What to Consume While Fasting for Maximum Benefit
Drinking water during a fast is a vital component of a healthy fasting experience. Not only does it help prevent dehydration, but it also supports the body’s natural detoxification processes and can help control hunger. Additionally, drinking water can boost metabolism, which may be slowed down during a fast, and help the body burn fat more efficiently. By ensuring adequate hydration, drinking water during a fast can contribute to the overall health benefits associated with intermittent fasting.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has several potential benefits when consumed on an empty stomach, or during a fast. First, it can help to improve digestion and regulate the body’s pH levels. It also contains acetic acid, which has been shown to promote feelings of fullness and reduce appetite, making it a useful tool for weight management and extended fasts. Additionally, apple cider vinegar has been shown to help lower blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity, as well as reduce inflammation.
Creatine does not break a fast. It is a naturally occurring amino acid that helps to increase the body’s energy stores, allowing for improved athletic performance and increased muscle strength. When consumed during a fast, it may help to reduce muscle loss, maintain energy levels, and increase the body’s ability to perform. Additionally, some research suggests that creatine supplementation may also improve cognitive function and support brain health. However, it is important to note that more research is needed to fully understand the effects of creatine supplementation while fasting and to determine the optimal dosage and timing for the best results.
Green tea has been shown to enhance autophagy during a fast. Autophagy is a metabolic process where the body’s cells break down and recycle damaged or unwanted components, promoting cellular health and removing harmful substances. This process contributes to overall well-being. Additionally, green tea contains the amino acid theanine, known for its calming effects on the brain and body. Theanine has been shown to reduce stress and improve sleep, enhance cognitive function, and improve mood, reducing symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Black coffee has been shown to decrease appetite and stimulate lipolysis, the process by which the body breaks down stored fat into usable energy, during a fast. Just be sure not to add any sugar, milk, or creamer to your brews as these will kick you out of a fast. Opting for a zero-sugar sweetener like Stevia is okay however since it contributes no fat or calories.
Any fast over 12 hours increases the likelihood of electrolyte deficiency due to decreased insulin and food consumption. To prevent dehydration, headaches, or fatigue you can supplement with electrolyte drink mixes. Be sure to look for those without added sugar or calories. My favorite brands are Redmonds Re-Lyte and LMNT. Both have the essential electrolytes Sodium, Potassium, and Magnesium at the proper concentrations and they taste delicous.
Sparkling water is a fun, bubbly, calorie-free variation to sip on during a fast and change up the mundane H2O.
Cinnamon or Cinnamon Tea
Cinnamon is known for its ability to regulate blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity, making it useful for those experiencing fluctuations in their blood sugar during a fast. Additionally, cinnamon has been shown to suppress appetite and reduce inflammation in the body. Cinnamon is also believed to help reduce cortisol levels and decrease stress.
Lemon or Limes
With only 2-3 calories, adding lemons or limes won’t break a fast and will enhance the taste of your water. Plus the added benefit of a Vitamin C boost.
Bone broth is a nutritious, low-calorie option that is allowed during fasting periods in small amounts. It’s high in protein and minerals and is a great option to help you feel fuller for longer. Just be mindful to consume only a few ounces at a time.