Benefits of Intermittent Fasting + How to Do It

Benefits of Intermittent Fasting + How to Do It

Hey, Dr. Axe here, doctor of natural medicine
and founder of In this video, I’ll be training you on the
many benefits of intermittent fasting, what to do and what not to do, and who should do
it when it comes to intermittent fasting. And also some of the key foods you’re going
to want to be eating if you’re going to be following intermittent fasting type of diet. So let’s jump right in. Let me say this, intermittent fasting the
benefits can be pretty profound, and what tends to happen when you look at what it is
and how you want to do it . . . First of when you look at intermittent fasting, you want
to typically eating a four-hour to a maximum eight-hour window, but typically that window
is about six hours. Now, most people eat first thing when they
wake up in the morning, so maybe that’s 7 o’clock, and also they eat a snack or something
even up to till the time of bed, maybe that’s 11 o’ clock. So what ends up happening is most people end
up eating for about 16 hours a day or at least 12. And so, your body is kind of always digesting,
always processing and it doesn’t have a very long rest period for really cleansing, detoxification,
for internal healing. So, we’ll talk about that more in just a minute. But one of the big benefits is that you have
a much longer period where you’re not eating so your body can recover and heal. Now here’s one of the biggest benefits of
intermittent fasting. It promotes human growth hormone. You know, there was an article written years
ago by Herschel Walker, a famous Georgia running back and also was a very prosperous NFL running
back. In fact, broke the rookie running record in
terms of yards per carry. But it promotes HGH, that’s human growth hormone. You know, most people today as we age, our
human growth hormone declines. And this is why you’ll see a lot of men with
low testosterone, have low human growth hormone. When women start to age faster, get brittle
bone, their human growth hormones lower. Naturally having more human growth hormone
tends to mean you’re younger, you’re more vibrant, you’re more energetic. But again if it’s low, that starts leaning
toward sickness and disease. Now, some people as they age will start to
try and do testosterone injections and other things that are synthetic. The problem is those outside in things that
are unnatural also have serious side effects versus ideally, you want to boost the human
growth hormone in your own body and keep it high, one of the best ways to do that: intermittent
fasting. You know, also if you were working out on
an empty stomach first thing in the morning, boost your human growth hormone by sometimes
more than a 1000% can go sky high. So again, one of the biggest ways you can
actually increase human growth hormone is by intermittent fasting and coupling it with
heavy weight training. It’s a great way to stay younger longer. Number two, as we’ve talked about anti-aging. So much of aging is sort of balancing hormones
in your body as you age, from human growth hormone, to cortisol levels, to insulin. We want to keep your cortisol levels balanced. Really one of the keys to doing that is intermittent
fasting. An intermittent fasting diet, most people
might have their first meal at 1 o’clock. Maybe they’ll do two meals a day. They’ll eat at 1 o’clock and around 5 or 6,
and that’s what they do. You’re always skipping breakfast when you’re
intermittent fasting. Some people eat at noon, 3 and 6. That’s another option if you still want to
get three meals. But in general with intermittent fasting,
is you’re waiting to eat, and it’s really eating possibly more like our ancestors did. You know, our ancestors we don’t know that
they necessarily ate something every morning and then they might have gone out and worked
for a while. Then when they started getting hungry, then
they would eat. They were really listening to their body. But again, intermittent fasting can promote
anti-aging because of how it balances out cortisol, human growth hormone, insulin, and
other hormones that really affect aging. Number three, improve sports performance. You know, a lot of this has to do with again
HGH. You know the best athletes are faster and
they are stronger. Stronger has a lot to do with that human growth
hormone, which a lot of people try and cheat the system and do anabolic steroids. Here’s the truth. You can boost your own internal natural steroids
and your own anabolic system if you follow intermittent fasting, and especially if you
couple that with weightlifting and burst training or high intensity training. Doing those things together really helps boost
that human growth hormone, which will boost your strength and help sports performance. Number four, normalizes insulin sensitivity. Now, this is huge. You know, people with diabetes, we know that
they have insulin spikes. We know that they are having issues with their
insulin receptor sites with diabetes. So obviously, this helps that. But a lot of people don’t also realize that
insulin has a lot to do with weight gain. Also insulin has to lot to do with other hormones
being balanced in the body like progesterone and estrogen. And oftentimes what happens if insulin stays
imbalanced, progesterone gets low, estrogen gets high. That can lead to issues like infertility in
women. It can lead to PCOS, that’s polycystic ovary
syndrome, severe PMS symptoms. A number of hormonal health conditions are
related to insulin imbalance. So again, insulin . . . your energy levels
all day should kind of be like this, okay? They should just be high, they should be feeling
good. What happens to a lot of people who eat these
carby breakfasts, which your body can deal with because you fasted for eight hours. But then for lunch, we do a lot more carbs. So what happens is you hit that like 2 or
3 o’clock coma, you want to go into a nap. You know, that’s what happens when you have
insulin levels that aren’t balance. So ideally what you do is, you miss breakfast
and then you’re eating a diet that’s high in protein, fiber, healthy fat, and other
antioxidants, okay? So again, notice I didn’t say carbs in there. You want to keep insulin levels balanced? Do intermittent fasting and follow a diet
that has protein, fiber, healthy fat, some other antioxidants in it, and that’s what’s
going keep you really leveled and energized all day long and help normalize insulin sensitivity. Number five, it helps regulate hormones in
your body like leptin and ghrelin. Now, ghrelin is known as your body’s hunger
hormone, so maybe you’ve been in that position where you are just hungry, you’re famished,
and your body says, “I need more food.” Well, when you start intermittent fasting,
you might have that for about three days. But after three days, that starts to go away. When you do intermittent fasting the right
way and eating foods that are high in fat, protein and fiber like an example of a meal
would be for breakfast, doing a smoothie, doing bone broth protein with some coconut
milk with maybe a little bit of fiber like a chia seed or flaxseed, you can do a few
berries in there. I’m sorry. And by the way, your breakfast is at noon,
okay? And then at 3 o’clock, maybe you’re eating
another meal a 3 o’clock lunch and you’re doing like a big salad with lettuce and chicken
breast and olive oil and that type of thing. And for dinner, organic meat like triple dose
of vegetables, some more healthy fat like an avocado. That’s the ideal meal plan. If you eat meals like noon, 3 and 6, it’s
going to help kill off that hunger hormone or balance that out. And also there’s another hormone intermittent
fasting helps balance out called leptin. And leptin is really released by some of your
fat cells and it’s really what tells your body that you need to burn fat or to store
fat, more fat in your system. So again, intermittent fasting can also help
in a major way with balancing out those hormones that cause cravings. Also it can lower triglycerides. You know, it’s interesting, there’s this debate
between the holistic natural health community and the medical community, and the medical
community is saying cholesterol is what causes heart disease. Really, it’s not cholesterol. It’s high LDL cholesterol and low HDL cholesterol. But one of the things you want to do look
at with your heart health is overall triglycerides. We know, triglycerides, when those get high,
those can actually increase your likelihood of having clogged arteries and a heart attack
or stroke. So what we want to do is balance out those
triglyceride levels. You lower triglycerides by consuming a lot
of herbs, okay? Things like cinnamon and ginger and turmeric,
and also by intermittent fasting. Doing those things together is going to help
bring those triglyceride levels back into balance. Number seven here, detoxification. This is probably one of the greatest benefits
of intermittent fasting. So think about this, when you wake up and
eat first thing in the morning, that’s 7 a.m. and you eat another little snack at 8 or 9
your body’s only getting about maybe 8 to 10 hours of rest while you sleep at night. If you eat a meal, let’s say at 1, and your
next meal at 6, where your body’s digesting for about five hours there or maybe let’s
say six even while your body’s have an extra eight hours, let’s say 18 hours for your liver
to detox, for your colon to cleanse, for your lungs to filter, for your kidneys to balance
out these fluids in your system. It’s giving your body more time to not have
to work. Here’s the thing. This is really important thing to remember,
foods don’t heal you, your body heals itself. Your liver detoxes, so milk thistle or turmeric
or beets or . . . none of those things actually heal you. They support your organ in functioning. Your liver detoxes, your body heals itself. So the important thing to remember is, the
best thing you can do for your body is practice fasting and really resting your body. This is why fasting itself has been practiced
for thousands of years. If it’s referenced throughout the Bible, for
fasting, for spiritual insights and for overall health, it’s referenced in Chinese medicine,
fasting, Ayurvedic medicine, so we know that fasting was recommended by Hippocrates and
Galen, the fathers of Western medicine, so we know there are many benefits of fasting. One of the biggest reasons is it supports
detoxification of your organs. Number eight here, weight loss. Probably, one of the biggest reasons people
will use it is, when you’re intermittent fasting, again, you’re experiencing the benefits of
killing off your hunger hormones, balancing out insulin levels, having more anti-aging
hormones, detoxification. All of these things benefit weight loss. And also, when people tend to eat less meals
or closer meals together, they tend to eat less calories. Overall, it supports weight loss in a major
way. Also doing this combination of a diet where
you mix intermittent fasting with a ketogenic diet for 30 days, marrying those two diets
together is the fastest way to burn fat and lose weight you could ever imagine. That’s a combination of a ketogenic diet plus
intermittent fasting for about a 30 day to a 90 day period really leads to rapid weight
loss. So who should do it? Anybody’s who’s looking for these benefits. If you want to experience the benefits of
intermittent fasting . . . Again, if you’re a person who wants to lose weight, you want
to balance insulin levels, you want to balance hormones, you want to age slower, you want
to get rid of brain fog for a lot of people, you want to support detoxification, that’s
who should do it. People that shouldn’t do it are potentially
women that are pregnant. You know, you want to just make sure that
you’re eating when hungry. You’re listening to your body during pregnancy,
of course. And anybody where it’s been contraindicated. If you have diabetes, you want to work with
a practitioner on this to make sure at least you’re getting some food so you’re not having
these spikes. But over time, most people with diabetes can
start to see that reverse by practicing that diet that I talked about, fiber, fat, protein,
get rid of the sugar and carbs. Consuming a diet like that with intermittent
fasting over time can really help with those insulin levels and the blood sugar levels. And then, how to do it. Ideally with intermittent fasting, I kind
of went through this earlier. Again, you want to start eating your first
meal around noon or 1, last meal around 5 or 6. I typically recommend like a six hour window
of when you can eat, okay? And then the rest the day, you don’t eat. Now, you can drink fluids during that time,
get plenty of water. But that’s really what you want to do on an
intermittent fasting diet is not eat during those six hours. And remember, when you’re doing intermittent
fasting, eat a diet that’s high in protein, fiber, healthy fat, and lots of nutrients
from herbs. When I say herbs throwing turmeric in with
your chicken or with your hummus or something like that that you’re eating. If you’re making an Italian chicken dish,
lots of basil, lots of oregano, lots of rosemary. You know, if you’re making a smoothie, a big
teaspoon of cinnamon in there. You know, using lots of herbs, lots of vegetables
as well on this diet is something you absolutely want to do as well. And again you can see all of these benefits
here. So hey, if you want to experience the benefits
of intermittent fasting, go ahead and I would just simply just know that there’s really
nothing complex about it. You’re eating less during a six hour window
during the day. It’s really that simple to following the diet. Hey, the first three days, you start to have
a lot of those cravings. But listen, after a few days, you don’t even
get hungry in the morning and you won’t even be hungry till lunch. So again, try out an intermittent fasting
diet. I know you’re going to see benefits. And hey, if you’ve enjoyed this video, make
sure you’re subscribed here to my YouTube channel. And hey, we’ve got a lot of great content
coming out about essential oils, other advanced diets like to ketogenic diets, and really
just teaching you how to use food as medicine. I hope you’ve enjoyed this video. Hi, Dr. Axe here. I want to say thanks so much for checking
out this You Tube video. And also don’t forget to subscribe if you
want to get more great content on things like herbs, essential oils, natural remedies, and
how to use food as medicine. Also check out more of our content on my YouTube
channel. Thanks for watching.

100 comments on “Benefits of Intermittent Fasting + How to Do It

  1. ivi122 Post author

    Did he say get rid of carbs? Aren’t carbs what gives you energy? I’m totally confused. So many different advice from diff ppl…Eat regular meals, no eat intermittent fasting, become vegan, no You need to eat meat for certain minerals, eat high carb low-fat, no eat high fat low carb, so so confusing and overwhelming ??

  2. Nicole McBane Post author

    I go to the gym at 4 am and start work at 8 am. My feeding window is 10am-4pm everyday, is this too long to wait between my workout and first meal?

  3. DAD SON Post author

    Is it me or does he just talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk………. Take a breath jusus……

  4. Allan Alberts Post author

    I do 23:1. So good. I get so much more work done. Don’t have to worry about cooking plus lost plenty weight in just 3 months.

  5. MJ T Post author

    How does intermittent fasting affect blood sugar? I have been intermittent fasting for several months now and I only eat 6-8 hour periods and I eat healthy and organic. I had a blood test done recently and there were issues with my hemoglobin levels. Please let me know!

  6. Gloria Gomez Post author

    I don't agree with the time of meals because I do different and I've lost 11 pounds in a period of 7 weeks. In my case I have a 6 hours window from 8 am to 2pm. After this I fast 18 hours and it has worked too. It is not possible to me to have a meal after 2 pm until 8 pm and by 9pm I must be in bed because of my work very early in the morning. So I think the fact you have breakfast won't stop the effect of fasting.

    Every person must adapt this awesome way of eating considering that it is important to fast 18 hours doesn't matter the time of the day starts

  7. Lindsay Till Post author

    I do workout in the AM around 6 but don’t eat until 12. Is that okay as far as gains? I do supplement BCAAS during my workout but because I don’t eat for 6 hours after my workout I don’t want to negatively effect my gains. I just stated IF so I want to make sure I’m doing it right 🙂

  8. Tristan Oliver Post author

    Make the Case for Intermittent Fasting (but with a few key criteria)
    1) Must be directed at me – a 40 year old white male, in good all around health. I eat well, exercise regularly, get enough sleep. No major illness, disease, etc.
    2) Not for weight loss because science is very clear that the best/safest way to lose weight, the right kind of weight, and keep it off, is over time through proper diet, exercise, sleep etc. And I'm at my natural weight.
    3) Not for spiritual/religious/new age reasons. Bc just not my thing.
    4) Not for the sake of simplifying my diet, time, energy – I'm fine with eating well.

    Make the case for doing it, drawing on science/studies, for PROVEN HEALTH REASONS only.
    For me only.

    Thanks in advance

  9. unclemearl Post author

    Great video,

    Ive struggled with acid reflux and IBS ( gluten intolerance) for years. Doctors couldnt help and medication only helped masked the problem. Ive now dropped 50lb in 17 weeks with IF. Best thing i ever did. Ive not had an anti acid tablet for 2 months (was daily) and IBS is now none existant. I honestly cannot believe the change in my body!!

    This is not a fad it genuinely works. Im currently doing a 8 // 16 window and couldnt be happpier. Would reccomend to anyone. Once your body adjusts to the food intake your set. I wish i knew about this year ago and i could have bypassed alot of pain and embarrassment.

  10. Robyn Roach Post author

    If you weight train in the morning at 5:30, is it as effective to have your post workout meal at noon also.

  11. قناة الخير Ryma Post author

    Im thankfull that we fast for a month..thats why we feel so happy …focused….energy ..level hight….the profet muhamad used tut o fast mondays and thursdays ….so true islam is a religion of life benefit it make sence that porc and wine and all the unhealthy stuff are forbiden thanks god im a muslim

  12. Christina Miller Post author

    My waking hour could be 3 or 4 or 5am because I suffer from Insomnia. I belong to a group called Intermittent Appetite Correction on Facebook where the Administrator controls the Posts.
    On 10/12/18 I joined on Facebook 5:2 diet where several Administrators control the room's posts.

  13. TheCalvinist Post author

    Hey man! Thanks for the info! FYI my wife is great friends with your wife’s cousin! I also went to Highschool with your wife! We hope you two are doing well! God bless!

  14. Chris Post author

    I thought it was better to eat – +6 small meals/snacks a day, instead of three large meals, going to give IF a try.

  15. akrem bennour Post author

    Is it okay to eat oatmeal as first meal for exemple I workout first thing in the morning and at 12 I take an oatmeal and protein shake

  16. madara senju Post author

    i try to build muscle and go up in weight. is IF good for it ? as long as I eat surplus it should work yes ?

  17. Leticia Quezada Post author

    Hey Doctor Axe! Are we allowed to eat the healthy food that’s high in those macronutrients that you mentioned and high in calories during the 8 hour window or do we have to restrict ourselves to low calories when we eat during this window?

  18. Pari Aghaty Post author

    Hi Dr Axe. I am a nutritional therapist. I did and still am doing research about intermittent fasting as I wanted to see the result before I could recommend it to my clients. I liked your protocol and tried to follow them when I am fasting. I started with one day a week and went to three days a week. But the days I am fasting I end up craving more carbs in the evening. Is there a reason for that? What am I doing wrong?

  19. Derek Montgomery Post author

    So if I don’t eat until 12 and I do a morning workout(heavy lifting) aren’t I supposed to get protein in my body after a workout?

  20. FueledByCaffeine Post author

    I have a doubt that if you start practicing intermittent fasting and you consume less calories in a day doesn't it make you feel little weak and loss of muscle?

  21. Tas J Post author

    I tried IF twice 18/6 with green smoothie made with dark leafy greens and Flaxseeds and 1 gallon of water a day. I had excellent results….but each time I had severe constipation by day 12 and had to stop.

  22. marrie jane chiong Post author

    I'm on my 10 days of IF, and the results is amazing ☺️ from 68klgrms to 64 now. And I've noticed I'm not craving anymore for foods.. I do 9:30am to 4:30pm sometimes i stopped eating at 4 pm.. If is d best!

  23. Elisa Perales Post author

    Ive been doing this since 12/5 my sugar went from the 200s to low 130s and i have been feeling better

  24. Brenda Hoffmeister Post author

    Wondered what IF was… so basically much like I've always ate and people would give me a hard time about not eating breakfast and I would say I'm not hungry until afternoon and I still eat 3 meals. I'm 54 super toned and healthy.

  25. Siim Land Post author

    When Dr. Berg uses one of your blog post's thumbnails (the KETO AND IF one)
    I don't know how to feel even

  26. AMSPA ENGINEERING P LTD. Post author

    Back in 2013 i used to soak handful of dry fruits in water every night and have these first thing in the morning and then have small size meals between 1-9 pm and i lost a lot of weight.

  27. AMSPA ENGINEERING P LTD. Post author

    Dr.Axe is really like your videos. Doctor with open mind rather than following Medical School fundamentals to the T.

  28. Tsel Bar Post author

    Hi doctor i start IF 5 days already i start eating at 8am then start at 3pm.then i go gym at 4pm is it good or bad thanx

  29. PHOTOM42 Post author

    Not sure if it is you tube or your video, but the audio and video are out of sync by around 100 milliseconds.

  30. LiaGreenBird Post author

    I have a question about the fasting period: I know you should just drink water during that time, but would it harm the results if you would have tea (no sugar obviously) also? It usually has no to I think less than 10 kcal, but it would have some flavour at least. Would be helpful to know, thanks! ?

  31. TheMesoPeaks Post author

    Just did IF for two days and I've already lost 7 lbs. LOL

    Probably just water from carbs and glucose hahaha

  32. noel angeles Post author

    i intermitent fasting eating dinner then no breakfast eat at 12 pm the dinner at 8 pm and thats it…drinking coconut water and coconut break my fast? please help..thank u

  33. Angelique Reyes Post author

    Hi just wondering if having a cold pressed juice during a fast is Ok? as I've read that it is just want to know your opinion thanks

  34. Healthy Person Post author

    I eat and drink from 12 midday till 6pm, everyday. This helps me in not waking up at night, to go to the toilet. I go to sleep at 12 midnight. For this reason alone, I will continue practicing IF, because in the past 2-3 years, I have been getting poor sleep due to the before-mentioned issue.

  35. alkis makris Post author

    I'm on fasting (20/4) in the last 11 months. I have lost 11 kilos.
    No sugar, no alcohol, no flour, no dairy.
     I did general medical examinations last week and almost everything was ok apart from my Glucose level witch was 109 .. in Greece the reference rate is 70-110.
    And a small liver cyst.
    Any ideas why I have too much glucose?

  36. Laura Elizabeth Post author

    This video was very informative and the concept seems straightforward and doable, but I have been a vegetarian my entire life and need a plan that is meat free. Is there an IF plan that is vegetarian?

  37. Constance Baez Post author

    Please also provide vegan and vegetarian options. Bone broth sounds gross and there is o scientific evidence that bone broth has any benefit.

  38. Srae D' Nur Vlog Post author

    Hi Dr. Josh, how long should i do intermittent fasting? is there any medical research of benefits and consequences of it in the long term?

  39. Gerald Brienza Post author

    Give up coffee (all caffeine,) tobacco (obviously,) processed foods, sugar, simple carbs, alcohol and dairy along with your fasting. Great results.

  40. Going Native Coffee Post author

    I noticed the food cravings disappeared after day 3. Now fasting for 14 hours between meals is easier to do

  41. Lisset Sanchez Post author

    I get a lot of conflicting information regarding IF. Thank you for giving a detailed benefits and how to. I greatly appreciate it. ☺️

  42. Xavier Superflyy69 Post author

    Doing this at work, skipping lunch till i go home and people keep offering me food and im just saying im not hungry but i notice i have more energy then most people. This really works !!!!

  43. Enedelia Gonzalez Post author

    I’m gonna have try this ☝️❤️?thank you for the advice love it

  44. skysailorm Post author

    Excellent summary, just to add autofagy (cell recycling) as another great benefit of IF…thanx

  45. Kiran char Post author

    Science is only now getting to know the benefits what us muslims knew since decades!

  46. Kimberly Faith Jones Post author

    Dr. Axe, I did the fasting as you suggested and also did a light workout. The problem is my thinking process is scrambled. I’m not getting things done unfortunately. Any tips?

  47. Mr.Wayne Post author

    I do fitness, so i have some muscles. But i went from 113kg to 104!! In 4 weeks!!! IF changed my life

  48. Faith Post author

    I honestly think this is the only thing that keeps me skinny. I don’t eat after 6 pm and I wake up late and eat a late breakfast. I’ve never been necessarily healthy… I do however want to try this mostly for spiritual reasons. Fasting is a powerful way to connect with God

  49. Alisha Hassinger Post author

    I'd like to try this, but if I don't eat in the morning I get super shakey ? I am never very hungry for dinner though so I could I eat breakfast and such and just do the fasting later in the day into the next morning?

  50. Annie Lade Post author

    He didn't really say how many days out of the week we should do this. Could anyone who is fasting tell me how often they do this?

  51. EMILY Wright Post author

    I have to take psych medication in the morning and the evening. Is it possible to still get the positive effects of the fasting?

  52. Showroom 305 Post author

    Great video. Very informative and inspiring. I was really excited to read some the comments below as well. Great job everyone!

  53. Mark Post author

    Could I get some information on longer fasting whether it be 24 hour or 48 hour and the pros and cons to doing that?

  54. alan nelson Post author

    Hi Dr Axe, what are your thoughts on vegetarian or pescatarian? I’m getting confused whilst trying to find the ultimate food for good health. Interested in your thoughts?


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