Fasting has been given great importance in the 21st century. But what some people don’t know is that this concept goes back to thousands of years. People used to fast only for religious reasons. But today, they choose to fast, not only for spiritual benefits. They do because it is healthy for the body. Intermittent fasting reduces weight and maintains a healthy body. But among people who follow an intermittent fasting plan, are vegans involved? In other words, is plant-based intermittent fasting possible?
Before answering the question, let’s define. What is intermittent fasting? And what do we mean by plant-based food?
Intermittent Fasting Plan
Intermitting fasting is a weight loss plan that consists of depriving yourself of eating. It happens during a specific time of the day or week. Intermittent fasting relies on two periods: Fasting and eating periods.
The fasting period is when you don’t eat. You can just have a cup of coffee, water, or fresh juice. The eating period is when you eat whatever you want. And as much as you want. It might seem easy to fast. But when you start, you need persistence and hard work.
We mean the foods that come from the plants, not from animals. Plant-based food does not contain animal derivatives. These types of foods are the best for vegans.
Intermittent Fasting for Vegans?
We know that vegans tend to be healthier than meat-eaters. But sometimes they need a diet too. Not just to lose weight, but to strengthen the body as well. The most asked questions on this subject are:
What if I am a vegan? Can I follow an intermittent fasting plan? Is it healthy for a vegan to fast? Which method of fasting should I use?
We have said before that when it comes to intermittent fasting, Time is gold. The most important factor is WHEN you eat and WHEN you don’t. Once your eating period has begun, what you eat and how much does not matter.
Studies showed that plant-based intermittent fasting is doable. Both intermittent fasting and plant-based foods have benefits. So, mixing them is a good match.
Plant-based intermittent fasting conserves a healthy weight along with balanced body composition. It is a good choice for vegan athletes. It helps them to lose weight and to enhance their hormones.
Plant-Based Intermittent Fasting: Does it Lack Protein?
Some meat-eaters consider that being a vegan is harmful to the body. They say that some nutrients like proteins only exist in animal-based foods. They consider that fasting while plant-based eating is even more damaging:
“When a vegan fasts, his stomach is empty. Then he eats foods that do not contain proteins and other needed nutrients. This is so dangerous.”
Yet, we have proved in our article:
“What are the best protein-based vegetarian diet basics?” that plant-based foods do contain proteins. To know what are plant-based foods rich in proteins, check out the blog.
The Eating Period as a Vegan
Plant-based intermittent fasting is very normal. Just like a non-vegan, the eating period includes all types of foods. Nothing is forbidden. The only difference is that a meat-eater goes for beef, chicken, eggs, etc. At the same time, a vegan chooses fruits, vegetables, and grains.
Intermittent Fasting and Plant-Based Food Is a Great Match
Hungry is what you feel when you fast. But the fibers existing in plants and grains make you feel full for longer. That’s why plant-based intermittent fasting is successful. You have to choose the plant-based foods that make you full.
Some plant-based foods that make you feel full for longer periods:
Rice, whole grains, quinoa, butter, nuts, legumes, and seeds.
Which Method of Fasting Should Vegan Use?
Any method is suitable for a vegan. You can choose to fast for two days per week. Or you can fast and eat on the same day. One thing you can also do is to fast one day and eat the other.
Some Tips For Easier Plant-Based Intermittent Fasting
Organize a plan – according to your working hours, social life, workout time, etc. See what time is the best for you to fast, and when it is suitable to eat.
Put this plan into action: Start adapting slowly to the plan. Don’t force yourself to change in a short period.
Plan due date – Intermittent fasting while plant-based eating is not a lifestyle. It is a plan. So put a due date and an approximate target to reach.
Choose your food right – Some foods contain nutrients more than others. Choose nutrients that are rich in fiber to reduce hunger during fasting.
A Message to All Our Vegan Friends
Plant-based intermittent fasting is a great idea. It has so many benefits, even more than fasting for meat-eaters. But be careful while choosing your method. There is a way of fasting suitable for some, but not for others. Speak to your nutritionist before you take the step.
Starting intermittent fasting can be difficult. During the first week of fasting, people may notice that their stomachs grumble. And some people feel tired or lightheaded due to low blood sugar on fasting days. But be patient! We encourage you to wait until these side effects pass.
Don’t forget. Eating at night is horrific, and eating night snacks is the worst. Eating at night and then going to bed is the surest way to gain weight.
Choose your food right. And choose the right timing. Good luck with your fasting journey!