Contrary to widespread beliefs, eating more small meals during the day does not accelerate metabolism, and skipping meals does not fatten. Similarly with the problem of exercising with an empty stomach – training “for a hungry” will not ruin the effects of the effort you put into the exercise. It can be quite the opposite, because periodic fasting brings beneficial changes in the body.
- Short-term fasting results in improved body sensitivity to insulin. Too frequent food reduces this sensitivity and makes it difficult to burn body fat. Therefore, eating at longer intervals and allowing for the feeling of hunger causes the body to release insulin less often, which forces the body to increase sensitivity to its presence, which in turn facilitates the burning of fat tissue and improves muscle blood circulation.
- Short-term fasting combined with strength training and regular sleep causes higher secretion of growth hormone, which promotes the formation of muscle tissue and fat burning, and furthermore promotes longevity. In one study, it was discovered that fasting lasting 24 hours increases the level of growth hormone by 2000% in men and by 1300% in women! The level of the hormone returns to normal with the end of fasting.
- Short-term fasting combined with physical exercise also causes an increase in testosterone levels. This hormone promotes the building of muscle mass and reduction of body fat, adds energy, increases libido, prevents depression and heart disease in both women and men.
Physical effort, especially intense physical exercise, which requires simultaneous work of many muscles, most effectively raises testosterone levels. Combining it with a fasting, i.e. doing it on an empty stomach, is one of the ways to build muscle mass more effectively and increase the sensitivity of the body to insulin. This happens not only because of the increased secretion of hormones, but also because the body is more efficient in managing the nutrients that it provides after a short-term fast. Carbohydrates, proteins and fat are maximally utilized and minimally accumulate in the form of adipose tissue.
It has been proven that training on an empty stomach exceptionally effectively helps to lose weight and that organisms of people regularly training with an empty stomach are more and more effective in using fat as a source of energy for the effort, including the intense one.
People who are not interested in building muscle may also benefit from hunger strike. Fitness trainings performed on an empty stomach teach the organism more efficient glycogen storage – its stores can be renewed up to three times faster than those who train after a meal. It’s not everything. It has been proven that efforts carried out with an empty stomach significantly improve the body’s ability to use oxygen (VO2Max).
How to reasonably use the advantages of a short-lived fast?
First of all, a short-lived hunger strike is when you’re hungry and not refusing to eat all day long.
Secondly, after an exercise on an empty stomach, eat a meal, but you can do it at any time. You do not have to eat it right after the effort. The increase in hormone levels caused by fasting exercises will effectively prevent the burning of muscle tissue! Therefore, eat when you feel like it, not necessarily within 30 minutes after training.
Thirdly, fasting does not mean refusing liquids! Before training, you can drink coffee or tea without sugar, or any drink without calories.
Fourthly, not every training must take place “for a hungry person”. Even occasional exercises with an empty stomach will bring good results.
Fifth, each of us is different and that’s why training with an empty belly does not have to suit everyone. Training after a meal also brings results.