Here in my homeland – Bulgaria – we have a saying: “Eat your breakfast alone, share your lunch with a friend, and give your dinner to your enemy.”
I have been thinking a lot about having an early dinner. My grandmother used to apply this principle and she was very healthy and energetic throughout her life – always an amazement to the physicians.
And now I see that the old knowledge of the benefits of having regular fasting periods has started to emerge once again.
But I wanted to see it for myself. I made a commitment to try the intermittent fasting technique and test it out for 30 consecutive days. That is how I would have some substantial data over a significant period of time, and I would be able to draw my conclusions.
So, here is what I did!
I decided to do a light version of the intermittent fasting – for 30 days I was having my last meal at 6 PM (at least 5 hours before bedtime). I was having brunch at 11 AM, so my fasting period was about 17 hours. Furthermore, once a week I was having a fruit fast (an apple every two hours).
And that’s it! During the rest of the time, I was eating my regular meals – mostly vegetarian, with lots of fiber and no white sugar.
I thought that this regimen would be very harsh and exhausting, but I was pleasantly surprised! Here is what happened during these 30 days of intermittent fasting.
6 Things That Happened When I Tried Intermittent Fasting For 30 Days
1. Less Bloating
During my experiment, I was surprised to find that my belly was feeling much better – less bloated and relaxed. And not just during the fasting period, but throughout the whole day. I have been struggling with flatulence and IBS for many years, but intermittent fasting turned out to be one of the most effective natural treatments!
2. Better Sleep
Another great effect of this 30-day challenge was my improved sleep. Although I prioritize sleep to get enough hours of rest, I have been having periods of waking up tired and groggy.
And to be honest, I was worried that too many hours without food would make me feel low on energy. But the opposite turned out to be true – I was feeling much more energized and vital, and I was waking up more refreshed and well rested. And when I was feeling peckish before bedtime, I would pour a cup of soothing Peppermint tea (unsweetened). It calmed my stomach and relaxed my nervous system.
3. More Energy
As I have mentioned earlier, intermittent fasting helped me really improve my energy level! At first, I was concerned that this eating schedule would be exhausting and it would leave me without energy, but I was wrong. On the contrary – I was much more energized, focused and clear-minded as if a fog lifted from my brain! Plus, I was still doing my 20-minute morning workouts on an empty stomach! Intermittent fasting was a real booster!
4. Better Mood
When you wake up feeling well rested and refreshed, full of energy, the logical consequence is that your mood improves as well. But it goes beyond that – I was feeling much happier and optimistic on a cellular level! The best word that would describe this wonderful feeling is lightness – as if a heavy burden lifted from my shoulders – both from my body and my mind!
5. Fewer Cravings
One thing that really surprised me about my fasting challenge was the significant decrease in unhealthy cravings! Sounds almost too good to be true! I know for sure that our brain reacts in a very similar manner when we eat white sugar and artificial drugs like cocaine. And the more we eat sweets, the more cravings we have. But when I started fasting, it seemed like my body was detoxing from the addictions and I was having fewer and fewer unhealthy desires. It was definitely one of the best results of my experiment!
6. Weight Loss
And of course, this is the obvious result of limiting the food intake and having fewer sugar cravings. I was able to lose some weight, and particularly some stubborn belly fat. As we know the levels of our blood sugar are directly related to the amount of fat we store around the stomach. So, for me, it was logical that decreasing the blood sugar level will positively affect my belly and show some abs.
And the good news is that intermittent fasting does not slow your metabolism. On the contrary – short periods of food abstinence has been proven to speed the metabolic processes and promote healthy weight loss. And my 30-day challenge absolutely confirmed this!
On a final note, my experience with intermittent fasting was definitely very positive and rewarding. I am certainly going to continue to apply this diet principle in my life. Although I felt a bit anxious at the beginning, my worries quickly went out the window!
I encourage you to dip your toes in the waters of intermittent fasting! I am sure you will be positively surprised!
Her work has been published on The Huffington Post, The Elephant Journal, Thrive Global, Steven Aitchison, and more.
She is the author of "The Detox and Strong Immunity Series" and "DIY Homemade Beauty Products Series".
Latest posts by Milica Vladova (see all)
- 6 Things That Happened When I Tried Intermittent Fasting For 30 Days - February 7, 2018