Using intermittent fasting to enhance weight loss while on TRT is a powerful and safe strategy. In this post, you will learn how to get started and why it’s so effective.
Roughly a year after college, I’d been stuck in the 6 meal a day cycle with 1 cheat day during weekend cycle.
While I was skinny, I was what the #fitfam folks call “skinny-fat.”
I knew I needed a diet overhaul but the “experts” were telling me that keeping my metabolism running is the only proven method.
Then my good pal, Alex Nerney, filled me in on this elixir-grade method called fasting.
Aside from weight control, I quickly found that fasting allows your body self-medicate.
Tangent, I was brought up in a Christian family, so my mind immediately went to stories of people living off hot water for weeks on end. So, naturally, I was like um, no…
The internet is plastered with the studies about fasting and its effectiveness.
It is true that adopting a better diet and healthier lifestyle will promote testosterone production and help your body stay above borderline levels where low testosterone symptoms start to occur.
However, if your testosterone levels are clinically low or your symptoms are moderate to severe, diet and exercise alone will likely not solve your problems and Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) may be recommended. Learn more about TRT benefits and TRT Basics to understand more about what you should expect from low T treatment.
Functional & Traditional Medicine, taking a total-body approach, combining nutrition, life, and modern medical testing.
As we teach in our Total Health Course, there is no magic pill or prescription to dropping weight and maintaining a thinner waist line. The combination of Movement, Diet, and Testosterone Replacement Therapy has shown to improve results in men on treatment. Adding intermittent fasting can promote a healthier lifestyle and get you closer to your fitness goals.
I’m going to give you most well-known methods but also some alternatives that have worked very well for myself.
I encourage everyone to try it and give it some time because of its powerful effects on your body and mind, and research is revealing that it could even help you live longer.
What is Intermittent Fasting?
Fasting 101: Periodic fasting essentially takes our bodies back to our “roots” when food was scarce and the next meal was uncertain.
Our great-great-great-great grandparents would go without food for extended periods of time, so naturally, our bodies can function just fine (sometimes even better) without.
Researchers at USC found that 72-hour fast reinvigorated dieters immune systems and stem cells. (here)
Are there Proven Benefits to Intermittent Fasting?
- Weight loss: Intermittent fasting can help you lose weight and belly fat fairly quickly when following proven methods. If you’re struggling with binge eating, periodic fasting is a powerful weapon because our stomachs are able to shrink down to their natural size so hunger disappears 3x times as fast.
- Insulin resistance: IF help reduce insulin resistance: lowering blood sugar by ~6% & fasting insulin levels by ~31%.Starting this fasting routine could be your ticket. It is important to know that low testosterone is associated with higher blood sugar levels. Elevated blood sugar for extended periods of time may lead to a decrease in what is known as insulin sensitivity.
In a study published in the American Diabetes Association Journal, there is unique relationship between testosterone, insulin sensitivity, and metabolic ailments like diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, etc.
A total of 45% of subjects had normal glucose tolerance, 20% had impaired glucose tolerance, and 35% had type 2 diabetes. Testosterone levels were positively correlated with insulin sensitivity (r = 0.4, P < 0.005). Subjects with hypogonadal testosterone levels (n = 10) had a BMI >25 kg/m2 and a threefold higher prevalence of the metabolic syndrome than their eugonadal counterparts (n = 50); this relationship held true after adjusting for age and sex hormone–binding globulin but not BMI. Testosterone levels also correlated with Vo2max (r = 0.43, P < 0.05) and oxidative phosphorylation gene expression (r = 0.57, P < 0.0001).
The study concludes that given low testosterone levels can predict the development of type 2 diabetes AND due to the fact that as men age there is a natural decrease in testosterone and insulin resistance, the findings show that testosterone is an important modulator of insulin sensitivity and digestive function in men. Study, Study, Study, Study
- Inflammation: IF reduces body inflammation because our bodies are given a chance to clear up the backlog of energy created but never processed aka fat. Continuous eating = high risk of inflammation. Inflammation is correlated to prediabetes as well.
- Anti-aging and brain health: All-systems-go; fasting keeps our cells and organs running efficiently and effectively. You’ll feel more focused and energetic during your fast. My skin is the healthiest it’s ever been.
- Immune health: Fasting actually protects and resets your immune system by promoting cell regeneration. I rarely get sick – I have not had the flu since starting my fasting regiment.
- Heart health: Fasting can reduce cholesterol, blood clotting, inflammatory markers, blood sugar and insulin resistance. All of the above lead to heart disease.
- Cancer: Some studies suggest that IF may help us prevent cancer.
What types of intermittent fasting are there?
The most popular is the 16:8 Method.
Entails skipping breakfast and restricting your daily eating period to 8 hours, for example from 1 pm to 9 pm. Then you do not eat for 16 hours.
This is the more reasonable method for those that have to get up early to take care of the kids or like to go to the gym before work.
I’ve modified the sequence to FIT my schedule because I enjoy going to the gym in the early morning to beat the crowds.
I use a 14/10 system, where I eat breakfast to refuel after my workout then skip lunch. It is possible to have success with the 16/8 and exercising in the morning without breakfast, which is not a bad thing.
Our bodies are still digesting yesterday’s meal.
For a full body reset, try the 24-hour challenge.
I suggest using this method if you feel like cravings are getting out of hand. This is pure mental warfare at its finest.
I call it a reset because using the 24 hour period will allow you to rethink your health goals.
For a basic guide throughout the process, check out our Total Health Program.
This involves fasting for 24 hours, once or twice a week – for instance – by not eating from dinner one day until dinner the next day, then a huge healthy meal to refuel.
Think about it, you’re really only skipping 2 meals.
How do I start Intermittent Fasting?
Think about a typical Friday, if you’ve ever eaten dinner, then slept late and not eaten until lunch the next day, then you’ve already executed a 16+ hour fast.
You’re off to the races. For those drinking a full ~bottle of wine (or three too many glasses of whiskey) Friday night, you’re close but doesn’t count. *guilty* 💁♂️
Many people already eat this way because they do not feel hungry in the morning and a few cups of coffee is enough.
This is a great place to start your routine.
What is a good example of an Intermittent Fasting schedule?
Dinner, Netflix, chill, bed, wake up, work out, coffee, lemon water, perhaps more coffee, then lunch to break the fast.
As mentioned before,
I like the fasted lunch approach because I like to load up on superfoods greens and protein after working out then allow them to digest and fuel my body throughout the day.
The most common hurdles faced while fasting are boredom, hunger, and fatigue. Think about your busiest time of day and plan your fast around that activity;
active mind = effective results.
Appetite suppressors are key.
They will not only curb your cravings, but they will help bolster your weight loss and cleanse your system of harmful toxins.
Remember, weight control is pivotal for getting your diabetes under control.
Black coffee: no cream, milk or sugar.
Lemon Water: 5-6 lemons + water + jug – shazam: lemon water.
Apple Cider Vinegar: Shot, lemon water, *bitter face*, more lemon water.
A tablespoon or two of Apple cider vinegar is my go-to.
I opt for a shot while some folks like to mix with the lemon water a sip.
I use ACV to help control my blood sugar levels as well.
Green tea: fresh brew, make sure to check that no sugar was added. No milk.
The frequently asked questions.
Isn’t it unhealthy to skip breakfast?
No, The problem is that most stereotypical breakfast skippers have unhealthy lifestyles. If you make sure to eat healthy food for the rest of the day then it is fine.
Can I take supplements while fasting?
Yes, However, keep in mind that some supplements will work better when taken with meals.
Do check with your doctor if you’re taking medication like Metformin or Amaryl for example. Your doctor may have you change WHEN you take the meds to accommodate your new lifestyle.
Can I work out while fasting?
Yes, fasted workouts are fine, I do them almost every morning. I recommend taking amino acids before a fasted workout to make sure your body has sufficient fuel.
Will fasting cause muscle loss?
Yes, but minimal compared to the amount of unhealthy fat loss. Refueling with tons high-carb planet-based veggies and grains will make you feel like a million bucks.
Will fasting slow down my metabolism?
No, studies show that short-term fasts will boost metabolism.
Fasting completely overhauled my body. Following a high complex carb, medium protein, low-fat diet.
I was able to drop 5 inches off my waist and for the first time in my life I could see my abs.
So, to get you started, check out:
Rise Men’s Health combines Functional & Traditional Medicine, taking a total-body approach, combining nutrition, life, and modern medical testing. Learn more about our Testosterone Replacement Therapy and our Total Health Program.
1. It feels like you’ve tried almost all the trendy diets but nothing seems to last.
With the millions of diets and opinions out, it’s tough to know who is right… you feel like nothing is sustainable and will work for the long-term…
2. You’re working long hours and just have no time to spend hours on shopping and working out.
You’ve been trying to lose weight for SO long but work/life balance does not allow time…
3. Your interest levels drop after 2 weeks into a basic diet…
You start off strong, put together a grocery store and head to the gym. After 2 weeks, you sleep in and skip the gym, then head to McDonalds then order pizza for dinner… You’re toast and can’t get back on track.
Medically Reviewed by: Dr. Kallal
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