I'm a fifteen year old girl, and I've been paleo for a few months, since June. I weigh around 130, and wouldn't mind losing another inch or so off my waist. I'm not particularly active. Should I worry about fasting? Or should I just stick with paleo eating. I usually manage to get a fourteen hour fast in every night, early dinner, but do you guys think I should bother with it? I know there're tons of benefits and stuff but still, I'm fifteen.
I think that you should say no to fasting. Because you are young, you are still developing. Development points vary depending on the person and all, but there's no doubt your body is changing and going through a hormonal shitstorm. And because you are a woman, intermittent fasting might not be the best idea regardless of age. http://www.paleoforwomen.com/shattering-the-myth-of-fasting-for-women-a-review-of-female-specific-responses-to-fasting-in-the-literature/
If you were over age 25, I might say, "Give it a try, what's the worst that can happen?" because a lot of times, stalled weight loss, sleeplessness, and anxiety are the worst that happen. But because you are still developing, you may not realize the worst that can happen til much later. I just don't think the risk is worth it - better to just step up your activity a bit and keep on with the Paleo, maybe even be a little heavier than you'd like for longer, than to risk disrupting your hormonal balance.
Stick with paleo eating. Women don't do particularly well with intermittent fasting. I am pretty sure I heard Sarah Fragoso talking about this, but they don't have any shownotes at Every Day Paleo. Luckily, they are only on podcast number seven, so if you have the time, listen to them all.
Let me channel Robb Wolf a little: you have to have everything else dialed in- good food, a solid eight hours sleep, good exercise, etc... You can't have any stress in your life. It can work, but only for people pretty much already on top of their game.
And again, the trainers seems to be saying women respond to it badly.
I'd say stick with paleo for a while longer and see how you adjust. Then only if it's easy should you IF. I think people get caught in this thinking that IF is magic and that it will solve all of their problems. There are cases where IF is good, and I like IF in the context of truly "intermittent", i.e., once in a while. The leangains 16/8 or other stuff you see on PH is what it'd call "scheduled fasting" not intermittent. But if the fast is hard for you in anyway, I say don't do it. The stress of the fast may do more harm than the fast does good.
Some things to keep in mind: if you do IF, you should still get the same amount of food/calories you'd otherwise get. You'd just eat them within a compressed window of time. So that means either your lunch or dinner would include the same amount of food as your breakfast (or split).
You shouldn't do calorie restriction with IF. You shouldn't go very low carb if you do IF.
There seems to be this notion that IF is bad for women and teenagers, but I believe it's misguided. Humanity has had periods of famine where both men and women as well as children were exposed to it. It hardly makes sense that one gender would be harmed but not the other, or that both wouldn't adapt. And anyway, IF is not calorie restriction, nor is it starvation.
It's simply shifting the timing of your meals, and keeping the calories and macronutrients the same.
It would help to be adapted to burning fat before starting IF because, if you're used to only burning carbs, your body will not be used to relying on its fat stores and you'll feel very low energy and hungry. This only applies to most of us who have led most of our lives under the Standard American Diet (SAD) - that is frequent high carb meals, and used to eating high carb snacks very often between meals. Since you say you can handle a 14 hour fast without issue, this doesn't apply to you.
Another thing is not to do the same thing day in and day out. That is, some days, don't do an IF. Some days, eat all 3 meals. Also, don't eat the same foods over and over. This allows you to not be constantly hitting the same detox pathways, (which is something that IF can be very beneficial for.)
Make sure you get proper nutrition, that includes things like organ meats, good veggies such as kale, etc. That way, the IF doesn't become a stressor - if it does, the constant release of cortisol will be detrimental.
How tall are you? 130 might be the perfect weight for you, especially since you are still growing. I don't recommend fasting at all for you. Just eat as healthy as you can. Try to get in some exercise - it will probably do you the most good.