A Best Kept Secret to Losing Weight




Introduction: A Best Kept Secret to Losing Weight

About: Dream. Design. Make. Share.


I was struggling to lose weight for more than 10 years.

I do bodybuilding, and a bit of cardio, but I don't like cardio, and I hate running too because of a back injury.

In 2012, I asked some of my bodybuilder friends, but unfortunately, their advice didn't work out for me.

I then started looking online for the best ways to do it.

I tried every school out there that focuses on limiting calorie intake, others that focus on sports to burn calories, I installed some food tracking apps on my phone, did high intensity workouts, I even purchased some products that claim will help me lose weight, but nothing worked.

At the end, I was having a hard time keeping my weight from increasing..

But I did not give up. No, that is unacceptable..

My motto is : If someone else did it, YOU CAN TOO.

I kept looking online for month, then I stumbled upon a method that was in front of my eyes the whole time, but is being suppressed by the supplements and sport equipment companies for decades..

why kept so secret?

Because this method is simply not marketable at all..It doesn't require you to purchase any medications or supplements, training programs, special foods , sport equipment or personal training services at all..

Thus, these companies created all kinds of propaganda to suppress it, so that they don't lose a great deal of their market.

What is this secret method that has been used for thousands of years ?

Simple.. It is called Intermittent fasting..

Step 1: What Is Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting is:

“The act of willingly abstaining from some or all food and in some cases drink for a period of time.”

By abstaining from eating, the human body will use its fat reserves to burn energy, resulting in Fat loss.

I will not go too much in detail concerning this topic, I will however give you the practical side, so you can start applying it immediately.

Who can use this method?

everyone, except children under 15 years of age.

For People with Diabetes, although I know many people who have diabetes have been on Intermittent fasting and had very good results, including getting better with the diabetes, I suggest you consult with your doctors, maybe it's just not suitable for your condition.

Is it safe?

yes. definitely.

This instructable contains more than enough info for you to start but If you want all the details about it, simply google it.

There is also a very good book about the subject called Eat Stop Eat by Brad Pilon.

It is supposed to be a paid book, but someone managed to upload a pdf version of it online..

Step 2: Types of Intermittent Fasting

There are around 5-6 different ways you can fast.

Here I will mention the most common and beneficial:

* Lean gains (16/8 hours fast/feed). -- Most fasters favorite method.

* The Fast-5 Diet. (19/5 hours fast/feed).

* The Warrior Diet (20/4 hours fast/feed).

* Eat Stop Eat (24 hours fasting, 1-2x/week). -- I recommend this method to maintain your weight after You've reached your goal, or if you decide to gain more muscle

Step 3: Lean Gains (16/8 Hrs Fast/feed)

With this method, You will be fasting for 16 hours, and feeding for 8.

The best timing for it in my opinion, is to stop consuming food and calorific drinks at 08:00 PM, and to start the next day at 12:00 (at noon).

You can do 18.00 to 10.00 if you like.

you can choose any timing as long as the eating window is still 08 hours.

Step 4: The Adaptation Period

You probably have been having breakfast all your life.

For your body to learn to skip it, it will need to adapt.

how do you do that? Very simple.

Start by stopping to eat at 08:00 PM ( if this this the window you chose), the next day, in the morning, you will eventually start to feel hungry.

Stay fasted, until you can't anymore, then have your breakfast.

have your dinner at 08:00 PM.


With days to come, your body will start adapting to this new lifestyle , and after a while, you will be able to fast until noon.

Side note

As long as you have an ounce of fat on your body, you don't need to have breakfast...ever.. telling people that breakfast is mandatory for their health is a lie that came from the same propaganda that suppressed this method.

Step 5: The Nutrition

How to Eat and drink

While fasting

While fasting, you can consume all kinds of non-calorific drinks, like water, coffee, tea, cola zero if you like and others.

You may use sweeteners instead of sugar, I recommend Stevia instead of Aspartame.

While fasting, you may consume 50kcal Max, (a small sugar spoon if you hate sweeteners..).

If you consume more, you will get out of the fasting mode.

Why is it important to stay fasted?

When you are fasting, your body consumes your fat reserves more efficiently than when you aren't.

While Feeding

You may consume anything you like. What is so nice about this method, is that it is not a diet, you are free to consume anything you like :). Isn't that awesome?

Do not Starve yourself please.

I know many people who were so astonished by this method's results, that they got greedy and tried to accelerate it by eating less and less..

That is not good at all.. because when the body starves, it starts to break down our HARD EARNED MUSCLES for energy and you will eventually hit a plateau..

You should aim to lose between 2-3 kg (4.5 to 6.5 pounds) per month. More means your muscles are disappearing along with your fat.

What to eat

Here, I would like to take the opportunity to tell you, that if you improve your food selection, your results will be much faster and your health and energy levels much better!

What not to eat

Improve your food selection, by eliminating all sugars and products containing refined sugar and by reducing salt.


is a highly addictive product, sadly as addictive as nicotine and it is high in unnecessary calories that will slow down your progress.


Reduce Salt in your food.the maximum recommended salt intake is 5 grams (1 teaspoon) per day.. when you consume more, it poisons your body, and the body starts to retain water to reduce the salt density in it in order to prevent itself from being poisonned.

Allergies and sensitivities

Many people including myself, are allergic to diary, and/or Gluten ( a protein found in grains such a wheat ).

If you get bloated after you consume bread, then you are sensitive to gluten. you will feel much better if you replace it with corn bread for example.

If you get gas after you consume diary, well you are sensitive to that too..Milk can be replaced with almond milk for example.

What to eat

Try to eat whole foods, meaning buy whole ingredients that aren't tampered with nor manufactured from the super market such as a steak, a potato , a fruit , a vegetable etc..

For more info on this topic, please google Paleo diet food list.

Step 6: The Results

Many intermittent fasters started to see results within 2 weeks..


This lifestyle is very forgiving, do not worry too much about your food selection , but do not exaggerate it either.

With 2-3 kg (4.5-6.5 pounds) of loss per month, you will lose between 12-18 kilos (26-40 pounds) in a period of 6 month!

That's an excellent result.

I highly recommend you to do some sport that will involve all your muscles in a one week period like going to the gym for example and taking it easy there, as this will pass the message to your body that your muscles are very dear to you, and that at no circumstances it should use them for energy.

One important note here

The result you are actually searching for is not to lose weight..

It is to lose weight and maintain the new weight as is for years to come..This is what most diets fail to achieve, as people go off their diet after they have reached their goal, only to see their weight go back up after a few month, to where it first was..

By losing 2-3 kg (4.5-6.5 pounds) per month, you are also adapting your Thyroid gland to your new weight, thus preventing it from taking it back up.

This gland controls the body weight, when you lose weight really fast, it "thinks" that your body is in an environment where there is a lack of food, as a defense mechanism, it slows down your metabolism speed to bring your weight back up, and insure your survival by stocking more fat..

Step 7: Troubleshooting

You're fasting, and you love it, but tonight your friends invited you to a night out in a bar and a restaurant.

You know you 're gonna have to eat and drink there, but you're not that happy about it because you'll be overeating, and that will slow down your weight loss results.. what do you do? here's the answer.

when you are "forced" to eat for social reasons, you can get " picky" in what you are eating there.

Apply a strict but smooth food selection protocol by selecting dishes and snacks with high protein and low carbs in them, and by "not finishing your dish" and avoiding small bites and snacks if you can.

Load up on water.

Substitute alcoholic drinks with ones that have no "fillers", by that I mean selecting strong alcohols (40%), like drinking a neat whisky instead of a beer, this way you wont need to drink all the calories in the beer that gets you fat instead of drunk, after all, we drink alcohol for the alcohol effect, not the other stuff that comes in it.

After the night out, i usually pull a 24 hour fast to regulate my calorie intake of the night before, that does the job.

Here's a breakdown of the calorie intake for this case :

night before : 3500 calories IN from alcohol and snacks.

The day after : a 24 hour fast , then a 600 calorie high protein meal.

Result : 3500+600 = 4100 calories in 2 days, /2 = 2100 calories a day.

That's a bit under an average man's daily maintenance calorie intake.

So in a way, you still can party and lose weight.


With alcohol intake, even though the numbers I mentioned are correct in theory, In reality, your body will retain water for a couple of days after the fact, to treat all the alcohol you took in, so on the weight scale, you might go up around 3-4 pounds, but those will go away after 4-5 days, as the body will dump them after the alcohol is fully digested.

Step 8: Final Words

I haven't invented anything i wrote in this instructable,it is all true and verified through scientific research. I haven't cited any references from the web though, because it is simply too time consuming for me to dig those studies up.. time that I don't have.

I am highly educated in nutrition, If you have any questions, please post them in the comment section, and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

please do try to find your answers on google first ;).

Thank you for reading this, and I sincerely hope you succeed in your weight loss journey.

-> You don't think intermittent fasting is something for you?

Good news, I 've written another instructable on how to shed body fat, without skipping breakfast.

Check it out : https://www.instructables.com/id/Manage-Your-Weight-Using-IIFYM/



3 People Made This Project!


  • Edible Art Challenge

    Edible Art Challenge
  • Paint Challenge

    Paint Challenge
  • 3D Printed Student Design Challenge

    3D Printed Student Design Challenge



3 years ago

Ok, so i'we tried this a while ago and it helped me lose 6kg in two months at that time. I was intrigued by it's mechanism, by what made it work, so recently made some research. It seems that this method is based on autophagy, a cellular process. If you want to understand the mechanism and how to trigger it more efficiently, search for more info about Yoshino Osumi and his Nobel prize from 2016. I'll leave some links bellow. Now facts: I lost like 1kg/week with this by actually eating more calories than i used to before starting this diet (basically i eat everything eatable that gets in my hands). My schedule is: wake up, drink a big glass of water, wait an hour then start eating. I am careful for my breakfast to be the most consistent meal, and i stop eating after 6 hours - I follow a feeding window of six hours. That means if i start eating at 9am, at 2.30 pm i'll have my last meal. According to the research, autophagy should trigger at around 7pm, which means roughly 14 hours until next meal. I must admit that hardest thing is the hunger at around that exact hour, but you can get used to it. Hunger is just a feeling given by a hormone that is released at interval of three hours in our body and only during the day. That means sleep helps a lot. It is important not to eat anything, as small and insignificant it is because it triggers release of insulin which inhibits the level of glucagon, the "main switch" of autophagy. Just drink water, lots of water; alkaline if possible.

That being told, just be careful not to push yourself in too much weight loss because that could lead to hormonal imbalances and .. who knows what else. Recommended is 0.5kg/week, so that your body can take knowledge of it's new shape and will not try to compensate loss first thing he gets "input".




3 years ago on Step 8

Thanks very much for your honest and helpful advice. I too have tried everything and gained 10kgs after following a PTs advice who cost me a mint! I am now stuck in a rut and have gone completely off track but still maintaining even while sabotaging myself with wine almost every night. I have hope after reading your blog and will start my "journey" tomorrow. Any other ideas and info much appreciated! Thanks :)


4 years ago

I have a strong feeling that these things work.


4 years ago

If one considers what hunter-gatherers probably had to do, they likely did something like intermittent fasting, because instead of eating grains, or getting up and eating breakfast and maybe lunch, they had to hunt/gather for proteins and produce. Physical work + fasting = far less obesity. They didn't eat much simple sugars; their carbs came with lots of fiber already in them. Makes sense.

But sometimes, if there is metabolic imbalance, one might need to try both restricting calories, using a Paleo or ketogenic diet, And/Or, the other end of the spectrum, certain types of Raw Vegan diets, to get the metabolic imbalance re-booted, and calories starting to burn properly, instead of being stored.


4 years ago

all my skinny mexican friends from Mexico do this. They eat nothing before 10 am and after 530 am and they are all healthy.


Reply 4 years ago

You mean 5:30 pm, don't you?


4 years ago

I read this instructable out of curiosity. I have never been overweight. People usually ask me what my secret is, because they see me eat like a pig at meals. I usually tell them "I don't know, I was lucky to be born with a good metabolism", another possible cause is that I do not enjoy sweets as most people; I never buy candy for myself, and I rarely eat more than a single (and small) piece when offered cake, pie, or similar...

However, by reading this, I realized I've been doing Intermitent Fasting my whole life (sort of). Not in a strict way, of course. But I have dinner at around 9/10pm every day. The next day, my only breakfast is a cup of yoghurt (if at all) which I just checked and it is supposed to have 120kcal, then I do not eat anything until lunch at around 1pm.

This would mean that I'm following a 15/9 plan or something like that...

Would the cup of yoghurt break the fasting period?


Reply 4 years ago


I wondered if I'd come across a post on here saying that someone just naturally didn't put on weight because, unknowingly, they'd been intermittently fasting their whole life, because this instructable basically details what I've done pretty much my entire adult life, too. I've always assumed that I have a very high metabolism, and would joke that "I'm not very good at eating". But this instructable has shed new light on everything.

Unlike yeself, I *do* like sweets/candy - and sugar in general. I also eat "processed" food, such as pies and and chips quite regularly. And I've not been to the gym in well over a year. However, despite this, my weight has always remained within the same boundary.

Also, I rarely drink alcohol, unless I'm out. I detest beer and have never understood why ANYONE would drink it, so this will be a huge contributing factor to my, clearly, distinctly "fxied" weight.

I just assumed I had a very high metabolism.



Reply 4 years ago

Thanks for sharing, Ivan. It's good to read someone with a similar experience. I have to admit that over the last 3-4 years, approximately after passing age 30, my belly grew significantly, and I am a little concerned about the shape of my body. So I started the gym last year (I'm not the most regular gym-goer, though) and I'm trying to stop eating like a pig and have a healthy meal every now and then. I'm still far from being fat but I would like to go back to the shape I had a decade ago.

How old are you?



Reply 4 years ago

Hi Ezequiel. I'm 43. I've now given up on the idea of ever returning to the gym; the idea just no longer appeals!

I've no 6-pack, but my shape is still pretty damn good, despite everything. I look a lot better than many of the guys I hang around with who are generally older than me. :oD

I guess I'm at an age where I'm just not bothered about having a bodybuilder's physique; far more important things that I want to get on track with in my life!



4 years ago

Thank you for this Instructable. I ran across it just after Christmas and started 16/8 fasting the first of the year. I'm down 7+ pounds so far. Also I ran across an article on BBC news: 'Fasting diet 'regenerates diabetic pancreas'. It was mice tests using 5 days of restricted diets followed by 25 days of normal feedings. So there is a lot of research yet to be done on intermittent fasting.


4 years ago

"Fasted" from 8pm->12noon every day for two months (this Jan/Feb). My weight is exactly where it was when I started.


4 years ago

Sorry to split hairs, but my OCD has gotten the better of me. I have to point out that you are still eating breakfast (regardless of food type or time). Breakfast originally meant to break your fast. Breakfast especially applies to this concept, since this is how we humans used eat.

(another word killed by marketing)

I would also like to point out the general cause of hypoglycemia (for non-diabetics) during fasting is the fact that companies put sugar in everything, so the bodies metabolism is set to get as much sugar out of the blood as possible since it has a steady, and abundant supply. Meaning some is stored in the muscle a little is removed by the kidneys and the rest is stored as fat. Once your body gets used to fasting your metabolism will change gears.


5 years ago

I was doing this successfully (16/8), for a couple of months, until I saw to my doctor and mentioned that I was intermittent fasting. She gave me a steely look and said, "no skipping meals." She drew me a diagram of blood-sugar fluctuations caused by not eating breakfast. She also suggested a Paleo diet for me to ward off inflammation. Which has me wondering... wasn't intermittent fasting a way of life for our Paleo ancestors? I am overwhelmed by conflicting advice.


Reply 4 years ago

Call me a cynic if you must, but there are more than a few doctors that are not interested in you being healthy, it costs them money.
Most cereal producers have always lied to you, like eating special K for a healthy breakfast. Yeah sure, consuming carbohydrates with sugar on top is good for you, I don't think so.
The diet industry are the biggest liers, there's no profits for them if you actually loose weight is there?
Check out the 2-5 diet, 2 days fasting 5 days eating.


Reply 4 years ago

No, I don't believe All doctors are "they're sicker, I am richer" mentality. (I love our doctor!) But they are ALL malpractice sue scared!! Even ours has to give textbook/generic warnings to everyone. Most of (us) patients are nit-wits in the first place. How does he or any doctor KNOW if we've taken our antibiotic until it's gone. I know all about MRSA and yet I've been guilty of forgetting those last few doses (opps!). The internet makes things (like altering our diet, bodies etc) way too easy. Reading a couple of tips, a few paragraphs or scanning Wikipedia makes us feel like "instant professionals". We want fast and now which leaves us skipping lots of important things.

Otherwise, we'd be preparing and eating non-processed food and working out.

Only speaking for myself. "I appreciate this instructable. But it appears I need the instructables on Self Control and Self Discipline"!

Happy New Year everyone!


Reply 4 years ago

You are soooo right. I have tried every fad diet wikipedia has advertised and have not lost weight. Everyone (including myself) wants a quick fix but the truth is weight loss is really about discipline. Wiki doesn't teach that.

PS I love carbs and sugar. I am fat because I love carbs and sugar.


Reply 4 years ago

Hi ...I would like to add that in the here in the East world, fasting is associated with religion. Almost all religion recommend fasting of various nature. Hindus fast on different occasions by taking only water and fruits during a specified period and for the Muslims, a month of fasting during Ramadan, every year, when they eat only after the sun set. In addition, throughout the year it is recommended to fast for two days a week (Monday and Thursday)....Definitely, sound life style with balance :) I love Islam !


Reply 4 years ago

Your doctor surely means well, but making a blanket statement about blood-sugar fluctuations and meal timing is meaningless unless you personally are measuring your blood-sugar levels. If you fast, your blood sugar levels will naturally drop but this is not a problem unless you are diabetic or insulin sensitive. Also, the vast majority of westerners eat breakfast foods that are very high in refined sugar and low quality carbohydrates which itself creates an unhealthy spike in blood sugar levels.

The drop in blood sugar is where your body moves from burning carbohydrates/sugar for fuel and switches to burning fat reserves and for most people it takes >10hours to reach this state which is the principle behind fasting for 16 hours then eating in an 8 hour window. The short-term benefits (weight loss, better sleep) and long-term benefits (less disease, longer life, healthier end of life) of Intermittent Fasting (IF) have been well studied, google 'Intermittent Fasting' and you will find lots of information.

The anti-inflamatory effects of the Paleo diet are well documented.

For our Paleo ancestors, intermittent fasting was simply how they lived as they only ate when they were able to hunt or when whatever plants they could gather were in season. On the timeline of modern human evolution, we have been farmers for a very small fraction of evolutionary path, so our bodies genetically still respond well to fasting.

There is lots of very good information out there so happy, err, hunting :-)


Reply 4 years ago

Actually no, our ancestors were more farmers and gatherers while some hunted, if times got tough than they may have starved a little, the key with their diet was they worked through intensive labor.

The best advice my doctor has ever given me was to eat when you are hungry, but with everything moderation, (meaning if you sit at a desk all day then maybe you don't need a 2400 cal diet) and also add in some light exercise to work your body so it won't become an issue when you get older.