Intermittent fasting has become popular in the last few years. Hundreds of thousands of people use fasting to lose weight, decrease inflammation, slow down aging, and more. It’s a straightforward tool for improving your health, and it gives you results quickly.
However, while fasting is simple, it isn’t necessarily easy. A lot of people struggle to start fasting regularly. Intermittent fasts can cause fatigue and hunger, especially at first, when your body isn’t used to going without food for more than a few hours.
That’s where mineral support comes in. A good mineral supplement can reduce hunger and keep your energy levels up, making it easier to stick to a fasting regimen. Minerals can even enhance the benefits of fasting, so you reach your health goals faster.
Here’s a look at intermittent fasting, and at how minerals can make your fasts easier and more effective.
What is Intermittent Fasting?
Intermittent fasting is simple: you go without food for a portion of the day, then eat all your calories within a shortened eating window.
For example, you may skip breakfast, then eat all your meals between 12 and 8 p.m. This would be a 16:8 fasting schedule—you fast for 16 hours, with an 8-hour eating window.
Fasting is flexible: anything over 14 hours is considered a fast, and you can set the eating window to meet your needs. While 16:8 fasting is the most popular, you may prefer other variations of fasting, including:
- 14:10 fasting. An easier daily fast, and a great place to start if you’ve never fasted before. With this schedule you have a 10-hour eating window (e.g. you only eat between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m.).
- 20:4 fasting. A longer, more intense daily fast with a 4-hour eating window (e.g. all your meals between 2 and 6 p.m.).
- OMAD fasting. An even more intense daily fast. OMAD stands for “one meal a day” and is self-explanatory—you only eat a single meal each day, and fast the rest of the time.
- Alternate-day fasting. In this fasting style you alternate between eating normally one day, then eating nothing the next day.
- 5-2 fasting. You fast on two nonconsecutive days every week, and eat normally the other five days.
It’s a good idea to take things slow with fasting. It’s recommended to start with a shorter fast, then increase the length of your fast after a week or two, once your body has adjusted.
A longer fast isn’t always better. It’s important to find a fasting length that feels good (and sustainable) for you.
Benefits of Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting has a number of health benefits. Research suggests that fasting is an effective tool for:
- Decreasing inflammation [*]
- Stable blood sugar [*]
- Lowering high blood pressure [*]
- Mental clarity [*]
- Better mood [*]
- Stronger immune function [*][*]
- Weight loss [*]
One of the ways that intermittent fasting works is that it activates “autophagy”, which is like spring cleaning for your cells. During autophagy, your cells break down any old or damaged parts and replace them with new versions that function better. As a result, your body becomes more efficient at a cellular level, which can be good for everything from immune function, to weight loss and brain function. [*]
In short, fasting is a powerful tool with a variety of health benefits.
Side Effects and Downsides of Intermittent Fasting
While fasting is amazing for you, it comes with a few challenges.
When you first start fasting, your body has to adapt to your new eating schedule by becoming more metabolically flexible. During fasting periods, you burn through your carbohydrate stores and enter a metabolic state called “ketosis”, which is when you burn primarily fat for fuel. People call this having a “fat-adapted” metabolism. It’s great for energy, focus, and weight loss, but if your body isn’t used to ketosis, you can run into side effects for the first couple weeks.
During the transition into fasting, many people experience:
- Brain fog
- Flu-like symptoms (called the “fasting flu” or “keto flu”)
- Muscle cramps
- Muscle weakness
- Sleep problems
- Food cravings
These symptoms usually go away once your body adjusts to fasting—but for beginners, they can make it difficult to stick to a fasting routine long-term.
That’s where we can help! A lot of the above symptoms are the result of mineral depletion during fasting. Fasting is great for you, but it taxes your body, especially when it comes to your mineral stores.
It’s important to provide non-caloric support to your cells during fasting periods. Doing so will prevent the side effects of fasting and decrease hunger and cravings, making it easier for you to fast.
Your Body Needs Minerals During a Fast
Your body is made of about 37 trillion cells, and every single one of them requires minerals to function.
You need minerals all the time, but when you fast, your mineral needs increase more than usual.
- You stop relying on carbohydrate stores during fasting, which leads you to excrete more water—and with that water, you also lose potassium and sodium, which you need to replace at a faster rate. [*]
- Your mitochondria (the power plants of your cells) produce more energy when you fast, which makes you feel great—but that uses use up a ton of minerals, and their increased activity means your mineral stores deplete more quickly. [*][*]
- Fasting reduces mineral concentrations in your muscle tissue, and according to a 2015 study, replenishing those minerals can make fasting easier and reduce side effects like muscle cramping and fatigue [*]
Dr. Mindy Pelz, best selling author of “Fast Like A Girl” teaches people how to start intermittent fasting as a lifestyle change. Dr. Mindy reports that, without proper mineral and electrolyte supplementation, people struggle and often fail. In order to fast consistently in a sustainable way, your body needs a lot of electrolytes and minerals.
Because our food supply is depleted of minerals, most people are mineral deficient even before starting intermittent fasting. When we begin fasting, the depletion can become critical.
How Minerals Make Fasting Easier
If you experience the symptoms you read about above—fatigue, brain fog, headaches, sleep problems, and so on—there’s a good chance you need more minerals during your fast.
The good news is that we make fasting support easy. Our full-spectrum mineral supplements provide all the minerals your body needs to sustain intermittent fasting, in the right ratios and bioavailable forms.
With BEAM Minerals, you don’t have to take electrolyte powders or a bunch of different pills to try to adjust to your fasting routine. All you need are two supplements: Electrolyze and Micro-BOOST. Together, they contain the full spectrum of minerals your body needs to fast. They come in a liquid form that reaches your cells within minutes, making them close to 100% bioavailable, and they taste like water.
If you’re going to start intermittent fasting, take ½ an ounce of Electrolyze and ½ an ounce of Micro-BOOST every morning. It takes 30 seconds, and it will give your body unmatched fasting support. With BEAM Minerals you can prevent mineral depletion, reduce hunger and cravings, improve your energy levels, speed up weight loss, and more.
BEAM Minerals makes intermittent fasting easy. Give it a try; you’ll feel the difference, right from your first fast.