Time-Restricted Feeding, What Does A Feeding Window Mean To Weight Loss

Time-Restricted Eating

Time-restricted feeding, also known as intermittent fasting, refers to eating only during a certain period of time in the day.  Most people eat 3-6 meals throughout the day that is spread out over a long period of time.

The period of fasting for every intermittent fasting type will vary and yet will be longer than the usual overnight fast time of 8-12 hours.  Many had had positive results from this type of eating, especially in regards to weight loss and blood sugar regulation.

Types of intermittent fasting

  • 6/8 protocol: This is where you take your food between noon and 8 pm, skipping your breakfast, essentially fasting for about 16 hours.
  • 24-hour protocol: As you can infer from the name you are fasting for 24 hours in this protocol. So you would be skipping two meals, say you take dinner on one day at 8 pm and do not have anything until the next day dinner at 8 pm.
  • The Warrior Diet: The name is derived from the fact that this is generally followed by warriors who are under training. They fast for about 20 hours every day with only one meal in the night. You can have some protein or fresh juice, raw fruits, and vegetables during the fasting period if you want.
  • Alternate day fasting: In this case, you will not be starving on the alternate days but you will be taking 1/5th of the calories you take on the other day. For instance, if you have 2000 calories on a day, the next day you should take about 400-500 calories only.

How do you follow this?

The intermittent fasting is a very simple process where you consume the calories required for the day during a certain time period.

In case you are looking to lose some weight and improve fitness using this method then you should look at increasing the fasting period even further.

To give an example, let us say you typically start your day with breakfast at 8 am and finish your day with dinner at 9 pm. Then it means you have your calorie intake during this 13 hour period.

In case of intermittent fasting, you would ideally be skipping some meals.

  • Which is the best window or meal to skip?

There is no concrete or scientific evidence of which is the best eating window one should skip. However, quite a few people go for the 6-10 hours every day.

  • Will it result in low-calorie consumption?

It depends on the type of food you intake. While for some it will be lesser calories, for some people who indulge in high-calorie foods, reducing the eating window will not result in low-calorie consumption.

What is the concept of “6 small meals” as quoted by several health books?

Like every process, your body requires calories to burn the meal that you have just ingested.

Irrespective of when and how you consume your calories, the body will take the same amount of calories to burn the food. For instance, 2000 calories consumed during a particular time or throughout the day will require the same number of calories to process.

Why is intermittent fasting a better option?

  • Helps achieve your goals. When you are fasting, you are inevitably reducing the number of calories you intake over a period of time. And over the longer period, this helps in reduction of weight and helps you to stay fit.
  • Easy to cook/ prepare. When you are skipping meals, you don’t have to make food for those times nor is it required of you to pack your food. You only have to keep the food for the eating window you decide to eat in.
  • Saving time and money. Since you would not be preparing so many meals in a day, you are not just saving effort but you are inevitably saving time in preparation of the food and also the money involved in making it.

Relation between weight loss and time restricted feeding

Several Studies conducted on groups of overweight and normal weight people show that when their eating window is restricted to 7-12 hours, they go through a weight loss of about 5% in a period of 2 to 4 weeks.

Losing weight with the intermittent fasting is dependent on the calorie you eat during the restricted eating window. Consuming lower calories during this period will definitely help.

In case following the intermittent fasting helps you to restrict the number of calories then you will definitely lose weight over a period of time.

However, if your calorie intake is not changing with the restricted feeding then you would not be making much of a progress in weight loss.

Sunday Meal Prep For Beginners; November Week 2 – Fasting Results Continued

November Week 2 is complete and I must say. I am really liking this intermittent fasting program I am following. It is really simple to manage and am still getting good results.

To recap here is Week 1 in full. Showing both my daily weight and body fat numbers.

Weight is down 3lbs, Body fat in the upper 17’s. I would say I averaged 177 lbs for the week. Remember to keep in mind when tracking your weight.

Your scale and body fat tools are not 100 perfect. I always find myself stepping on and off the scale a couple times to make sure the numbers are the same. My rule of thumb is two in a row for weight then I have a good number.

I used to get on and off the scale no joke 10 times! This gets into the OCD world and I didn’t want to go there. Especially the body fat tracker, that number is different every time I get on and off my scale. What we need to learn from this data are trends. 

More than the actual numbers. At SOLDEIRFIT we use an Omron Fat Loss Monitor. This is a handheld body fat measuring device.


The Fitbit Aria Wi-Fi Smart Scale, which I have, tracks body fat by your feet.

I have used both within 20 minutes of one another. What I found was the Omron Fat Loss Monitor had me a bit lower. Sometimes they were both off from each other as much as a 2 percent difference. In the world of body fat coolness. 15% body fat is cooler than 17%. But we want results, not coolness factor. What matters more than the numbers is how you look and feel when looking in the mirror. You know your body best and can see changes good or bad. Moral of the story. Don’t make yourself crazy with exact the numbers. Trends are more important.

Here are Week 2’s results from Intermittent fasting.

Weight change you can see on the top right was about the same. But I would say this week I was more in the 175 average. For me and my personal goals. I am 43 years old and 6 foot tall. This is the top end of where I want my weight to be. 170 – 168 is where I want to be. From there I will see how my running and weight training is if I take a performance hit.

Even to my surprise, I hit 174 a couple times. The Saturday 174.3 was really shocking because of the night before I have Chipotle, chips and some chocolate for dinner. I thought for sure I would be up a bit. Nope, still right on the path. Sometimes when we have a big meal it might not hit your scale until two days later.

Remember it is never good to lose more than 2 pounds a week. Also keep in mind water weight, especially for women plays a factor. So I feel comfortable with where I am at and my trends.

Sunday Meal Prep For Beginners; November Week 1 – Fasting

If you followed the October series Sunday Meal Prep. You see that my results were not what I expected. In fact, I went up a bit in weight. Smaller meals, working out sometimes twice a day and still no headway. Gym in the early mornings followed by a 20-minute afternoon run. I need to remind myself that with any weight loss and fitness journey we don’t always hit the mark. We need to make tweaks, fork off and try something different.

Intermittent fasting was something I have played around with before but never really had any hard data to track my progress. But now I do and WOW the results.

I basically used the same meal plan on Sunday Meal Prep October Week 3. The only modification was taking out the breakfast part. I kept everything else the same.

Do I eat perfectly all week? No way, life, stress, being tired. I can go slightly off the rails but never too big of a calorie binge. The frustrating part for October was just a little variation, like having a bit of extra rice, then my numbers are way off. Dejected then the excuses come in, you go off the rails a few more times. Then you get a bad month.

Someone’s, diet, as I am learning really needs to be personalized. None of us fit the cookie cutter mold. For me I am up at 0430 to teach a boot camp class, then I workout. Then off to my real job for the day, sitting in front of a computer. Run for 20 minutes outside for my lunch break, then home at 6.

Look at my results for the week from just excluding breakfast. I dropped 3 pounds in one week! Being a technical guy my next question is how and why. I basically did the same thing as I did in the month of October except now, I just excluded my first meal of the day.

Frist thing I realized is something called the feeding window or time restricted feeding. In a nutshell, it is better to eat within an 8 hour time period than a 12 or 16 hour time period. If I was getting up at 0430 eating for the first time at after the workout, then a late snack at 10 pm. Becuase of the pattern I am well over that 8-hour feeding window.

I have known a couple people who stopped eating snacks after 8 pm and lost weight big time. So the anecdotal evidence is there. There is something to this time restricted eating.

My gut health has never been that great. I notice that my body doesn’t do well with a large meal at night and if I get up 6 hours later. My body never had time to process the food. This can also impact how you sleep. The rule of thumb based on clinical research is not eating 2 hours before bed. We can go into detail about this in a later blog post.

Another factor in this weight loss was how I eat. Just like working out, if we do the same thing over and over again our bodies get accustomed to it. Like the guy who runs the same amount every time on the treadmill. At first, it works great but after about 3 months the results tail off. So he goes longer and more often and still very little results. The issue is, he is no longer tricking his body. His body is saying, DUDE, I know how many calories and how much fat to store based on this so we good. So you have to mix it up. Maybe add a boot camp class or swim some laps. You need to trick your body back into calorie-burning mode.

The same issue can apply to eating and digesting and what we eat. We can get stuck. We have talked about seasonal training and seasonal eating before and it makes sense. My body was like wait, I am not used to going without food till 10:45 am. You are teaching and working out. My glucose is low and I need gas so let’s use a bit of muscle and fat for fuel. This is working great now but in about 3 months my body will adjust and I will probably lose the effect.

On a side note: I had no negative reactions to my workouts from the fasting. I could work out in a fasted state with no strength loss or feel light-headed. Have a protein shake at 10:45 am and go for a run at 12:30 afternoon without issue.

To recap, the fasting helped me in two ways. One it put me into that 8-hour feeding window instead of the 12 I had been going on for years. It also tricked my body into using a new fuel source because I was in a semi-fasted state. Remeber this is just all antidotal. There is research to back this up which we will dive into soon in a later blog post. For now, I will continue to eat this way for the month and see how it goes.

What is interesting about what is happened is I always find that my body likes to store fat as it starts to get colder. August is always my leanest month of the year. I have the data to back that up from my Fitbit scale. If we ever have sat down for a one-on-one consult you would know I have records of what I eat going back 3 or 4 years.

The winter months are always my worst when I get up to 180 + even though I am still working hard at the Gym. So weather must play some factor, it has too, our bodies know what happens when it starts to get cold, there is no food. It is built into our DNA.

All of this made me realize how our approach eating healthy and weight is so out of whack. We forget how our bodies are programmed for thousands of years. We ignore that, fight against it and wonder why nothing is working for us.

So follow along and try it yourself, see what happens. Report back on this site in the comments with your results. I would love to hear from others how it did or did not worked for them.

I was stunned, even my binge meals didn’t throw anything off. I was still on point weight wise. Let’s be honest, this was right after Halloween and even with some candy I was still right on point.

Sunday Meal Prep For Beginners; October Week 4 – Pasta Bomb

Meat Sauce for Pasta

I am still sticking with last weeks meal prep. I didn’t do the apple in the morning because I really wanted to lower my carbs. Looking back now it was a mistake. The low carbs didn’t affect my workouts but I felt like my food cravings were harsher.

This week I brought back a piece of gluten-free toast instead of an apple.  I only get to have that piece of toast as a post workout food. Since I always workout first thing in the morning it gives me something to look forward to with breakfast. What a simple motivator, no workout in the morning then no piece of bread. I think having a few carbs post workout is a good thing.

As usual, by Wednesday my focus started to waver again, which I think is due to lack of carbs to start the week. But one thing really threw me off last week. Spaghetti with meat sauce. Gluten-Free rice based spaghetti with meat sauce to be exact.

Tuesday night we had it because it’s one of our kid’s favorite meals and his Birthday. So how can I say no to that? Well, I could have said no easy and had something else or only had one bowl of pasta with meat sauce but I didn’t #SelfControl. As a result of my THREE bowls of pasta, take a look at my weight and body fat for the two days after that one meal.

measurement week 3

Aside from that meal, I stuck with the game plan. It took nearly two days for the carb bomb to cycle out of my system. Shorting any gains I might have built up had I stuck to the game plan.

You can see from my meal, it was a mega bomb of carbs. Remember, food logs are just an estimate, it was probably more carbs than that.

pasta meal
With any fitness journey or eating healthy journey, we need to make adjustments. I like pasta with meat sauce. I actually love it! How can I make it healthier so I can still eat it? That is where spaghetti squash comes in.

Look at the difference in carbs. Plus all the other healthy macronutrients mixed in. This is a much better alternative to store-bought pasta.

spaghetti squash

So the moral of the story is you can make mistakes just try not to repeat them. I have been doing that for weeks with my pasta dinners. Even though it is gluten free, it doesn’t mean it is healthy. The journey is all about consistently tweaking your game. You know how you are, your weaknesses and strengths. Play to them this week. Your strengths, not weaknesses 😉

Sunday Meal Prep For Beginners; October Week 3

Meal Week 3

So far, not so good. Let’s just say I was way off last week. Trying to get back on the horse this week.

I am mixing things about this week getting rid of the sausages, bread. Focusing on fewer carbs and more protein. I added an extra Turkey Burger and guacamole. I also got rid of the 1/4 sweetened vanilla almond milk. That was a bit carby even at 1/4 cup. I might bring it back next week depending on how I do.

The main thing for me this week is to stick with it more than anything else.

Macro Break Down

This is based on inputting these items in my Fitbit food tracker.
Meal Prep Week 3

Items to Purchase

Breakfast:
Eggs – Costco
Turkey Burgers – Costco
Apple – From Apple Picking

Snack:
Almond Milk – 1 cup of unsweetened Vanilla – Most Stores
Rice Protein powder 

Lunch:
Naturals Turkey Breast – Costco
Sabra’s Hummus – Costco

Afternoon Snack:
Turkey Burgers – Costco
Wholly Guacamole mini’s – Costco

Dinners For The Week:

Monday:
Baked Chicken, Guacamole, and beef hot dogs –

Tuesday:
Baked Chicken, Veggies and Guacamole –

Wednesday:
Salmon And Veggies  –

Thursday:
Baked Chicken, Veggies, Guacamole, and Snap Peas –

Friday:
Cheat Meal

Leave your thoughts or comments below. Together we can work on this guide and help as many people we can go from beginner meal preppers to advanced.

Sunday Meal Prep For Beginners; October Week 2

Last weeks Sunday meal prep is in the books. We now look at what to do this week. We are sticking with the basics from last week because it worked with my weight loss.

The results were good with my weight coming down big time off a weekend of eating really poorly. Overal I focused on four days strength training in the gym and four days of cardio. I did two interval training days, one day of the Beachbody 21-day extreme fix and one long 3.2-mile run. Some days I did strength in the morning and run in the afternoon. Y9=ou can always replace running with a twenty-minute walk.

This week I am sticking with the same meals because I still have food left over from Costco. However this week instead of a piece of Gluten Free bread in the morning I will substitute with an apple. We went apple picking over the weekend and there is nothing better than some freshly picked apples.

One thing you have to keep in mind with fruit is the carbs that come with it. You think fruit is healthy, which it is, it contains many macronutrients and fibers. But people forget about the number of carbs fruit can contain.

Look at the comparisons of an apple vs a piece of gluten-free bread.

Basically, two slices of bread are the equivalent to one apple in terms of Carb intake. That is something to keep in mind when you are creating your meal prep for the week. People assume that they can eat a lot of fruit and lose weight but that is not the case. Then they wonder what is going wrong. A couple of pieces of fruit a day and your well over 100 carbs without even batting an eye.

As far as my mental state for the week. I definably went more off the wagon as the midweek came. I am hoping that mixing things up with the apple will help a bit with my sweet craving. I still struggle with the chip craving. But I found Snapea Crisps as a decent substitute for that chip craving.

Dinners For The Week:

Monday:
Chicken, Veggies, and Guacamole.

Tuesday:
Taco Beef and Gluten Free Wrap

Wednesday:
Salmon And Veggies

Thursday:
Chicken, veggies, and Guacamole.

Friday:
Cheat Meal

Leave your thoughts or comments below. Together we can work on this guide and help as many people we can go from beginner meal preppers to advanced.

Sunday Meal Prep For Beginners; October Week 1

Meal Prep

If you interested in losing weight or maintaining a healthy diet. Planning your meals for the week is essential. It saves you a ton of time and also saves you money. Take one hour out of your Sunday and get all your meals for the week together in one shot.

Over the next month, I will be showing you how we do our Sunday meal prep. Each week we will come out with a new meal prep you can try. This one is a simple meal prep beginners. For beginners, I like to focus on the morning and afternoon. If you are a desk person,  like me, you are kind of forced to eat what you bring into the office. I also eat my breakfast after I get to work vs at home. Allows for some extra sleep plus I workout with weights in the mornings before I go to work most days. The items I use are all Gluten Free. You can learn more about the results of my MRT food sensitivity test here.

The goal for me in this meal prep is to focus on a bit of weight loss. Now that it is starting to get colder here on the east coast I am less active, so my weight has gone up. These are easy meal prep ideas for weight loss you can try.

Macro Break Down

This is based on inputting these items in my Fitbit food tracker.

Items to Purchase

Breakfast:
Jimmy Dean Turkey Sausages – Costco
Eggs – Costco
Udi’s Gluten Free Bread – Costco
Earth Balance Buttery Spread – Most Stores

Snack:
Almond Milk – 1/4 cup regular Vanilla and 1 cup of unsweetened Vanilla – Most Stores
Rice Protein powder 

Lunch:
Naturals Turkey Breast – Costco
Sabra’s Hummus – Costco

Afternoon Snack:
Turkey Burgers – Costco

Dinners For The Week:

Monday:
Baked Chicken, Guacamole, and beef hot dogs – Calories: 1231, Carbs: 59.1, Fat:47.7, Protein 148.7

Tuesday:
Baked Chicken, Veggies, Guacamole, and Rice  – Calories: 1619, Carbs: 129.5, Fat:57.3, Protein 159.8

Wednesday:
Salmon And Rice  – Calories: 2193, Carbs: 180.9, Fat:80.8, Protein 181.1

Thursday:
Baked Chicken, Veggies, Guacamole, and Snap Peas – Calories: 1471, Carbs: 103.8, Fat:58.4, Protein 145.6

Friday:
Cheat Meal

This kind of gives you an idea on what I am doing.  I do follow a workout program as well. I will get into that in a later post.

Is this the perfect thing, 100% healthy no. The idea is to get you started by being able to basically hit Costco and you are done for the week. We are looking for compliance over anything else.

Leave your thoughts or comments below. Together we can work on this guide and help as many people we can go from beginner meal preppers to advanced.

October At-Home Workout

We are now going to mix things up for the months of October, November, and December. At Unique To You Nutrition, we believe in seasonal training. Mixing things up every three months.

October, November, and December we will focus more on Strength training rather than cardio and leaning out. Octobers workout we focus on supersets with core.

2 min light run or walk

Do the exercise followed by a core exercise. That is a superset.  4 sets. Set 1 – 20 Reps. Set 2 – 18 reps. Set 3 – 16 reps. Set 4 – 14 reps. Rest 2 minutes in between each set.

M – a. Band Curls
b. Pick a core

T – a. Statue Of Liberty – Split Squats (Split the reps per leg, so 20 reps would be 10 on each leg)
b. Pick a core

W – a. Burpee
b. Pick a core

T – a. Pull Ups
b. Pick a core

F – a. Squat Pulses
b. Pick a core

Pick a different core each workout;

Hollow Body Hold (30 secs)

Plank Up Downs

Stability Ball Pass

Bicycles

Sprinter Ups

 

Cardio At Home Workout for September

(Fall Workout)

5 min run(M,W,F)

M – Chin ups w/ weight – 4 x 10

T – 3.2 mile run or run walk (no pre or post run)

W – a. DB Rows 4 x 10
b. DB Lat Raises 4 x 10

T – 3.2 mile run or run walk (no pre or post run)

F – Band curls – 4 x 25 after 5 reps a 5-second pause

Pick a core at end of each workout (Different each day);

Hollow Body Hold – 3 x 1 min

Plank Up Downs – 3 x 1 min

Stability Ball Pass – 3 x 1 min

Bicycles   – 3 x 1 min

Why Should We Eat Seasonal Fruits And Vegetables, Benefits

seasonal eating

The Lifelong Benefits Of Eating Fresh Fruits And Vegetables

There are many reasons why eating fresh fruits and vegetables are important for your health. From a young age, most people learn that fruits and vegetables are an important part of maintaining nutritional health. On the U.S.D.A. Food Pyramid, fruits and vegetables are considered a priority to maintain a balanced diet for healthy living.

But while all fruits and vegetables are generally good for the body, there’s a big difference between fresh fruit and vegetables and their counterparts of canned or pre-prepared vegetables. Aside from the delight, it can bring to have the enjoyment of eating ripe fresh fruits and vegetables, there is an enormous amount of health benefits in fresh fruits and vegetables that make them the superior choice for nutrition.

Research has shown that fresh fruits and vegetables have a higher quantity of nutrients than canned and pre-prepared ones do. In fact, some nutritional values are as much as 50-100 percent higher in their nutrients with fresh fruits and vegetables. That means that eating fruits and vegetables at their peak freshly picked can make a significant difference in ensuring the body gets all the important daily nutritional values from eating them.

Fresh Fruits and Vegetables and Disease

Research has shown that having at least five servings of fresh fruits and five servings of fresh vegetables a day can significantly alter the body in a healthy way. Diseases such as cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure and cardiovascular diseases are all affected by how many fresh fruits and vegetables are consumed by a person each day. In addition, fresh fruits and vegetables help the body maintain a healthier weight, aid in digestion, maintain a healthy immune system and aids in increasing metabolism.

In fact, in a recent study by the Imperial College of London compiled and analyzed data from 95 different health and disease studies that concerned fruit and vegetable intake daily. The researchers found after looking at the study groups that the greatest benefit came from those people who were eating 800g (10 servings) a day of fresh fruits and vegetables. This information concludes that having a total of ten portions a day total of fresh fruits and vegetables could cut cancer, cardiovascular and heart disease in half. The research suggested that millions of lives could be spared each year by people increasing the number of fresh fruits and vegetables eaten per day.

Peak Season Availability of Fresh Local Produce

With all this great news on fresh fruits and vegetables saving lives and so many great ways to serve them, there is little wonder why stopping at the local farmer’s market might just be the healthiest thing a person does all day. While many of the fresh fruit and vegetable varieties are at peak in the summer months, there is also an abundance of different varieties of produce in the fall, winter and spring to choose from. The nutritional value of local fresh fruits and vegetables are at their highest levels when they are freshly harvested. The best fresh produce for each season to look for are as follows:

Spring fruit features the best time for strawberries, cherries, apricots, rhubarb, and Kiwi. For spring vegetables look for: early corn, asparagus, fresh lettuce, spinach, parsley, dandelion greens, tomatoes, fiddleheads, peas, beets, and basil for peak vegetables. Great spring citrus fruits which are generally grown in the semi tropical regions include lemons and grapefruits.

The summer months are known to be the very best for almost all varieties of produce. Great summer fruits include watermelon, blueberries, cantaloupe, honeydew melon, figs, raspberries, blackberries, peaches, plums, pears, nectarines, and grapes. Peak summer vegetables include the sweeter corn varieties, green beans, zucchini, summer squash, cucumbers, eggplant, peppers, tomatoes, most varieties of beans, sugar snap peas, broccoli, carrots and most varieties of lettuce. Peak citrus fruits during this time are grapefruit and limes.

The fall harvest is the primary season for almost all types of apples. It is also a great time for other fruit like pumpkin, figs, Pomegranates, cranberries, and pears. In the fall, the vegetable harvest gets hearty with it being the peak for late corn, butternut squash, winter squashes, potatoes, cabbage, cauliflower, parsnips, carrots, celery, and zucchini. It is also a time when limes are still being harvested in the tropical regions.

While many parts of the country are not good for growing in the winter, there is harvest still going on in the warmer climates of the country. Winter months are great for citrus in the tropical regions. This is when oranges, tangerines, mandarins, and clementines are at their peak. Other fruits that are mostly harvested at their peak in the warmer climates include strawberries, kiwi, dates, bananas. The peak vegetables of winter include yams, sweet potatoes, turnip, leeks, Belgian endive and Brussel sprouts.

While not all these items are grown in all regions of the country, most of these are readily available in all parts of the country. Local produce of any variety assures consumers they are getting them at the peak of their freshness, abundance, taste and nutritional value. It is also when they are the least expensive. Peak local produce seasons are also the best time to buy produce to can, jar and freeze them for off season enjoyment.

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