Intermittent fasting is a popular way of managing not only your diet but your fitness goals. Many celebrities swear by it. Even celebrity chef, Sandra Lee, credits it for achieving her weight loss goal.
People love intermittent fasting because it is far less focused on what you eat but when you eat. The idea is that you eat for certain hours of the day and allow your body to “rest” from eating the rest of the time. The belief is that this pattern hearkens back to a kind of primordial caveman situation, where we weren’t nibbling and snacking all day long (thank you, modern-day conveniences).
Does fasting really work?
Intermittent fasting has helped many people better manage their weight loss, but it might offer other benefits too. Studies suggest it can boost overall health and improve some brain functions. Some studies even suggest it might help you live longer.
Some of the more popular intermittent fasting plans include what might be the most commonly used one, sometimes referred to as the 16-8. With this plan, you limit your eating to an 8-hour window, say noon to 8 p.m.
Then there’s the OMAD (one-meal-a-day) plan, which is exactly what it sounds like. Other variations include the eat-stop-eat in which you fast for an entire day each week, and the more extreme alternate-day fasting, what some call the “every-other-day” fast.
With all of these variations, it can be hard to keep track. That’s where an intermittent fasting app can be a huge help! Part of sticking to any new diet plan (or any goal for that matter) is having a plan and creating new habits. Using an app helps you stay on track with your personal goals and monitor your progress and make adjustments as you go along.
(Note: If you are considering intermittent fasting, it is essential to make sure you check in with your doctor first. They can tell you if the method makes sense for your specific situation and give you advice on how to do it healthfully and mindfully. They can also help you maximize your results.)
What is the best app for intermittent fasting?
There are tons of intermittent fasting apps out there. For this blog, we will look at the most popular ones so you can get a quick and dirty idea of what they offer and which one might be best for you. Just about any fasting app helps you track fasting times, but each has its variation of a free version. You have nothing to lose by trying them out!
Zero is one of the most popular intermittent fasting apps available. The app has been featured in Women’s Health, The Tim Ferriss Show, and more. In addition, it boasts quite a positive user rating on the Apple store, with over 300k reviews and a rating of 4.9.
With all that positive buzz, you might be wondering, is the Zero app free? Well, yes and no. You can access the timers, basic library, create journals to track your progress with the free version. But some of the more powerful features such as personalized plans and expert guidance come only with the paid Plus membership.
Still, with its reliable core features, alongside badges and milestone features to keep you motivated, the free version of this intermittent fasting app offers plenty to love.
Is the BodyFast app good? Well, the free version includes standard fasting plans to help guide you through 16:8 and other intermittent fasting scenarios. But for hyper-focused plans centered around weight loss and other more specialized goals, you will have to use the app’s Coach program (a paid service).
Many users love that BodyFast gives you an idea of what to expect as your body migrates through all of the phases of intermittent fasting, problems you might run into, and how to address them. This can be especially useful for beginners who don’t know what to expect.
It is also worth noting that many users have found phenomenal success losing weight and achieving other nutritional goals with just the free version of the app.
Fastic is another popular intermittent fasting app, with its animations and overall vibrant design that make the user experience particularly appealing. You simply add your personal information (age, height, current weight, etc.) and set your goals, and you are ready to begin.
Fastic will send you notifications when your fasting periods begin and end, and help you track your progress. Users also love its community-based focus with challenges. These challenges give you small wins so you feel more confident that you can make dietary and lifestyle changes and many people say they help motivate them to stay on track. The app also focuses on healthier eating and provides recipes to help you achieve nutritional goals (but these recipes only come with the paid version).
(Pssst… if you need recipes, we have a few of our favorites on The Austin Artisan blog!)
BONUS APP: Ate Food Diary
Technically, Ate Food Diary isn’t an intermittent fasting app. It is about making sure each meal is a meaningful, mindful experience, a MUST for dieting. After all, staying strict on what you eat is hard enough. If your meals begin to feel like a chore, you are less likely to succeed.
Ate Food Diary food is somewhat of a newcomer to the scene, but that doesn’t mean you should discount it. Not only does it help you set your goals, but it encourages you with specific steps you can take to meet those goals. And it does it with positive, life-affirming language that will make your diet feel a bit less demanding and a lot more enjoyable.
To log your meals, you simply take a photo of your meal and mark it as “on path” or “off path” depending on your goals. You then answer questions about why you ate it, who you ate with, how it made you feel, and more. This gives you an opportunity to be mindful of what you eat and create a visual food diary you can use for long-term growth and tracking. You can look back and get stats on and insight on how much your food intake was “on-path.”
Enjoy the Health Benefits of Meal Planning
If you are trying out intermittent fasting, you might soon discover that you get ravenous as your fasting periods come to a close. But cooking food when you are already hungry can be a treacherous proposition. It is essential that you don’t default to reaching for the nearest snack food sitting in your cupboard. After all, that completely negates the goal to live a healthier life in the first place!
That’s why chef-prepared meal delivery is the perfect complement to intermittent fasting. You have the confidence that your meals are made with healthy, fresh ingredients that support your goals. When the HANGRY sets in, you don’t have to worry about the hassle of cooking up something. You can simply enjoy a chef-cooked meal chock full of delicious, healthy ingredients. You will look forward to your meals, not dread yet another dinner plate full of so-called “rabbit food.”
If you live in Austin or the surrounding area, we would love to create a meal plan that aligns with your intermittent fasting efforts. Contact us for ideas on how we can deliver weekly prepared meals at a frequency and taste profile level that suits your specific needs. We will create fresh-cooked meals that will help you stay on track and will be effortless to prepare. Just pop them in the oven and enjoy, no prep or clean up afterward!
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