IF question ****

While I was waiting for my first order of Huel to arrive, a friend gave me some info on IF. So I tried eating 200 calorie meals every 2 hours and only between 10 am and 8 ish. I noticed I was losing every day. Then my Huel came and I kept to the feeding window between 10 and 8, but not necessarily spreading my shakes out so I was consuming 200 ish calories every two hours. The weight loss has slowed. Does it make sense to consume smaller amounts more times per day?

Also, I have been drinking a cup of chicory tea every night before bed because for some reason it helps me sleep. I’ve googled, but am not finding anything that tells me for sure if this will break a fast.

@Deron, I’m hoping with your knowledge of IF, you can steer me in the right direction.

Thanks!

You will lose weight easily at first. As you lose weight the number of calories you need to continue to lose weight decreases.

So as an example, if you weighed 200lbs the calories required to lose weight might be 2200kcal. You then lose 10lb and at 190lbs you now need 2100kcal to lose weight, so if you continue to eat the same amount of food your weight loss will slow.

If you find that the tea helps you sleep and it’s not leading you to consume any significant calories outside of your window then there is no reason to stop drinking it. Technically that is breaking your fast but in the real world it’s helping you with no downsides, so why stop?

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Although each person is different, in general I think this type of food consumption is not very practical or something that can be sustained for life. and I’ve also seen examples of people who have done one meal a day. A giant meal once a day. And they have successfully lost weight or maintained a lean body mass. not that I’m advocating this. I don’t know if I could actually consume 2000 calories in one sitting. My stomach may not like that. remember, each time we eat our pancreas has to release insulin to deal with the rising blood sugar and the other macronutrients that are being digested. it seems to me that the body is more efficient by eating a substantial amount of food at less frequent intervals.

Personally, when I shed the extra body fat and was in the middle of my daily 16 he fast, I would eat bigger portions less often. 2 meals and a small snack within my 8 hour window.

But I will echo what Dan says. Weight loss will slow as you get closer to your ideal weight. many years ago I was even bigger than when I had started my IF plan. I remember going through a consistent weight loss for 8 weeks, and then going through an 8 week period where I didn’t lose a single pound. Frustrating. Even though I didn’t change anything about my diet the weight remained the same.
And then, magically, for no reason, the weight loss resumed. So, my advice is try not to micromanage the weight loss.

The body is complex and adjusts metabolic rates while at rest in response to other things. The body also tries to maintain homeostasis. We cannot rapidly lose weight for too long, because the body will try to protect itself from what it perceives as an eventual point of becoming too lean. it doesn’t understand that you are trying to lose weight to get to a specific goal size. It only understands that body fat is being lost rapidly and so it will enact countermeasures to try and slow this.

In regards to the chicory tea, it’s macronutrients are so small that drinking it would only induce a very very small insulin response. It’s not enough to break the fast in a significant way. For example, a cup of black coffee can be anywhere between 6 to 8 calories. Most people consider drinking black coffee something that doesn’t break your fast.

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Hey @HoniHen, weight loss definitely is not a linear progression. You will definitely see times of plateau or even possibly days where you mysteriously gain a pound or two. Don’t let it worry you. I experienced some of the same things @Deron mentioned. Steadily lose for 4-5 days then nothing for 3-4. And it will slow down in general as you get closer to your goal weight.

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Thanks @Deron. This is very helpful, and I’m glad to hear it. I’m too into my job to manage so many meals at work, so I can simply remove that pressure and wait and see how things go. I also find it hard to just sip my Huel. I like it, I like the mouthfeel, so taking in smaller amounts more times a day is likely never going to happen :slight_smile:. I’m happy the tea isn’t going to disrupt. Everything I read said the calories have to be significant, but what’s not significant to one, may be significant to another. I appreciate you giving me a definitive answer about this.

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Thanks K. This is so good to hear. I think I psyched myself out because I lost a pound a day for over a week just eating the 200 calorie meals, and drinking water. Then when I started on Huel it stopped and I’ve been at the same weight since. However, as much as I’d like to lose, Huel isn’t primarily about weight loss for me. It’s about having energy, and doing the right things for my body. The 200 calorie meals I was eating were not healthy for me; lots of cheese and too much sugar content. I feel much better now that I’m having Huel instead.

Since I made the decision to start Huel, I’ve given up soda, cut back on coffee to a certain degree, and eliminated creamer (I used to use lots of coffee-mate). I think I might give up my scale too!!

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Does multivitamin and a few other supplements taken at 7a have any impact on IF? I’m using a window of 12-8p, and wondered if “pills” is enough of a something to break the fasting.

The only two things I consume during my fasting window are water and coffee. Others might be able to chime in on this but I think you’ll be fine if you take your supplements during this time.

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Good question. It’s unlikely but you’re best to take your supplements with food/after a meal as this tends to help absorption.

I practice IF 18:6 6 days a week, with 1x 23:1 fast about once a week. and have been the past 7 months. Your body may have just be adjusting. Have you experimented with taking in more than 200 calories per meal, and stretching the time between a bit more?

Does it make sense to consume smaller amounts more times per day?

No. I’m not sure you friend has mentioned this, but when we constantly eat and eat (snacking too) throughout the day, we keep our insulin and blood-sugar levels high. Our bodies will constantly be at work burning glucose, and as a result, it will store more fat (if eating in excess), and burn less fat. Whether you’re eating small, medium, or large meals, your body will be at work metabolising the food. Eating more often means your body will never get a rest.