Water Fasting For Weight Loss: Does It Work And Is It Safe?

Could water fasting increase weight loss and how many days consuming nothing but water is safe?

Could water fasting increase weight loss and how many days consuming nothing but water is safe?

Water fasting is a type of diet plan undertaken by people who want to lose more weight quickly.

A water fast can last for five days or more and during this period a person will eat nothing but drink water and natural zero calorie beverages.

Scientists have reviewed the evidence for water fasting and Buchinger fasting, a medically supervised diet therapy consisting of taking very little food for several days to almost three weeks.

The research reveals that fasting for five to 20 days increases ketones production due to the body breaking down fat for energy, and promotes weight loss up to ten percent of body weight.

However, four months after the fast ends, the metabolic benefits such as reduced blood pressure, reduced LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides, improved insulin sensitivity and blood sugar levels seem to fade.

The adverse effects were metabolic acidosis (too much acid in the body), insomnia, hunger, and headaches.

Otherwise, a water fast or a similar diet therapy where a person consumes very few calories daily did not cause any severe injury.

Professor Krista Varady, the study’s lead author, said:

“My overall conclusion is that I guess you could try it, but it just seems like a lot of work, and all those metabolic benefits disappear.”

Five days maximum

However, Professor Varady advised that without medical supervision, people should not use these type of fasts for more than five days.

The review analysed eight studies on prolonged water fasting or Buchinger fasting where fasters under medical supervision consume a tiny amount of vegetable soup, juice, tea, and water.

The findings show that the weight loss effect after a short period of time was visible.

In five days participants lost four to six percent of their weight, those on seven to 10 days fasting lost between two to 10 percent, and those on 15 to 20 days fasting slimmed down by seven to 10 percent.

After the fasting period was over, participants maintained their weight loss if they followed a restrictive calorie intake, otherwise in three months they gained the weight back.

About one-third of the weight loss was fat mass and two-thirds was lean mass suggesting that extreme fasts cause people to lose more muscle than body fat.

Professor Varady said:

“Your body needs a constant intake of protein.

If it doesn’t have that, then it draws from muscles.”

Professor Varady added she prefers those who want to lose weight to consider intermittent fasting instead of water fasting,

“Because there’s a lot more data to show it can help with weight management.”

Related

The study was published in the journal Nutrition Reviews (Ezpeleta et al., 2023).

Stop Intermittent Fasting And Start Losing Weight With This Proven Strategy

Fewer small meals or intermittent fasting, which is more effective for losing weight?

Fewer small meals or intermittent fasting, which is more effective for losing weight?

Portion control or simply eating fewer calories appears to be a better strategy for weight management than intermittent fasting.

Eating less frequently and having smaller meals each day will strongly influence weight loss compared to fasting for a certain number of hours a day, a study has found.

Some studies have suggested that time‐restricted eating, also known as intermittent fasting, can boost circadian rhythms and energy metabolism.

However, the current study didn’t find that limiting meals for a specific period of time can helped anybody lose weight in the long run.

The research team examined the relationship between time from first to last meal with weight change.

For this study, 550 obese adults were enrolled, of which 80 percent were white, most participants had a college or higher degree.

The follow-up period was 6 years.

They used a mobile application to report eating, sleeping, and wake up time across 24 hours.

This information allowed the team to calculate the interval from waking to first meal, between meals, and from the last meal to sleep.

Summary of findings

  • Meal timing had no effect on weight change over the long-term.
  • Total daily number of large meals (more than 1,000 calories) was linked to weight gain over the six-year follow up.
  • Total daily number of medium meals (between 500 to 1000 calories) was associated with weight gain over follow‐up time.
  • However, fewer small meals (less than 500 calories) was linked to weight loss over the follow-up period.
  • The time intervals from being awake to first meal was 1.6 hours, from first to last meal was 11.5 hours, and from last meal to sleep was 4 hours.
  • Sleep duration on average made up 7.5 hours of the 24-hour window each day.
  • The greatest risk factors for weight change were daily calorie intake and meal frequency rather than meal timing.

Data suggests that nearly 70 percent of Americans are either overweight or obese, a serious risk factor for cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Therefore, improving diet and lifestyle, including eating healthy foods, lower calorie intake, smaller sized meals, more physical activity, less stress, and better sleep can help people to battle obesity.

According to the American Heart Association, irregular eating patterns and changing meal frequency are not favourable for weight control and heart health.

The study was published in the Journal of the American Heart Association (Zhao et al., 2023).

The Dose Of Ozempic That Increases Weight Loss 75%

The daily amount of Ozempic that lowers blood sugar and increases weight loss.

The daily amount of Ozempic that lowers blood sugar and increases weight loss.

People with type 2 prediabetes don’t respond to insulin and as the condition progresses, lowering blood glucose and losing weight becomes difficult.

A healthy diet and exercise could certainly reduce the risk of diabetes but when it comes to medication there are many ups and downs.

Semaglutide (marketed as Wegovy, Rybelsus and Ozempic) is a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist that causes the body to produce more insulin.

The drug has been found to help diabetic patients in losing weight as well as reducing blood sugar levels.

While the drug keeps gaining attention, the effective dosage of oral semaglutide has been challenged.

Semaglutide dosage study

A study compared the effectiveness of the currently approved 14 milligrams (mg) dose in adults with 25 mg, or 50 mg per day for 52 weeks.

The results showed that taking a 25 mg or 50 mg semaglutide tablet once a day is superior to the 14 mg dosage in reducing blood sugar levels and in increasing weight loss.

At the end of study period, participants who were on 50 mg of oral semaglutide had lost 17.5 pounds (8 kg), those on 25 mg had lost 14.8 pounds (6.7 kg), and those on 14 mg had lost 10 pounds (4.5 kg).

Semaglutide suppresses appetite so as the dosage increases there will be less desire for eating which results in losing more weight.

Professor John Buse, the study’s lead author, said:

“Low doses of GLP-1 receptor agonists are really powerful for reducing A1C, or the average glucose in the blood.

Whereas, the higher doses that are really good for weight reduction.

On average, patients lost eight kilograms (17.5 lbs) at 50 milligrams, which is nearly twice as much weight loss that we saw with the lowest dose.”

The common side effects for semaglutide are nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, or constipation which occurred more often with taking daily dosages of 25 mg or 50 mg.

The trial involved more than 1,600 adults with type 2 diabetes who were randomly divided into three groups by the daily dosage of oral semaglutide; 14 mg, 25 mg, and 50 mg.

The haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) test reflects blood glucose levels and the A1c for adults with diabetes is suggested to be below 7 percent.

In this study, participants A1c levels were between 8 to 10.5 percent.

They found that those who received either 25 mg or 50 mg of oral semaglutide were more likely to reach the goal (A1c level of below 7 percent).

Related

The study was published in the The Lancet (Aroda et al., 2023).

The Best Dieting Strategy For People With Type 2 Diabetes

This diet is a very effective weight loss strategy for diabetic patients and those with prediabetes.

This diet is a very effective weight loss strategy for diabetic patients and those with prediabetes.

People with type 2 diabetes are often obese or overweight and have high blood pressure.

However, to combat this metabolic syndrome, the first step is to lose weight.

There are several effective diet plans to help people with this condition but what dieting strategy works best remains unclear.

A study on adults with type 2 diabetes has found that time restricted eating (TRE) is more effective than the daily calorie restriction (CR) strategy.

TRE is a type of intermittent fasting that only allows an eating window of 8 to 12 hours and water fasting during the remaining hours each day.

The TRE group in this study were allowed to eat between noon to 8pm while the other group followed the CR approach.

Participants on the TRE regime lost more weight and body fat, and saw an increase in HDL (good cholesterol) compared to those who ate fewer calories.

However, blood sugar levels were similarly improved in both groups.

Ms Vicky Pavlou who presented this research at the annual meeting of the American Society for Nutrition, said:

“Many people find counting calories very hard to stick to in the long term, but our study shows that watching the clock may offer a simple way to decrease calories and lose weight.

Although time-restricted eating is becoming increasingly popular, no other studies have looked at an eight-hour eating window in people with type 2 diabetes.”

Professor Krista Varady and the team wanted to know if diabetic people would gain more benefits from the TRE strategy than the CR diet plan.

57 overweight and obese adults with type 2 diabetes were divided into calorie restriction, time-restricted eating, and control groups.

The TRE group were allowed to eat for 8 hours (noon to 8 p.m.), the CR group could eat at any time but counted their daily calorie intake, but the control group could eat whenever and as much as they liked.

When compared with the control and the CR groups over six months, participants on the TRE diet lost about 4 percent of their weight, equivalent of losing 5 kg for a person weighing 125 kg.

Haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) levels were tested for blood sugar, the normal range is 4 to 5.6 percent but the levels in people with diabetes were 6.5 percent.

The results show that the HbA1c levels for the TRE group reduced by 0.91 percent and for the CR group by 0.95 percent.

To see any improvement in cardiometabolic risk factors a minimum 5 percent weight loss is required.

Since this was not achieved, the team could not assess them.

Ms Pavlou added:

“Our study shows that time-restricted eating can be a good alternative for those with type 2 diabetes who want to lose weight and improve their blood sugar.

However, there are multiple types of medications for those with type 2 diabetes, some of which can cause low blood sugar and some that need to be taken with food.

Therefore, it is important to work closely with a dietitian or doctor when implementing this dieting approach.”

Related

The study was presented at the annual meeting of the American Society for Nutrition in Boston (Pavlou et al., 2023).

This Breakfast Can Double Weight Loss

People who consume their daily calories in this way can double weight loss.

People who consume their daily calories in this way can double weight loss.

Eating high quality proteins like eggs, Greek yogurt and lean meats for breakfast can boost weight loss, research finds.

Having more calories for breakfast has even been linked to more than doubling weight loss, one study has found.

Consuming more calories at breakfast is linked to a greater chance of losing weight and reducing the waistline.

Even having a desert at breakfast, such as a cookie or piece of chocolate cake, was linked by the previous study to lower levels of insulin later on and healthier triglyceride levels.

In general, people who consume their daily calories earlier in the day can double weight loss.

Despite this, more than half of young people skip breakfast, researchers find.

This is what inspired Dr Heather Leidy, co-author of the current study:

“This study examined if the type of breakfast consumed can improve weight management in young people who habitually skip breakfast.

Generally, people establish eating behaviors during their teen years.

If teens are able to develop good eating habits now, such as eating breakfast, it’s likely to continue the rest of their lives.”

The study included 28 overweight teens, half of whom were fed a high-protein breakfast (35g) and half a normal-protein breakfast (13g).

Normal protein breakfasts involved milk and cereal while high-protein breakfasts included eggs, dairy and lean pork.

All the teenagers in the study reported skipping breakfast almost every day of the week.

Dr Leidy explained the results:

“The group of teens who ate high-protein breakfasts reduced their daily food intake by 400 calories and lost body fat mass, while the groups who ate normal-protein breakfast or continued to skip breakfast gained additional body fat.

These results show that when individuals eat a high-protein breakfast, they voluntarily consume less food the rest of the day. In addition, teens who ate high-protein breakfast had more stable glucose levels than the other groups.”

The study was published in the International Journal of Obesity (Bauer et al., 2015).

4 Familiar Foods Linked To Weight Loss Without Dieting Or Other Lifestyle Changes

People in the studies lost weight without dieting or changing their lifestyle.

People in the studies lost weight without dieting or changing their lifestyle.

Eating beans, peas, lentils and chickpeas all help people lose weight, a review of the research finds.

People in the studies lost weight by adding a single daily serving of these foods, without making any other changes to their diet or lifestyle.

In other words, they did not reduce their calorie intake, skip meals or track what they ate.

They just added around three-quarters of a cup of these foods to what they normally ate each day.

The group of foods, known as pulses, are effective because they increase feelings of fullness by 31%, studies show.

Other pulses include:

  • Runner beans,
  • black-eyed peas,
  • broad beans,
  • kidney beans,
  • and butter beans.

Dr Russell de Souza, who led the Canadian study, said:

“Despite their known health benefits, only 13 per cent of Canadians eat pulses on any given day and most do not eat the full serving.

So there is room for most of us to incorporate dietary pulses in our diet and realize potential weight management benefits.”

The research analysed the results of 21 separate clinical trials.

The combined results showed that people lost an average of a half-a-pound in six weeks, without dieting.

Pulses have a low glycemic index, meaning the body takes a while to break them down.

This helps people feel more full, said Dr de Souza:

“This new study fits well with our previous work, which found that pulses increased the feeling of fullness by 31 per cent, which may indeed result in less food intake.”

Pulses have the added benefit of reducing the levels of bad cholesterol in the body by around 5 percent.

They also lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Dr de Souza said:

“Though the weight loss was small, our findings suggest that simply including pulses in your diet may help you lose weight, and we think more importantly, prevent you from gaining it back after you lose it.”

The study was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (Kim et al., 2016).

10 Foods To Help Blast Away Belly Fat, According To Science

The simple diet change to help you lose belly fat and improve health.

The simple diet change to help you lose belly fat and improve health.

A higher intake of fibre and lower intake of saturated fats can help to lower belly fat, research concludes.

Belly fat is the fat that surrounds the vital organs, deep in the belly.

Unfortunately, there is no miracle food that can reduce belly fat on its own.

However, eating a heart-healthy diet high in fibre can help to reduce abdominal fat.

Soluble fibre, such as that in fruit and vegetables, turns to a gel during digestion.

This helps people feel more full and may also lower blood sugar levels and help bowel movements.

Dr Kari D. Pilolla, the study’s author, writes:

“…research has shown that dietary trans and saturated fats are positively associated with abdominal obesity, whereas fiber, especially soluble, is negatively associated.

Thus, a great start to preventing and reducing abdominal obesity is to follow a diet that encourages foods high
in fiber such as vegetables, fruits, legumes, and whole grains and limits foods high in trans and saturated fats, such as fatty meats, baked goods, and highly processed foods.”

Over 50 percent of Americans are thought to be abdominally obese.

High levels of belly fat are linked to fatty diabetes, liver disease and high blood pressure.

Abdominal obesity raises the risks of a variety of disease, said Dr Pilolla:

“Independent of body weight, a larger waist circumference increases risk for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome.

In fact, it has been estimated that approximately 84% of people with abdominal obesity are metabolically
unhealthy.”

The study compared the evidence for a variety of different diets, including the ‘paleo’ diet, intermittent fasting and those involving green tea.

The best evidence that is currently available in terms of fighting obesity supports two diets:

  • the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet,
  • and a Mediterranean-style diet.

Here are ten typical ingredients of the MedDiet:

  • Green leafy vegetables,
  • other vegetables,
  • nuts,
  • berries,
  • beans,
  • whole grains,
  • fish,
  • poultry,
  • olive oil
  • and wine.

The MedDiet also has relatively little red meat, little dairy and uses olive oil as the largest source of fat.

The DASH diet is reasonably straightforward and involves eating lots of fruit, vegetables and whole grains.

It also includes:

  • fat-free or low-fat dairy products,
  • fish,
  • poultry,
  • beans,
  • nuts,
  • and vegetable oils.

It recommends limiting intake of sugar, fatty meats, full-fat dairy, palm oil and foods high in saturated fats.

The study was published in the ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal. (Pilolla et al., 2018).

3 Supplements And Vitamins That Increase Weight Loss Up To 500%

People taking these supplements and vitamins were able in some cases to lose weight without making other lifestyle changes.

People taking these supplements and vitamins were able in some cases to lose weight without making other lifestyle changes.

Taking inulin, vitamin D supplementation and drinking low fat milk have each been repeatedly linked to weight loss.

Inulin, a natural fibre available as a supplement, could quadruple weight loss, one study has found.

Inulin is a fibre found naturally in many foods, including leeks, wheat, onions, bananas and asparagus.

Also, taking a vitamin D supplement is repeatedly linked to weight loss by studies.

People taking vitamin D lose weight without dieting or making other lifestyle changes.

Adding in dieting and exercise can help to boost weight loss even more.

Drinking three cups of low-fat milk each day can double weight loss, research finds.

Obese and overweight women in the study dropped 10 pounds in 8 weeks when they drank a pint-and-a-half of low-fat milk every day, along with following a diet.

Professor Gary Frost, co-author of a study on the inulin and weight loss, said:

“These results are encouraging in that they show this potential food supplement, when combined with exercise, can help people burn through their fat stores faster, decreases appetite and could in the long term help to achieve a healthy weight.”

In addition, inulin is found naturally in many foods, including wheat, leeks, bananas and asparagus.

The fibre helps the body burn fat faster and reduces cravings for high-calorie foods.

Authors of a study on the link between weight loss and low-fat milk write:

“Our results showed that consumption of low-fat milk enhanced the beneficial effect of an energy restricted diet on central and general obesity and therefore a diet rich in dairy calcium could be tried in obese persons.”

Authors of the study on vitamin explained:

“The findings of this double-blind clinical trial study in obese and overweight women aged 20–40 years showed that supplementation of the vit D with dozes 50,000 IU/w for 6 weeks reduced significantly the mean BMI [body mass index], weight and on the other hand, it increased significantly the level of vit D in comparison with the control group.”

The study was published in the journals Cell Host & Microbe, Metabolism and Journal of Preventative Medicine (Faghih et al., 2019; Malkova et al., 2020; Zou et al., 2018).

This Technique Doubles Weight Loss Without Dieting

There was no exercise or major diet change involved in this simple weight loss method.

There was no exercise or major diet change involved in this simple weight loss method.

Eating slowly helps people lose twice as much weight, a study has found.

Simply chewing each mouthful of food for 30 seconds led to study participants losing 5 pounds in weight over a six-month period.

In contrast, a control group who ate at their normal speed put on around 8 pounds.

There was no exercise or major diet change involved.

The slow eating approach works because it allows more time for the feeling of fullness to travel from stomach to brain.

Professor Schmid-Schoenbein, study co-author, said:

“You can adopt this slow eating approach for yourself and keep it up for the rest of your life.

You can teach this approach to your children and they can teach it to their children in turn.”

The study included 54 children aged 6- to 17-years-old.

They were told to chew each mouthful for 30 seconds and given a small hourglass to help them time it.

Professor Pedro Cabrales, study co-author, said:

“The hourglass made it more like a game.

We also noticed that the children kept each other accountable.

If some forgot the hourglasses, the others would remind them.”

The only other instructions given in the study were to drink a glass of water before a meal and avoid snacks between meals.

The results showed that children who ate slowly lost between 3% and 5% of their body weight in one year.

In comparison, a control group of similar children put on between 7% and 8% over the year.

Slow eating is effective because it gives more time for the ‘satiety reflex’ to reach the brain.

The message that the stomach is full takes around 15 minutes to arrive, but many people eat a whole meal quicker than this.

Dr. Ruy Perez-Tamayo, study co-author, said:

“Our method focuses on preventing weight gain.

It is simple, inexpensive and easy to follow.”

The study was published in the journal Pediatric Obesity (Salazar Vázquez et al., 2015).

Routinely Drinking These 3 Beverages Could Quadruple Weight Loss

Three simple and delicious drinks that have all been linked by research to weight loss.

Three simple and delicious drinks that have all been linked by research to weight loss.

Low-fat milk, water and yerba mate tea have all been linked to weight loss.

Yerba mate tea is a herbal tea which is an excellent source of flavonoids, amino acids, vitamin C, B1 and B2 and minerals providing several health benefits.

This traditional south-eastern Latin American tea is sold as a stimulant due to its caffeine.

Research has found that it can boost weight loss.

In addition, replacing just one sugary soda with water can lead to weight loss and improve health.

Indeed, one study has linked drinking a pint of water before every meal to losing five times as much weight.

Changing to water also decreases fasting glucose levels, which is better for weight loss and general health.

Drinking water is one of the most popular weight loss techniques used by people.

On top of mate tea and water, a couple of glasses of fat-free milk each day could double weight loss, research finds.

A study of 322 overweight people revealed that those drinking two glasses of low-fat milk each day doubled their weight loss compared to those who drank around half-a-glass.

Dr Greg Miller, an expert in food science and human nutrition, said:

“The good news for the public is that you can follow these recommendation for 3 servings of dairy foods each day and get the nutrition benefits without concern of extra weight gain.

If you’re cutting calories to lose weight, it’s important to get your 3 servings of dairy foods each day for good health and to enhance your weight loss efforts.”

Drinks like mate, water and milk are all an improvement on sugary drinks, said Dr Kiyah J. Duffey, author of study on the subject:

“We found that among U.S. adults who consume one serving of sugar-sweetened beverages per day, replacing that drink with water lowered the percent of calories coming from drinks from 17 to 11 percent.

Even those who consumed more sugary drinks per day could still benefit from water replacement, dropping the amount of calories coming from beverages to less than 25 percent of their daily caloric intake.”

The study was published in the journals American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Nutrients & Journal of Functional Foods (Duffey & Poti, 2016Rajpathak et al., 2006; Zapata, et al., 2019).

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