Does intermittent fasting have a dangerous dark side?

(Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Moet & Chandon)
(Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Moet & Chandon) /

While many people follow intermittent fasting, does the diet have hidden dangers.

At the start of the new year, resolutions are many. For some, intermittent fasting seems to hold the promise of fulfilling those goals. From losing weight to a change in lifestyle, the way of eating might be seen as a magic pill. But, is there a downside to intermittent fasting?

Depending on the study, report or just word of mouth, everyone believes that one lifestyle plan is better than another. From Keto to Vegan to everything in between, everyone is looking for one way of healthy eating that makes them feel energized and look good.

Although it has long been said that there is no magic pill, a balanced lifestyle is often the most sustainable healthy eating plan. Still, people search for that edge or even quick fix.

Some people are drawn to intermittent fasting because it is restrictive yet not completely restrictive. Simply stated, certain times are spent fasting and other times are for eating. While the timing is restrictive the food eaten is not. Granted, no one is saying that anyone should eat 10,000 calories during the non-fasting times, it is not as regimented as a Keto diet.

As this way of eating has gained popularity, some people are worried about the dangerous dark side of these choices. In a recent NY Post article, people discuss the possibility that this “diet” can mask an eating disorder.

While any eating plan managed with care can be beneficial, some people can take this method of eating to the extreme. Skipping meals for too long or following a super restrictive methodology could mask another problem, like an eating disorder.

There is a difference between an eating disorder and an eating plan. Sometimes, an eating disorder is more about having control. It is far from a healthy eating lifestyle.

Although people debate this intermittent fasting method of eating, one aspect is clear. Any lifestyle choice needs balance. Avoiding food for too long can have a negative impact on health. From minimal energy to lack of concentration to a variety of other issues, refusing to eat is not an healthy eating plan.

While everyone should find a lifestyle choice that works for them, one word should guide any choice. Moderation can lead lasting change. The journey is a long one taken one step at a time.

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What is your advice to someone who is making a lifestyle change?