Losing weight while eating for a limited time?
So-called intermittent fasting does not seem to help with weight loss, according to a recent study. But intermittent fasting has other health benefits.
How Does Intermittent Fasting Affect Weight Loss? (Image: thanksforbuying / Stock.Adobe.com)
Intermittent fasting does not lead to significantly more weight loss than a normal diet of eating three meals a day, according to a recent study by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco. The study was published in the English-language journal “JAMA Internal Medicine”.
What is intermittent fasting?
During intermittent fasting, food is only eaten at certain regular intervals, often with the goal of losing weight. This form of diet has become more and more popular in recent years. In addition, the special form of fasting is associated with various health benefits, such as improving heart problems, lowering cholesterol, and improving focus, the researchers report.
116 overweight or obese people participated in the study and were divided into two groups. There was a control cohort who ate three meals a day. The other participants followed a diet for a limited time. They could eat food between noon and 8 p.m. and fasted for the rest of the day. During the fast, participants were only allowed to drink non-calorie drinks.
What values were measured?
The researchers not only measured the participants’ weight, but also their body fat and lean mass, insulin levels, glucose, blood sugar, and energy intake and consumption during and outside of the fasting period.
What was the weight loss?
Although there was a 1.17% weight loss in the intermittent fasting group, there was no significant difference from the control group, experts report. People in the control group lost 0.75% of their total weight during the same period.
Don’t neglect protein intake when fasting
Most of the weight loss was also related to lean mass, not fat percentage. Regarding metabolic markers, the research group could not find any significant differences between the two groups.
Time-limited food intake seems attractive as an option for easy weight loss, as it does not require tedious and time-consuming methods such as counting calories or following complicated diets. But in the current study, no weight loss benefits of intermittent fasting were found, the research team said.
Contradiction in study results
Unlike the current study, an in-depth analysis of existing studies recently published in the American Journal of Medicine came to the conclusion that intermittent fasting may very well contribute to weight loss and, in so doing, body fat percentage. . Positive effects on lipid metabolism, blood pressure and the risk of cardiovascular disease have also been found.
Intermittent fasting seems to be worth at least one try to lose weight. The deciding factor, however, is what foods are eaten. Or to put it another way: Those who only indulge in unhealthy foods for eight hours a day need not be surprised if intermittent fasting fails. (as)
Also read: Diet: Ketogenic diet, a risk for the heart?
Author and source information
This text conforms to the requirements of specialized medical literature, medical directives and current studies and has been verified by health professionals.
Dylan A. Lowe, Nancy Wu, Linnea Rohdin-Bibby, A. Holliston Moore, Nisa Kelly et al .: Effects of time-limited diet on weight loss and other metabolic parameters in women and men suffering from overweight and obesity, in JAMA Internal Medicine (published 09/28/2020), JAMA Internal Medicine
This article is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to be used for self-diagnosis or self-treatment. It cannot replace a visit to the doctor.