Intermittent fasting (IFast) has been around for most of human history, and its proposed health benefits have been mentioned in ancient civilizations. However, recently, there has been a renewed public interest in IFast. Given the importance of nutrition in optimizing athletic performance, there is a concern about the effects of IFast on athletics. Most of the studies looking at performance and fasting are regarding athletes who observe Ramadan. Looking at high-intensity, endurance, and resistance exercises, studies have been varied but are uniform in showing that there is no benefit to athletic performance while fasting. More long-term studies need to be done to evaluate specific fasting protocols during sport.
Drexel Sports Medicine and Department of Family, Community & Preventive Medicine, Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA
Address for correspondence: Emily Levy, MD, 10 Shurs Lane, Suite 206, Philadelphia, PA 19127; E-mail: EML324@drexel.edu.