Intermittent Fasting For Women Weightloss At Different Stages Of Life, Pros And Cons| Part II

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Intermittent fasting is a popular dietary trend that advocates alternating periods of fasting and non-fasting. This eating pattern has gained popularity in recent years as a potential tool for weight loss, improved metabolism, and overall health. However, when it comes to women, the benefits and drawbacks of intermittent fasting are still a topic of debate. In this article, you'll explore the pros and cons of intermittent fasting for women's weight loss in their different age groups viz. girls in  puberty, menstruating women, pregnant women, and lastly, menopausal women.

This is the part II, you can learn in detail the basics of intermittent fasting and ancient practices of fasting in intermittent fasting for weight loss, part 1

Am I A Fasting Expert?

No.

Then why and how am I writing about the intermittent fasting!

Hhhh...

All because my parents currently at their late 70's are only Two Times Eaters.

One mini meal around 10:00 a.m. and another, the large, in fact... pretty Large at around 5:00 p.m.

They are doing this since about last 20 years. But what they are following is not,  what you can call as the intermittent fasting. In contrary, they are doing convenient eating. At this age, they are not bothered about fasting , they are all into eating.

Eating to feel good... Eating to feel full... Eating to stay happy... Eating because this is the one activity which they can do effortlessly.

But what they can't do effortlessly is preparing multiple meals for themselves. So they got  stuck with their easy ways to prepare and rejoice the meal.

With this eating routine, they are eating between 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

In modern fancy words, their eating window opens for 7 hours, then closes for another 17 hours. From God's grace they are fit... Touch wood!

Viola! It's a proof that intermittent fasting is real and works. Owing to this, I have also opened a new eating window for myself.

I call it 12/12 fasting, eating twice: 11:00 a.m. and 11:00 p.m. My eating window involves two "ok-large" meals and fruits in between. With this,  I'm not able to maintain a too tiny waist ( because of the late dinner), but I am perfectly fit with an appropriate BMI (body mass index). As simple as it looks. Moreover, it perfectly suits to my lifestyle:-) And I am a committed Yogi!

Please do write in your comments, what is yours preferable eating window/style.

What is Intermittent Fasting?

Intermittent Fasting For Women Weightloss At Different Stages Of Life, Pros And Cons|

First, let us briefly have a look into what is intermittent fasting, and popular and recommended ways it is accomplished.

Intermittent fasting involves restricting food intake for few hours in a day, followed by unrestricted eating during non-fasting periods. The most popular types of intermittent fasting are:

16/8 method:

This method involves fasting for 16 hours a day and consuming all meals within an 8-hour window.

5:2 diet:

This diet involves eating normally for five days a week and restricting calorie intake to 500-600 calories for two non-consecutive days.

Alternate-day fasting:

This method involves fasting every other day and consuming only 500-600 calories on fasting days.

This seems very obvious that the Intermittent fasting works by reducing calorie intake, which can lead to weight loss. The body also switches to burning fat for fuel during fasting periods, which may help improve metabolism and overall health.

General Overview Of The Intermittent Fasting For Women Weight Loss

Following is the general overview for all the females. Later on, you can continue reading according to your age group.

Intermittent Fasting for Women's Weight Loss: Pros

  1. Caloric Restriction:

Intermittent fasting is an effective way to reduce calorie intake, which can lead to weight loss. A study showed that intermittent fasting resulted in more weight loss than a traditional calorie-restricted diet for overweight women.

  1. Improved Metabolism:

Fasting can lead to improved insulin sensitivity, which can help with weight loss and prevent metabolic disorders. Research has shown that intermittent fasting can improve metabolic health markers like blood pressure, blood sugar levels, and cholesterol.

  1. Convenience:

Intermittent fasting is an easy dietary pattern to follow since it doesn't involve meal planning or calorie counting. It can also be customized to fit an individual's lifestyle and schedule.

Intermittent Fasting for Women's Weight Loss: Cons

 

  1. Hormonal Imbalance:

Some studies have shown that women may experience hormonal imbalances with intermittent fasting, which can lead to menstrual irregularities and other reproductive health issues.

 

  1. Nutrient Deficiency:

Since intermittent fasting involves restricting food intake for specific periods, it can be challenging to consume all the necessary nutrients during non-fasting periods. This can lead to nutrient deficiencies, especially in women who require more nutrients due to pregnancy or breastfeeding.

 

  1. Stress:

Intermittent fasting can be stressful for some women, leading to increased cortisol levels, which can hinder weight loss and cause other health problems.

Intermittent Fasting for Girls in Their Puberty

Intermittent Fasting For Women Weightloss for girls in their puberty , Pros And Cons| Part II

Intermittent fasting might not be suitable for girls in their puberty. Puberty is a crucial time for growth and development, and adequate nutrition is essential for overall health. In the following part, we will explore the pros and cons of intermittent fasting for girls in their puberty.

Pros of Intermittent Fasting for Girls in Their Puberty:

 

  1. Improved Insulin Sensitivity:

Intermittent fasting can improve insulin sensitivity, which is essential for maintaining healthy blood sugar levels. Girls in their puberty may experience insulin resistance due to hormonal changes, and intermittent fasting can help to improve insulin sensitivity.

  1. Weight Management:

Girls in their puberty may experience weight gain due to hormonal changes. Intermittent fasting can help to manage weight by reducing calorie intake and improving metabolism.

  1. Reduced Inflammation:

Intermittent fasting can reduce inflammation in the body, which is important for overall health. Girls in their puberty may experience inflammation due to hormonal changes and stress, and intermittent fasting can help to reduce inflammation and improve immune function.

  1. Improved Brain Function:

Intermittent fasting has been shown to improve cognitive function, memory, and focus. Girls in their puberty may experience cognitive decline due to hormonal changes and stress, and intermittent fasting can help to improve brain function.

 

Cons of Intermittent Fasting for Girls in Their Puberty:

 

  1. Disrupted Hormonal Balance:

Girls in their puberty already experience hormonal changes, and intermittent fasting can disrupt hormone levels. This can lead to menstrual irregularities, mood changes, and sleep disturbances.

  1. Nutrient Deficiency:

Girls in their puberty require a higher intake of certain nutrients like calcium, iron, and vitamin D to support growth and development. Intermittent fasting can make it difficult to consume enough of these essential nutrients, leading to deficiencies that can affect bone health, immune function, and overall growth.

 

  1. Impaired Growth and Development:

Intermittent fasting can lead to a reduction in calorie intake, which can affect growth and development in girls in their puberty. Caloric restriction during puberty can lead to stunted growth, delayed puberty, and impaired bone health.

 

  1. Disordered Eating:

Intermittent fasting can increase the risk of developing disordered eating patterns in girls in their puberty. Restricting food intake can lead to an unhealthy relationship with food and body image, which can have negative consequences on overall health and well-being.

 

Conclusion: Intermittent Fasting for Girls in Their Puberty

 

Intermittent fasting may have some benefits for girls in their puberty, including improved insulin sensitivity, weight management, reduced inflammation, and improved brain function.

However, it can also have negative consequences, including disrupted hormonal balance, nutrient deficiency, impaired growth and development, and disordered eating.

Therefore, the Girls in their puberty  too, should consult with a healthcare professional before starting intermittent fasting to determine if it is safe and appropriate for their individual needs. A balanced and nutritious diet, along with regular exercise, is essential for overall health and well-being during puberty.

Intermittent Fasting For Women In Their Reproductive YearsIntermittent Fasting For Women In Their Reproductive Years

 

Intermittent fasting is also a popular trend for weight loss and overall health for the women in their reproductive age, but it might have negative effects too!

The periods of restricted food intake,  can lead to hormonal changes in the reproductive age, that can affect women's reproductive health. In the following part, we will explore the potential side effects of intermittent fasting on women in their reproductive age.

 

  1. Menstrual Irregularities

 

Intermittent fasting can cause menstrual irregularities in women. This is because the body perceives intermittent fasting as a form of stress and may try to conserve energy by reducing the production of reproductive hormones like estrogen and progesterone. This hormonal imbalance can lead to irregular periods, missed periods, or changes in the length of menstrual cycles.

 

  1. Fertility Issues

 

Intermittent fasting can also lead to fertility issues in women. Studies have shown that low-calorie diets or intermittent fasting can cause a reduction in the levels of luteinizing hormone (LH), which is responsible for ovulation. This can lead to anovulation, where the ovaries do not release an egg, making it difficult for women to conceive.

 

  1. Disruption of the Menstrual Cycle

 

Intermittent fasting can disrupt the menstrual cycle in women. The menstrual cycle is regulated by a complex interplay of hormones, including estrogen and progesterone. Intermittent fasting can alter these hormone levels, causing changes in the menstrual cycle. This can lead to shorter or longer menstrual cycles, changes in the duration of periods, or missed periods.

  1. Nutrient Deficiency

 

Intermittent fasting can also cause nutrient deficiencies in women, which can negatively affect their reproductive health. Women require a higher intake of certain nutrients, such as iron and calcium, due to menstruation, pregnancy, and lactation. Intermittent fasting can make it difficult to consume enough of these essential nutrients, leading to deficiencies that can affect reproductive health.

 

  1. Pregnancy Risks

Intermittent fasting during pregnancy can be risky for both the mother and the foetus. Pregnant women require adequate nutrition to support foetal growth and development. Intermittent fasting can lead to nutrient deficiencies that can negatively affect foetal health. Pregnant women who practice intermittent fasting are also at higher risk of dehydration, hypoglycemia, and preterm labor.

So conceiving and pregnant women should take a balanced  wholesome diet with more than 2 feedings of seasonal fruits and vegetables and consult with their Health care provider before committing to intermittent fasting.

Pros And Cons of Intermittent Fasting On Menopausal Women.

 

For menopausal women, intermittent fasting may have unique advantages and disadvantages. In the following paragraph, we will explore the pros and cons of intermittent fasting on menopausal women.

Pros of Intermittent Fasting for Menopausal Women:

  1. Weight Loss:

Menopausal women often experience weight gain due to hormonal changes. Intermittent fasting can help women to lose weight by reducing calorie intake and increasing the body's metabolism.

  1. Improved Metabolic Health:

Menopausal women are at a higher risk of developing metabolic disorders like type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Intermittent fasting can improve metabolic health by reducing blood sugar levels, improving insulin sensitivity, and reducing inflammation.

  1. Improved Brain Function:

Intermittent fasting has been shown to improve cognitive function, memory, and focus. Menopausal women may experience cognitive decline due to hormonal changes, and intermittent fasting can help to improve brain function.

  1. Reduced Menopausal Symptoms:

Menopausal women may experience hot flashes, night sweats, and mood swings due to hormonal changes. Intermittent fasting has been shown to reduce the severity of these symptoms and improve overall quality of life.

 

Cons of Intermittent Fasting for Menopausal Women:

 

  1. Hormonal Changes:

Menopausal women already experience hormonal changes, and intermittent fasting can further disrupt hormone levels. This can lead to menstrual irregularities, mood changes, and sleep disturbances.

 

  1. Nutrient Deficiency:

Menopausal women require a higher intake of certain nutrients like calcium and vitamin D to maintain bone health. Intermittent fasting can make it difficult to consume enough of these essential nutrients, leading to deficiencies that can affect bone health.

 

  1. Dehydration:

Menopausal women are at higher risk of dehydration due to hormonal changes. Intermittent fasting can further increase this risk, leading to fatigue, dizziness, and headaches.

 

  1. Reduced Muscle Mass:

Menopausal women are at a higher risk of losing muscle mass due to hormonal changes. Intermittent fasting can exacerbate this issue, leading to a reduction in muscle mass and strength.

 

Conclusion: Intermittent Fasting For Menopausal Women

 

Intermittent fasting can have both advantages and disadvantages for menopausal women. While it can help with weight loss, metabolic health, and improved brain function,

it can also disrupt hormone levels, lead to nutrient deficiencies, dehydration, and loss of muscle mass.

Again, for all the female, in this stage of life, It is essential to consult with a healthcare professional before starting intermittent fasting to determine if it is safe and appropriate for their individual needs.

A balanced, nutritious, and sattvic diet, along with regular exercise, can also support overall health and well-being during menopause.

Intermittent Fasting For Women Over 60

Intermittent Fasting For Women Over 60: pros and cons

Intermittent fasting has gained popularity as an approachable tool to improve health among the senior people. And this is really the age when you need to reduce your food intake in order to stay healthy!

Your children are grown up and you might be retired from the work!

With comparatively lesser requirements of physical and mental engagements, 60 + women can effortlessly adapt to an "intermittent fasting type" which suits best to their lifestyle.

However, it may not be suitable for every women over 60 years old. In the following paragraph, we will discuss the pros and cons of intermittent fasting for women in their 60s.

 

Pros of Intermittent Fasting for Women Over 60:

  1. Improved Insulin Sensitivity:

Intermittent fasting can improve insulin sensitivity, which is beneficial for women in their 60s who may be at a higher risk of developing insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.

  1. Weight Management:

Intermittent fasting can help to manage weight by reducing calorie intake and improving metabolism. Women in their 60s may find it more difficult to lose weight due to hormonal changes and a slowing metabolism, and intermittent fasting can help to address these issues.

  1. Reduced Inflammation:

Intermittent fasting can reduce inflammation in the body, which is essential for overall health. Women in their 60s may experience increased inflammation due to age-related factors, and intermittent fasting can help to reduce inflammation and improve immune function.

  1. Improved Brain Function:

Intermittent fasting has been shown to improve cognitive function, memory, and focus. Women in their 60s may experience cognitive decline due to age-related changes, and intermittent fasting can help to improve brain function.

Cons of Intermittent Fasting for Women Over 60:

 

  1. Disrupted Nutrient Intake:

Women over 60 require adequate nutrient intake to support healthy aging, and intermittent fasting may lead to nutrient deficiencies. It may be challenging to consume enough vitamins, minerals, and fiber during the shorter eating window.

 

  1. Increased Risk of Dehydration:

Women over 60 may already be at an increased risk of dehydration, and intermittent fasting may exacerbate this issue. Drinking enough water even during the non-eating window is essential to avoid dehydration.

 

  1. Adverse Effects on Medications:

Not often, but aging bodies might demand rapid medication!

Women over 60 may be taking medications for various health conditions, and intermittent fasting may interfere with the efficacy of these medications.

Again, it is essential to consult with a healthcare professional before starting intermittent fasting to ensure that it is safe and appropriate.

 

  1. Increased Stress:

Intermittent fasting can be stressful for some individuals, and women over 60 may be more susceptible to stress-related health issues such as osteoporosis and others. It is essential to listen to the body and stop fasting if it causes excessive stress.

 

Conclusion: Intermittent Fasting For Women At 60+

Intermittent fasting may have some benefits for women over 60, including improved insulin sensitivity, weight management, reduced inflammation, and improved brain function.

However, it may also have negative consequences, including disrupted nutrient intake, increased risk of dehydration, adverse effects on medications, and increased stress.

Women over 60  too, should consult with a healthcare professional before starting intermittent fasting to determine if it is safe and appropriate for their individual needs. A balanced and nutritious diet, along with regular exercise, is essential for overall health and well-being in older adults.

 

Conclusion: Intermittent Fasting For Women Weightloss At Different Stages Of Life

 

Intermittent fasting may have potential health benefits, but it can also have negative effects on women's reproductive health, especially for those in their reproductive age.

Women who are pregnant, breastfeeding, or trying to conceive should avoid intermittent fasting.

Women who experience menstrual irregularities, fertility issues, or nutrient deficiencies should also avoid intermittent fasting or seek advice from a medical professional before starting. It is essential to prioritize a balanced and nutritious diet to support overall health and reproductive health.

Further,

Intermittent fasting can be an effective tool for women's weight loss, but it's not suitable for everyone. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should avoid intermittent fasting, and those with a history of disordered eating should approach it with caution.

The hormonal and nutrient balance of women can be affected by intermittent fasting, which can have negative impacts on their health. Therefore, women who are considering intermittent fasting should consult their doctor or a registered dietitian before starting.

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About Author

Rashmi is a certified Yoga Teacher, Reiki Healer, Advanced Chakra Healer, Spiritual and PLRT Therapist, Yin Yoga And Pilates Instructor from India.

For result oriented health and nutrition coaching through Yoga and Reiki Healing in combination with other healing modalities, please check out Yogarsutra Healing Studio.

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