Intermittent fasting has been in the limelight for all its purported benefits. But between all the talks about how much weight can you lose with intermittent fasting, and whether you should combine IF with keto, we tend to overlook one crucial aspect. Can intermittent fasting have side effects? It turns out that consuming fewer calories can affect you in several ways. Besides, you can experience a few bumps on the road on the first few days of starting the diet. Here's how to tell if the fasting diet is not the best fit for you.
1. Feeling Hangry
While 'hangriness' is not a real word, it is a real feeling of grumpiness, grouchiness and irritability when your body goes without food. It is not easy to go without food for 16 hours, and you should not be starving first thing in the morning when you have taken enough protein at night. But if you are, it's a sign that your body is not adjusting well to the fasting and you need to make certain dietary adjustments.
2. Fatigue or Brain Fog
When you go too long without food, you might find yourself yawning over and over the mid-morning. Wading through a brain fog is a tip-off that you are not eating the right foods during non-fasting hours. Yes, you are allowed to eat whatever you wish on an intermittent diet, but you should still be feeding your body with nutritious foods that will make you healthy and strong. Intermittent Fasting Suitable For All? Dos & Don'ts For This Popular Weight Loss Diet
3. Low Blood Sugar
If you experience persistent headaches, nausea or dizziness during IF, it's a red flag that your diet may be throwing your blood sugars out of whack. IF can cause you to become hypoglycaemic, a dangerous condition for anyone with insulin or thyroid conditions. In fact, if you have diabetes, you should avoid any fasting diet. Intermittent Fasting, Noom Diet, Keto Ultra Diet Top the Most-Searched Diets in Google Year in Search 2019 Global List
4. Hair Loss
The lack of nutrients, especially protein and B vitamins and sudden weight loss can lead to hair loss. And while IF does not necessarily make you deficient of nutrients, it can be a challenge to eat a well-rounded diet when you are cramming a whole day's worth of munching into a couple of hours. Re-evaluate the nutrition content of your daily meal if you think you are losing more hair than usual.
Going 16 hours without food can also be a recipe for gastrointestinal issues. Any diet can cause digestive troubles if you are not getting enough fluid, proteins, vitamins and fibre. So if you have started an IF diet and can't seem to have your bowel movements regularly, it is time to hit a pause to your plan and speak to a nutritionist. Intermittent Fasting for Weight Loss: 4 Types of Diet That Can Help Burn Fat
6. Sleep Disturbances
While many people have reported improved sleep patterns with IF, a study published in the Journal of Nature and Science of Sleep found that IF causes a decrease in REM sleep. Getting enough REM sleep has been linked to better memory, concentration and cognitive processing. So, if you notice that you are finding it difficult to fall asleep after starting the IF diet, talk to your doctor to ensure that you are not hurting your health.
7. Irregular Periods
When you are consistently not getting enough calories every day, you might find your menstrual cycle slow down. Sudden weight loss can disrupt your typical hormone cycle and cause irregular periods. So, while you might be shedding pounds, you could be depriving your body of calories it needs to function.
IF can also bring about some pretty unhealthy eating habits, so if you find yourself binging on junk food, you may be better off with a diet that doesn't force you to restrict your eating hours.