How Intermittent Fasting Affects Weight Loss

Hey there…hope you are doing great 🙂

I’m finally moved and settled into my new Toronto condo.  One thing I forgot to mention from my 15 Things That Make Life Awesome Blog post is that my roommate can cook really really well.

The best part?  My roommate is a Paleo aficionado.

That’s right….he cooks some amazingly healthy and tasty meals.  And because of me…he adopted an Intermittent Fasting lifestyle and his weight loss results are coming fast.

It’s really cool when you make small changes to your diet and you break past some plateaus.  Since adopting IF into his lifestyle he has lost 5-7 pounds and is starting to get his abs back.

It’s just a testament to the fact that fasting and losing weight have a direct correlation with each other.

Btw here is our view when we enjoy his paleo cooked meals…

Pretty sick eh?  This view also doubles as my new office 🙂

Onto the task at hand….

Fasting And Weight Loss

After spending the good part of the last 2 years delving into intermittent fasting research and application I am already convinced that it is a easy solution to losing weight, living a normal lifestyle and life extension.

It’s kinda crazy when I see so many trainers still recommend eating frequently (5-6 meals a day) as a viable way to lose weight and “keep their metabolisms” fired up.

The one thing I have to wonder is…are they saying this to support their own products and services?

It is a known fact that certain people/businesses/the food and supplement industry as a whole…these people have a lot more to gain by telling eat more frequently than to adopt a less frequent feeding schedule or even skip breakfast for that matter.

When you eat 3 meals a day you just have no space to throw in any extra supplements, health foods and other non sensical crap that doesn’t make a difference.
No more meal replacement shakes.  No more “health food” snacking.  No more adding extra shit to your diet to ensure your body is mythically “stimulating your metabolism”.

My purpose in this blog is to keep things as simplified as possible to get you the best type of results you are looking for.  That is the way that I believe is best to get into your ideal body type and keep it there.

That’s why I don’t talk about counting calories or macronutrient levels.  You eat in a certain way that supports your lifestyle and if you do go overboard you can always take a break off eating.

Note:  While I don’t advocate counting calories/macronutrients…I do believe that counting is necessary when taking someone down to the uber lean body fat levels (women around 15% and men around 10%)Before my trip to the beaches of Thailand in November you best believe I’ll be counting calories/macros and getting myself down to a respectable body fat level.

I truly believe that the more complicated you make a diet you see a greater decrease the compliance rate.

Sure you can have the one client out of 100 that will do exactly as you say if you give them even the most minute details.  But in the reality of a personal trainer…we don’t have that sort of luxury.

Janet’s lost 22 pounds using IF…without calorie counting.

With a couple of changes to their diet, exercise and eating style we can do that easily.  In order for complete compliance we need to keep things as simple as possible in order for our clients to comply to our programs and see results.

It’s harder for the average client working a 9-5 job with a social life to count calories, count macronutrients, and bring 5 boxes of tupperware with them wherever they go.

It’s not only hard…it’s bad advice.

That is why I chose the Ninja style of Intermittent Fasting to be a viable long term solution for losing weight and maintaining a weight you can be comfortable in.

It’s a very simple way to decrease your caloric intake and keep your appetite under control.  After two to three weeks of doing Intermittent Fasting what you’ll find is that you have greater control over the foods you eat.

If you follow an Intermittent Fasting and Paleo type of lifestyle then food choices become even easier and the diet plan is easier to maintain due to the fact that you are limited to eating whole foods.

I don’t go strictly paleo as I still love to have my cheat days/alcoholic drinks on occasion…especially when poured down an ice sculpture that looks like a big Vodka bottle 🙂

How Intermittent Fasting and Weight Loss Go Together

Decreasing Caloric Intake Without The Shitty Feeling You Usually Get From Dieting

Whether you are taking on a 16/8 IF lifestyle, 24 Hour Alternate Day Fasting Lifestyle or a combination of both you will significantly decrease the amount of calories you put into your body.

Just taking away the snacking in between meals will help decrease the average persons body weight.  This is also due to the fact that snacking can be overdone and it usually is.

Nuts are a particularly dense caloric snack that people go overboard on.  Even though they are high in fibre and loaded with good fats people usually eat over the amount of calories and are still left somewhat hungry for more afterwards.

When is the last time you ate a handful of nuts and didn’t want to eat more?

According to J. Stanton of snacking not only makes you fat…it makes you weak as well.

Just taking away the snacking in between meals you are taking out at least a third of calories from the average persons diet.  You can do this easily by adopting the 3 meal a day eating style we love so much down here at the FLN (Fat Loss Ninja :))

Decreased Hunger and Increased Appetite Control

A funny thing happened along the way when I started on my IF journey…I started to get less and less hungry in between meals.

What is even funnier was that in the past I trained my body to become a breakfast eater and a frequent feeder because that’s what I thought would help speed up my metabolism.  I started to get hungry first thing in the morning when in the past I didn’t.  I started to get hungry in between my meals when before I wasn’t.

Something weird was definitely happening.

In fact, researchers from the Kansas City Medical Center found that one of the best ways to control appetite is not through meal frequency but by increasing protein intake.

What I realized through the application of eating 3 meals a day was the decreased hunger pangs I used to experience in between meals.  By adopting this style of eating as well as doing 24 hour alternate day fasts…I was able to decrease the rate of hunger I experience between meals.

Mark Sisson of The Primal Blueprint also makes a good point on the secretion of ghrelin and it’s effect on your appetite response:

“If all that stuff is under control, consider that you may need a few days to entrain your ghrelin secretion to your eating schedule. Ghrelin? It’s a hormone that precedes and indeed predicts mealtimes, induces hunger and is secreted when you’re about to eat. Your ghrelin secretion schedule follows your eating schedule, and it’s a fast responder, so a few days should be plenty of time to get things lined up.

In the meantime, you may have to deal with a little extra hunger at your previously normal mealtimes.What I found out through my IF experience and my clients was that we are able to control our bodies appetite response in a matter of a few weeks.

Judging by my experience as well as my clients experiences, it takes about 2-4 weeks to completely train your body to eat in whichever way you want it to eat.

This alone is cause for celebration.

A lot of people are left in chronic hunger by eating more frequently.  This leads to increased intake of foods and decreased control over what they put into their bodies.

Intermittent fasting helps you lose a ton of weight just by decreasing your overall hunger.

Greater Control Over Food Choices

This one is a little more abstract than the others as I do not have the research as of yet to back up this claim.  I can only speak from the experiences of myself and my clients when I say that IF gives you greater control over food choices.

Say you are in a pinch and the only thing around you that is available to eat is some sort of fast food.

After doing IF you can actually delay the feeding time until you have a healthy meal to eat.

This is because after doing IF for a long time, you know that you have to put something good into your body.  You become more mindful of the fact that food is an energy source so if you put crappy foods into your body you’ll be either hungry again in an hour, running out of energy at the end of the day, feeling like shit or…all 3 at the same time.

Trust me…I know this because I’ve tried it.

After experimenting with IF…I know I have to stick with high quality foods that keep me full and give me tons of energy to do the things I have to get done throughout the day.

This means eating primarily lean meats, lots of cruciferous vegetables, taking fish oils and my greens supplements.

If you know you are not going to eat for the next 4 hours then you better get eating healthy foods to sustain energy throughout the day and keep hunger at bay.

In Conclusion

If there was a magic bullet that I could use to help a client lose weight, drop an insane amount of body fat, increase their life spans, look younger, feel younger and decrease their chances for disease…intermittent fasting would be that bullet.

It works especially well when we are trying to help clients lose weight.

Just remember that with great power comes great responsibility.  Follow the guide we have right here and make sure you eat the right foods along with this plan…or else it won’t work.

Hope you enjoyed this post…

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Facebook comments:


  • Becky says:

    I’ve been following fast 5 for about a week. what i’ve noticed is that when my eating window opens (between 5-10) i’m not as hungry as i thought i was and would rather opt for some rice, ‘bouyon bred’ (which i guess you might call bok choy soup in English) and fish. delicious! i’m pretty full after that. might have a sandwich 3 hours later if i’m still hungry but rarely finish it. can you tell me about fat re-distribution in the body after a while because i seem to be losing a lot more from the top of my body (shoulders and collar bones sticking out) than from the bottom.

    • NinjaMan NinjaMan says:

      Hey Becky thanks for leaving a comment.

      This really has more to do with genetic disposition than anything else. If you tend to gain fat in a certain area very easily then that will most likely be the very last place you lose fat. I wish we could spot reduce areas on our body but the only thing I can advise you to do is keep going and eventually you should see fat loss from your lower body.

  • Michelle says:

    I started IF back in the summer around August. I lost 10 lbs very easily but now at 122 I’ve stopped losing. I’m still fasting once or twice a week and don’t eat between meals. I would like to lose 5 or 6 more lbs and then maintain it. Please help. 🙂

    • Antonio says:

      Like I said in my other post, it’s probably due to homeostasis. Your body is burning the same amount it’s taking in. Make sure your calorie deficit is 20% less than your AMR. If it is, then the only thing you can do is exercise more.

  • Antonio says:

    I have done IF for a while now, i usually follow the 20/4. Warrior diet style, If i get too hungry I eat under 500 calories a day before 5pm. Then at 5pm i eat the rest. I haven’t noticed anything “special” about IF. It’s just for convinces, and it’s a way to accomplish a calorie restriction. The subject of thyroid function is often neglected in weight loss topics. If you’re calories are too low it will slow down your thyroid function, lowering your metabolic rate.

  • JJ says:

    Hi Dan,

    I’m new to IF (3 days into it actually). It hasn’t been all that bad–in fact, 3 weeks ago I had adopted a vegan diet to help with my fitness goals (believe me I’m not starving!). I’ve decided to follow this type of schedule: Monday-Friday is 16-17 hours (I don’t eat anything from 8:30pm until 1:30pm the next day). Sat. and Sun is back to 3 meals. I have a 9-5 job and my training time is 2 days a week after work and 1 day on the weekend. So really, I’m actually training during my feeding window. I hear that training in a fasted state is the ideal but is my schedule ok too?

  • JP Patterson says:

    Hi JJ you ll find thatbeatingna s hit load of mcdonlads will help you counter the vegan nonsense quite quickly

  • Ana says:

    Hi! I’ve been fasting for about 23 days now 🙂 There are days when I am hungry in the morning, and other days when I’m not. I tend to be hungry before or after my times (3-6pm) but I have lose my appetite for the past couple days. I eat around 500-800 calories every day, and my goal is 1200 calories. I’m 5’3″ and 150, so I know I’m eating A LOT less calories than what I’m supposed to. I’m also lifting weights, is this optimal?

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