Alternate Day Fasting for Quick Weight Loss


After observing twelve obese women and four obese men, during a period of ten weeks, eating the bare minimum of food every other day, researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago concluded that this “alternate day fasting” can be a good way to lose weight fast.

Currently the diet plan, Eat Stop Eat, is the diet program that best comes closest to using a similar and successful approach to the alternate day fasting approach.

The Participants of the Alternate Day Fasting Study

The age age range of the participants were between thirty-five and sixty-five years old. There weight was greater than 210 pounds each with a body mass fatlady 229x300 Alternate Day Fasting for Quick Weight Lossindex (BMI) between 30 and 39.9. In addition, previous to the study, their weight was stable for the previous three months. None of the participants were diabetic, had a history of cardiovascular disease, was on weight loss medications, or smoked.

The Study

The study was divided into three different phases.

  1. Eat and exercise normally
  2. Eat normal meals one day and fast the next day, then repeat
  3. Chose to eat and do whatever they feel, based on what they learned.

For the first two weeks, participants ate and exercised in a normal manner. Then, between the third and sixth weeks, the participants ate normal meals one day then fasted then next day.

The “fast days” consisted of a three-course lunch, prepared by UIC’s Human Nutritional Research Center, which provided between 20 and 25 percent of their daily energy needs.

In the final four weeks, the participants chose what to eat, based on what they had learned about meal sizes and food choices. Krista Varady, assistant professor of kinesiology and nutrition, who led the UIC research team, explained the reasoning behind this third stage by stating, “We wanted to see if they could actually do it by themselves — because what’s the point of studying this diet if you have to feed people meals prepared at metabolic kitchens all the time?”

The Results of the Alternate Day Fasting Diet

The results of the diet was a weight loss that ranged from 10 to 30 pounds. However, researchers expected an average loss of only five pounds. In addition, and an unexpected surprise, blood pressure, heart rate, cholesterol levels, and fat levels decreased.

Varady added: “Why are some able to do it but others not? It takes about two weeks to adjust to the diet, after which people don’t feel hungry on the fast day.

“We need to find out how long they can stay on this diet — and if they go off it, do they automatically regain the weight?”

There is still more research needing to be done to determine the long-term effectiveness of this diet, but so far it looks promising.

The alternate day fasting diet is still a study being researched, but fasting diets have been around for years. Eat Stop Eat is one of the most popular and highest rated.  Eat Stop Eat is a flexible intermittent fasting
program that simply requires you to do one or two 24 hour fasts per
week.

eatstopeat Alternate Day Fasting for Quick Weight Loss

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Sam March 6, 2010 at 6:09 pm

I read about alternate day fasting. People who live by the restricted calorie diet sometimes do this. It is very important that nutrition is a key part of every calorie you eat.

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