A Balanced Diet with Intermittent Fasting

SeniorSage

Administrator
It's becoming increasingly obvious to me just how important my health is now that I’m in my 60’s. As they say Health is more important than Wealth for us seniors. One of the most impactful ways to maintain our health is via the food we eat.

Let's start with the foundation - a balanced diet. Our bodies thrive when we provide it with a variety of nutrients from all food groups. Balancing proteins, carbohydrates, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals not only fuels our bodies but also contributes to mental clarity and emotional well-being.

Proteins are the building blocks of life as they repair tissues and boost immunity. While it’s true that we probably need less protein than growing children and young adults, be sure to include at least three serves of lean meats, fish, eggs, legumes, or dairy each day. Carbohydrates provide the energy our bodies need. It's best to choose "complex" carbohydrates such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. They release energy gradually, unlike processed and refined food (Chocolates!) which can spike blood sugar levels. Contrary to the myth, fats are essential. They aid in absorbing vitamins, supporting brain health, and maintaining healthy skin. Avocados, nuts, seeds, and olive oil are all great examples of healthy fats.

Also be sure that your meals include vitamins, minerals and fibre. This can be as simple as ensuring that you have a variety of different coloured vegetables on your plate!

About 10 years ago I watched Michael Mosley's "Eat, fast and live longer" doco on SBS. It's really worth investing the hour or so to watch it. Intermittent fasting isn't a diet in the traditional sense - it's more of an eating pattern that cycles between periods of eating and fasting, giving your digestive system a well-deserved break. While it might not be suitable for everyone, many seniors have found it to be an effective way to manage weight, improve metabolism, and promote overall well-being.

There are several ways to approach intermittent fasting. Personally I find the 5:2 Diet the easiest. For 5 days a week I eat normally, and then for the remaining 2 days I reduce my calorie intake to just 600 calories for the day. I've been doing this since I watched the doco, have lost weight and have never felt more energised! It also gives me the freedom to enjoy what I eat the other days, without being too concerned about eating too much!

Like everything else, balance is the key. A balanced diet that incorporates all food groups ensures that we're nourishing our bodies comprehensively. While intermittent fasting may indeed help you live longer!
 
My son says he does Intermittent fasting too. But differently - he skips breakfast everyday, and only starts eating at lunchtime. He also doesn't eat after dinner. This seems easier and I'm wondering if it has the same benefits?
 
My son says he does Intermittent fasting too. But differently - he skips breakfast everyday, and only starts eating at lunchtime. He also doesn't eat after dinner. This seems easier and I'm wondering if it has the same benefits?
There are actually several ways to approach intermittent fasting. Such as:
  • The 5:2 Diet: This is the approach SeniorSage was referring to in his opening post.
  • The 16/8 Method: I think this is what your son does. It involves fasting for 16 hours a day and eating during an 8-hour window. It might involve skipping breakfast and having your first meal around noon.
  • Eat-Stop-Eat: This involves fasting for a full 24 hours once or twice a week. For example, fasting from dinner one day to dinner the next day.
  • Alternate-Day Fasting: This approach alternates between days of normal eating and days of fasting or consuming very few calories.
According to Michael Mosley all approaches have the same health benefits :)
 
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