1. #1

    IF vs Standard Diet

    Intermittent fasting (IF) is all the rage, but is it any more effective for weight loss than typical dieting? Many studies that looked at the Q were too short and or too small. This one ran a year and was 100+ people enrolled. What did it find? IF (5:2) no better than standard dieting on various measures. No surprise to me. What it does indicate however is that there's room for individual approaches to weight loss, and if people prefer IF, then do that, but don't buy into the claims it has magical metabolic effects, at least on weight loss and cardiovascular risk factors:

    Via J.Nutrition, Metabolism & Cardiovascular Diseases:


    •Intermittent energy restriction resulted in weight loss and maintenance in free-living men and women with abdominal obesity after one year similar to that achieved with continuous energy restriction.

    •Both diets improved cardiovascular risk factors.

    •Feeling of hunger may limit long-term adherence to intermittent energy restriction.


    Background & aims

    Long-term adherence to conventional weight-loss diets is limited while intermittent fasting has risen in popularity. We compared the effects of intermittent versus continuous energy restriction on weight loss, maintenance and cardiometabolic risk factors in adults with abdominal obesity and ≥1 additional component of metabolic syndrome.

    Methods & results

    In total 112 participants (men [50%] and women [50%]) aged 21-70 years with BMI 30-45 kg/m2 (mean 35.2 [SD 3.7]) were randomized to intermittent or continuous energy restriction. A 6-month weight-loss phase including 10 visits with dieticians was followed by a 6-month maintenance phase without additional face-to-face counselling. The intermittent energy restriction group was advised to consume 400/600 kcal (female/male) on two non-consecutive days. Based on dietary records both groups reduced energy intake by ∼26-28%. Weight loss was similar among participants in the intermittent and continuous energy restriction groups (8.0 kg [SD 6.5] versus 9.0 kg [SD 7.1]; p=0.6). There were favorable improvements in waist circumference, blood pressure, triglycerides and HDL-cholesterol with no difference between groups. Weight regain was minimal and similar between the intermittent and continuous energy restriction groups (1.1 kg [SD 3.8] versus 0.4 kg [SD 4.0]; p=0.6). Intermittent restriction participants reported higher hunger scores than continuous restriction participants on a subjective numeric rating scale (4.7 [SD 2.2] vs 3.6 [SD 2.2]; p=0.002).


    Both intermittent and continuous energy restriction resulted in similar weight loss, maintenance and improvements in cardiovascular risk factors after one year. However, feelings of hunger may be more pronounced during intermittent energy restriction.



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  3. #2
    Interesting. For me, not eating after 6:30pm and resuming eating at 7am has really worked well for me when combined with low carb eating. I eat carbs without worrying about them on days I workout and I really cut carbs on days I don't workout. Very easy and very effective for me.

  4. #3
    Member Sean Mosher's Avatar
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    Nov 2015
    Houston, Texas
    I've been tinkering with the Jay Campbell IF plan laid out in one of his books as well and it seems to work.
    Just hard to be consistent every single week.......I work in the healthcare industry and there's always free unhealthy food everywhere!

  5. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mosher View Post
    I've been tinkering with the Jay Campbell IF plan laid out in one of his books as well and it seems to work.
    Just hard to be consistent every single week.......I work in the healthcare industry and there's always free unhealthy food everywhere!
    Constancy is the most important aspect to long term success, so any plan you find it difficult to be consistent with, may not be the right plan for you.

  6. #5
    Two huge red flags make me think this “study” of IF is completely invalid. First, a commonly reported benefit of true fasting is that hunger vanishes, and that is exactly how it worked for me. I do a 16/8 leangains style of eating and I eat because I know I need to support my next workout, not because I have any hunger, so the fact that they reported increased hunger says the mechanisms of fasting were not in place. Second, inserting two low-calorie days is not fasting and cannot be expected to produce the benefits of fasting. Not eating is fasting, so to even call this a study of IF is deceptive. It is a study of intermittent low calories. Something Dr. Fung points out which I have found to be very true for me, is that it is much easier to not eat at all than to try to just eat a small amount. It seems like eating anything at all suddenly turns on a hunger urge.

  7. #6
    Nothing in what Will posted addresses marcros, only IF.

    If you go to IF and don't reproportion carb/fat intakes, i.e. eat larger portions of carbs fewer times per day you damn well will be damn hungry!

  8. #7
    Moderator Vince's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Milwaukee, WI
    I know many people that use intermediate fasting to fight coronary artery disease and have great success. There was also a study that Nelson posted a few months ago that used weight train athletes, you may be interested in comparing.

    I am not a medical practitioner. Any suggestions I provide are not medical recommendations and are just my opinions. Please consult with your physician on any matters concerning your health.

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