Is Intermittent Fasting Safe After Weight Loss Surgery

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If you are on a journey to weight loss, then there is no doubt that you have come across the concept of “intermittent fasting”. Quickly catching on as a healthy alternative to a full-scale diet, it is becoming a rising fad in the health and lifestyle world.

What Is Intermittent Fasting?

Unlike a diet, which changes your meal plan, intermittent fasting is bringing about a change in the pattern of when you eat. Most intermittent fasting plans work in a ratio, 16:8, 13:11, and so on. One consumes food for the shorter fraction (8 hours, for instance), and then does not eat for the remainder of the hours of the day. A good chunk of this non-eating period is at night, when one is sleeping.

The science behind this is simple. The body is usually in two states in relation to eating: “fed” and “fasting”. The fed state is when insulin levels are higher to help digest food – during this time it is almost impossible to burn any fat. The fasting state is only achieved after the fed state is over (usually 5 hours after a meal).

In a normal eating pattern, this state is difficult to achieve if we eat our next meal before the first fed cycle is over. But with IF, the body is given a chance to access fat that needs to be burned once the insulin levels go down again.

Is Intermittent Fasting Safe After Weight Loss Surgery?

There is no clear cut answer to this question, unfortunately. On the one hand, intermittent fasting helps with portion control and makes it easier to transition into the post-surgery lifestyle. Moreover, since fasting attacks fat stores, it does not have any negative effect on the protein the body needs to recover.

However some specialists feel that intermittent fasting can deter post-op recovery, since it is important for patients to have a constant intake of vital nutrients. The best way to know if intermittent fasting is safe for you is dependent on your specific body type, and the nature of your weight loss surgery.

Discussing intermittent fasting as a post-op lifestyle choice is one that needs to be made under the guidance of experienced medical staff, at Dr. David Davtyan’s, we ensure that your medical history decides what is the best diet choice for you for weight loss post- surgery. Talking to your medical team is the only way to know for sure.

Posted on behalf of Dr. David G. Davtyan MD, FACS, FICS

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