16-hour fasting, also called 16:8 or the 8-hour diet, involves a daily fast, avoiding food and calorie-laden drinks for 16 hours, and then eating in an 8-hour window.
Intermittent fasting may reduce the risk of obesity and obesity-related conditions, such as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. However, the data gathered is supported by animal trials and further human studies need to be conducted. (1)
Wake Up (8 AM)
Aim for 9 hours of restful sleep every night. Once you wake, enjoy a cup of hot (or iced) coffee. A splash of milk or cream is acceptable, and if you need sweetness, stevia is a great replacement for sugar. You may replace coffee with green or black tea if preferred.
Sipping on water or coffee throughout the fasting period is a great way to keep your hunger at bay and keep your cells hydrated. Don’t go overboard on the caffeine.
Lunch (12-1 PM)
Eat a lunch full of good protein and heart-healthy fats. On days when strength training, eat some carbs before or after your workout to ensure performance and aid in recovery. Avoid starchy carbs.
Snack (3-4 PM)
If you don’t enjoy one large meal for dinner, eat a portion of it during this time or enjoy a late afternoon snack.
Dinner (6-8 PM)
Try to complete your last meal before 8 PM. Include a decent amount of protein, a complex carb, and two servings of vegetables (or one serving vegetable & one serving fruit).
Bedtime (11 PM)
Avoid blue light from electronic devices at least an hour before heading to bed. Consider a melatonin, 5-htp, or magnesium supplement if sleep is an issue. Not getting enough sleep may slow muscle recovery and have other negative health effects.
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