Intermittent fasting has become a very popular method of achieving weight loss, especially for celebrities on the low-carb, high fat keto diet. Fans include Kourtney Kardashian, Jenna Jameson, Halle Berry, and most recently Chris Pratt. The 39-year-old “Guardians of the Galaxy” actor is pretty new to the fasting process, but claims he has already reaped benefits in the form of weight loss.
“So I’m doing this intermittent fasting thing; don’t eat till noon, try to get my cardio in in the morning. It’s super exciting actor stuff,” Pratt jokingly revealed during an Instagram story. “But I finally get my coffee and look: I’m drinking out of Minnie Mouse’s head!” he said, while lifting up his mug. Adorable.
He then encouraged his followers to do some research about intermittent fasting, as he is happy with his progress. “Look it up! Check it out! It’s actually kinda cool,” he continued. “Works pretty good and I’ve lost a little weight so far.”
As part of his commitment to his new diet, he also revealed he would be bringing back his epic “What’s My Snack?” series. In case you haven’t been following the hilarious actor on social media for the last few years, Pratt started the little game in 2017 while on a super strict diet for “Jurassic World 2.”
During his posts he would make fun of celebrity movie diets by sharing photos, details and snarky commentary about the snacks he was "allowed" to eat on his diet — which included things like baobab, banana, cacao and chia smoothies, “manly” apples and “cat food” (sliced sashimi) — all packaged individually with instructions on when to eat.
He explained that his first featured “snack” this time around was the aforementioned black coffee, which he topped off with oat milk. “I can have black coffee on the intermittent fasting,” he clarified.
So what exactly is intermittent fasting? Just like the words imply, it involves abstaining for food for a specific period of time — usually ranging from hours to days — and consuming all of your calories during a shorter window. Think about it this way: everybody fasts when they sleep. However, with IF, that period of time in-between meals is usually extended a few more hours.
The method is most commonly practiced with those on the ketogenic diet, as intermittent fasting helps the body get into the desired state of ketosis.
At this point, it forces your body to burned stored energy — aka stored body fat — which, in turn can contribute to the many purported benefits of intermittent fasting. These can include weight loss, improved mental state, increased energy, improved fat-burning, increased growth hormone production, lowered blood cholesterol, reduction of inflammation and improved cellular repair.
Like Pratt mentioned, liquids such as coffee, tea and water are allowed during fasting periods. Some people even drink low-calorie fruit-infused water or juices.
Many people, including celebrity trainer Jillian Michaels, even believe it can benefit overall longevity. In a recent interview with Well + Good she revealed that she tries to keep her food intake to the period between 8 a.m. and p.m. to reap the “anti-aging” benefits of intermittent fasting.
However, when it comes to weight loss, she isn’t as supportive of the method, as she believes, “It doesn’t matter when you eat or when you don’t eat, all that matters is how much you eat.”
While the concept of intermittent fasting can be daunting, keep in mind that it doesn’t have to be a “one-size-fits-all” method. During a recent episode of LIVESTRONG’s Stronger podcast, Dr. Steven Gundry, bestselling author of The Plant Paradox and a long-time practitioner of intermittent fasting, explained that it doesn’t have to be so restrictive or unsustainable.
For example, he allows wine as part of his diet and adapts intermittent fasting for weekends and special occasions. He also points out that in addition to when you eat, what you eat is also crucial. Basically, you can’t refrain from eating for 16 hours and then binge on an entire pizza and expect to reap any benefits.
Also, keep in mind that intermittent fasting isn't for everyone, and it is always a good idea to check with your physician or health expert before trying any new diet.
Leah Groth is a writer and editor currently based in Philadelphia. She has covered topics such as entertainment, parenting, health & wellness for xoJane, Babble, Radar, Fit Pregnancy, Mommy Nearest, Living Healthy and PopDust.