Make The Perfect Meal Plan For Intermittent Fasting
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Intermittent fasting is a powerful tool for anyone looking to get leaner, healthier, and maybe even live longer. It’s also not the easiest nutrition strategy to adopt and sustain. In fact, it’s quite difficult for most people to fast for extended periods of time. 

But, with a little prep work and planning, making the perfect meal plan for intermittent fasting is much easier than you might think. 

The Importance of a Good Meal Plan When Fasting

Once your body enters a fasted state, it begins to shift its primary source of fuel from glucose to fat. This can be a good thing if you’re trying to lose fat, but it also means that you need to be consuming adequate amounts of certain nutrients in order to stay healthy. If you don't get the nutrients you need every day while you're fasting, it can cause a wide range of problems, such as low energy, trouble thinking, problems with your metabolism, and more. 

How to make the perfect meal plan for intermittent fasting

The key is to consume enough calories while also consuming adequate amounts of protein, vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats. During an eight-hour fast, you should aim to consume approximately 500 to 600 calories. During a 16-hour fast, the goal is approximately 800-900 calories. 

Best Foods for Intermittent Fasting

    Eggs: When fasting, eggs are a great source of quality protein and fat that will help keep you feeling full and satisfied while also helping you meet your daily nutrient requirements. 

    Nuts: Nuts are packed with protein, healthy fats, and various micronutrients that can be difficult to obtain in large quantities in other types of foods and make it easier to get through your day without feeling hungry. 

    Cottage Cheese: Cottage cheese is high in protein, vitamins, and minerals that are important for healthy metabolic function, while also being very low in calories. 

    Vegetables: Vegetables like spinach, broccoli, and other leafy greens are low in calories but high in vitamins and minerals, and they are also extremely easy to add to a wide range of dishes and meals. 

    Fish and seafood: It is recommended that adults consume 225 to 285 grams of fish weekly. Not only is it high in protein and good fats, but it also has a good amount of vitamin D. Fillets of salmon are the most convenient cut because they cook uniformly, whether seared or baked. 

Intermittent Fasting Foods to Avoid

    Fatty Meats: While meat is an excellent source of protein, vitamins, and minerals when consumed in moderation, it is advised to avoid fatty cuts of meat like bacon, sausages, and steak. 

    High-Calorie Foods: Nuts and other high-calorie foods can be great sources of nutrients and calories if you eat them in moderation, but if you eat too much of them, you could end up eating too many calories. 

    Sugary Foods: Sugary foods like cereal, granola bars, and processed breakfast bars are excellent when consumed in moderation and not in excess. 

    Fruit: When eaten in moderation, fruit is a great source of nutrients and calories, but it also has a lot of fructose, which is hard for the body to process in large amounts. 

Here are the most common IF approaches available to you:

1.    The 12:12 approach: Maintain a 12-hour fast each day and restrict your eating to that time frame. For newcomers, this is a good starting point. 

2.    The 20:4 approach: If you want to lose weight, fast for 20 hours and then eat normally for 4 of those hours. 

3.    The 16:8 approach: consume all of your food and drink for the day within an 8-hour window, and then abstain for the remaining 16 hours. 

4.    The 5:2 approach: Five days a week, you can eat whatever you want. During the remaining two days, men can have 600 calories and women 500. 

Two foods you MUST include in your IF meal plan

    Protein: It helps keep you feeling full, provides your body with essential amino acids and micronutrients, and can also help boost energy levels. 

    Healthy Fats: They’re essential to proper metabolic function, and they can also help boost energy levels and keep you feeling full. 

Two must-have fats in your IF meal plan

    Avocados: Avocados are a great source of healthy fats that can help improve your metabolic function and promote feelings of fullness. 

    Coconut Oil: Coconut oil is a great source of healthy fats that can help promote feelings of fullness and improve cognitive function. 

Remember, when it comes to intermittent fasting, it’s important to consider not just the foods you’re consuming during your fast but also the overall macronutrient composition of your daily diet.