I have a bodybuilder friend who is also a military fitness instructor. Since I am mostly sedentary (in front of a PC) kind of person and quite overloaded with work, I have obviously gained weight. I am also unwilling to spend time hitting the gym.

So he suggested doing the following:
1. After waking up, the first thing to do, run for about 30 minutes and do it slowly, to not go over 110-120 bpm to use up all 'leftovers' of the yesterday's supper 'food' inside my blood and boost up metabolism.
2. Drink black coffee without sugar to keep metabolism increased for longer.
3. Last as long as I can before the first meal (additional black coffees are ok).

The idea he presented that conditions necessary for one to start burning his own fat is no food in the bloodstream and no heavy load on body otherwise it will start burning muscle instead.

My wife claims that not eating and drinking coffee will ruin my stomach and heart.

How tenable is this sort of diet and what are health implications?

2 Answers 2


Both your friend and wife are wrong.

Your friend seems to believe that fasted cardio leads to greater fat loss, but it simply doesn’t. Your body might attempt to use more fuel from fat during such a session, but it makes up for it later in the day, thereby rendering the attempt neutral (neither good or bad). Whether you exercise fasted or fed should be determined based on how you feel as well as your body’s response. Your friend also seems to believe that intermittent fasting is important for fat loss, but this also isn’t true. Your net caloric balance matters more than anything else when it comes to this. For some people, intermittent fasting fits their lifestyle and compliments their goals. Other people are equally successful eating 5 or more times a day from morning to night. It’s your net caloric balance that matters most here, not the timing or specific size of each meal.

Your wife’s claims are also wrong by simple observation. More than half of all Americans drink coffee, you’ll notice that far far fewer have stomach problems. Having food with your coffee doesn’t magically change how your body digests it either, there just isn’t anything in coffee that would cause such a problem. As for the heart issue, unless you have a personal or family history of heart problems, caffeine consumption within a safe range (under 400mg, about 4 cups of coffee) is going to be just fine.

Can your friend’s advice help? It could, it just depends on how sustainable it seems for you. The caffeine can certainly help to motivate you through a workout, and intermittent fasting is useful for a lot of people too. Can your wife’s advice help? It’s good to be mindful of your current/potential medical conditions as well as what’s reasonable to consume. Ultimately however people are different and respond differently to things.


Since you are clearly asking about intermittent fasting. Let me give you some background first. I was obese since I was a little kid. It never bothered me anyway until I turned 21 and my friends calling me FATTY! So I tried any method I could and there never were a success. Anyway throughout this time I experienced one thing, that is you cannot lose weight without controlling the diet. And dieting is completely a mind game.

Finally I came to a realization, the only thing you have to do is limit the calorie intake (simply the quantity of food) and let the excess fat in the body take care of the energy needs.

I have written a few articles on my blog on this topic. Feel free to have a look at it yourself. I am copying the link below here.


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