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    How to Gain Muscles While Intermittent Fasting

    Intermittent fasting is one of the most popular diets. Not only do people do intermittent fasting for weight loss, people also choose to fast for health and lifestyle. Intermittent fasting is when you cycle between a period of eating and fasting. Technically, it is not a diet as it does not limit what you can eat. Instead, you control the period of time that you eat and not eat. 

    The most common option for intermittent fasting is fasting for 16 hours and eating for 8 hours. This means that while you are fasting, you are not consuming any calories at all, whether it be in liquid form or solids. This means that while you are in the fasting zone, you can only have water, plain tea and black coffee. 

    The idea of building muscles and losing weight is generally considered as two physiological processes that would contradict each other. This means that your body often would try to prevent this as much as possible. To lose fat in your body, it requires you to decrease your calories and because you are in a deficit, you most likely would not be able to build muscles. To maintain your muscles, you will need to stress your body and give time for it to repair. 

    Muscle hypertrophy is pretty important. It basically means an increase in your muscle cells. Lifting weights is one of the best ways of achieving muscle hypertrophy. To build muscles, you need to weight lift to stimulate the muscles and damage the fibres so that your body can repair and make you stronger. Studies show that if you put significant stress on your muscles, you’ll be able to achieve maximum gains. But don’t forget, your body still needs to rest after lifting, this will promote more gains than if you over stress yourself. 

    To build muscles, you generally need a decent amount of good protein and extra calories. Another concern for some people is that they might have decreased performance when weight lifting due to the lower amount of calories they eat. If they don’t eat enough protein or calories, some people might find it hard for the body to repair after strenuous exercise. 

    When you are fasting, your body will eventually lead to using the stored fat in our body. This means that your body will be burning the fat to help your body to function. Your human growth hormone also increases during fasting. This hormone is produced by your pituitary gland and then released into your bloodstream. It’s the hormone that helps children grow during their childhood. However, once you have reached adulthood, the growth hormone helps maintain your metabolism and body structure instead of helping you grow. Over time, your body will produce less growth hormones as you age. Studies have shown that if your body is low in human growth hormone, it might lead to a loss of lean muscle mass and increase of your body fat, this generally leads to you gaining weight. 

    According to research, your levels of human growth hormone starts to increase within 13 hours after you start your fast. The increase in this hormone while you fast can help keep your muscle tissues while your body uses the fat in your body to create energy. There also have been studies that show that the human growth hormone can increase your muscle performance and function in sports.

    Research has shown that fasting does not seem to cause muscle loss. They show that people who participate in intermittent fasting are able to lose significant fat mass while their lean body mass remained the same. While other studies show that people who fasted lost less lean body mass than those who just restricted their calories. There has also been suggestions that intermittent fasting will not reduce the basal metabolic rate (BMR) whereas this is often seen in those who restricted their calories. Instead of shutting down the body, intermittent fasting allows for your body to swap the fuel source it uses. The hunger hormone ghrelin is also not released as much when you are fasting. This means that you are less likely to be hungry compared to people who participate in caloric reduction. When you don’t eat (fast) your hunger hormones actually go down over time. Eventually, your body will adjust and you will become less hungry while you are fasting. 

    Another thing you need to consider is that insulin is a hormone that helps regulate the glucose levels in your blood. When you eat, insulin is secreted to help you digest your food and allow for the glucose to be used for energy or stored as fat. When you are fasting, your insulin levels drop a decent amount, this helps facilitate fat burning in your body. Although this doesn’t mean that it will help you build muscles, it does mean that you will burn more fat, this might help your body maintain your muscles while you’re in a caloric deficit. 

    In the end, intermittent fasting is a very useful tool for those who are trying to lose weight and maintain their muscles. Studies have shown that those who choose to intermittent fast do tend to lose less muscles than those who just eat less to achieve a caloric deficit. If your goal is not to lose weight, then I believe it is perfectly fine to do intermittent fasting as long as you are able to eat enough protein and calories within a timeframe. 

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