Intermittent Fasting fad; does it work?

Local News

Jennifer Lopez, Kourtney Kardashian, Selena Gomez, Beyonce, even Hugh Jackman all reportedly swear by their rockhard abs; they say the diet works! 

Andrea Mendoza agrees.  “It really does make me just feel good.”

Intermittent Fasting; a diet where you can eat pretty much whatever you want and some people claim to still lose weight, fend off heart disease, lower your risk for diabetes, and look younger.  The catch?  You can only eat at certain times of the day. 

Andrea tells us, “The thought of it is scary, ya know? ‘Oh, I can’t eat for the next 12 hours,’ but it’s actually not that bad.”

Andrea says she eats her biggest meal early in the morning and stops eating after 6pm. 

Integrative Medicine Dietitian Robin Foroutan tells us, “Even though we would still recommend a healthy, balanced diet; we’re not as focused on what you eat rather, when you eat.”

Robin recommends the 8:16 method, where you eat all of your daily calories in an eight-hour window.  The rest of the day?  It’s just water, tea, and coffee (with no milk or sugar).   She says, “There are 10 years of really interesting data, very compelling research studies on IF…  preventing atherosclerosis, there may be cancer prevention benefits…”

But, is intermittent fasting really a magic cure-all? Dr. Jennifer Ashton, ABC News Contributor, tells us, “Intermittent fasting is being hyped up… Going 12 or 16 hours without eating is not a big deal medically, physiologically, metabolically or nutritionally… The body does not go into a metabolic fasting state until it’s without food for about 36 hours.”

But, if just the idea of fasting makes your stomach growl, Foroutan says the best thing to do is start small.  “What’s great about IF is that you can do it some of the time or most of the time and still stand to reap great benefits.” And that even 12 hours of fasting can be a major boost to your health. 

–Maggie Rulli, ABC News

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