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Eat Stop Eat Diet: Advantages and Downsides
Intermittent Fasting

Eat Stop Eat Diet: Advantages and Downsides

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Written by Edibel Quintero, RD | Medically reviewed by Medically reviewed by Rosmy Barrios, MD check
Published on August 23, 2022
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6 min

For success with intermittent fasting diets, you need to review the different methods to find the one that fits your lifestyle. Here we discuss the eat-stop-eat variation, covering the pros and cons.

Eat stop eat

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The intermittent fasting (IF) method has become a roaring success in the dieting world. 

It is favored as an effective way to lose weight and linked to multiple health benefits, including improved metabolic health, blood pressure, and blood sugar regulation.

Practicing the concept entails extended periods without food. There are several variations of the method, mainly differing in terms of the fast length. It’s essential to review the pros and cons of each strategy to identify the one that best matches your lifestyle.

Eat Stop Eat is a type of intermittent fasting diet that features a unique set of rules. 

This article covers everything there is to know about the Eat Stop Eat method. Read on for the definition, how it’s done, benefits, and drawbacks.

What Is the Eat Stop Eat Diet?

Eat Stop Eat is a customized approach to fasting. Unlike some other intermittent fasting schedules that isolate certain hours of the day for eating, Eat Stop Eat focuses on one or two non-consecutive fast days per week.

On the chosen days, you fast for a total of 24 hours. For the remaining days, you have the freedom to eat as you wish.

Eat Stop Eat is the brainchild of intermittent fasting expert Brad Pilon, brought to the mainstream by his book Eat Stop Eat, which offers an indispensable guide to IF.

According to Pilon, the concept results from his graduate research at the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada, on short-term fasting.

How Eat Stop Eat Is Done

It isn’t too difficult to get on board with Eat Stop Eat. First things first, you need to select one or two non-consecutive days per week where you practice food abstinence, ideally for 24 hours. 

For the remainder of the week, you can eat as usual. Meal timing is key, as the method focuses on when you eat rather than what you eat.

That said, we recommend you eat responsibly outside of the fasting window. For the most significant health benefits, you should aim to eat a nutritious diet, focusing on consuming healthy food choices on your non-fasting days.

While you’re free to eat as you please, it’s best to avoid consuming excessive calories that your body doesn’t need. This can hinder your weight loss efforts. 

Per the Eat Stop Eat method, it is not necessary to fast for more than 24 hours. 

Essentially, you can eat a meal daily with the Eat Stop Eat regime. Many find this intermittent fasting method easier to sustain, as that single meal can make a big difference. 

So, if your intermittent fasting plan is to abstain from food from 9 AM on Monday morning until 9 AM on Tuesday morning, you can squeeze in at least one meal before beginning. 

Alternatively, you can enjoy an evening dinner before voluntarily cutting out food until dinner the following evening.

Managing your fast

During the fasting window, you must remember to drink liquids to avoid losing electrolytes. Water, black coffee, herbal tea, and sparkling water are acceptable low-calorie beverages that won’t break your fast.

The DoFasting app is a requisite for a successful fasting journey. It provides the tools to help you better cope with your fasting schedule, offering custom programs for your individual needs. 

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The success of the diet typically revolves around consistency. Most people struggle to adapt to an intermittent fasting plan in the early stages. 

DoFasting exists to educate, motivate, and drive you throughout your chosen fasting schedule, ensuring you thrive with short-term and long-term fasting.

Eat Stop Eat Fasting Benefits

Eat Stop Eat is popular for a reason. It is possibly one of the most accessible intermittent fasting plans to sustain, as it is slightly less restrictive than others. It also brings potential health perks. 

Here are 3 advantages of the diet plan:

#1 May increase lifespan

According to the American Heart Association, intermittent fasting is associated with a reduced risk of heart failure and a longer lifespan. The practice supports heart health by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels, which may contribute to a longer and healthier life.

Although more human research is required, one study found that fasting improved health and longevity in mice.  

#2 Helps regulate blood sugar

Studies reveal that IF may lower your risk for type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Therefore, Eat Stop Eat may improve insulin sensitivity and help regulate blood sugar. 

However, people with diabetes must get professional medical advice before fasting, as long periods without food may cause low blood sugar leading to hypoglycemia.

#3 Aids weight loss

Among other fasting diets, Eat Stop Eat is primarily used for weight loss. 

The theory behind intermittent fasting is that you create a calorie deficit as you consume fewer calories by restricting your eating times. 

For example, if you usually consume 2,000 calories a day, that’s a calorie deficit of 4,000 calories per week if you fast for two days.

The fasted state can cause a metabolic shift in which your body begins burning fat for fuel, helping you lose weight. If you continue to work out regularly, you can enjoy fat loss while preserving lean muscle mass.

Eat Stop Eat Downsides

As with Eat Stop Eat and any other intermittent fasting method, the science reveals both pros and cons. 

Here we’ve selected the negative aspects. 

#1 It’s not for everyone

While Eat Stop Eat is suitable and safe for most adults, it’s certainly not for everyone. 

Generally, it is not recommended for children, teens, breastfeeding and pregnant women, and people with diabetes.

As fasting involves caloric restriction, it may trigger unhealthy habits in some people. 

Switching between eating and not eating can lead to a vicious cycle of binge eating and obsessive thoughts about food and calories, leading to eating disorders. It’s best to avoid Eat Stop Eat if you have experienced disordered eating. 

#2 Possible nutrient deficiencies 

Eat Stop Eat involves fasting for one or two days per week. As you restrict calories during the fasting period, you risk missing out on vital nutrients your body requires to function. 

When you reduce your caloric consumption completely, you simultaneously reduce your nutrient intake. This can lead to nutrient deficiencies that negatively affect your overall health, from lowering your energy levels to triggering mood changes. 

#3 Can cause hormonal changes

Although there is not enough clinical research to determine the specific health outcomes, it’s possible that IF may pose a potential risk to women’s health. 

It may alter the level and frequency of hormonal secretion and throw off the reproductive hormones, potentially causing irregular periods and complications with pregnancy.  

Will Eat Stop Eat Work for You? 

There’s no telling whether the Eat Stop Eat diet will work for you until you try it. Your body is unique, and how a diet affects the participant can vary from person to person. 

It also depends on your ability to sustain your fasting days and your non-fasting days. Sticking to the diet poses the biggest roadblock for most people, which is why the DoFasting app is worth a try. 

It can help you manage meal timing and healthy eating and ensure you remain on track. The daily motivational boosts might be just what you need when thinking about quitting.

To further increase your chances of triumph with Eat Stop Eat, whether you want to lose weight or improve metabolic health, it’s important to be mindful of what you eat in your eating window. Unhealthy eating won’t benefit your body and may decrease your potential for weight loss. 

Remember, the Eat Stop Eat diet is not suitable for everyone. Make sure you seek professional medical advice before diving in. 

A Word From Our Nutritionist

Eat Stop Eat is an intermittent fasting diet that involves one or two days a week of voluntary food abstinence.

One of the best things about the routine is that it allows you at least one meal daily, as you can select your timings so you may eat right before a fast. For instance, you may want to begin your day with breakfast and fast until breakfast the following day.

More evidence is needed to support the claims of this pattern, but the idea behind Eat Stop Eat is that your body facilitates weight loss with a reduced caloric intake that sparks a metabolic shift.

It could work for you if you practice it sensibly, but not before taking advice from your healthcare provider.

If you are breastfeeding, pregnant, or have a previous history of eating disorders, you shouldn’t practice this method as it can lead to serious health issues.

Conclusion

This review clarifies that Eat Stop Eat can bring potential health perks to individuals. However, you must weigh up the positives and negatives before implementing the routine, as the schedule may not suit you. 
If you’ve given Eat Stop Eat the green light, remember that you can take additional support from DoFasting, the app created specifically for the fasting lifestyle. Use it to your advantage and reach your health and weight loss goals!

HR_author_photo_Edibel
Written by
Edibel Quintero is a medical doctor who graduated in 2013 from the University of Zulia and has been working in her profession since then. She specializes in obesity and nutrition, physical rehabilitation, sports massage and post-operative rehabilitation. Edibel’s goal is to help people live healthier lives by educating them about food, exercise, mental wellness and other lifestyle choices that can improve their quality of life.
Medically reviewed by Rosmy Barrios, MD
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