DETROIT – Intermittent fasting is a hot new diet trend, and one Metro Detroit woman said it's working for her.
Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern that cycles between periods of fasting and eating. The idea is that when people are fasting, insulin levels go down and fat cells can release stored energy.
Tika Collins said intermittent fasting worked for her.
"I am a nationally ranked physique competitor," Collins said.
Collins has been training for body building competitions for five years. She also trains other people and knows it's a struggle.
She said she was on and off of diets until she found one that helped shed the pounds she couldn't lose with workouts alone.
"Dieting, doing two hours of cardio, and noting seemed to work," Collins said. "Once I researched intermittent fasting, I actually incorporated it into myself and my diet -- the workouts and everything I was doing -- I lost about 30 pounds in two months."
There are several forms of intermittent fasting. The 16:8 method is skipping breakfast and restricting daily eating to eight hours, such as 1 p.m. to 9 p.m., then fasting for 16 hours.
With the 5:2 method, people consume 500-600 calories on two nonconsecutive days each week, but eat normally the other five days.
"Eat, stop, eat" is fasting for an entire 24 hours once or twice per week.
Collins said the 16:8 method is her favorite.
"You can eat a meal every two hours and I just think that works for people's schedule better," Collins said.
From her experience, she said it's especially effective for certain people.
"You just have like that stubborn fast, like, 'OK, I've been working out. My legs are getting toned. My arms are getting toned. But this right here doesn't want to go away,'" Collins said.
Experts said the jury is still out on the longterm safety and success of intermittent fasting. It's a good idea to talk to a doctor before trying the method. It's not recommended for anyone who has suffered from an eating disorder or people with diabetes.