Intermittent fasting, low carb diets, high protein, ketogenic and high intensity aerobic training, there are many ways to appear more toned and slender, but what is the easiest method to undertake?
In this article we will describe some of the most popular methods, listing the peculiarities and defects of each and at the same time dwelling on the more or less valid natural supports that can assist lipolysis (slimming), that is, the process of the organism connected with the mobilization of reserves. of fat which involves the splitting of triglycerides into fatty acids and glycerol.
Assist slimming with dietary supplementation
Although the diet and lifestyle are the basis of the normal state of health and therefore also of weight loss , modern nutrition applied to food supplementation offers us today natural fat burning supplements that can promote energy expenditure and facilitate it the achievement and maintenance of the negative calorie balance, ie the ratio, in favor of the former, between calories “burned” and introduced with food.
Among the latest trends in the world of nutrition we must mention intermittent fasting, a methodology that has come to the fore thanks to the studies of the researcher Valter Long or, aimed at the health sector.
This very popular diet among athletes consists of an alternation of periods in which one eats other fasting meals. It is therefore not a real diet but a food program that tells you not what, but when to eat.
Among the most popular intermittent fasting schemes, we mention:
Scheme 16/8 : known as the “leangains” method as it is characterized by the prolongation of the night fast by skipping breakfast and having the first meal at noon and then eating until 8 in the evening. It involves dividing the day into two parts: 8 hours of eating and 16 hours of fasting.
Alternate (5: 2): this model is based on the concept of calorie reduction for two non-consecutive days per week (max 600 calories per day).
Eat Stop Eat : according to this scheme, fasting days alternate with free days in which you eat at any time, once or twice a week.
Although it is a method that cannot be practiced by those who suffer from specific pathological diseases, the same demonstrates a certain usefulness in terms of improving insulin sensitivity and growth hormone secretion, with consequent benefits in terms of greater ease in burning fat such as energy source.
Low carb, high protein and ketogenic diets
These are food regimes consisting of the reduced or zero consumption of carbohydrates (carbohydrates), designed with the aim of drastically reducing the daily calorie intake. According to the concepts of these dietary regimes, it is necessary to significantly decrease the consumption of cereals, fruit and starches, because in doing so the body would begin to oxidize fats, triggering weight loss.
However, official science does not recommend this method as it would not distinguish “fictitious” from “real” slimming.
The depletion of glycogen stores induced by the excessive cutting of carbohydrates, would in fact decrease the activity of the metabolism and favor the loss of lean tissue rather than the elimination of fat reserves. It should also be remembered that carbohydrates represent the main energy substrate used by the brain, therefore, a drop in blood sugar would cause drowsiness and deterioration of cognitive performance.
Ketogenic and high-protein diets are included in the “low carb” as they are also characterized by a strong restriction of carbohydrates. The first is based on the 80% -20% -20% ratio between fats, proteins and carbohydrates, in such a way as to force the body to use lipids as the primary energy substrate.
This regimen aims to trigger the mechanism known as “ketosis”, or an alteration of glucose metabolism that induces prolonged hypoglycemia and the formation of ketone bodies in the bloodstream.
The release of ketone bodies into the body normally occurs after a period of prolonged fasting and involves their use as an energy source .
Without a doubt, this approach proves to be among the most effective in the short term but subjects the body to considerable stress that is not really beneficial. In summary, even in this case, it is absolutely necessary to consult a specialist doctor in order not to experience side effects such as to harm our body.
As for the high-protein diet, a program much loved by bodybuilders who believe they can ingest disproportionate quantities (over 3-4g of protein per kg) without experiencing kidney or liver problems , we are faced with an intentional approach to take advantage of the positive characteristics of proteins on weight loss, let’s see them:
– a protein surplus would allow to preserve muscle tissue from catabolism when the carbohydrates of the diet are reduced;
– the protein-induced acceleration of metabolism promotes energy expenditure at rest with positive effects in terms of fat disposal and muscle definition.
The aforementioned are broadly the most relevant properties of the high-protein diet , but what are the cons?
As confirmed by the studies, proteins satiate and increasing them up to 27-28% of the daily calorie intake promote weight loss. This is true however only for the first few months. The protidic metabolism produces nitrogen which the kidneys eliminate with abundant water. You lose a lot of fluids and you are happy, but after about 12 months things change. This is also shown by an Italian research from 2016 where obese children between 8 and 13 years of age consumed much more animal protein than their leaner peers!
There is also the possibility that once the diet is over, returning to eating normally, all the lost pounds can be quickly recovered (yo-yo effect). This happens because an organism subjected to diets actually lacking in carbohydrates that affect the glycogen reserves, then tends to ask back what has been removed making us return the desire for those foods that previously had been almost completely eliminated from the food plan.
Although the programs listed above may be useful to facilitate weight loss , they have obvious limits in terms of long-term sustainability and impact on health. In fact, these are practices that tend not to respect the normal balance of the body since they lack this or that macro and micro nutrient. Our advice is therefore to avoid hearsay and to rely on a specialist doctor who will know how to size the weight loss diet based on individual characteristics and always taking into consideration the health conditions of each of us.