Women are much more sensitive to the environment around them, nature gifted woman with the power of creation. They see and react to world different way than men do.
Intermittent fasting for a women is not much different than men, may yield both good and bad results depends on person to person. Most of the women have beneficial effects just like men and some may end up getting missed periods and high sugar levels.
Note: On requests from readers decided to write on “Intermittent fasting for women “. I am a male so have little personal experience with “intermittent fasting for women”.
What is intermittent fasting?
Intermittent fasting also called as “If diet”. It’s not about what to eat and what not to eat. It’s more about when to eat.
It is a cyclic pattern in which fasting period followed by a normal eating period. “If diet” can be combined with any other diet like “Paleo” or “Keto” on a normal day of eating.
You can read more about it here.
Intermittent fasting for women
Historically women had done fasting routine like Ramadan and other kinds of religious fasting. Fasting for women is not much different than men. Fasting creates the same good /bad result just like men.
Some people naturally good at coping with stress and some are really bad.
Intermittent fasting is a kind of stress on the human body, and the body responds to stress by generating hormones like cortisol. Which sometimes causes negative side effects like weight gain, high blood sugar, and raised heartbeat in case of women missed periods and low fertility.
How to Get Started ?
There is nothing magical in body’s ability to cope with stress. You must have heard story of a man lifting massive bull on his shoulders.
He lifts that big massive bull, because he is lifting that bull since bull was calf and weighs around few lbs. As time progress calf grows in size and weight, the man keeps lifting calf every day. As weight and size grow gradually over the period man’s body adapt to lifting calf’s weight. After few year man can lift the entire calf which is now adult bull.
How is this even possible? It’s because his body gets adapted to changes and partly because he gave time to his body to adapt with changes.
The point I want to make here is that don’t go big on fasting at the start or when you are new to fasting, start with a small time frame like 8 hours or16 hours of fasting. Let tour body to adapt with fasting routine.
Keep a close eye on changes happening in your body? If you not feeling well after or during fasting consult with your physician and act according to his advice.
Health Benefits of Intermittent Fasting for Women
For women, intermittent fasting done in a right way provide multiple health benefits just like men.
Fasting causes weight loss and helps women to keep off lost weight without strict diet rules. Fasting allows women to eat whatever they want but focus more on when to eat. Hence make life simpler.[Study 1,2]
Read more about benefits here.
Intermittent fasting schedule for women
Start small to let your body to adapt with fasting routine and then go for long-duration fasting.
- “12 hours fast”, “16/8 fast” or “24 hours fast” per week.
- It is as simple as skipping a single meal in a day, probably breakfast.
- Find out how your body reacting to these small fast.
- Even if no negative effects are shown, continue doing small fast for few months.
- When you are confident increase time frame to 48, 56 hours or short period fasting 2 to 3 days per week.
- Do not start with long-duration fasting (fasts greater than 24 hours period)
Intermittent fasting for women over 40
- At any age, if women who trying for baby or planning should not do any kind of fasting.
- Intermittent fasting for women over 40 or 50 is not much different than a younger woman who is under 30.
- Asses your bodies response to small fasting periods. And change your strategy accordingly.
Is intermittent fasting safe for women?
- Intermittent fasting is safe for most of the healthy adult woman.
- Women who are pregnant, breastfeeding, malnourished or underweight should avoid any kind of fasting.
- Couples who trying for a baby should also avoid fasting.
- Women who taking any medication or health condition should consult with a physician before starting on fasting.
- Generally, intermittent fasting is safe for women just like men.
- Start with a short fasting period, give your body some time to adjust with fasting routine, go slow.
- As a woman are more sensitive they may experience negative effects of intermittent fasting compared to men.
- Unfortunately few Women may experience eating disorders, high blood sugar, and missed periods due to calorie restriction, because of body’s focus on survival rather than reproduction.