Submitted by Guest Blogger, Jamie Cassata
Important note: G&G doesn't offer medical advice. We recommend speaking with your physician before starting any diet or exercise program.
Is your eating out of control? Well, mine certainly was.
I’ve been working out and lifting for years, but eating is something I never had a handle on. I’m a big eater. If I’m not restraining myself, I’ll eat everything in the house and then head out to McDonald’s for the “good stuff.” Frankly I have no clue how I didn’t balloon up to the size of the Goodyear blimp.
How Fasting Got Me Down to My High School Weight
One day at the bookstore I discovered a book on fasting. At first my brain resisted this concept like some wanted felon resisting arrest. I mean, the idea of restricting my eating to set times was just wrong on so many levels.
But I was persuaded to try it out, restricting my “eating window” to only eight hours. I ate almost anything I wanted within those eight hours and fasted the rest of the time. I tended to start eating about 1pm and stop at 9pm. But it was flexible.
And as it turned out, in the first week I lost about five pounds. Water weight, mostly. But the real advantage was learning how to rein in the eating and develop some self-discipline about it.
Over the next few months I bumped up the fasting. From 16 hours a day I moved to 18 hours … then to 20 … and finally to 23. I even did a few 36- and 48-hour fasts along the way. But I settled in at 23 hours of fasting a day.
What is OMAD?
In other words, one meal a day. OMAD. With OMAD, I started eating all my calories within a one-hour window—usually between about 10am and 11am—and I fasted the other 23 hours.
All told, from the time I first started fasting, I lost 27 pounds and about five inches off my waist in four months. I was back to my high school weight.
I started OMAD with the belief that lipolysis (fat burning) depends on your insulin levels going down. Insulin is a hormone that helps the body utilize glucose or store it for later. When insulin increases, fat burning decreases. But when insulin decreases, fat burning increases. Fasting tends to lower your insulin levels and should result in fat burning. And the longer you fast, the more fat you burn.
Fasting also tends to counter the extreme metabolic adaptation that can occur when you’re restricting your calories but eating frequently throughout the day.
But there’s some controversy about these claims. I encourage you to research the issue for yourself. I’m no scientist or doctor, and I have no vested interest in anyone else fasting or doing OMAD. All I know is OMAD worked for me. And it might work for you, too. Of course, check with your doctor first. OMAD isn’t right for everyone.
I love OMAD because I can eat a lot of food in a short period of time and still lose weight. This style of eating mirrors how I like to eat naturally. It’s pretty tough to exceed your daily calorie limits when you’re eating this way, especially when you’re in the habit of exercising and weightlifting.
How to Do OMAD
You can start with the eight-hour eating window and gradually increase your fasting times when you think you’re ready. The body eventually adapts through a process called hormesis.
You may need to use an online calorie calculator to determine how many calories you should be consuming daily, just to make sure you’re staying at a deficit. And eat a balanced diet to ensure you’re getting all your nutrients.
Fasting isn’t an excuse to eat unhealthily.
I like to give myself a “cheat meal” every week so I don’t feel deprived. But most days I try to eat healthy, balanced foods: whole grains, meats, dairy, greens, fruits, nuts, and legumes.
Here’s one of my typical OMAD meals:
- 4 slices of Ezekiel Bread toast with peanut butter or cream cheese
- Tall glass of 2% milk
- 2 pieces of salmon cooked in coconut oil
- 2 smoothies made of kale, spinach, fruits, water, and vanilla protein powder
- Serving of nuts
- Square of dark chocolate
- Bowl of oatmeal with dried blueberries
- Serving of dates
- Serving of figs
All that food and I’m full. Then my brain hits the “off” switch when it comes to food for the rest of the day. Until the next feast tomorrow.
For more tips on healthy eating and fitness, we recommend these articles: The Benefits of Meal Planning, Get Fit in the Gym, Lose Weight in the Kitchen, Common Fitness Myths, It's Not About Getting Skinny.
If you’re ready to take the next steps in your fitness journey, contact the experts at G&G Fitness Equipment today, use the chat feature on the bottom right of this window to connect live with a G&G expert, or stop into a G&G Fitness Equipment showroom and let us show you why we are the best specialty fitness equipment retailer in the northeast.
About Jamie Cassata
Jamie Cassata is a direct response copywriter. He’s written copy for multimillion-dollar health and wellness brands and helps companies implement marketing strategies that generate leads and sales.
Despite his success in eliciting direct response from readers, he can’t seem to get his two cats to do anything.
His website is at https://JamieCassata.com.