Intermittent fasting fan

Dear Annie

Dear Annie: I have discovered something that your readers might find helpful, and if you agree, I hope that you will print my letter.

For the past 20 years, I have wanted to lose the same 10 pounds. In fact, I have lost them dozens of times and then regained them after going off whatever diet I tried. And I have tried them all!

Low fat and high carbohydrate works well, as does high fat and low carbohydrate. The problem with either diet is that I find myself missing too many different foods and eventually go off it. When I was following a low-fat diet, I craved hamburgers and fries all the time. When I was eating a low-carb diet, I instead craved ice cream and cookies.

I exercise a lot to maintain my fitness and am in good shape overall, but, as I say, I have struggled with those extra 10 pounds for many years.

Finally, I found a solution that I find easy to live with and really works. My daughter told me about it; I tried it and did not feel uncomfortable at all, and gradually seven of those 10 pounds have come off. I wanted to share this with your readers. The “diet” is called intermittent fasting.

As a practical matter, what this means for me is that I do all my eating during an eight-hour time period and then don’t eat again for the next 16 hours. I eat whatever I used to eat — no limitations at all — and as long as I do all my eating in eight hours, I keep losing weight. If I feel like a hamburger and fries, I eat them. If I want ice cream and cookies, same thing. But I try to practice moderation and not go overboard the way I used to when I would come off a starvation diet.

Most days, I eat my breakfast at 11 a.m. and make sure to finish dinner before 7 p.m. But if I have to have an earlier breakfast, then I eat an earlier dinner, and if I start eating later in the day, then I might eat dinner a little later.

I don’t know why this works, but it really does, and I feel much better without those handful of pounds on my body. I love your column and wanted to share my experiences with your readers. — Eating and Satisfied

Dear Eating and Satisfied: It sounds like you have found a meal plan that really works for you. My guess is that you are consuming fewer calories during each 24-hour period. I am printing your letter in order to share your success with others. As always, however, my advice to all readers is that before trying a new meal plan, be sure to check with your physician to make sure it is right for you. Thank you for your kind words! Keep up the good work.