Read to know my top 5 tips to start circadian fasting
Circadian rhythm fasting is a time-restrictive eating plan that aligns all food consumption with our internal body clocks. A circadian diet involves eating during the daylight hours when our digestive system and metabolism are the most active. Eating stops after 7:00 P.M. because these internal processes slow down and become more dormant.
A typical day involves eating large meals earlier in the day and consuming a small meal in the evening in order to avoid blood sugar spikes and weight gain. There should be no further eating until breakfast the next morning!
Circadian rhythm fasting can speed up your metabolism, help you sleep better, improve your metabolic health and immunity and reduce your risk of diabetes. It is easy to practice because there are no strict changes—this system follows your natural bodily processes!
Tip #1: Make Sure to Eat Your Meals Earlier in the Day
Timing your meals earlier in the day will allow you to feel the benefits of this eating plan. Eat your first meal shortly after doing your fasted workout but make sure to get your morning sunlight first thing in the morning! You can extend your fasting window as long as you want—just make sure it fits within the light-dark cycle.
For example, Dr. Amy Shah begins her day with morning sunlight, stretching, exercise and eats her first meal between 10:30 - 11:00 A.M.
Tip #2: Limit Sugars and Refined Grains
Eating sugar foods and refined grains, such as white flour, will make your blood sugar spike after meals. If your diet consists mainly of sugary foods or foods like white rice, pasta and bread, it can cause poor sleep and digestive issues while your body is trying to rest. If you enjoy these foods, please eat them earlier in the day when your insulin response is more sharp.
Nuts, seeds, fruits (berries), vegetables, lean protein (sprouted tofu), whole grains and beans are the ideal foods to eat.
Tip #3: Avoid Eating at Night
Snacking or eating meals during the evening or late at night can disrupt your circadian rhythm. Avoid eating during your fasting window to allow your body to rest and recover. Staying up late and eating heavily at night will slow down melatonin production and make it much harder for you to fall asleep.
If you need to eat, have a tea with stevia or a spoonful of nut butter to make it through the night!
Tip #4: Follow a Consistent Daily Schedule
To stabilize and strengthen your circadian rhythm, try to get up and go to bed at the same time every day. Try to eat around the same times each day and do not overeat during your eating windows—plan your eating times and your meals out each day.
Tip #5: Get Plenty of Light During the Day, Not at Night
Light exposure is essential to maintaining your circadian rhythm. Light exposure in the morning through your retina sets off a cascade of biological actions that make you feel awake and energized. Avoiding light exposure in the evening can stimulate melatonin production and improve your ability to fall asleep—this also means limiting the use of electronic screens close to your bedtime!