Should women fast?

A thought-provoking article from Lauren Brooks (she of Kettlebell Training: An Introduction and Baby Bells: The Fit Pregnancy Workout) about women and intermittent fasting.

Stumptuous readers may recall that I contributed to a free e-book with my colleague Dr. John Berardi on intermittent fasting. He experimented with IF on himself, with mixed and interesting results. The book was less of a wholehearted endorsement of IF and more of a demonstration of the power of science and the value of testing hypotheses on oneself. Nevertheless, overall, his response to IF was pretty good.

Mine was somewhat more reserved. I’d reviewed dozens of studies on IF, and was initially interested in the potential health and longevity benefits, as well as the decrease in inflammatory markers and improved insulin sensitivity that IF seemed to produce.

Of course, when fitness-minded people, especially women, start doing anything, it’s not long before our minds wander into I wonder if this’ll help me lose fat? Not-eating suddenly seemed like the perfect way to cut weight for grappling. It seemed pretty darn easy! Just not-eat periodically, and you’ll be riptshizzled! I started off strong and felt pretty good.

My body had other plans. And so did many other women’s bodies. Which brings me to this article.

Lauren’s interviewed several women working in the field of nutrition, fitness, and health, and they’ve all come to the same conclusion — IF, done long-term, is not a great idea for most women — especially active women. Check it out: It’s an interesting read. (Also check out some of the linked pieces, such as Stefani Ruper’s excellent work, and How Intermittent Fasting Saved Me… While Slowly Killing Me.)

What’s your experience been? Feel free to share in the comments below.