You may have been confused during your journey of intermittent fasting about what to eat and what to avoid during fast.
After an in-depth analysis, I have written this article to clear the confusion regarding what breaks and what doesn’t break the fast.
These rules will apply to all forms of intermittent fasting – 16:8 , 5:2 and other approaches.
Before talking on what breaks fast , let’s find out the basics of fasting.
Table Of Contents
What does Breaking fast mean ?
Fasting is the state, insulin and glucose level are low. Decrease level of insulin will lead to burning fat and reduction of food appetite.
In short answer, Anything that has calorie will increase insulin and glucose level and break the fast.
When you take calorie , the level of glucose in your blood will increase. This will increase the production of insulin . Insulin command the liver and adipose tissue to make fat which will break fast.
To achieve the health benefits of fasting , the insulin and glucose level needs to be low throughout the fast. You should not break your fast for optimum results.
We will look at the common foods and beverage whether they break fast or not . Before that we need to understand the basic aim of intermittent fasting.
Aim of Fasting
People try intermittent fasting for various purpose. Some do fasting for weight loss while some perform fasting for autophagy. The most common aim of fasting are :
- Weight loss
- Blood Sugar Regulation
- Lowering blood pressure
- increasing insulin sensitivity
- Healing and preventing chronic disease
If you are practicing intermittent fasting for weight loss, improving insulin sensitivity and blood sugar regulation then you have more wiggle room to eat during fasting.
So, what breaks and doesn’t break a fast depends on your aim as well. Now, we will discuss on various drinks that break and don’t break your fast.
|Water||Doesn’t break fast|
|Coffee||Doesn’t break fast|
|Milk Coffee||Break Fast|
|Lemon water||Doesn’t break fast.|
|Green Tea||Doesn’t break fast.|
|Ginger Tea and other herbal tea||Doesn’t break fast.|
|Medicines||Doesn’t break fast.|
|Supplements||Doesn’t break fast.|
|Apple Cider Vinegar||Doesn’t break fast.|
|Diet Coke||Not good for health|
Water is the best drink you can give to your body during fasting. It doesn’t contain any calorie.
You should focus on drinking as much water as you can during fasting especially when you are focusing on weight loss.
During fasting, fats are being burned down in your body. It releases toxins. Such toxins are excreted from body as urine. You will need a lot of water to clear the toxins.
I would recommend you to add some pinch of salt on water to provide necessary electrolytes to your body.
Herbal tea like ginger tea , tulsi tea, passionflower tea, green tea and hibiscus tea won’t break your fast.
These tea will provide some taste during your fast . But if you aren’t preparing your own tea and using a tea bag. Then you need to make sure that the tea bag doesn’t contain any calorie.
These tea will increase your water intake which will be helpful for your body.
Lemon water has got next to zero calories. It has almost zero calorie but it is filled with vitamin C and phytonutrients.
Lemon water will help you keep your body hydrated. It can reduce wrinkles and help to remove kidney stones.
Lemon water is also found beneficial for weight loss. So it can be a good drink to have during your fast.
Supplements and Medicine
Almost all supplements like collagen and protein powder are fine during your fast. You can also have your medicine and electrolyte during your fast.
But you need to look at your electrolyte packet. Most electrolyte contain artificial sweetener which can break your fast. Stevia is only artificial sweetener which can be allowed during fast.
Black coffee is fine for your fasting. Black coffee doesn’t contain any calorie . So, it won’t be problem for your fast.
But you cannot add milk or sugar to your coffee during fast. Milk consists of protein and carbohydrates . It will break your fast.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Many people try apple cider vinegar during their fast. It helps to reduce appetite.
Apple cider vinegar has near to zero calorie. So, it won’t cause spike on your insulin level to break your fast. It will be helpful if you are practicing IF for weight loss.
Apple cider vinegar helps to reduce fatty liver and improve digestion.
Diet coke and other diet soda consists of artificial sweetener like aspartame . Aspartame doesn’t contain much calorie but it isn’t completely healthy.
People with phenylketonuria , tremors, anxiety and tardive dyskinesia should avoid aspartame. The long term health benefits of aspartame aren’t well known.
Studies have shown that diet coke increase your craving for food during fasting. Studies have also suggested that artificial sweetener increase the incidence of stroke and cardiac disease. So, I will suggest you to avoid diet coke during your fast.
I would recommend you to this article before trying intermittent fasting.
Sachet Subedi is 2nd year medical student from Institute Of Medicine, Maharajgunj . He writes on health, diet, wellness and science. He likes cricket and loves to study books and research paper on productivity, diet , health and wellness.