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Home arrow Nutrition arrow Intermittent Fasting arrow Can You Drink Water While Fasting? Facts Explained

Can You Drink Water While Fasting? Facts Explained

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Written by Thalia Oosthuizen
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Fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Last update: April 26, 2023
3 min read 1778 Views 0 Comments
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Can you drink water while fasting

Intermittent fasting is a popular way to change the way you eat without changing what you eat.

Most people use intermittent fasting to lose weight, and in doing so, they need to keep a close watch on what they consume during their fasting period.

Most people immediately turn to water when they’re thirsty, but what about drinking water during a fast? Is water okay to drink while you’re fasting? 

Our experts explore the benefits of drinking water during a fast, water fasts, and more.

Can I Drink Water While Fasting?

Will a nice cool glass of water break your fast? Thankfully, the answer is no!

You shouldn’t be eating food and drinking soda during a fast because when you’re fasting, food and soda affect your blood sugar and insulin levels. It also stimulates your digestion, which means you’re not getting any gut rest.

But when you drink water, it doesn’t affect your blood sugar or insulin levels. This means that you can drink water during your fasting hours without any issue. In fact, experts recommend that you drink water in order to stay hydrated.

Can You Drink Water When Fasting for Blood Work?

When you have to fast for blood work, this means that you need to not eat or drink anything for 8–12 hours before your blood work. It’s recommended that you also don’t smoke, exercise, or even chew gum – even if the gum is sugarless!

However, water is okay to drink while fasting for blood work. Once more, it’s highly recommended to drink plenty of water the night before your blood work.

Staying hydrated will help you stay alert and energized even after getting your blood drawn.

Water Fast: What Is It?

Water fasting is much like intermittent fasting, but instead of simply restricting calories for a certain set of hours, water fasting limits all solid foods except water. For the most part, water fasts can last anywhere from 24 hours to 72 hours.

However, water fasts shouldn’t last any longer than 72 hours without supervision from your trusted medical professional.

Water fasting has shown to have quite a few benefits. It has been linked to lowered blood sugar levels and reduced insulin resistance, which can help people who are at risk of diabetes. Water fasting also shows promise for helping cell repair, which can lower your risk of cancer.

When water fasting, it’s important to drink enough water. You shouldn’t be water fasting if you’re not actually drinking water. You should be drinking anywhere from 9 to 12 (or even more) cups of water while doing a water fast.

If you’re not drinking enough water, you’re going to be both hungry, fatigued, and dehydrated, which can lead to a number of health issues.

After your fast has ended, you should eat small meals for the first day or so before returning to your normal eating habits.

The Dangers of Water Fasting

Before doing a water fast, you need to know the potential dangers. Because you’re restricting all types of calories, you’re likely to lose weight very quickly. While this may sound like a good thing, remember that the CDC recommends that weight loss happens no quicker than 1 to 2 pounds a week.

Losing weight too fast can cause issues, including weakness in your heart muscles that could lead to heart attacks or heart disease further down the road. Water fasting can also cause disordered eating or worsen eating disorders in some people.

Don’t do a water fast without talking with your doctor and seeing if you could benefit from a 24–72-hour water fast. While the health benefits may seem tempting, there are still dangers that you need to be aware of.

Can You Drink Flavored Water While Fasting?

Hydration is super important while you’re practicing intermittent fasting. Some people struggle with drinking water because it can sometimes be flavorless. So what about flavored water? Generally, lightly flavored sparkling water is perfectly fine for intermittent fasting.

However, if your flavored water contains any sugar or calories, then you want to avoid it. If you’re wondering what else you can have in your fasting state, you can check out an intermittent fasting app for tips, tricks, recipes, tracking progress, and more.

A Word From Our Nutritionist

Fluid intake while practicing intermittent fasting is no joke. While you’re waiting for your next eating window, your empty stomach might make it harder to make it through all the way to your next meal. While it might be tempting to pick something up like a diet soda, water is all you need.

If you find yourself struggling to drink water because you crave a little flavor, try some lemon water, lightly flavored sparkling water, or even some zero-calorie flavor packets – as long as there’s no sugar! If you find yourself feeling dizzy or tired while intermittent fasting, you definitely need more water.

Certain types of people don’t take very well to hours of fasting in between meal times, so it’s important to talk to your doctor before you embark on this particular health journey.

Conclusion

Now you know that not only does water not break your fast, but experts highly recommend you drink water over other beverages. Your overall health has a lot to do with how much water you have in your system.

Water is so good for you that some people embark on a water fast in order to detoxify their systems, improve their cell repair, and lower their blood sugar. 

Water fasts are much more intense than intermittent fasting and shouldn’t be done without talking to your doctor first.

Written by Thalia Oosthuizen
Thalia has always wanted to be a writer, starting her first local newspaper at the age of 11. She also has enjoyed a passion for health and fitness since a young age, playing many sports through her schooling career, and still enjoys biking, running, and swimming today. She studied English Language at University for 3 years, developing a passion for spelling, grammar, and research. She now has over 10 years of experience writing, proofreading, and editing, and has paired this with her love for health and fitness by writing health content.
The article was fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
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HR_author_photo_Thalia
Written by Thalia Oosthuizen
HR_author_photo_Rosmy
Fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Last update: April 26, 2023
3 min read 1778 Views 0 Comments
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