Do you agree with me when I say:
Fat loss is challenging!
There’s soo many things that screws with your goal of getting lean. There’s hunger, there’s low energy, there’s the social aspect of dieting and so on.
But, what if I told you that fat loss doesn’t have to be challenging. That there’s a way to make it a lot easier?
Well, that’s exactly what intermittent fasting can do for you!
Today you’re going to learn the 5 big benefits that comes with using intermittent fasting for fat loss. Benefits that together makes IF the most powerful fat loss tool in the world.
Let’s get to it!
Intermittent Fasting: Awesome Fat Loss Tool Nothing Else
During the last four years I’ve been experimenting with a ton of different dieting strategies.
An here’s what I’ve found:
Intermittent fasting is definitely one of the top strategies for effortless fat loss.
Now, it’s not because there’s anything inherently magical about intermittent fasting that makes you burn more fat.
It’s not some hormone increase that makes you burn more fat directly, it’s not the fact that you don’t eat during specific hours, or that you do eat during certain other hours. No, the reason it can help you burn more fat is this:
“Intermittent fasting makes being in a calorie deficit easier for most people.”
Because, as I’m sure you know:
You must be in a caloric deficit if you want fat loss to occur, as you can see in this pyramid showing the dieting hierarchy of importance for fat loss:
As you can see: calories, macronutrients, and micronutrients all take precedence above meal frequency and timing. And that’s exactly what intermittent fasting is: How frequently you choose to eat and when.
Now with that said, even though IF ranks in at fourth place in the hierarchy, it still works.
In fact, it works extremely well:
This is Greg O’Gallagher and Martin Berkhan, two of the biggest intermittent fasting advocates in the world when it comes to natural physique development.
(How was it, who was first? 😉 )
Anyways, they both look incredible. And best of all:
They both manage to stay this ripped consistently…
…while having a life…
…and even building large businesses!
And this is partly because of intermittent fasting, which they both have used for more than a decade!
Again, intermittent fasting works because it makes a calorie deficit feel way more effortless than what it typically do with a “normal” feeding window. And exactly how, is what we’re going to look at now:
The 5 Big Benefits of Using Intermittent Fasting for Fat Loss
What follows now are the five benefits that comes with using intermittent fasting for fat loss. I think this will clear up many thought about why intermittent fasting provides such good results for a lot of people.
Benefit Number 1 – Intermittent Fasting Creates a Huge Calorie Budget for Later in The Day
The main way that intermittent fasting helps with fat loss, is by creating a huge calorie budget for later in the day.
Research on circadian rhythm shows that people generally are more hungry in the evening than during the morning:
Where the arrow points in this scientific graph, is when during our circadian rhythm that people normally are most hungry.
Which seems to be right around 8 PM. After which it then slowly declines until noon the next day, where it then rises again.
And this by the way, also explains why: “eating at night makes you fat” articles pops up everywhere.
I’m sure you’ve seen these articles before?
Here’s an example:
There’s nothing wrong with most of these articles. In fact, stopping to eat at night can work for fat loss.
But, here’s the thing:
The only reason it can work is because you stop overeating on calories, at a time when your appetite is high. Where you normally used to overindulge.
This then puts you in a caloric deficit and you start losing fat.
However, this causes another problem:
Which is that you go against your circadian rhythm.
By forcing yourself to stop eat at night, you go agains what your body truly wants, which is to actually eat.
And this might work in the short term, but not for long…
Because, here’s the deal:
Each time you go against your natural impulses, you have to work with willpower.
And eventually, you’ll get sick of depending on willpower every night, and that’s when binging typically occurs…
…or, you say f**k it to the diet, and quit.
As you can see, even though stopping to eat at night might work in the short term, it usually doesn’t take long until it backfires and the opposite takes place.
So, what’s the solution here?
Well, to do the opposite instead:
The food you eat in the morning also includes calories, and as the research on circadian rhythm shows:
Hunger and appetite is at the lowest in the morning.
So, by saving those morning (and possibly lunch) calories for the evening, you allow yourself to be more in line with your body while you’re trying to lose fat.
And guess what happens when you’re in line with your body?
Yes, that’s right, fat loss becomes super duper easy!
But now you might say:
I’m hungry in the morning, why is that? Can I still use intermittent fasting?
Well, first of all, some people doesn’t have the same circadian rhythm like the one mentioned above. No, some people simply are more hungry during the morning and don’t feel the urge to eat at night.
If this is the case for you, then intermittent fasting in the traditional sense of skipping breakfast, likely isn’t the right choice for you.
With that said though, you could flip the approach and eat more in the morning and just start your fast in the early evening instead. This could however be troublesome for the social aspect of dieting which we’ll look at soon.
Furthermore, a common reason why we feel hunger during the morning, is simply because we’re used to eating in the morning.
Research has shown that the hunger hormone Ghrelin is associated with habits. Where more Ghrelin get released when the body is used to eat. So, it takes somewhere between 1-4 weeks, depending on the individual, to get used to intermittent fasting.
After this “getting used to” time, and especially with the help of these 8 tricks, most individuals can then take advantage of the following benefits of using intermittent fasting for fat loss:
Benefit Number 2 – Intermittent Fasting Improves Satiety and Enjoyment to the Diet When Cutting
This is hands down the biggest benefit of intermittent fasting.
As I just mentioned, by postponing your first meal a few hours into the day you can eat more in the evening.
This will leave you more satiated and satisfied at a time when it’s needed the most. And this is definitely the key for getting lean and muscular without giving up on your life in the process.
And again, this has a lot to do with willpower!
Studies, including this one by Hamilton, shows that willpower works kind of like a battery.
Where each energy demanding task that you do throughout the day. Such as; practicing self control when it comes to dieting to get lean, is easier done earlier in the day when the willpower battery is charged up:
As opposed to later when it’s low on energy:
So, placing most of your food in the evening, when willpower is low, has the potential to offset overeating during the nights, and actually stop binging to occur.
In fact, here’s a quick question for you…
What Would You Choose?
Option 1: Coming home from work, followed by a training session feeling drained, and knowing that you must resist eating food all night to stay lean; or
Option 2: Coming home from work, followed by a training session feeling, perhaps a bit more drained, but this time knowing that you have a feast with family, friends or in front of your favorite tv-series, all while staying lean?
When choosing option number two, you’ve created a budget of calories so big that you’re actually able to indulge in food, at a time when food is typically in focus. Which leads us to:
Benefit Number 3 – Intermittent Fasting Enables you to More Easily Participate In Social Events and Gatherings
What do most social events and gatherings have in common?
Yes, they typically takes place in the evening, right?
So, by creating a food budget for later in the day, you have the chance to spend time enjoying yourself, a lot. Yes, even when cutting down to a low body fat percetange!
- going out to eat with your friends
- joining a family dinner
- eating popcorn at the movies
- going clubbing
…will be no problem at all.
In fact, it’s not unlikely that, since you’re using intermittent fasting, you actually got the calorie budget to eat more food than most people at the event.
Don’t be surprised if people ask you:
“How can you look freaking amazing and also be able to eat so much food?”
And now you know what to answer them 😉
Benefit Number 4 – Intermittent Fasting Saves you Time
One seemingly small, but actually big benefit of intermittent fasting is that you save time:
You no longer have to constantly prepare and eat food, especially in the morning.
Since we’re mostly in a rush heading to work, school or whatever occupation we might have during the morning anyways. It actually makes a lot of sense to skip food at this time.
Not only does this create a bigger budget of food for later in the day.
But it also saves you a lot of time to either sleep in longer, or better yet, be productive during the morning hours instead.
Pro tip: Create big satiating meals in batches one or two times per week and combine this with intermittent fasting. This way you can free up even more time to do other things you enjoy.
Benefit Number 5 – With Intermittent Fasting Every Meal Will Feel Like a Cheat Meals
Often when people are trying to lose body fat with a standard approach, such as the six meals per day, every three hours one.
They typically look forward to that huge cheat meal once per week, such as on Saturdays:
While the other 6 days look like this:
At a first glance this doesn’t look to bad.
But here’s the thing:
Eating these small and unfulfilling meals day in and day out quickly becomes boring, strict and monotonous.
It’s also been shown that diets like this can lead to binge eating.
This can happen because rigorous dieting 5-6 days in a row often can lead to you falling of the wagon during the weekends, when the time to indulge is finally there.
This can potentially offsets the whole caloric deficit that you created throughout the week, and fat loss stops…
With intermittent fasting on the other hand, all your meals will be big and satiating, meaning that every meal will feel like a cheat meal.
You no longer need to postpone gratification to only once per week, because with intermittent fasting you will eat like a king each and every day:
Okay, so there you have it:
The 5 big benefits of using intermittent fasting for fat loss. And as you can see, it’s all about buffering calories to times when food is typically in focus. If you can do this for yourself, fat loss will become very easy!
Let’s say that you’d lose 1 lb of fat per week by eating 2200 calories per day. Now with the help of intermittent fasting, you could have all these 2200 calories within only 8 hours. That’s A LOT of food in such a short time, making you full and satisfied all while losing body fat at the same time.
Want to learn how to cook large, tasty and enjoyable fat loss meals? Check out this post next.
Now, before wrapping up this post, let’s quickly debunk some of the most common intermittent fasting myths:
Myths Surrounding Intermittent Fasting For Fat Loss
Short-term fasting has been thought to have some negative effects on body composition, muscle growth, and metabolic rate.
Myths such as:
- You need to eat small meals to ramp up your metabolism. Not true
- Smaller meals are better for appetite control. Not true
- Eating in the evening makes you fat. Not true
- Short-term fasting leads to muscle loss. Not true
- You need to eat protein every three hours to maintain your muscle mass. Not true
Simply put, meal frequency and food distribution don’t affect fat loss and body composition.
Eating 2 meals or 6 meals per day will yield equal results for fat loss and muscle retention, at least for recreational trainees.
The problems seem to appear when going to the extremes, in both cases!
Eating only 1 large meal per day might cause you to develop unhealthy relationships with food where you train yourself to eat enormous amounts of calories at one sitting.
On the other hand, eating more than 6 meals per day creates the opposite problem.
This way you will think about food all the time, because you have very small meals every hour or two that don’t satisfy you.
Either end of the spectrum makes your adherence to the calorie deficit tougher than it has to be.
Recently there was a meta-analysis done by Alan Aragon, Brad Schoenfeld and James Krieger that looked at the effect of meal frequency on body composition.
Well, they found no difference. Here’s their conclusion:
“Given that adherence is of primary concern concerning nutritional prescription, the number of daily meals consumed should come down to personal choice if one’s goal is to improve body composition.”
This puts the nail in the coffin that when intermittent fasting is set up correctly, it can have all the ups with none of the downs for successfully achieving a lean and ripped physique.
There’s nothing magical about intermittent fasting.
It’s just a highly effective tool for increasing comfort, enjoyment and satiation during a fat loss phase.
In other words, intermittent fasting will make the most important factor for fat loss, which are being in a calorie deficit, feel extremely easy to adhere and stick to.
Give intermittent fasting a try and I promise that you’ll turn into a fat burning machine, while also being able to enjoy life to the fullest in the meantime! This is what I did as well, I started out skinny fat and IF definitely helped me a ton!
Ready to try intermittent fasting? Then this article will have you covered with setting up your schedule, click here to read it!
2 thoughts on “Intermittent Fasting for Fat Loss: The 5 BIG Benefits That’ll Make You Ripped”
I tried IF, but it’s too radical method for me, I think it was designed for people who want to achieve extraordinary effects like body builders, who don’t have problem in keeping the diet. And since you have to be in a calorie deficit to get slim, no matter which method you will use, for noobs like me, eating less and only during 8 hours a day is very problematic. I prefer ways like Simple Weight Loss System for now. But who knows, maybe after losing 30 punds, I will be able to lose more with this method?
I hear you! IF doesn’t work for everyone. Personally I think eating more often for smaller meals is too radical for fat loss, simply because the meals get so puny. But as you say, once you’ve gotten leaner and acclimated your body to fat loss, perhaps IF will work better then.