What are the Most Common Intermittent Fasting Types?

by | Apr 7, 2023 | Issue 157, Issues, Special Issue - David Nurse | 0 comments

Intermittent fasting has become a popular way to lose weight, feel better and improve overall health. It involves periods of fasting followed by periods of eating. There are many different...

Intermittent fasting has become a popular way to lose weight, feel better and improve overall health. It involves periods of fasting followed by periods of eating. There are many different types of intermittent fasting, each with its own set of rules and benefits.

Intermittent fasting comes with its own vast array of benefits, such as reducing your risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. Fasting also helps to boost your metabolism and burn fat more effectively.

When you fast, your body is forced to rely on stored energy, which means it will start to break down fat cells for fuel. This process can help you lose weight quickly and effectively. Intermittent fasting is a great way to kickstart your weight loss journey!


What is Intermittent Fasting?

Intermittent fasting is a dietary pattern that cycles between periods of fasting and non-fasting.

The idea behind intermittent fasting is that we should not eat for a certain period of time, usually 12-24 hours, in order to give our bodies a break from digesting food. Depending on what works best for you, you can resort to fasting daily or weekly.

Intermittent fasting has been shown to improve blood sugar control and reduce insulin resistance, leading to weight loss. It can also help lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease.


Intermittent Fasting Intervals

The most common fasting protocols are 16/8, 18/6, and 20/4—all referring to fasting for a certain number of hours per day and then eating within an 8-hour window. For example, with the 16/8 protocol, you would fast for 16 hours each day and eat only during an 8-hour window.

Other less common fasting protocols include the 5:2 diet, which involves fasting for two days each week and eating normally the other five days.


The 16/8 Method or Leangains Protocol

The 16/8 method involves fasting for 16 hours and eating only during an 8-hour window. Also called the Leangains protocol, this fasting method was popularized by fitness expert Martin Berkhan. It is the most popular type of intermittent fasting as it is the easiest to stick to.

For example, let’s say you finish your last meal at 8 p.m. and don’t eat again until noon the next day—you are fasting for 16 hours every day. You can drink water, black coffee, tea and other zero-calorie beverages during the fasting period.


18/6 Interval

18/6 fasting is a protocol where you fast for 18 hours out of the day and eat only during a 6-hour window. This fasting protocol, having a more extended time window than the 16/8 interval, is popular among people trying to lose weight. 


Warrior Diet (20/4 Interval)

The Warrior Diet is a type of intermittent fasting that involves eating small amounts of raw fruits and vegetables during the day and then eating one large meal at night. Typically the interval is 20 hours of small amounts of food and 4 hours of eating a large meal. This diet is based on the belief that our ancestors ate this way and that it’s more appropriate for food digestion.

However, there is no scientific evidence to support this claim, making the Warrior Diet quite dangerous to your overall health. Because you’re not eating enough calories during the day, you may feel weak and dizzy, and even faint. Be sure to speak with your doctor first if you decide to try the Warrior Diet.



The OMAD diet, or “one meal a day,” is a type of fasting in which you eat only one meal per day, typically for a 23-hour period. It is the most extreme form of a daily intermittent fasting protocol, as the OMAD diet’s fasting period is much longer than with other fasting protocols.

Some evidence suggests that the OMAD diet can help with weight loss. A small study found that people who followed the diet for eight weeks lost more weight than those with more meals with the same caloric intake.

However, there are also risks associated with this diet, as fasting for such a long period of time can lead to dehydration, dizziness and hunger pangs. Be sure to speak with your doctor first if you’re considering trying the OMAD diet.


Intermittent Fasting Risks

If you’re considering intermittent fasting, it’s important to understand the different types of fasting and the potential health risks associated with each one. Fasting can be a great way to improve your health, but it’s not for everyone. Here’s what you need to know about the risks of fasting before you decide to try it.

The risks of intermittent fasting are minimal but can include headaches, dizziness, stomach cramps or nausea, low blood sugar level, dehydration and low energy levels. However, if fasting is not done correctly, it can lead to more severe health problems such as electrolyte imbalance and malnutrition.

When done correctly, intermittent fasting is a safe and effective way to improve your health. However, it’s important to understand the risks before you start. Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns about fasting or your health.


Intermittent Fasting while Breastfeeding

When you are fasting, your body goes into a state of ketosis where it starts to burn fat for energy. This process can help you lose weight and improve your overall health.

However, if you are breastfeeding, you must ensure that you are still getting enough calories and nutrients while fasting. Failure to consume enough nutrients may result in adverse side effects such as low energy levels, headaches and dizziness. It is also essential to drink plenty of fluids while fasting to prevent dehydration.


A Parting Reminder

Consult with your doctor first if you’re thinking about trying intermittent fasting to ensure it’s right for you. Then, once you’ve decided to give it a try, be sure to start slowly and gradually increase the fasting intervals. For example, if you’re new to fasting, you might want to start with a 16/8 fasting protocol and then move on to longer fasting intervals like 18/6 or 20/4. Remember that intermittent fasting is not for everyone, so don’t let fasting slow you down!

Peter C

Peter C


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