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Fasting is not always negative or bad for our bodies. There are some types of fasting that might actually help us lose weight in a healthy way.
Although it is widely known that sometimes fasting is not that good for our diet and metabolism, there are some kinds that are actually beneficial and can help us in a healthy way. But before we learn about them it is important to remember that we call fasting that period of time where no food is eaten.
One of the advantages of fasting is the caloric restriction that accompanies it which has an immediate consequence on weight control. In addition, they produce a series of positive hormonal changes for the prevention of many chronic diseases such as diabetes.
Types of fasting
We can divide them into short or long. Short fasting is the ones that last less than 3 days, they don´t usually represent risks for healthy people and they don´t require medical supervision. They have proven to be very effective for weight loss and to prevent metabolic pathologies. On the other hand, the long ones (several days or even weeks) must be strictly supervised by a professional to avoid dehydration, protein malnutrition, and hypovitaminosis. Among these two classifications, we can find four types.
1. Intermittent fasting
It is the most well-known practice which consists of fasting for a few hours a day, usually skipping breakfast. During the fasting period the intake of water, coffee, tea, or caloric beverages is allowed. This method helps weight loss and doesn´t make you be too hungry.
2. 24-hour fast
It is slightly more aggressive and more difficult to follow since it consists of fasting for a whole day, usually once a week. It should be noted that some muscle loss can occur due to this practice. Although this method reduces the number of calories ingested on a weekly basis, it is not recommended for people with complex pathologies such as a thyroid problem.
3. Protein fasting
It is based on intermittent fasting with the exception that, during the fasting period, the limited intake of mostly protein foods is allowed. It is interesting for athletes who intend to define their muscles. On the other hand, the possibility of eating certain foods during the fasting period reduces appetite.
4. Long fasts
This type involves a 3-day or longer period. They are normally used in cases of morbid obesity and are always supervised by professionals. In cases of longer fasts, some solutions with intravenous glucose are administered. In addition, the contribution of vitamins and minerals through supplements is essential, as well as the control of hydration. They have been proven effective, but carry certain risks such as the loss of lean mass.