Intermittent Fasting meal plan

Intermittent Fasting meal plan

 

“Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”

― Michael Pollan

“Intermittent Fasting” is not a diet, it’s more of rules to follow every day. One can combine “Intermittent Fasting” with any diet like “Paleo” or “Ketogenic” diet or whatever you eat on a normal day. Fasting is not restricted for any food, you need to follow one rule “Not to eat anything for a specific time interval”.

To be specific one should not eat or drink anything which raises his blood sugar hence keeps insulin levels in the body to low.

“Intermittent Fasting” provides various benefits like weight-loss, anti-aging, anti-inflammatory, increased mental focus etc.

You can read in detail about benefits here

If you munch on pizza, cookies, burgers and sugary drinks after fasting, you will lose most of the benefits provided by fasting. High carbohydrate food raises your blood sugars rapidly, triggers the insulin response and excess sugar gets stored as fat. I am also against processed food or food which is manufactured in factories.

Food that raises insulin levels should be avoided, one can use below chart as a reference point. This chart can be used as reference point for “glycemic index diet”.

insulin index

Ref. University of Sydney study

Glycemic index (GI), Glycemic load (Gl) are used to measure foods impact on blood sugar.

What is GI (Glycemic index)?

Glycemic Index (GI) is number associated with food, how fast it raises your blood sugar after consuming the food? GI is measured in 0 to 100.The GI represents the rise in a person’s blood sugar level two hours after consumption of the food.  Low GI considered good and high GI considered as bad. GI only measured for foods consisting of carbohydrates.

GI depends on how much carbohydrates, proteins, fats, and fibers are in food.

  • High carb food normally high GI.
  • High-fat food normally has a low GI.
  • High protein food falls in between, where blood glucose rises slowly than high carb food but faster than high-fat food.

For example

  • High GI Food: White wheat bread     75
  • Low GI Food:  Peanut butter 14
  • Blood sugar will rise much faster for White bread compared to Peanut butter

For the complete list of food and GI visit harvard link

What is GL (Glycemic Load)?

The glucose spike in your blood not only depends on the food you eat but also on the quantity of food you eat in one sitting. For example, we can eat a lot more ice-cream in one go compared to apples.

There is a formula to calculate the Glycemic load of foods

Foods GL= (Foods Glycemic index X grams of carbohydrates per serving)/100

For example

  • Carrots have GI of 47 and 5 grams of carbs per unit
  • Carrot GL = (47X 5)/ 100=2.35
  • Honey have GI of 55 and 17 gm carbs per tablespoon
  • Honey GL= (55X 17)/100=9.35
  • Compared to Carrots, Honey has 4 times GL . Hence honey will raise blood sugar 4 times faster than carrot.

Broadly speaking Lower GI and GL numbers are considered good. Low GI and GL indicate lowered risk of various chronic diseases.

Note: GI and GL both depend on carbohydrates content in food. Both don’t take in account FAT and Protein in food.

Below chart depict foods impact on insulin levels in the body, foods insulin response is more accurate measure than GI and GL as it doesn’t include fat/protein/fiber content in food.

High insulin response food

cookies, ice-creams, candy bars, jelly beans, glucose, fruit juices, rice, wheat bread, cupcakes, potato, cereals, yogurt, tortilla, corn syrup, French fries, skim milk etc.

Moderate insulin response food

lentils, beans, oat bran, muesli bar, tomato sauce, cheese, fish fillet, granola etc.

Low insulin response food

Eggs, butter, pure ghee, beef, cream cheese, tuna, peanut, walnuts, bacon, full cream milk etc.

Intermittent Fasting meal plan guidelines

The general guidelines are

  • High carb food raises insulin level by highest amount.
  • High protein food raise insulin level to by moderate amount.
  • High-fat food raises insulin level by lowest amount.

To get the most benefits from fasting one need to combine it with a healthy diet, low in carbs and high in protein or fat.

During fast

  • During fast person can have coffee, tea, bone broth, water, salt, a small amount of fat. Avoid anything which will raise your blood sugar.
  • Strictly avoid sugar and snacks.
  • For details about what to drink during intermittent fasting read this post.

After fast

  • For breaking fast, a person can have moderate carb and high fat meal .
  • For example rice with chicken breast, vegetable salads with olive oil

On normal days

  • On normal days, eat high protein or high-fat meal like butter, pure ghee, seafood, vegetables, avocado, eggs, coconut oil, high-fat yogurt, cottage cheese, olive oil, nuts and seeds, dark chocolate etc.
  • Normally avoid high carb meals.

Intermittent Fasting meal plans

depending on duration if fast, below are some meal plans

12-hour Intermittent Fasting meal plan

  • In 12-hour fasting, a person goes without eating for 12 hours.
  • No snacking allowed at any time.
  • Eat only 2 meals a day with 12 hours gap in between them.
  • For Details read this post.

For example

  1. Breakfast at 8 am- Baked oatmeal with olive oil
  2. Lunch 12 noon – skip lunch
  3. Dinner at 8 pm – Veggies and cottage cheese salad

16-hour Intermittent Fasting meal plan

  • In 16 hours fasting, a person need to skip one meal and need to have 2 meals with 4 hours between them.
  • The main aim is to keep a 16-hour gap between 2 consecutive meals
  • For Details read this post.

For example

  1. Breakfast at 8 am- skip
  2. Lunch at 1 afternoon – chicken breast with veggies
  3. Dinner at 5 pm – fish with sweet potato

24-hour Intermittent Fasting meal plan

  • In 24 hours fasting, a person needs to have only 1 meal in a day.
  • The main aim is to keep a 24-hour gap between consecutive meals.
  • For Details read this post.

For example

  1. Breakfast at 8 am- skip
  2. Lunch at 1 afternoon – skip
  3. Dinner at 5 pm – pasta with veggies

36-hour Intermittent Fasting meal plan

  • In 36 hours fasting, a person needs to skip 3 consecutive meals in a day.
  • The main aim is to keep a 36-hour gap between 2 consecutive meals.
  • For Details read this post.

For example

Day 1

  1. Breakfast at 8 am- skip
  2. Lunch 1 afternoon – skip
  3. Dinner at 5 pm – skip

Day 2

  1. Breakfast at 8 am- scrambled eggs with veggies
  2. Lunch 1 afternoon – normal lunch
  3. Dinner at 5 pm – normal dinner

48-hour Intermittent Fasting meal plan

  • In 48 hours fasting, a person needs to skip 5 consecutive meals in 2 days.
  • Person need not to eat anything for 48 consecutive hours
  • The main aim is to keep a 48-hour gap between consecutive meals.
  • For Details read this post.

For example

Day 1

  1. Breakfast at 8 am- skip
  2. Lunch 1 afternoon – skip
  3. Dinner at 5 pm – skip

Day 2

  1. Breakfast at 8 am- skip
  2. Lunch 1 afternoon – Skip
  3. Dinner at 5 pm – pasta with veggies

Meal ideas you can try

Breakfast

  1. 2 boiled eggs with grapes
  2. fruits slices with bacon
  3. Whey protein smoothies
  4. veggie egg omelet

Lunch

  1. Salad greens with olive oil
  2. Salad greens with lemon dressing
  3. Salad greens with cheese dressing
  4. Salad greens with avocado dressing
  5. chicken wrap, beef, and veggie stir-fry

Dinner

  1. Grilled fish
  2. grilled chicken with asparagus
  3. boiled salmon salad
  4. grilled sirloin with baked potatoes
  5. chicken curry with tortilla or bread

You will find many detailed recipes for term “high-fat meal” or “high protein meal” on the internet.

Mix and match any meal to your convenience, try to have high fat or high protein meal. Keep simple.

Eat a lot of veggies with a lot of fat like cheese, ghee or butter. Try to eat fewer animal products like chicken beef or pork.Eat organic produce as much as you can for long-term health.

Don’t eat snacks or sugary drinks during the fast period. On fasting days, have a normal meal, with low carb and high in fat.

 

If you have any questions please ask in comments.

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