Feast and Fast: The Surprising Method to Melt Pounds Without Giving Up Your Favorite Foods

Tired of dieting and not seeing results? Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley have found a promising solution to help your body break down fat, slim your waistline, and still allow you to eat what you want. It’s called “alternative-day fasting.” This technique has you eating as much as you want on odd days while cutting calories on even days. It’s an effortless way to lose weight and maintain it.

How Does It Work?

Although it’s called “alternative-day fasting,” you’re still allowed to eat a small amount of food on the fasting days. The primary goal is not to strictly fast, but to reduce your calorie intake on fasting days significantly.

So, why does this diet seem to work? According to researcher Krista Varady of the University of Chicago, it is primarily because something in the body prevents dieters from binging on their “feed” days. Varady and her team believe hormone changes or stomach shrinkage could be the reasons behind this phenomenon.

Varady also suggests that exercising first thing in the morning on fasting days can accelerate weight loss. This way, you can burn calories faster and help your body adjust to the new routines.

Initial Weight-Loss Period

During the initial weight-loss period, it is essential to cut calories on fasting days to 25% of your regular calorie intake. This means, if you usually consume about 2,000 calories, you’ll need to eat only 500 calories on your fasting days. This significant reduction in calories will jumpstart your weight loss journey and allow your body to adapt to the new pattern.

Transition to Maintenance

Once your body becomes accustomed to the alternative-day fasting method, and you have achieved your desired weight goal, it is time to transition into a maintenance phase. In this phase, you can increase your calorie intake on fasting days to 50% of your normal caloric consumption. Going back to the 2,000 calorie example, you would now eat 1,000 calories on your fasting days. This increase in calories on fasting days will allow you to maintain your weight without gaining back the pounds you’ve worked hard to shed.

Benefits of Alternative-Day Fasting

Apart from the obvious benefit of weight loss, alternative-day fasting can improve various aspects of your health. Some of these benefits include:

  • Enhanced insulin sensitivity: Fasting has been known to improve insulin resistance, which can aid in controlling blood sugar levels.
  • Lowered blood pressure: Studies show that alternative-day fasting can help lower blood pressure in those with hypertension.
  • Reduced inflammation: Intermittent fasting has been linked to reducing inflammation in the body, which can improve overall health and decrease the risk of chronic diseases.

Who Should and Shouldn’t Try this Method?

As with any diet, it is vital to consult with a healthcare professional before embarking on a new weight loss journey. Alternative-day fasting may not be suitable for everyone. Pregnant and lactating women, individuals with eating disorders, and those with a history of heart issues should avoid fasting methods. Remember, the key is to find a sustainable and healthy weight loss approach tailored to your body and lifestyle.


In conclusion, alternative-day fasting is an effective and straightforward approach to weight loss. By eating as much as you want on odd days and significantly reducing calorie intake on even days, you can lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Coupled with exercising and other healthy lifestyle practices, you can continue to enjoy your favorite foods while still shedding those stubborn pounds. As always, consult a healthcare professional before trying the alternative-day fasting technique to ensure it aligns with your body’s needs and lifestyle.