Intermittent Fasting Diet of my own creation
I had originally heard about this diet and it was named the “Spartan Diet” .. I’ve since looked this name up and the diet that I have come up with and that one are not the same. So, instead, I have been calling it the Intermittent Fasting Diet or IFD which may also be incorrect.
The idea is relatively simple though. We want to keep our stomachs in a state of smallness while still eating whatever we want. This will cause our bodies to naturally eat less food without the feeling of being hungry. You will also naturally find yourself craving healthier foods because your body needs those nutrients.
There are also a couple of other things to keep in mind. First, I have hemochromatosis, so my plans take into account a reduced red meat intake. Second, I do not prioritize any one type of food over any others. I believe healthiness comes from eating a balanced diet.
Where I started…
When I first started my journey, I attempted straight fasting. That is, I tried to not eat for a week. I made it less than one day! I ended up at Burgerville eating a delicious bacon hamburger. I remember that burger like it was yesterday!
Next, I tried calorie counting. I ended up just pretending things were fewer calories than they were. When I was serious, the weight loss was not nearly quick enough to keep me motivated. The work to both manage this and then always being honest about it with myself was just too much.
It was Patsy who finally clued me into the correct technique. We started in Lynnwood by simply cutting high fructose corn syrup from our diet. Bam, I lost 20 pounds without changing my diet. High Fructose Corn Syrup is one of the most unhealthy ingredients if not the most unhealthy ingredient on the market. Stop consuming High Fructose Corn Syrup!
But that was it, 20 pounds and then I sat at 300 pounds for another year. Then I figured out what the problem was. I thought my body was hungry, but it wasn’t, my taste buds just wanted to taste something. You see, the normal hunger that you feel isn’t really hunger at all. It’s your brain saying it’s time to eat, regardless of what your body needs.
Again, regardless of how much you eat, your stomach is going to feel hungry again in roughly the same amount of time. Eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and you may feel full or you may not. But in 4 hours just about everyone’s hungry again.
Imagine it from a different angle. You’re at an all you can eat buffet and you’ve just completed stuffing yourself to the brim eating three or four times as much as normal. How long is it going to be before you eat again? For some people, maybe they start nibbling on some sweats after 4 or so hours. For others, they might not eat again until breakfast the next day.
Almost nobody is going to skip three or four meals (the equivalent of how much they consumed) before eating again. Why? Because the stomach only takes so long to process the food you eat and your brain wants to keep your stomach busy. Your brain is going to do everything it can to get you to keep food in your stomach. It’s a basic survival instinct.
You’re probably asking by now why this is important. We’re getting there, I promise.
If your stomach was smaller and 3 to 4 times your normal was only half as much food as you eat now you could do exactly what you just did. Eat to your maximum consumption and have that glorious feeling of over eating contentment, but still be losing weight and eating less food.
The trick is not to fight your brain, it’s to utilize what your brain is going to do to your advantage.
What we do…
Have you ever had the flu and then afterwards you feel full after eating just a small amount of food? That’s because your stomach shrunk down while you weren’t eating during the flu. That is precisely what we are going to try and achieve, but on a daily basis.
The way to make that happen though isn’t to starve yourself for a week. That’s just too damn much to ask of yourself on a routine basis.
But consider for a second that you sleep for 8 hours every night. You literally manage to fast for 8 hours a day without even trying. So if we use that sleep to our advantage, we can make huge progress on this front with extremely minimal effort.
So, how do we accomplish it?
(1) An extremely minimal breakfast. Patsy and I will usually just have a cup of coffee as our breakfast. If you don’t feel like you can fully miss breakfast, it is recommended that you eat a piece of fruit or a protein shake. Avoid long term energy sources like carbohydrates. In this case, sugars are better than carbs and proteins are better than sugars.
(2) Generally speaking, we want to limit the physical quantity of intake for lunch, but we don’t want our bodies to be working against us, so we need to make sure that we put something small in our system. It doesn’t matter what this is, but it should be something you enjoy and is easy to prepare.
(3) For dinner, you should eat until you are full. You will find your cravings increase and you should try and fulfil those cravings. Cravings are your bodies way of telling you it needs or wants something. Listen to it!
(4) After dinner, plan that you will want something else small to eat 1-2 hours later. For us, this is usually a sweet treat. This is usually as simple as a bowl of cereal or a couple of store-bought cookies.
Trust me when I tell you this routine is easy to follow and will become a part of your life before you even really dedicate yourself to the program.
Once the routine is set though, it’s extremely easy to increase your weight loss rates. For example, something as simple as a 10 minute workout with a 90+ bpm heart rate when you first wake up in the morning will cause the weight to just fall off of you. My non-expert understanding is that on an empty stomach your body will force itself into a fat burning mode to ensure the body has energy for the day. It’s important to feed the muscles though, so that’s why we ensure we’re getting some protein in the morning.
Over the next couple of weeks I’ll be making some posts and extrapolating on these subjects. Let me know if there are any parts you would like me to expand on first.