Weight-loss is the main reason many of us gravitate towards intermittent fasting (IF). Beyond just that, IF benefits extend to improved focus and energy, enhanced organ detox, healing illness and even reverse the signs of aging. 
Sounds too good to be true, right?
We thought so, until we experienced it for ourselves. As parents, in our 40s we’ve tested and tried many diets and lifestyle changes, and in the end have stuck to IF since 2013.
Fasting is an ancient tradition that is on trend not only in North America but worldwide. The medical literature on fasting is growing quickly with overwhelming majority showcasing numerous restorative health benefits.
With todays beyond 9-to-5 lifestyle, intermittent fasting (IF) has a strong appeal of convenience and application to any diet be it keto, palo, vegan and beyond. However, there are questions and myths regarding fasting such as starvation mode, low energy, muscle loss, and skipping the most important meal of the day—breakfast.
In this article, we’ll explore these topics (from a personal and scientific view), how IF affects the body and the benefits that come with it, especially weight loss.
Intermittent Fasting 101
Intermittent fasting is not a modern fad or latest diet but, simply a way that you cycle between eating (feeding) and not-eating (fasting). The fasting periods are flexible and up to each individual.
Some people fast daily restricting a feeding window anywhere from 2 to 12 hours. Others prefer to do a full 24 hour fast every other day. There are weekend (48 hour) fasts where you may consume minimal (500) or no calories.
Mistakenly IF gets confused with starvation, but there is a difference.
Starvation is the uncontrollable absence of food. Meaning, there’s no food in sight and unknown when it will become available. Fasting is simply a withholding of food on purpose with a set end time. 
Also, there are no hard and fast rules with fasting regarding specific times. We simply enter a fasting state each time we’re not eating. For instance, overnight period between dinner and breakfast the next day may be 10-12 hours, and in a sense we all IF daily.
This restricted time eating compliments our genetically evolved energy production and storage mechanisms, thus carries numerous health benefits. The body is well equipped to perform in a fasted state for a long time. Modern record is 382 days where a man lost 125 kg (276 lbs) with no negative side effects. [2-3]
Skip Breakfast For Sustainable Weight-loss
Have you ever felt that you’re just not that hungry when you wake up?
If so, you’re not alone.
Many of us don’t feel like eating in the morning but, believe that we should. It has been ingrained in us that breakfast is “the most important meal of the day” and skipping it ignites hunger, messes up hormones, leading to constant overeating and weight gain.
Breakfast studies often scare us with associating factors of how not eating it may jeopardize our health. [4-6] But, a closer look at the research data shows inconsistencies that don’t add up.
It’s important to remember the difference between association and causality. Majority of pro-breakfast research uses vague language describing associating factors, not causing factors.  These papers either review science experiments or collect questionnaires from people of various walks of life, medical history, stress levels and many other factors which make us different and unique.
Compiled information from such case-studies is often dispersed and shows no particular pattern. Researchers that analyze such data draw loose associations between not eating breakfast and weight gain or development of some kind of disease. [5-6]
Afterwards, these interpretations are marketed as “scientific proof” which is far from facts that fail to show any causation or protective effects to eating breakfast. Furthermore, many reports are skewed, bias and often sponsored by the big food companies who have a direct profit gain for favourable results.
The truth is that there’s nothing special about breakfast. Breakfast literally means, first meal that breaks the fast. Fasting research examines timed eating patters including when to have the first meal.
Current analysis shows that skipping breakfast will not make you gain weight [1,8] or diminish metabolism. [1,9] The message here is “listen to your body”. If you don’t feel like eating first thing in the morning, then keep fasting and extend your first meal for few hours around lunch time.
And, if you are hungry?
Then, go ahead and have nutrient-rich foods to break your fast, but finish the feeding window earlier and forgo dinner. This is the beauty of IF; as it is flexible and adaptable to any schedule or metabolic clock.
Skipping dinner holds its own benefits including decreased appetite, greater fat burn and weight loss that can be maintained long term. [10-12] Few larger meals consisting of quality fats, carbs and protein eaten during the day increase metabolic activity better than multiple smaller meals and snacks. 
This misconception of frequent eating being healthy works against us, as extra energy isn’t burned but rather stored on the waistline.