Intermittent Fasting Issue & Discussion

Obee1

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Because the CICO model is highly reductionistic. It's akin to saying all drug addictions can be solved by "just not using drugs".

For example, CICO doesn't account for how meals and meal timings influence hunger hormones ghrelin and leptin, your GI/gut health (which impacts hunger as well), your bodies ability to utilize glucose in liver stores, and worst of all it seems to imply that the foods you eat don't matter, only the calories. Oh and another thing, food labels are often extremely inaccurate so trying to count calories is kind of pointless unless you're eating the same foods in exact portions every day.
I'll agree with you that CICO doesn't account for a lot when it comes to meal timing and the various hormonal responses but I don't think it purports to. CICO is just a simple way of explaining the first law of thermodynamics and its role in maintaining, losing, or gaining weight. Different diets lead to different biochemical pathways for sure. But a healthy diet still must adhere to this law. It is certainly possible to have a bad diet and lose weight by only adhering to this one principle. This has been proven time and time again most notably by the nutrition professor who lost 27 lbs only eating Twinkies. I speculate that certain blood markers were a disaster. Alternatively, a person can fast and end it with excess calories of healthy nutritious foods and gain fat. CICO is not a diet, it is one law that healthy eaters should follow to meet their goals whether that be lose, gain, or maintain weight.

I wouldn't call food labels extremely inaccurate but they certainly aren't exact. They're still a good guideline though. Just like figuring what your Basal Metabolic Rate using the Katch-McArdle formula. It's a guideline, but it'll get you in the ballpark and you can adjust accordingly. Several months out of the year I do exactly what you referred to above. On Sunday I get the scale out and figure my meals and snacks for the week. I then eat the same breakfast, lunch, and dinner and snacks with the exact portions everyday. In a couple weeks based on the scale, measurements, and sometimes a DEXA scan, I'll adjust or maintain my caloric intake. It's not for everyone and maybe excessive but when I go back to my regular eating pattern I have a decent idea of the calories & macros I'm eating because for those several months I was weighing, portioning and counting everything that I stuffed down my gullet. All that said, you have some good points and it shouldn't be all about CICO.
 

BackInTheGame78

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Losing weight is a psychological battle. Calories in vs. calories out is the formula. However makes the math work out will work.

I am of the opinion that deprivation is counterproductive psychologically and fasting would fall under deprivation for the majority of people. Find a way to cut the calories without depriving a person of what they want to eat.
It depends on how you are doing it. Fasting where you don't eat anything for a day is actually one of the best ways to lose pure fat, AND increase your metabolism. Studies have shown that even after 5 days of not eating people's metabolisms were higher than they were prior to starting the fast.

I harness this via a 5:2 fasting cycle each week...additionally you can increase calories on the days you do eat to add increased boosts and still lose weight as you will still be in an energy deficit in a given week.
 

BackInTheGame78

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I'll agree with you that CICO doesn't account for a lot when it comes to meal timing and the various hormonal responses but I don't think it purports to. CICO is just a simple way of explaining the first law of thermodynamics and its role in maintaining, losing, or gaining weight. Different diets lead to different biochemical pathways for sure. But a healthy diet still must adhere to this law. It is certainly possible to have a bad diet and lose weight by only adhering to this one principle. This has been proven time and time again most notably by the nutrition professor who lost 27 lbs only eating Twinkies. I speculate that certain blood markers were a disaster. Alternatively, a person can fast and end it with excess calories of healthy nutritious foods and gain fat. CICO is not a diet, it is one law that healthy eaters should follow to meet their goals whether that be lose, gain, or maintain weight.

I wouldn't call food labels extremely inaccurate but they certainly aren't exact. They're still a good guideline though. Just like figuring what your Basal Metabolic Rate using the Katch-McArdle formula. It's a guideline, but it'll get you in the ballpark and you can adjust accordingly. Several months out of the year I do exactly what you referred to above. On Sunday I get the scale out and figure my meals and snacks for the week. I then eat the same breakfast, lunch, and dinner and snacks with the exact portions everyday. In a couple weeks based on the scale, measurements, and sometimes a DEXA scan, I'll adjust or maintain my caloric intake. It's not for everyone and maybe excessive but when I go back to my regular eating pattern I have a decent idea of the calories & macros I'm eating because for those several months I was weighing, portioning and counting everything that I stuffed down my gullet. All that said, you have some good points and it shouldn't be all about CICO.
There are myriad issues with CICO that I go into great detail about in another thread on this forum.

In general, calories are at best a rough guideline that can be used, especially if you are eating packaged foods where the calorie count can be off by up to 20% in either direction and it's OK by the FDA.

But on top of that...you get into what state a food is in when it's eaten. For instance, if I take a few stalks of raw celery, it's only got about 6 calories. If I cook them in a stew or soup, now it becomes 42 calories because some of the fiber that wasn't digestible when raw now has become digestible. Cooking foods, especially vegetables is similar to digestion where it turns some indigestible fiber into digestible fiber.

Then you deal with carbs that don't really count like fiber but are still included in calories totals. Unless of course you have turned some of that into digestible fiber and then some of it counts.

Protein counts as 4 calories per gram but really it only counts 3 calories.

And so on and so forth until you get to a point where all you can do is guesstimate within 400-500 calories a day of the real total AT BEST
 

EyeBRollin

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Because the CICO model is highly reductionistic. It's akin to saying all drug addictions can be solved by "just not using drugs".

For example, CICO doesn't account for how meals and meal timings influence hunger hormones ghrelin and leptin, your GI/gut health (which impacts hunger as well), your bodies ability to utilize glucose in liver stores, and worst of all it seems to imply that the foods you eat don't matter, only the calories. Oh and another thing, food labels are often extremely inaccurate so trying to count calories is kind of pointless unless you're eating the same foods in exact portions every day.
It is not that complicated. Focusing on calorie density of food makes it easy to cut calories through food choices.

Dense sources of calories are fat first and foremost, then refined carbohydrates. That means get rid of the oil, butter, and sugar.
 

FlexpertHamilton

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It is not that complicated. Focusing on calorie density of food makes it easy to cut calories through food choices.

Dense sources of calories are fat first and foremost, then refined carbohydrates. That means get rid of the oil, butter, and sugar.
Both of the points you've brought up is known or practiced by almost every fat person in the west, so if it were that simple, they wouldn't still be fat (and getting fatter).
 

EyeBRollin

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Both of the points you mentioned is known and practiced by almost every fat person, so if it were that simple, they wouldn't be fat.
Quickest way to shed calories from a diet is to keep it the same but eliminate the excess calories. Swap out soda for zero calorie diet soda, or even better - water. Cut out the oil and butter. Replace sugar with Splenda. For most people those 3 things alone shaves 500 to 1,000 calories per day.

It’s actually hard to over-eat calories in the absence of sugar, oil, and sugary drinks.
 

BackInTheGame78

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Quickest way to shed calories from a diet is to keep it the same but eliminate the excess calories. Swap out soda for zero calorie diet soda, or even better - water. Cut out the oil and butter. Replace sugar with Splenda. For most people those 3 things alone shaves 500 to 1,000 calories per day.

It’s actually hard to over-eat calories in the absence of sugar, oil, and sugary drinks.
Fat intake is needed for your body to effectively burn stored fat. FYI.
 

The Diver

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A great channel with past Olympic athlete, Dr Sten Ekberg.
Subscribe to his channel to watch a lot more detailed and in-depth medical explanations about intermittent fasting.


 
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BackInTheGame78

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Fat is naturally occurring in things you should be eating (nuts, seeds, whole grains, fish, lean meat). Not something that needs to go out of your way to get…
For the most part I agree with that, but drizzling olive/avocado oil on things like salads etc is a good way to get it too.
 

Ricky

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FWIW, there's nothing magical about what time you eat your food; 3,000 calories is still 3,000 calories - even if you eat it all in 4 hours.

But IF has one of the best success rates for dieters because it is a lifestyle change that can be kept up with even afer the weight is lost. For that reason alone, IF works really well.
I do a modified IF with two 30-50g protein 'pulses', one in the morning (eggs) and one in the afternoon (2x scoop protein shake), then I can slam 12-16oz chicken breast in the evening and not have room for much else. I stole the idea from here.
i like this idea because when i intermittent fast strictly i end up drinking too much coffee. I also normally lift or do cardio in the morning so skipping breakfast completely feels a little tougher that it would for the roll out of bed last minute and not exercise intermittent fasters out there
 

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Is the benefit of IF mostly an insulin thing @BackInTheGame78 ? If that’s the case would a low carb / keto dinner or breakfast have an similar effect as fasting?
IMO, the biggest benefit is that IF burns almost pure fat, 90% of true weight lost is from fat, whereas virtually all other methods studied are 50/50 fat/muscle or lean more towards burning muscle more than fat.

The goal when losing weight should be to spare as much muscle as possible and this helps in that regard.
 

EyeBRollin

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IMO, the biggest benefit is that IF burns almost pure fat, 90% of true weight lost is from fat, whereas virtually all other methods studied are 50/50 fat/muscle or lean more towards burning muscle more than fat.

The goal when losing weight should be to spare as much muscle as possible and this helps in that regard.
I would think that if protein intake is sufficient and you are still strength training that muscle loss should be kept to a minimum regardless
 

BackInTheGame78

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I would think that if protein intake is sufficient and you are still strength training that muscle loss should be kept to a minimum regardless
It all works synergystically. I believe in stacking efficiencies and in my experience the best results come not from one big thing but stacking multiple little things that all help more than the sum of the parts would suggest.

IF generates massive increases in growth hormone, up to 700% of normal in pulses throughout the day, peaking around 24 hours.

Also, one of the most overlooked things in all of that is proper sleep. Studies were done showing that even if people are minimally sleep deprived their body burns muscle at a far higher rate than if they are not.
 

Money & Muscle

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I also normally lift or do cardio in the morning so skipping breakfast completely feels a little tougher that it would for the roll out of bed last minute and not exercise intermittent fasters out there
You could also consider using something like an intra workout nutrition supplement. It should give you some fast-acting carbs to help boost glycogen and limit impact on performance while not eating in the mornings. It doesn't do anything for the hunger, but it's <200cals of perfomance enhancement that you're better off having - assuming you've got a very strenuous workout ahead of you.
 

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it really doesn't. Post receipts.

Don't trust anything that gives a % effectiveness. It's usually a grift.
Here is one that talks about a study that showed a 1300% increase in women and a 2000% increase in men over the course of a 24 hour fast.


There are many many many other studies that have been done on this all the way back to 1988 that all show significant increases in GH ranging from 375%, 500%, 700%, 1200%, etc. Basically all of them were multiple times normal.

A quick Google search of 24 hour fast GH increases will confirm this and you'll have plenty of studies to read to your hearts content.

It's really common sense when you think about it from an evolutionary point of view. GH is being released by the body in the short term to help spare muscle and get energy from fat to give you energy to go look for food. It doesn't know you can simply go to your fridge whenever you want.
 

Money & Muscle

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A quick Google search of 24 hour fast GH increases will confirm this and you'll have plenty of studies to read to your hearts content.
So why don't we all just not eat then?
When does the GH increase stop?

I'm playing devils advocate because we don't know. Which is the same thing the article you posted said:
While the results were surprising to researchers, it's not time to start a fasting diet just yet. It will take more studies like these to fully determine the body's reaction to fasting and its effect on human health. Dr. Horne believes that fasting could one day be prescribed as a treatment for preventing diabetes and coronary heart disease.
 
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