Intermittent Fasting 101: How to Drop Fat and Build Muscle Fast

What is intermittent fasting? Here’s what you need to know:

Have you heard all the buzz about intermittent fasting?

Everyone from The Rock, Wolverine, and even the lead singer of Coldplay swear that fasting is the silver bullet to fat loss and muscle gains.

Others, however, say fasting will destroy your thyroid and make you fat.

And many, especially in traditional media, confuse intermittent fasting with starving yourself.

Personally, I enjoy the practice of eating my “breakfast” later in the day. I often eat my first meal of the day around noon or even later. And no, my muscles didn’t fall off when I started eating less often.

In fact, when I first experimented with fasting and feasting 4 years ago, I gained muscle.

See how you can gain muscle by eating less often. Abel James went from 148 lbs. to 168 lbs. using intermittent fasting. Learn more:


Against the relentless onslaught of advertising that taunts our deep-seated, primal urge to eat as often as we can, willpower isn’t enough. Every thirty seconds, most of us are interrupted by a boisterous distraction that demands our gustatory attention.

“Quarter-Pound Hamburger for 99 cents!”
“Pizza! Pizza!”
“Hungry? Grab a Snickers!”

Unlike our ancestors, who spent all day chasing a beast and all evening enjoying it, the smells, sights, and sizzles of food nag at us 24/7. In a world where everyone is eating all the time, it’s difficult to know when we should actually eat.

As it turns out, three square meals a day—breakfast, lunch, and dinner—is arbitrary, more a cultural artifact than a biological necessity.

The modern man isn’t just eating more than he ever has but—critically—more often than he ever has. Click To Tweet

Eating from dawn to dusk gives our bodies a steady stream of glucose, damaging in excess. Without a break from the taxing requirements of digestion, most of our population is faced with insulin resistance, weight gain, and disease.

Fasting and Feasting” or “Intermittent Fasting” is what I call a rhythm of meal timing that maximizes the hormonal benefits of cycling caloric intake. Instead of eating many meals throughout the day, fasting and feasting gives you a compressed eating window (typically 16 hours of fasting with 8 hours of feasting).

While skipping just the occasional meal can be beneficial, cycling periods of fasting (usually in the morning) and feasting (usually at night) can aid detoxification, encourage fat burning, and improve immune function.

What is intermittent fasting? Here’s what you need to know:

Fasting and feasting isn’t meant to be dogmatic—it’s simply the concept that your body thrives by following a cyclical approach to eating and digestion.

By one definition, fasting means “to abstain from all food.” But it also means “to eat sparingly, or of certain types of foods.”

For the most part, I’m talking about the latter, less draconian definition. In the same way that our muscles and bodies recover from plenty of rest, wouldn’t it hold that our digestive system would benefit from an occasional break from food?


If you could put the mental, physical, and spiritual benefits of fasting in a pill, you would make billions. The many benefits of fasting include:

  • Promoting human growth hormone production, which helps your body burn fat, build muscle, and slow the aging process.
  • Normalizing insulin sensitivity, which prevents chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer.
  • Regulating ghrelin levels, also known as “the hunger hormone.”
  • Decreasing triglyceride levels.
  • Reducing inflammation and free radical damage.
While most nutritionists argue that we eat too much, I argue that we simply eat too often. Click To Tweet

By under-eating most of the day and filling up at night, most people also find that they eat significantly less food (and save money) once they start fasting. Let’s dig a little deeper.


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Since the 1930s, animal studies have been telling us that restricting calories improves health and longevity. Until recently, we believed that it was necessary to “starve yourself” to reap the benefits.

But you can actually trim your waistline, improve your biomarkers of health, and increase your longevity without the pain, suffering, and hunger that comes along with restriction. Fasting works, too, but since it’s difficult for Big Food to profit from people going without their food, most of the benefits of skipping meals don’t make it into common wisdom.

There’s a monumental difference between “common” and “normal,” however. Today, more than 67% of us in the United States are overweight or obese. Being overweight is common. But it’s not normal.

Fasting, on the other hand, is historically quite normal but isn’t common in a world abundant with drive-thrus, meal-replacement shakes, and “eating 6+ times a day is healthy” dogmatism.

For millions of people across the world, regular fasting is commonplace and has been part of spiritual practice for thousands of years.

But before that, fasting was simply a way of life. With no storable grains, and few other foods that stayed fresh for very long, most of our ancestors experienced both feast and famine on a regular basis. When game was scarce, seasons changed, or the pickings were slim, hunter-gatherers did without.

To reap the full rewards of the Wild lifestyle, you might consider going without occasionally, too.

Eating all the time is not normal. But the good news is that when you get into a pattern of fasting and feasting on healthy low-carb foods, you can feel better, look better, and create your new normal.


If you’re over the age of thirty, and especially if you lead a sedentary lifestyle, you’ve likely entered a phase known as somatopause, or age-related growth hormone deficiency.

Natural production of growth hormone declines beginning in our twenties, leading to a reduction in lean body mass and bone mineral density and an increase in body fat— especially abdominal fat.

As growth hormone declines over time, you begin to look and feel older.

Here’s the good news: Fasting sets in motion a hormonal chain of events that not only burns fat but also protects hard-earned muscle.

After approximately sixteen to twenty-four hours in a fasted state, our bodies release a massive surge of growth hormone.

One study showed that while fasting for twenty-four hours, human growth hormone increased an average of 1,300% in women and nearly 2,000% in men.

But be careful: Depending on your unique situation, many find that you do begin to lose muscle with fasts that are longer than twenty-four hours.

Listen to your body and eat when you’re hungry. Another activity that can lead to a dramatic increase in growth hormone is high-intensity interval exercise like the Wild 7 Workout. Combining fasting with high-intensity exercise can provide synergistic effects to boost growth hormone.

In adulthood, the presence of growth hormone leads to a healthier body composition.

Growth hormone:

  • Keeps your body lean
  • Increases synthesis of new protein tissues to promote muscle recovery and repair
  • Decreases fat accumulation
  • Strengthens bones
  • Protects your organs from the decline that occurs with age
  • Promotes healthy hair and nail growth
  • Improves circulation
  • Gives a more favorable cholesterol profile
  • Decreases signs and symptoms of aging

Did I mention that fasting is free and you can start right now?

Fasting signals your cells that it’s time to focus the body’s energy on conserving, restoring, and repairing your body’s internal machinery.

You can think of fasting as “cleanse” mode, where your cells scavenge your body for free radicals, agents of disease, and damaged cells and recycles them to conserve energy.

The trade-off is that too much fasting can stress the adrenals, so occasional luxurious feasting can actually help keep the body in balance.


Discover how to drop fat with chocolate, bacon, and cheesecake. Plus: learn the 3 worst foods you should NEVER eat and the 7 best exercises for rapid fat loss. Click below to to claim your FREE gift ($17 value)!


Would you eat donuts for a “healthy” breakfast? Believe it or not, most products marketed as heart-healthy “breakfast foods”—cereal, granola, oatmeal, bagels, yogurt, and muffins—pack more sugar than a deep-fried, sugar-coated Krispy Kreme donut.

Some cereals are even packed with more processed sodium than a bag of potato chips.

Cereal is a shining example of a product that Big Food intentionally mislabels to make it appear “healthier” than it actually is.

Honey Smacks contain more than 50% sugar, and Apple Jacks, Froot Loops, and Corn Pops all contain 12 grams of sugar and almost zero fiber in the paltry serving listed on the side of the box.

For perspective, a glazed donut from Dunkin’ Donuts also contains 12 grams of sugar.

Surprised? When you look at the ingredients in cereal and donuts, you really don’t see much of a difference. Donuts are made from processed flour, sugar, and industrial oil.

Cereal is made from processed flour, sugar, and . . . industrial oil.

Here’s why that’s a problem: Nobody eats a donut for breakfast and thinks they’re doing themselves a favor. But how many people eat cereal for breakfast (or dinner) and assume that it’s good for them?

People who start their days with carb-y, high-glycemic foods like cereal, muffins, bagels, and fruit juice ignite a vicious cycle of hunger and snacking.

The flood of insulin in the hours following breakfast leads to low energy, brain fog, nagging cravings and hunger throughout the day.

As any endurance athlete or adventurer quickly learns, most of your energy comes not from what you eat for breakfast but from your dinner the night before.

The more nourishing and substantial your evening feast, the more you can do or longer you can go without eating the next day.

Eating your most substantial meal in the evening can help release endorphins, improve sleep quality, reduce next-day hunger, and provide energy to fuel activities the next morning.


How do you start? Simple. Tomorrow, make lunch your first meal. If you stop eating at 8pm and don’t eat until noon the next day, that’s sixteen hours of fasting— perfect for stimulating growth hormone, which boosts metabolism, builds muscle, and slows aging.

The fact that you sleep through the majority of your fast makes it relatively painless. If you’ve trained your body to expect food every two hours, then you might feel hungry the first few times you try fasting. But it will all be in your head.

Running just on the fat stored in their bodies, most Americans could walk from New York to Florida without technically needing a bite to eat. Give yourself a week or two for your body to relearn how to run on fat, and you’ll find fasting gets easier.

Fasting shouldn’t feel like forcing yourself not to eat food. @fatburnman Click To Tweet

While fasting, you’re liberated from having to think about food so you can spend your energy elsewhere.

That little voice that usually nags every few minutes, “Hey, is it time to eat? I think it’s time to eat!” now has a response that works every time. “There’s an epic feast coming tonight,” you might say. “No need to bother me until then.” After all, you have important things to do today.

The best day for your first fast is your day off, perhaps Sunday, so you won’t fall prey to the stress of the workday.

Do your best to get plenty of sleep and have a satisfying feast the night before your first fast to keep cortisol in check.


Here’s an example of what today’s meal plan can look like:

8:00am: Fatty coffee or bone broth
Noon: Giant salad, leftovers, eggs, or a green smoothie
6:00pm: Bacon Cheeseburgers with a side salad, and Choconut Cookies for dessert

If you fast from 8pm till noon the next day, that’s 16 hours… easy, right? #TheWildDiet Click To Tweet

When is the best time to work out, you ask? Generally, re-feeding with carbs and protein is best directly following the workout to maximize recovery and the anabolic response. I tend to lift in late afternoon and re-feed in the evening.


True hunger is generally experienced in the body and brain, not in the stomach. If you get light-headed or weak, or your workout suffers, you’re probably fasting too much.

It may take some practice, but once you reconnect with the feeling of true hunger, you can follow your body’s lead and eat whenever the feeling strikes.

Whenever you get hungry, ask yourself:

  • Am I thirsty? Drink water and cravings may subside.
  • Have I had my fill of greens and fiber today? Go for a salad, veggies, or a green smoothie.
  • Am I emotional or bored? Wait twenty minutes, go for a walk, or exercise.
  • Did I drink alcohol recently? Your body is probably tricking you into thinking you’re hungry because your insulin is out of whack.
  • Have I eaten my fill of protein today? Grab some.
  • Did I eat sugar, grains, fried food, or other “carbage”? Your insulin and blood sugar are unstable. You probably don’t need more food. Wait it out.
  • Have I exercised today? Try it and you might find you’re not hungry anymore.
  • Am I fasting too much? Go ahead and eat. Bonus if you make raw green veggies the first thing to hit your belly.


There are certain circumstances under which intermittent fasting isn’t ideal or shouldn’t be used. While it is an effective tool, everyone’s biochemistry is different and can vary at different stages or times in your life.

You should NOT use intermittent fasting if you are:

  • Suffering from adrenal fatigue. Adrenal fatigue can occur when you are under a lot of intense stress, have suffered an infection or illness, or are severely sleep-deprived. Adrenal fatigue makes you very tired, and it affects the way you metabolize your food.
  • Pregnant or nursing. To sustain the increased caloric needs of growing baby and/or milk production, you should be eating regularly.
  • Have or are recovering from an eating disorder. It’s important to have and maintain a healthy relationship with food. If you have an eating disorder, please seek professional help. If you are recovering from an eating disorder or have struggled with eating disorders in the past, please do not use intermittent fasting as a weight-loss tool.
  • Are a child. Children are growing while they sleep and need a good quality breakfast to replenish their spent energy. An ideal should not include fruit juice or grains, but rather protein and vegetables like a Green Monster Frittata or boiled eggs, meat, and vegetables.
  • Consult your healthcare professional prior to beginning a fast if you have any condition you are concerned will be negatively affected by a change in diet.

Because of the female hormone cycle, intermittent fasting may not be as effective for some women. However, other women find it to be an incredibly useful tool either on a regular basis or during specific times when they want to tone up quickly.

If you’ve been watching “My Diet is Better Than Yours” on ABC, you know that my contestant Kurt has been getting incredible results using intermittent fasting. He feels great, he’s losing weight, and he’s eating delicious food!

50 pounds lost in 6 weeks, and he’s not hungry. You can’t argue with that! #MyDietIsBetterThanYours Click To Tweet


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You’ll get a 30-day meal plan full of mouthwatering meals that can be used with or without intermittent fasting, tons of information about how to burn fat fast, a shopping guide, a motivational journal, and your 30-day fat-loss manual… all for a reduced price!

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Get step-by-step meal plans to burn fat, improve performance, and eat outrageously good food:

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  1. Fat Burning Man ~ Do you intermittent fast every day of the week typically? Or do you take a day here or there off? And is there a benefit to doing weeks at a time, and then taking a break or just making it a daily ritual if its working for you? Thanks for your time.

    P.S. I am a 30 year old woman, who has been seeing weightless and energy gain by intermittent fasting daily. I would like to keep it up, but not sure if taking “intermittent” breaks from I. Fasting would also help being female..

    • I eat my first meal around noon or later on most days. However, it’s nice to take a break from fasting from time to time – on weekends, when you’re especially stressed, or if you’re feeling a little run down are all good examples of when you might want to eat more regularly. And be careful of under-eating for days or weeks on end – it’s still important to make sure you get enough energy (primarily fat) from your food to help your body feel and perform at its best.

      As always, listen to your body! 🙂

      • melanie cajigas says:

        I am starting the “Wild Diet” Monday. I am doing a spiritual fast beforehand, but was wondering what sweetener can I use for my coffee? I do not like unsweetened coffee, but I want to follow the principles of the diet.

          • Abel, I had been a user of stevia in my coffee during fasting. But then I read The Obesity Code by Dr. Jason Fung, and in it he says that Stevia triggers a high insulin response than sugar. So I’ve been avoiding that as well.

  2. I LOVE intermittent fasting!

    I do it 5/6 days a week, 16/8 fast for almost a year now with no problems. The only time I don’t fast is when I go on vacation, that week I take a break from fasting but when I get home, it’s back to fasting.

    I do my workouts in the morning, completely fasted as well. It took about 3 weeks for my body to adapt to this new lifestyle, and now that it has, it’s just amazing!

    • Thank you for this response. I am starting week two. I also work out first thing in the morning and survive only on Coffee and BCAA’s. I am waiting for that no hunger feeling in the morning and hoping it comes soon!!

  3. i’ve been doing this for years, before i found out it was a thing. it just works for me, i like to eat late and don’t feel like eating throughout the day. generally i fast between midnight and 4pm, sometimes i’ll go till 9/10pm … i don’t do it like this everyday, now and then i’ll eat breakfast, or eat earlier for whatever reason.
    i also work out on an empty stomach

    my question concerns fatty coffee or broth (or, for this englishman, black tea with a splash of milk) – is this technically taking you out of your fast, and do you still get the benefits of the increased hormone release?


    • Hi John, great question and I’m glad that fasting works well for you!

      Just a splash of milk, cream, coconut oil, butter, etc. in your coffee won’t sacrifice the hormonal benefits of fasting. Just stay away from sugars and carbs in favor of fat and you should feel like a rockstar!

  4. Hi Abel,
    I work out (crossfit) most days at 5:30 am. Not sure I want wait to re feed until lunch time. Would it make a difference if I fasted from afternoon through til breakfast…basically just skipping dinner instead of breakfast? Thanks, Rick

  5. Hey Abel,

    Just curious if you drink both the bulletproof coffee and the bone broth daily? If so do you drink them both in the morning? What do you like to add to your bone broth? Thanks for all the great podcasts and up to date information.


  6. Robert Mellqvist says:

    Hello Abel!
    I have been on lchf for about 4 years, going more paleo last year as I have started lifting weights and doing more cardio.
    I usually do my exercise in the am and drink a proteindrink (milk protein) afterwards. Very little fat in it. Should I change my intake after workout containing more fat, reducing protein?

    Gonna start watching my diet is better than yours, finally a better concept than biggest loser.

  7. When you say have the coffee or bone marrow should you only have one cup then drink water the rest of the day till noon I can eat a salad or etc then drink more water till dinner?

  8. Whereas I have done the 16/8 approach and skipped breakfast and saw good results, I also like breakfast food (eggs, bacon, etc.) and am usually out an about at lunch time so can’t cook it and eat it hot (the best way). As a result, I’ve been eating breakfast and dinner only so it’s more like 12/12, give or take. What are your thoughts on that? Does it defeat the purpose as the fasting window isn’t long enough? I also only eat protein at breakfast (70g or so) and save my carbs for dinner and preferably after lifting. Thoughts on that? Thanks for the post. I’m going to share it because people always give me weird looks when I tell them I’m fasting and I don’t explain it well enough.

    • Interesting – I’d love to hear how this goes – generally folks doing IF find it easier to skip breakfast or dinner so I don’t hear much about this strategy. Keep us updated!

  9. I got the idea from Marks Daily Apple. In his articles on IF, he talks about three approaches: The 16/8, the breakfast/dinner, or the organic fast (skipping meals if not hungry/can’t eat right then and not on a specific schedule). His main point is that it’s not as important that you do it a certain way but rather that you work it in as it makes sense for you and in a way that works for you. I also do a 24 hour fast one day a week. I think it’s working well because I’ve recently started building a business and having time to work out is a challenge. I’ve mainly been doing your 7 minute workout 3-4 times a week and some walking. I’ve maintained my weight well and haven’t gained fat or lost much muscle.

  10. Awesome book!!!
    I can do broth in the AM – which is fine. I survive the mornings fine, until about 10:30 – then get wobbly (guessing that will go away as my ability to burn fat gets better). IF is a wild experience, I’ve done 24hrs in the past, and it sure wakes you up – if you think you can’t do it, you learn something about yourself!
    But I CANNOT do fatty coffee… I had a cup of it with 1tablespoon butter and a little bit of xylitol (easing into the sugarfree coffee – the last bastion of a sugary life for me)… TASTES AWESOME…wait 10 minutes….nearly threw it up. My stomach totally revolted on that one. Super self control, deep breathing, and no barfing thank you. But I’m not sure I want to repeat that EVER. Anybody else have that experience???

  11. I enjoyed MDIBTYD and read your book yesterday. I’d like to do the intermittent fasting. I’m confused by one thing.

    You suggest exercising as late into the fast as possible. You also suggest that a post-workout meal will likely include good tier 2 carbs. But the book describes your first meal in various places as a low-carb and low-calorie, light foods, and raw foods, with the real feast coming later for dinner. You also suggest exercise most if not all days of the week, so I don’t think my confusion is related to workout days vs non-workout days.

    I’m planning to fast from 10PM until 2PM. I’m planning to do a short cardio HIIT workout (warm up, 1 minute on/ 1 min off, cool down) of 15-20 minutes around 1:15PM 2-3 times a week. Around 8:30 PM I will be doing a 25-40 minute full body resistance program 5-6 nights a week.

    Should I make my two meals similar to one another and eat two smaller versions of your typical feast meal? Or is my afternoon cardio plan something that shouldn’t require the same sort of nutritional recovery as the resistance training will, thus making a smaller raw meal and a larger cooked feast still applicable?

    Thanks for your guidance. I just turned 50 and I am starting in on my 2nd body transformation (in the proper direction). About 15 years ago, I went from a 44 inch waist to a 29, maintained for 5 years and blew back up to a 44 over the last 10 years or so. I was an advocate of the 6-8 feedings per day, but dealing with food was all-consuming and regular life intruded so I quit! I think that the int. fasting strategy is a better fit for my lifestyle and other commitments, so I am anxious to make the most of it.

  12. Hi, Wondering if IF should be done for a certain span of consecutive days? Does 2 days of IF followed by 1 day off then 2 or 3 back on hinder it’s effectiveness?? Also, I’m about to switch from counting MACROS and being on a very high carb count and very low fat to this style of eating… Can I incorporate IF with Fatty Coffee immediately or should I give my body time to adjust to the reduced carbs and added fat in my meals??

    • Hey Mary. I’ve been doing the 16/8 IF every day for the past year and it has made a remarkable difference in my health and well-being. I am 64 and a year ago was 100 pounds overweight, blood sugar over 400 and as the guy says “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead”. One year later and I’ve lost 12″ in my waist, BMI is 23.6, given up alcohol, sugar, gluten and feel better than I have in the past 40 years. IF has played a big part in getting things like my triglycerides and cholesterol levels optimized as well as helping with my sleep cycles and patterns. So I guess the short answer is “do it every day”. Before you know it you will never notice you’re doing it.

  13. Nazish Kalani says:


    I have been following you since I watched the show “my diet is better than yours”. It is pure fate that I came to know about the show by switching channels. I am travelling at the moment and would have never heard about the show in my home country. Anyhow, I am in my early 30s and been looking to burn fat for last 2 years but haven’t been able to. I am not over weight, jus fat that I wanna get rid off and get toned. Since I started listening to your podcasts and reading your blog i got this belief that this is definately for me. I tired 2 days of intermittent fasting, felt so much better, active , high energy levels, focuses. I just ordered your book from Amazon and plan to do intermittent fasting and follow the wild diet once I get home. Having said that I didn’t came across many females following fasting and feasting method or this diet. Also been reading about hormonal imbalance in women coz of fasting or consuming high fat. Is it true?? How about fasting alternate days along with following wild diet on other days. Really looking forward to your guidance here. Thanks a lot!

  14. Hi Abel, great article and I really enjoy your work. I am just starting to experiment with a ketogenic diet and want to implement IF as a part of that. Question for you though: I work out early in the morning, usually the 5AM class. I’ll have some fatty coffee before hand and that works great to get me through my workout. But after my workout am I okay to have a post workout protein shake (I use Progenix or 3Fu3l) or will this throw off the benefits of fasting? I’ve always read your body needs the protein after a workout but feel like I should be waiting until later in the day to start eating to truly experience the benefits of IF and/or ketosis. Your thoughts and advice are appreciated. Thanks so much!

  15. How much fatty coffee and bone broth can you have in the morning? Can I have two cups of broth (16G protein) and a bulletproof/fatty coffee in the AM and not ruin it? I know its not carbs but its a decent amount of calories.

  16. I’m trying to find a good protien shake to supplement on of my meals and am having trouble identifying a safe one because of all the “additives”. I know you probably can’t suggest a specific name brand or product but can you point me in the direction of what to look for and what to avoid? For instancr, finding one without soy protein isolate is increasing in difficulty. Thanks in advance for your reply!

    • Vega One is Non-GMO project verified, vegan certified, low-glycemic, gluten-free, and made without dairy or soy ingredients. I have only tried the chocolate but I know they make other flavors. Hope this helps!!

  17. Hi Abel, Love your podcasts! Where do you recommend getting the bones for bone broth? Can you get them from the grocery store? I live in a metropolitan area…Orange County which is south of Los Angeles. Thanks!

  18. Hey Abel,

    Living in NOLA and working a job that has 10 hr days as a minimum, has wrought havoc upon my physique. So I recently began eating Sensible Portions of real food, and utilizing a 24 hour fast(noon to noon) once per week. Usually after lunch on Saturday until lunch on Sunday. Amazingly, I’ve lost 38 lbs. in 7 weeks and I’ve yet to do a single workout. Although that is about to change. Now that I feel a little more mobile, I’m going to start incorporating some of your Wild Workouts to ensure I don’t plateau anytime soon. Thanks for the inspiration.


    • Hello. I’m type 2 diabetic. I started intermittent fasting 16/8 at the beginning of this year (2016). I’ve lost 16 pounds. My insulin sensitivity has improved, which means I take less insulin. It’s helped me greatly!

  19. HI Abel:

    Question. I have played around with IF but I run into issues. I am a female, very active. I like to workout in the morning fasted. But I get SO hungry by 10… suggestions? I’d love to try to make this work to see if it helps. I also tend to have low blood sugar, so I am sure this could be beneficial long term.

    Thank you

  20. my question is about the exercise, 45 min.walk every day, 7 min work out 2-3 times a week, and weights 2 times a week 45 min sessions with some light yoga here and there, does that work for the program,I started the program a week ago, my first week I did i would say 90% of what program asks for,yet i only lost 1 lb,I am diabetic and my number before starting had gone up,may be that is the reason for the dismal results?

  21. I’ve been doing intermittent fasting, along with fatty coffee (or tea) for one month. I started while listening to the Wild Diet audiobook. It took a couple days for the hunger pangs to go away, which I already knew were false hunger signals from days when I used to fast, years ago.
    I only had two days in the one month where I took breaks from intermittent fasting because I felt like I needed to eat instead. One of those days I was very run down after a big moving day.
    I’m female and 31 years old. I’m already what’s considered a “healthy weight.” I lost 3 lbs in 3 weeks, but mainly lost inches, and I can see the difference in where I felt puffy with fat and now feel and look more lean.
    My hope is to heal my teeth, and boost my immune system.

  22. Hi Abel,
    I just purchased your 30 day plan. I’ve been reading up and looking at everything. All the meals look great. There’s only one problem for me. I’m allergic to sea food/Fish. So I can’t do wild salmon. Can I switch the wild salmon feast with a different one? Or what would you prefer to eat in the wild salmons place? Thanks!

  23. Hey Abel!
    I just love, love your podcast and tell everyone I know about you! I had a question about BCAAs. Can I take them before or after a workout without sacrificing my fast? Also, would you recommend a morning or afternoon exercise regimen?

  24. I am 60 and 80lbs over what I want to weigh. (I weigh 320 @ 6’4″ and was into body building in my 30’s. Back then, I had just under 200lbs of lean muscle and bone.) I also now have a computer running my heart (CRT-D) and have type 2 with an A1C hovering around 6.3-7.0. The CRT-D has a ‘cap’ on my BPM of 140, so as soon as I get over 120bpm, it starts shutting me down ….in a hurry! (Prior to getting it, I had to crawl to cross the living room. Now I’m back in my home wood shop creating my own line of furniture to fill my home, and I walk 90% of WallyWorld and Costco twice a week, …not fast, but I get there.) I also lost a kidney to cancer back in ’87, but the other one has taken over nicely. I have a salt limitation as well, consuming – or fight to consume – less than 600mg/meal, though most are around 800. Adding all of those up, weight loss – especially to have a good intense workout – is impossible.

    Now, I LOVE meat! After watching My Diet Is Better Than Yours, I was hooked! Raised around a prairie farm in Canada, I also LOVE FAT, especially beef and bacon. I even enjoy chicken (and veggies) cooked in its own fat/grease. YUMMM!

    On starting your plan, one of the first things I did was go through my cupboards and remove all the carb based products; never much cared for them, but ate them because I was told ‘I had to’.

    It’s been 3 weeks on your Wild Diet, and nothing has happened on the scale. While I do notice my pants fit differently, I have yet to lose a pound, and am up actually 2lbs from yesterday. My only indulgence from my past is my morning creamer in my 2 cups of coffee. That said, last week, I discovered it contains high fructose corn syrup. I’ve tried to make my own French Vanilla, but just can’t match the ID taste. Since I consume between 1/3 to 1/2 a cup of the creamer a day, how much would that amount of high fructose corn syrup disrupt the Wild Diet? Could that be the reason? Or because muscle weighs more than fat, am I actually regaining some of my lost muscle? I’m keeping the faith, but sure could use some answers.

    BTW, regarding fasting, I used to only eat one meal a day, but was screamed at by my doctor of nutrition, an ‘all natural’ body builder. I would like to return to it, having only my morning coffee and a mug bone broth at around 10pm, but need to know if I’m doing the right thing. Thoughts?

  25. Chris Thibodeaux says:

    Hi Able. I am a nurse who has to wake up @ 4:30 in the morning M-F. I have my fatty coffee @ 6am, and I find myself hungry @ 9-10 am. Being a nurse my work will sometimes let me breakfast and a lot of times not. Is it ok to eat earlier since I wake up a lot earlier? I usually eat 4 whole eggs for my first meal, no carbs. Thanks for any advice.

  26. Abel, I’m
    Still quite confused about the role of sugars like coconut palm, honey
    Maple syrup. I love your naked goods and still crave sweets a bit though much less. Is it ok to eat every day in small quantities if weight loss is a goal
    Thanks Lynn

  27. Hi Abel,

    I am trying IF for couple weeks and I feel great, but since IF I have been stop taking my vitamin pill, I am not sure it is ok to take vitamin pill while IF, so Abel do you have any advice to me? Thanks!!
    I enjoy your podcast show so much (specially Shaun T interview ) and I learn a lot from your show~ thanks again!

  28. Hi!

    Bought the book and joined the tribe.

    Have been applying your principles for 3 months and down 10 pounds, but really enjoy the mental clarity.

    Quick question: I am 44 and already was very fit and nothing but your program really worked to get the stubborn little bit of remaining weight off. I thought I had reached my goal which is 125 pounds, but when I look in the mirror…still jiggly in the thighs and but! Help! Any hacking methods? Already doing the intermittent fasting from 8pm til noon. Already placing my carbs late in the day.

    I would REALLY love your help!!

  29. Hi Abel,

    I read the part about adrenal fatigue. How is this something you would know if you have? The reason I ask is I am hypothyroid which affects much of my hormone function and lately I have been feeling more run down than usual. I am looking for something to help with my weight loss as I’ve tried many things and have had little success. I am hoping that this will be the plan that will work for me. I have always had a hard time incorporating breakfast into my diet as I just am not generally hungry early and don’t think about eating. Have been told to many times that I am not eating enough but I usually eat when I feel hungry unless I’m busy and don’t have time to eat. Please help…I’m 40 and know I am dying at 400lbs

  30. Dustin Mitchell says:

    Abel! I love it! After doing Weight Watchers for years I’ve always heard that not eating breakfast would slow down your metabolism. I’ve heard you don’t want to go more than two hours after waking up without food or you will get fat fast. well Weight Watchers was never longterm successful for me. I lost 40 pounds the first few month and then just gained it all back and some. I see now that the reason for this was because I never learned how to eat real food. Weight Watchers taught me to count points but still be able to eat crap. I saw you and Kurt on My Diet is Better than Yours. And I loved how Kurt was able to eat really good food and still lose weight. Plus you running in a bacon suit made me happy too! Anyways I am going to give this intermittent fasting thing a go. Thanks for all the good information.

  31. Carly Clark Zimmer says:

    Hi Abel!

    Thanks for sharing the details of intermittent fasting! I recently find myself doing this more and more just by starting my morning a little differently. I start with warm lemon water, turmeric and black pepper, then have a green juice (no fruit, just veggies) and then my fatty coffee. This keeps me going until around 1 or 2 pm! I think what I need to work on next is eating a bit more in that 8-hour window so I don’t snack after 8 pm. Thanks for the great info!

  32. Hi Abel!
    I saw you first on MDIBTY. After I saw the results, I started it to. The intermittent fasting has been key for me. I am 58 and weighed over 300 pounds. I was told that at my weight and age only surgery would help me reduce. I have only been doing this for a few weeks and already feel better, more awake, and am fitting into dresses I have not worn for years – so exciting!. I have not lost that much weight, but have lost a lot of inches – and still am now below 300 pounds. And I am not following the Wild diet as strictly as I should. IF was hard at first. I could go from 8 pm until 10 the next day. Then I had to add 30 minutes every week until I could get to noon. Now I am not starving and have the control to have a green shake first then eat a small meal a few hours later before I feast for dinner. This is life changing for me. I see it now as a lifestyle. Thank you so much!

  33. Bill Montgomery says:

    Hi Abel,

    A book came out recently called “How Not To Die,” by Dr. Michael Greger. Nice title. It is by a doctor who has been lecturing for years about improving peoples diet. He is pro plant based diet. That is all good but he puts people that promote saturated fat intake as “flat earth society” members and the only difference is that the people that believed in a flat earth didn’t hurt anybody, but the people that say fat is good for you are going to give people heart attacks. What say you oh wise and knowledgeable one?

  34. Hi Abel!

    I enjoyed following Kurt’s weight loss journey & success. I am new to your diet. I’ve been told by my trainer for years to eat every 3 hours or my body will insulin spike and I’ll store fat, gain weight, lose muscle, go in starvation mode etc. Also, that eating breakfast helps start up your metabolism and keeps you from over eating latter in the day. My body has really yoyo-ed in weight/body fat after trying out a fitness competition.
    Can you help me to understand what I’ve been taught about eating for years vs fasting & feasting?
    Thank you!

  35. Able, you’ve answered a few questions about this but I was looking for some clarity. You said that fat/protein are ok in the morning. Is it the carbs that break the fasting state? I’ve read a few places that say it’s ~40 calories that “break the fast”.

    Thank you so much!

  36. Hi Abel! I got your book this past July and loved every minute it up it!!! Helped my boyfriend and i lose 25 pounds! I consistently read your blogs and we watched you on “my diet is better than yours!” I love all the amazing information you share it helps to put things into perspective and help me to stay on track. But I have a question for you. Most days I work out at 530 am due to my 8-5 mon through friday work week….. sometimes I’ll work out and I usually can wait till 11am or 12pm (whichever is 16 hrs from my meal the night before) to eat my first meal…. should I fast after I workout still or I’ve read where I should be having some protien after my workout? What do you recommend?

  37. I do a high intensity boot camp style workout 3 days a week at 6am. I workout fasted but I need to eat afterwards, what should I eat? Also I generally shower at the gym and head straight to work so something portable would be nice.

  38. Great article! I would like to try intermittent fasting but most days the only time I can get to the gym is in the A.M. Do you have any suggestions on how to accomplish both and is using intermittent fasting 3 or 4 days a week going to provide descent results?

  39. Does a protein shake (120 cals, 24g protein, 2g fat, 3g carbs) during the fasting period mitigate the benefits? For instance, I’m trying to maintain a 12pm-8pm feeding window, but workout in the morning and generally follow that up with a shake.

  40. I eat breakfast daily at work, it’s an office job so it’s structured.

    If i “skip” breakfast on weekend and wait to eat until I’m hungry, is that a limited form of IF?

      • Hi Abel,

        I’ve been intermittent fasting 2 months now. I feel great for the most part, but little results for wt loss (lost 3 pounds). I’m doing the 16/8, workout 3 days in the morning (small workout). I would like to see bigger results for wt loss, I want to loose 15 pounds.

  41. Hi Abel, I complete my work only at 7.30 pm. Will work out after this is okay? Is it too late to do a work out or should it be better done in morning followed by a break fast. Any thoughts/suggestion?

  42. What’s up, Abel…

    Thank you for suggesting consulting your doctor before starting a session of intermittent fasting. My personal trainer (who highly endorses your book & advice) was just talking to me about the subject last week. I’m definitely interested, and think I’d be ok with just two meals a day. I’ll discuss with my doctor later, but may test it out for a couple days this week and see how I feel. Thanks!

  43. Hell Abel, I fast 15/7 last snack is something like peanuts and raisins at 10:pm next snack is 1 boiled egg at 6:30 am, coffee, green tea,and water til 3pm then i snack banana and wheat bread 30 min before i do a 4 mile walk daily! my only full meal is at 6:00 pm! and it consists of meats with fat, veggies, small amounts of carbs! Do you think i need any improvements! and i also do 100 push up a day 50 before 12noon and 50 more after! do i need to change anything?

  44. So I’m looking into getting into IF but I’m trying to figure where the window should apply. I’m thinking of doing a 16 hour fast with an 8 hour window for feasting with 6pm being the cutoff time and 1030am being my first meal of the day. Problem is once I get off work at 3pm, I hit the gym right after. Should I adjust something here so that I can workout on an empty stomach for an added bonus? Or should the 16 hour fast from 6p – 1030a be enough?

  45. cant really read on after reading the part that says fasting promotes the release of the human growth hormone… Micheal Mosley (a doctor who’s also experimented with fasting) says completely the opposite and has the evidence to prove it..
    Fasting actually slows down the production of the human growth hormone and this has the effect of reducing the risk of inflammatory diseases such as heart disease or also diabetes.

  46. Hi
    This is very useful blog. It really works. Apart these, you should also follow the diet plan which your gym trainer is make for you. Because your good diet and set of selected exercise can help to achieve your fitness goals more quickly.

  47. Hi- just listened to your podcast for the first time and am hooked! I love intermittent fasting and train early am before work. Then eat at noon. I was eating a carb heavy meal since I had trained, but heard the Dr. on your podcast say a fat heavy meal is better? Thoughts?

  48. Claudia Espindola says:


    I have lots of trouble getting rid of fat, I exercise at least three times a week, I have a calorie counter that supposed to be set for me to lose 2 pounds a week, yet I do not lose a pound!, – Worst, if I don’t exercise or eat more than I should I immediately gain weight !!

    I did fast for 30 hours and lose 5 pounds !!, I have two weeks trying fasting from 7 pm to noon, …no weight lost… 🙁
    I guess I can do another fasting for 24 hours or so and lose weight but I’m baffled as to why I have such hard time losing weight following other less drastic measures,

    Any comments/ input would be greatly appreciated.
    Thank you.

  49. Why breakfast skipped? I far and away would prefer skipping dinner because I don’t like to try sleep with a full stomach. Also reduces the risk of reflux. So my preference would be to skip dinner. I prefer early morning workouts and like to refuel after or is that being old school?

  50. How can you go against scientific study, when breakfast is the most important meal of the day, especially to burn off what u have eaten, the sugar, fats, etc… science is completely wrong in theor studies, help me out here.

  51. Hi Abel
    I am from India and in this country people in the rural areas fast a lot (mostly in the morning) due to religious reasons. But they always break the fast by having stuff that is light on the stomach like fruits, buttermilk, fruit juices etc., and then go on to have heavy spicy meals, rest of the day. It always works out for them and they are a lot healthier than people living in the big cities with access to all kinds of packaged foods.

  52. Greetings Abel
    Since early February this year, I’ve been gradually dropping weight and have gone from 88kg to 77.7kg.
    I then tried 16/8 for the first time yesterday…..I got up this morning and I was down to 75.6kg. I then went for an hour/10km run, got weighed again on my return and I’m at 75.1kg.
    During my first day of fasting yesterday, I still ate what I normally ate on a regular day but just made sure I had everything between midday and 8pm.
    I would still like to knock off another 3 to 5kg to be at the correct weight for my body, but I am utterly stunned by these initial results……and I’m still eating what I normally eat – win win!

  53. Adam Meliani says:

    I am 16 years old, and was wondering if I’m too young to fast. I want to burn fat to be more shredded and have abs. I workout 5 days a week right after school about an hour or hour and a half plus have two soccer practices a week and a game on sundays. Should I eat food to give me energy for all of that exercise or fast and burn fat?

  54. I’m guessing that the studies which say that regular intermittent fasting is not good for women are referring to alternate day fasting. I doubt they’re referring to eating a late break-fast since eating first thing in the morning is a fairly recent custom. Hell, the eating pattern of hunter gatherers is to eat little to nothing during the day and one large meal in the evening.

    • Look up Dr. Jason Fung for some awesome information regarding all types of fasting. He has lots of interviews all over Youtube but also has an excellent book.

  55. This is cool! I’d like to try this. I’m drinking Au Bon Broth’s organic bone broth and it actually helped me improve my health.

  56. Mike Williams says:

    I have a question regarding intermittent fasting. Does it matter when in the day the fasting is done? I tend to do my workouts in the morning, and normally do not feel like eating when I get home from work. So I have been doing a 16:8 intermittent fast as follows: 3pm – 7am – fasting, 7am – 3pm eating. Is there an extra benefit from doing your “fasting time” in the morning hours versus the evening hours?

  57. I am a lean, 39 year old woman. I have read that 14/10 may be more beneficial for women than 16/8 IF. What are your thoughts on this? Or do you recommend 16/8?

  58. what will burn the most fat?The 24 hour fast or the 44 hour fast? Also when do you start burning fat? I have about 10 pounds I want to lose. Thank you

  59. What does fatty coffee consist of ? I thought you couldn’t have more than 50 calories to remain in a fast.
    Lots of good information in your article!

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