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What Can You Drink While Fasting? Fluids Explained
Intermittent Fasting

What Can You Drink While Fasting? Fluids Explained

Written by Edibel Quintero, RD | Medically reviewed by Medically reviewed by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Published on 2022 July 13
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3 min

Thirsty on your fasting window? Our nutritionists prepared an extended fasting-friendly drinks list! Read on:

what can you drink while fasting

Intermittent fasting is a time-restricted eating regime practiced for health benefits from fat burning to managing insulin sensitivity. 

When it comes to intermittent fasting, food tends to steal all the attention. What and when you can and can’t eat is the prime concern for those fasting. 

Now, there’s plenty of information on the above, but what about drinks? 

Beverages have the potential to make or break a fast, so sipping the right liquids is essential to intermittent fasting plans. 

This article examines what you can drink without breaking your fast. 

Can I Drink Water While Fasting? 

100%, yes! Drinking water is a priority for anybody practicing intermittent fasting.

It’s naturally calorie-free and the best choice of drink while fasting. You can drink as much as you like during eating windows and fasting windows.

As well as ensuring optimal hydration, water can support weight loss. It fills an empty stomach, can curb hunger pangs, and help you burn more calories.

If plain water isn’t your preference, it’s perfectly safe to add fresh lemon, mint, or cucumber to your glass for a slight twist.

Why Is It Important to Stay Hydrated While Fasting?

Dehydration is a common occurrence for many practicing intermittent fasting. Often, people neglect fluids as they focus solely on abstinence from food. Hydration is essential to maintain your regular bodily functions and prevent an electrolyte imbalance. 

Hydration is crucial in general, but even more so in fasting periods. When you fast, you’re missing out on the water you’d ordinarily consume from certain foods. This makes it all the more vital to keep an eye on your fluid intake. 

Dehydration is dangerous, causing all kinds of health complications, from kidney problems to life-threatening seizures. 

However, it is essential to take your fluids from low or no-calorie beverages to avoid breaking your fast.

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What Can I Drink While Fasting? 

Eating or drinking calories will technically break a fast, but some intermittent fasting plans permit certain foods and drinks. 

As well as water, there are some other zero-calorie beverages or low-calorie beverages suitable for your fast. 

#1 Sparkling water

Sparkling water is an excellent alternative to still water, especially for those who like some fizz. It’s another drink with zero calories that will keep you hydrated during intermittent fasting while providing a refreshing pick-me-up.   

As with plain water, try a slice of lemon for more flavor.

It’s best to avoid flavored waters with artificial sweeteners, as such drinks can provoke an insulin response that breaks your fast. 

#2 Tea

Plain, unsweetened tea is completely safe to drink while intermittent fasting. Depending on the brand, one cup of tea contains three calories, give or take. Although not calorie-free, the few calories will not interfere with your fast. Realistically, you could drink several cups without harming your efforts. 

Green tea and some other herbal teas are also suitable choices. The key is not to add sugar, artificial sweeteners, milk, or other ingredients that will quickly increase your calorie intake. 

Tea has health benefits as it contains antioxidants. It may also promote weight loss, keep you feeling full in-between eating hours, and support disease control.

#3 Coffee

Caffeine lovers, it’s ok to drink coffee in your fasting window. But before you reach for the almond milk, only black coffee gets the thumbs up. 

Black coffee has few calories (as little as two calories per cup). Again, you could have several cups before it impacts your fast, but be careful not to consume too much caffeine. 

The keto diet encourages drinking bulletproof coffee during a fast as it is rich in healthy fats (usually coconut oil, MCT oil, or butter) that keep you feeling full. It can help keep your body in the metabolic state of ketosis. 

#4 Water with ACV

Water with apple cider vinegar is acceptable for intermittent fasting. Diluted apple cider vinegar is calorie-free, so mix a tablespoon or two into plenty of water. 

It has potential benefits that may help weight loss, blood sugar management, and gut health.  

Apple cider vinegar should be taken in small doses, as too much can affect the digestive system, causing an upset stomach. The high acid content also harms tooth enamel.

#5 Bone broth 

Bone broth is a nutrient-packed liquid safe for intermittent fasting in moderation. Some people prefer vegetable broth, which is also acceptable. 

As the calorie count can vary greatly between brands, we recommend making homemade bone broth to monitor calories. 

It’s vital not to have too much bone broth during fasting windows, as you will be consuming calories that will end your fast. 

A Word From Nutritionist

Whether you are doing alternate day fasting or the warrior diet, your intermittent fasting regime will have an eating window and fasting periods. Whatever your eating pattern, the idea is that you consume fewer calories throughout the day.

While introducing calories theoretically break a fast, consuming minimal calories will not impact it. As hydration is vital to a fast, it’s harmless and healthy to drink specific beverages.

You can safely drink water, tea, and plain coffee without fear of disrupting your fast. In fact, these drinks provide some weight loss advantages.

Forget drinking alcohol, fruit juices, and other sweetened drinks. Some fasters assume it is ok to drink diet soda, but diet sodas contain artificial sweeteners.

Conclusion

When it comes to intermittent fasting and beverages, it’s pretty simple: drink plenty and avoid calorie-dense drinks like fruit juice, soda, and alcoholic beverages.

Water is number one, but herbal teas, unsweetened coffee, and infused water are also great for fasting. Keep yourself hydrated both in and outside of your eating window, and you will feel better overall.

Written by
Edibel Quintero is a medical doctor who graduated in 2013 from the University of Zulia and has been working in her profession since then. She specializes in obesity and nutrition, physical rehabilitation, sports massage and post-operative rehabilitation. Edibel’s goal is to help people live healthier lives by educating them about food, exercise, mental wellness and other lifestyle choices that can improve their quality of life.
Medically reviewed byRosmy Barrios, MD
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