Exploring the Power of Intermittent Fasting: My Personal Insights

Exploring the Power of Intermittent Fasting: My Personal Insights

I write about Intermittent Fasting, a dietary approach revolving around scheduled eating and fasting periods. It has garnered attention globally in the context of losing weight. Intermittent Fasting doesn’t dictate food choices but rather focuses on timing e.g. the 16/8 method that is the most common (16 hours of fasting followed by 8 hours during which you eat), the 24 to 36 hour fast once a week, etc.

Over the years, I have experimented with various configurations of fasting, with my success metrics being my blood biomarker improvements (e.g. lower levels of triglycerides, visceral fat, inflammation) as well as for more qualitative improvements like better energy levels, less brain fog, etc. The latter are hard to measure but you know when you feel better.

I want to highlight a few benefits of Intermittent Fasting that I have observed.

- Cellular Repair: Fasting initiates autophagy, a process of clearing out damaged cells, promoting cell health. How long a fast is needed to trigger autophagy isn’t clear but it is believed that it starts happening around the 16 hour mark and therefore the 16/8 protocol.

- Brain Health: Some studies suggest that intermittent fasting may have neuroprotective effects and improve brain function. I can qualitatively state that I felt the benefits in terms of clarity in my thinking.

- Inflammation Reduction: Intermittent fasting has helped reduce my inflammation marker (hs-CRP) by about 20% (see post #6 for more context).

- Weight and Visceral Fat Loss: Intermittent fasting can improve metabolism and fat-burning processes. This is because after glycogen depletion due to Intermittent Fasting, the body turns to fat stores for energy. It is useful to note that most of us have enough fat reserves in our body to keep us going for days. Not that we should fast for long periods, because there are certain mechanisms that kick in during very long fasting periods that may signal to the body to accumulate fat rather than use it. I found that I lost visceral fat (9 down to 3) due to different forms of fasting coupled with eating right.

- Improved Insulin Sensitivity: My HbA1c dropped from pre-diabetic to normal levels using a combination of zone 2 exercise (walking at 60% to 70% of my maximum heart rate) and Intermittent Fasting.

I also want to talk about a few useful tips that I keep in mind when doing any form of fasting:

- I break my fasts with fiber followed by fat and protein and then carbs. I avoid breaking my fast with carbs because I have noticed even larger spikes in my glucose levels when I do that.

- I engage in weight training to ensure that I don’t lose muscle mass, especially when I undertake 24 - 36 hour fasts, which I do about once a month.

- I drink slightly more than my usual amount of water because I have found that it helps me adhere to my fasting periods that much better.

As always, speak to your doctor if you have any health issues before embarking on any fasting program.
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Himani Thakar: Nickhil Jakatdar the best part of IF Omad/keto in my case was that feeling in your stomach when it’s begging for food but you resist with mental strength 💪🏻 and once those feelings are gone you feel empowered and lighter. The bonus is the snatched stomach and waist and fitting into your best jeans 😂 Obviously internally the HCG to make you age slower, the lowering of insulin resistance, the reset of your immune system are priceless. I have attempted to do a 21 day water fast ( with lots of snickering from Kshitij Moghe 😝) and 1 day I shall conquer! 😀

Nickhil Jakatdar: Himani so many things to chat about with you and Kshitij when I meet you guys next. Meanwhile give K-man a punch from me the next time he snickers away at any of these scientific experiments we are doing 😀

Kshitij Moghe: I see I have become collateral damage in this convo for absolutely no fault of mine.

Himani Thakar

Madhu Vudali: Any recommendations for CGM device/app? A friend recommended Levels.

Nickhil Jakatdar: Madhu uses the GeneClinicX one 😀. You can sign up at GeneClinicX.com. It comes with 2 1:1 coaching sessions with a dietitian. Shameless plug that I try to avoid here but couldn’t resist. 😀. Having said that, the Levels app is really nice and if you are a biohacker who doesn’t need the dietitian session then it’s the one I would recommend.

Madhu Vudali: Nickhil Jakatdar no shame plugging. 🤓will check it out.

Madhu Vudali

Sahil Tyagi: Hey Nickhil, started intermittent fasting post Diwali last year and never looked back. Didn’t make a lot of other changes with it but stuck to religiously following 16:8. Can attribute the 10% weight loss from start in ~ 8 month’s time. Can Totally relate to your post.

Nickhil Jakatdar: Sahil this is very impressive. Your insulin sensitivity looks really good. I imagine your lipid profile is showing corresponding improvements as well.

Sahil Tyagi

Sunanda Khivansara: Gaining lot of knowledge from your articles Nickhil… Thanks 👍🏼

Nickhil Jakatdar: Thank you for your support

Sunanda Khivansara

Hemant Joshi: As usual, very useful information. I am trying to follow all your guidelines and always look forward for your next post on this topic.

Nickhil Jakatdar: Hemant thanks. Makes doing this that much more worthwhile. Pls do keep me posted on how it is helping.

Hemant Joshi

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