Wellness Tuesday Tips: Intermittent Fasting Part Two - The Personal

By Cathy Smith

As with any new dietary regimen, be sure and consult your doctor before diving in.

What I’ve experienced with IF has been profound on all levels of health. The mental, emotional and physical benefits I’ve experienced as a result have wowed me and far exceeded my expectations. How often does that happen?

I spent years functioning on little sleep, which impacted my health and wellbeing. Menopause and life events caused cortisol, a stress hormone, to rise as a loud crack in the night that left me foggy headed and dull. Herbs, acupuncture, body work, breath work, meditation and exercise helped to a degree, yet it felt as if my sleep button had been permanently switched off. Can a person forget how to dose off?

Enter IF and eventually adopting a keto diet. Voilà! Restorative sleep swept over me like a welcome friend. Not to discount the value of all the other things I did and still do, but at last, true healing began.

What was my approach? First, I made an agreement to proceed with gentleness and care- to trust the process and let it evolve over time.

I started with 12/12 hour eating/fasting window and slowly extended my fasting time by one hour as my body felt accustomed to that window. I feel very comfortable at 14 hours of fasting, though I aim for 16 hours as that’s when autophagy occurs. Most days I stop eating by 4 pm; other days I stop later according to my social calendar.

Other delightful benefits are these: my body runs warmer, the numbness in my feet and toes is going away and creativity is up. I feel younger and stronger. Yippee!

True silence is the rest of the mind, and is to the spirit what sleep is to the body, nourishment and refreshment.

- William Penn