Eating one meal a day (OMAD) for weight loss may seem at first like an impossible task. Building up to a longer fast takes time but is achievable, resulting in many health and weight-loss benefits. Extending the fast a few times a week and eating all the day’s calories during a shorter window can yield significant benefits.
If you have been doing intermittent fasting for a little while, you may have heard people talk about eating one meal a day (OMAD). It may seem extreme, even unsafe if you don’t understand how the body and intermittent fasting works.
After doing intermittent fasting for a few weeks, your body begins to adjust to your new fasting and feasting schedule. You may find your hunger level naturally decreases. Your body is efficiently using your stored fat for fuel and doesn’t require extra calories to function.
Although some women purposely choose OMAD as their intermittent fasting method, many don’t plan to eat OMAD at first. Instead, it begins to happen naturally.
Although there are different intermittent fasting methods, a few are better selections if you want to integrate OMAD fasting into your routine for weight loss.
Some people who follow OMAD for weight loss strictly adhere to eating only one meal, whereas others choose to have a meal plus small snacks during the shorter eating window.
OMAD boosts all the benefits of shorter fasts, including increasing insulin sensitivity, decreasing inflammation and fat loss (1).
When doing OMAD, weight loss naturally occurs due to the restricted calories. It is difficult to consume large amounts of calories in the short time OMAD allows for eating. Also, the body spends more time in the fat-burning stage, resulting in more significant fat loss (2).
Although some people do OMAD on a daily basis, weight loss is the same as a calorie-restricted diet. (4).
OMAD is perfect if you need to jump-start your weight loss, your results have slowed down, or if you want to reap the health benefits you gain when remaining in a fasted state.
Introduce OMAD intermittent fasting a couple of times a week, ideally not on consecutive days. This is sustainable for achieving long-term weight loss results.
The reward for fasting 20 to 23 hours is the choice of whatever you want to eat. But choose wisely.
If following OMAD, once the eating window closes, you need to feel sustained for many hours. Your one meal should be a high protein, high fat, low carb meal.
The average woman should consume 1200 to 1500 calories daily to lose weight, depending on her age and activity level. Consuming less than 1200 calories daily is unhealthy.
Eating enough when doing OMAD is sometimes tricky, especially if the eating window is only one hour. If you cannot consume enough calories, make sure the foods you eat are healthy and filling. Also, consider supplementation.
Eating OMAD for weight loss is an effective method of intermittent fasting. Doing longer fasts safely has many health benefits and leads to quicker weight loss results. It is best done a couple of times a week.
Although beneficial, OMAD is not necessary for intermittent fasting weight loss results. If you experience extreme signs of fatigue, digestive issues, or discomfort, then choose shorter fasts to reach your goals.
Try out OMAD with the support of other intermittent fasting women in this private online support group.
OMAD requires you to have a nutritious meal. Have a look at meal ideas for different types of diets on OMAD.
Fasting can stimulate the immune system and help to fight infection. Learn more about how fasting affects the immune system.