Long Term Fasting and Muscle
What is water fasting?
In short, fasting is simply only consuming water, tea, or coffee, and no food. You might’ve heard about about Intermittent fasting, which is only consuming food within an 8 hour window, and fasting for 16 hours. Longer fasting is around the 24-48 hour range, but is it safe? Healthy?
Will I lose muscle!?!
Hundreds of studies in animals and scores of clinical studies of controlled intermittent fasting regimens have been conducted in which metabolic switching from liver-derived glucose to adipose cell–derived ketones occurs daily or several days each week. Although the magnitude of the effect of intermittent fasting on life-span extension is variable (influenced by sex, diet, and genetic factors), studies in mice and nonhuman primates show consistent effects of caloric restriction on the health span
Fasting burns fat, but wont it burn muscle too?
Despite having similar body weight, mice maintained on alternate-day fasting have better running endurance than mice that have unlimited access to food. Balance and coordination are also improved in animals on daily time-restricted feeding or alternate-day fasting regimens.35 Young men who fast daily for 16 hours lose fat while maintaining muscle mass during 2 months of resistance training.36
The study above demonstrates caloric restriction vs. fasting. Both subjects in the study lost weight. However, the ones who fasted lost more fat and less than those who practice caloric restrtiction.