Common Concerns of Fasting
Q: Will intermittent fasting make me lose muscle?
A: Remember that intermittent fasting is more muscle-sparing than traditional dieting. You’ll only lose muscle if you don’t consume adequate calories (especially protein) during your feeding window. Strength training and supplementing with EAAs will also help support muscle maintenance during fasting.
Q: Will intermittent fasting slow down my metabolism?
A: Fasting has not been shown to reduce metabolism.Your metabolism won’t slow down as long as you eat enough calories during your feeding window.
Q: Will intermittent fasting affect my thyroid?
A: Fasting can cause a temporary reduction in thyroid hormone T3, which plays a role in metabolism and energy production. However, T3 production returns to normal once feeding is resumed. This re-uptake of metabolism and thyroid hormone is a benefit that is unique to fasting, as it doesn’t occur during long-term calorie restriction.
Q: When do I take supplements during intermittent fasting?
A: Most supplements contain insignificant amounts of calories and can be taken during the fasting window. However, some supplements are best consumed with food, including vitamins and fat-soluble nutrients. The best practice is to follow the directions on the packaging.
Safety, Side-Effects, and Special Considerations
Fasting is a great practice, but it’s not appropriate for everyone. Do not fast if you are underweight, under the age of 18, have recently undergone surgery, or currently deal with mental health conditions. If you have gout, diabetes, or are currently taking prescription medication, then only fast under the supervision of your physician.