Anyone tried Alternate Day Fasting?

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toxikon
toxikon Posts: 2,384 Member
edited August 2017 in Health and Weight Loss
Hi folks, just curious if anyone else has tried this method of intermittent fasting. I've dabbled with a few different types of IF over the years and have been consistently skipping breakfast for a few years to allow myself more calories for lunch and dinner. I'm actually quite comfortable fasting and find that hunger passes quickly, as opposed to the constant gnawing hunger of grazing on small meals throughout the day and never quite feeling satisfied enough.

I'm going to try eating 500 calories on fasting days and 2000 calories on non-fasting days, averaging out to 1250 calories per day. My current calorie goal is 1300/day (to lose approx. one pound a week) and I am finding it very hard to stick to due to constant tummy grumbles. I'm only 20lbs away from my goal weight and am fairly sedentary so it's been challenging.

Anyway - was just curious about others' results. :)

Article with overview of ADF: http://www.healthline.com/nutrition/alternate-day-fasting-guide

Replies

  • H_Ock12
    H_Ock12 Posts: 1,152 Member
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    Alternate Day Fasting worked well for me when I was more sedentary...I would actually find that at dinner I was often not hungry, so I would extend my fast. I don't find it conducive now to a schedule of running three days and lifting three days each week, so I fell back into a 19:5 schedule that allows me to fuel/refuel with the workouts. I did lose weight and if my health finds me sedentary again, it's definitely something I'll go back to.
  • kirsten11872
    kirsten11872 Posts: 519 Member
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    I do 5:2 and stick to under 800 calories on fasting days and try to stay around 1200 calories on non-fasting days. 500 calories is too low for me and I eat my last meal at around 3:30 or so on fasting days.
  • Christine_72
    Christine_72 Posts: 16,049 Member
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    I had 30lbs to lose and lost the first 24 of those in 4 months with ADF. At that time i was doing zero exercise and was extremely sedentary, and i found it really easy, until all of a sudden i didn't... I don't know what changed, but i just couldn't handle the 500 calorie days anymore, they creeped up to 800 cals, then 1000 and so on and so on until i just stayed at a regular deficit to lose the rest.

    If you can handle the low calorie days, then i say go for it. Losing weight was pretty effortless while i was sticking to the plan.
  • Kellryn
    Kellryn Posts: 139 Member
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    toxikon wrote: »

    Nice article, was informative and easy to read.

  • kathymhardy
    kathymhardy Posts: 266 Member
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    I do one or two days per week fasting (LighterLife) around 550 calories. The rest of the week I have 1200 calories per day. Unless there is a social occasion and I go over the 1200, so hopefully the fasting days counteract that. It's worked for me so far.
  • lemurcat12
    lemurcat12 Posts: 30,886 Member
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    1200 on non fasting days is not IF unless your maintenance is 1200, which seems unlikely.

    Anyway, OP, sounds worth a try and report what you think. A friend of mine does 5:2 and loves it, so I've thought about trying it. She runs on her fasting days (3-5 miles) and says it was hard at first but she adjusted, but I'm not sure how it would work with my exercise schedule.
  • OliveGirl128
    OliveGirl128 Posts: 801 Member
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    Yep, it's the method I did back during my weight loss phase (JUDDD). Worked well for me and I had no problem transitioning into maintenance.
  • OliveGirl128
    OliveGirl128 Posts: 801 Member
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    lemurcat12 wrote: »
    1200 on non fasting days is not IF unless your maintenance is 1200, which seems unlikely.

    Anyway, OP, sounds worth a try and report what you think. A friend of mine does 5:2 and loves it, so I've thought about trying it. She runs on her fasting days (3-5 miles) and says it was hard at first but she adjusted, but I'm not sure how it would work with my exercise schedule.

    This.

    You're supposed to be at maintenance calorie levels on your non-fasting/ 'up' days, not still be at a calorie deficit.
  • amyepdx
    amyepdx Posts: 750 Member
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    But if you can't stick to 1300 cal a day now, how will you manage 500 cal days?
  • rybo
    rybo Posts: 5,424 Member
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    amyepdx wrote: »
    But if you can't stick to 1300 cal a day now, how will you manage 500 cal days?

    Because for some people, it's much easier to deal with 2 days @ 500 than everyday at a deficit. The low calorie days really aren't as bad as you'd think, if you eat the right things. For me that was fish, eggs, spinach, mushrooms and lots of different vegetables. Very filling, and not much hunger at all.
  • toxikon
    toxikon Posts: 2,384 Member
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    amyepdx wrote: »
    But if you can't stick to 1300 cal a day now, how will you manage 500 cal days?

    I actually don't find it too hard to fast. My hunger doesn't kick in strongly until around 3pm, then if I just ignore it for an hour or two it goes away. I'm planning on eating my 500 calories before bed (around 8-9pm) just because I don't like sleeping on an empty stomach.

    It may seem odd to say that eating 1300 calories a day makes me hungrier than fasting for most of the day, but it's weirdly true. When I eat small meals throughout the day, I always feel hungrier for more.
  • toxikon
    toxikon Posts: 2,384 Member
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    Thanks for the feedback everyone, glad to hear some have had success with this method. Today is my first fast day!
  • rybo
    rybo Posts: 5,424 Member
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    toxikon wrote: »
    amyepdx wrote: »
    But if you can't stick to 1300 cal a day now, how will you manage 500 cal days?

    I actually don't find it too hard to fast. My hunger doesn't kick in strongly until around 3pm, then if I just ignore it for an hour or two it goes away. I'm planning on eating my 500 calories before bed (around 8-9pm) just because I don't like sleeping on an empty stomach.

    It may seem odd to say that eating 1300 calories a day makes me hungrier than fasting for most of the day, but it's weirdly true. When I eat small meals throughout the day, I always feel hungrier for more.

    That's definitely not weird to me. I'm much more hungry when I eat more often. Fasting is pretty easy for me. I am almost never hungry
  • lemurcat12
    lemurcat12 Posts: 30,886 Member
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    toxikon wrote: »
    amyepdx wrote: »
    But if you can't stick to 1300 cal a day now, how will you manage 500 cal days?

    I actually don't find it too hard to fast. My hunger doesn't kick in strongly until around 3pm, then if I just ignore it for an hour or two it goes away. I'm planning on eating my 500 calories before bed (around 8-9pm) just because I don't like sleeping on an empty stomach.

    It may seem odd to say that eating 1300 calories a day makes me hungrier than fasting for most of the day, but it's weirdly true. When I eat small meals throughout the day, I always feel hungrier for more.

    I don't think this is weird. I also would probably find it easier to do two days at 500, 5 at maintenance, than a low calorie level like 1300. I did 1250 for a while when losing (when I had lots to lose) but would find that extremely difficult now, and I think part of it is the idea of doing it every day vs. just a couple times a week.