review, a blogger claims to have lost 4 kilos/9 pounds after a 4-week challenge. While you may lose more (or less) pounds, what’s sure is that you are going to shed some pounds with this approach.
Because Eat Stop Eat is a method of intermittent fasting, you can expect a myriad of other benefits such as a lower risk of type 2 diabetes, better heart health, reduced inflammation in the brain, and a lower risk of cancer.
One of the key benefits of Eat Stop Eat is that it does not require you to starve yourself every day.
You can eat whatever you want 5 or 6 days a week. During the fasting days, you have to fast for 24 hours. Depending on your schedule and lifestyle, you can fast once or twice every week.
Such flexible timing allows you to enjoy your party, breakfast with your loved ones, or go on a dinner date with your sweetheart.
Why Eat Stop Eat Might Be a Perfect Choice for Newbies?
- You do not have to fast every day, which in some cases can affect your daily schedule. You would definitely not want to miss breakfast with your kids just because you are fasting.
- For some, sticking to Eat Stop Eat is easier compared to other IF methods such as the 5:2 diet, 16-hour fasts, and 20-hour fasts.
- You may choose to fast on weekend days when you can indulge in activities to distract yourself from cravings.
For a newbie, Eat Stop Eat may seem similar to the 5:2 diet. However, there is a key difference between these two approaches. The 5:2 diet allows the intake of about 500 calories during the fasting days but with Eat Stop Eat, you have to refrain from food for an entire 24-hour period.
Eating nothing for 24 hours seems difficult, right? Nevertheless, remember eating 500 calories (while fasting) can actually trigger hunger and increase discomfort. On the other hand, eating nothing for 24 hours significantly suppresses hunger.
Drawbacks of Eat Stop Eat
Though not a drawback in itself, one should understand that scientific studies have not specifically evaluated the benefits of Eat Stop Eat. Most intermittent fasting studies have used either Alternate Day Fasting (ADF) or the 16:8 method.
However, this does not mean the approach does not work or has fewer benefits than other approaches.
Below are a few drawbacks of Eat Stop Eat you should know.
- Some people may find it extremely difficult to go without food for 24 hours. Consequently, some may overeat once the feeding period begins.
The problem is more likely to occur with someone who has just started fasting. Nonetheless, this should not be a problem once the body adapts to a new state of energy balance and metabolism.
- Some people following Eat Stop Eat may experience headaches and irritability, especially during the first few weeks of fasting. However, these symptoms are mild and usually go away on their own.
- This approach is not suitable for diabetics, pregnant women, and those with eating disorders.
- Eat Stop Eat allows the intake of drinks that contain artificial sweeteners. Though these drinks do not contain calories, the sweet taste can trigger cravings.
- Eat Stop Eat doesn’t talk about foods to take during the feeding days. Some people may make unhealthy food choices and end up hampering their weight loss goals.
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Should You Try Eat Stop Eat?
Now, here comes the million-dollar question and the answer is – hell yeah!
The Eat Stop Eat approach is easy to follow, flexible, and suits your schedule unless you are super busy. Even if you’re super busy, you can fast on the weekend days. That way, you can get all those benefits you would get from other intermittent fasting methods.
Eat Stop Eat is not a strict method of fasting. Rather, it is a philosophy that focuses on occasional breaks from eating.
However, before you opt for Eat Stop Eat or any other method of fasting, it is crucial to learn your needs, goals, and ability. Only a team of experts can help you with finding the fasting method that meets your unique individual needs.
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