How to - 16/8 Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss

16/8 Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting (IF) has risen in popularity over the past few years. It's incredibly effective as a way of eating. However, intermittent fasting is not a diet; it's simply a pattern of eating. The general hypothesis comes from living like our palaeolithic ancestors by cycling through periods of feast and famine.



The science supports this method and the benefits. I’m an advocate of IF because it allows you to control your hunger hormone signals far better as you naturally lower and better regulate your blood sugar levels over 24 hours. This physiological process helps you control your behaviours and suppresses cravings which, then results in the obvious benefit of lower caloric consumption.


As a Liverpool and Wirral Personal Trainer, I encourage my clients who struggle to control their eating behaviours and I occasionally use it personally when I’m having a recovery week from training. Despite my enthusiasm, if you have any medical conditions then make sure you ask your dietician or medical practitioner for advice before trialling it.  



Intermittent Fasting can be used for different purposes which I’ll cover in-depth in a future blog but, here are the typical reasons people may choose to fast:

Religious reasons

Practice Self-Control

Weight Loss



Along with different reasons to use intermittent fasting, there are also several methods that I cover in my blog Intermittent Fasting for Fast Weight Loss. However, in this blog, I will focus on the most popular and easiest to implement, the 16/8 strategy. This is basically 16 hours of no food, to be more specific, zero calories, and 8 hours of eating your daily nutritional intake. The guide below will give you a basic framework to use should you wish to use the 16/8 system.  



How to implement the 16/8 intermittent fasting method


A typical framework that works well is to eat your last meal at 7pm and then your first meal of the day at 11-12am, so you basically skip the early breakfast. Plan eating windows for your nutrition, so make sure you have at least your first meal and last meal scheduled to make sure you hit the fasting & feeding windows.



During the fasting period, you cannot consume a single calorie. However, you can consume certain drinks. After your evening meal, you should comfortably manage no food for the rest of the night. My advice is to only drink water after your evening meal. The following morning allows an excellent opportunity for you to now consume plenty of water to hydrate yourself. This alone will help you feel great, but you can also add green tea or black coffee. DO NOT DRINK ANYTHING ELSE! Once you hit 11am, or whenever your fasting window closes, you then eat the meals your regular meals.



Pro Tip – Eating higher protein meals will not only make fasting easier for you but, you’ll also burn more calories as high protein foods typically have a higher thermal effect (use more energy in the digestion process).  


Should you wish to extend your fast a little further, which happens when you experience the paradoxical shift of not feeling like eating, then don't be afraid to try it. Some people live their lives incredibly well eating just one meal a day which, is another method of intermittent fasting. More on One Meal A Day (OMAD) in a future blog.



My advice is to aim for two meals and a snack between to keep your energy levels up for exercise & activity. Once you've mastered your diet, intermittent fasting, and exercise regime, you can play around with different fasting protocols later. But, for now, just keep it simple with two meals and a snack.


Look forward to my up & coming blog on Intermittent Fasting for Fast Weight Loss coming soon. But until then, try the 16/8 system and leave a comment to let me know what you think once you try it.



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