Black coffee is the best to drink during intermittent fasting as it is unlikely to hinder the benefits that you can obtain from this kind of fasting.
Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern that cycles between periods of fasting and eating, it usually involves fasting for 16 hours a day and then eating within the remaining 8 hours.
According to Mayo Clinic, Intermittent Fasting is not only useful for losing excess body weight but can also benefit your overall health.
Coffee has a plethora of health benefits, and experts say you can drink up to four cups in a day. But, if you are a habitual coffee drinker, you must have wondered if you can drink coffee during your fasting window.
Well, the best thing about coffee is it is safe to consume in every kind of diet or fasting that you want to undergo, as long as it is free of additives.
Continue reading the article if you want to know everything regarding coffee and Intermittent Fasting.
How Many Calories Can Break My Fast?
According to Benjamin Horne, PhD., consuming any amount of calories will break a fast. However, many other health experts claim that you won’t break your fast as long as you stay under 50–75 calories during each fasting window.
Whatsoever, if you want to attain maximum benefit out of your intermittent fasting regimen, you should stick to your fast’s requirements.
Can I Drink Coffee During Intermittent Fasting?
You can have coffee during intermittent fasting but it has to be black, without any additives.
As we all know that coffee consists of mostly water as it is prepared by brewing coffee beans, thus, it contains a very minimal amount of calories that are unlikely to break your fast.
However, it is also true that not all coffee drinks are low in calories. The table below shows the calorie count in different coffee drinks.
|Drink||Calories per 8 ounces (240 mL)|
|Iced black coffee||2|
|Cold press (nitro cold brew)||2|
|Brewed coffee from flavored beans||2|
|Coffee with French vanilla creamer (1 tablespoon)||32|
|Coffee with skim milk (1 tablespoon)||7|
|Nonfat frozen coffee drink||146|
As the table above displays, espresso holds more calories than brewed coffee per ounce, this is because it’s more concentrated. However, there’s only 1 ounce (30 mL) in a single shot of espresso having 2 calories only.
Furthermore, coffee drinks that are consumed with dairy and sugar tend to be much higher in calories than plain black coffee. Therefore, you should avoid additives in your coffee during intermittent fasting.
However, you can add a small amount of cocoa, cinnamon, or almond milk if you don’t like plain black coffee.
Are There Any Benefits Of Drinking Coffee During Intermittent Fasting?
Yes, it might be surprising for some people but coffee may enhance many of the benefits of fasting.
These include reduced inflammation, blood sugar, heart disease risk, and improved brain functions.
According to many health experts, chronic inflammation is the root cause of many illnesses. Research indicates that the consumption of coffee while fasting may help in reducing inflammation.
Some research also points out that higher coffee intake can be linked with reducing the risk of metabolic syndrome, which is an inflammatory condition characterized by excess body fat, high cholesterol, elevated sugar, and blood pressure.
Studies also link coffee with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes. And that’s not all, up to 710 ml (3 cups) of coffee in a day is associated with a 19% reduced risk of death from heart disease.
One of the main reasons why intermittent fasting has surged in popularity is its potential to protect against age-related neurological diseases and improve overall brain health.
Interestingly, coffee complements many of these benefits.
Just like intermittent fasting, regular coffee intake is also associated with a reduced risk of mental decline, as well as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases.
While on a fast, your body uses its excess fats to produce energy in the form of ketones, a function related to improved brain function.
A study in mice linked coffee to significantly increased autophagy.
Intermittent fasting has also been observed to support brain health through increased autophagy, which helps your body to replace dead cells with healthy ones, the healthy brain cells ultimately protect against age-related mental decline.
Thus, it can be said that including moderate amounts of coffee in your intermittent fasting regimen can prove to be quite beneficial.
You can watch the following video to learn more about how coffee can benefit your fasting regimen.
Best Coffee For Intermittent Fasting
Black coffee can be the best choice if you are a coffee lover observing intermittent fasting. The reason is its negligible calorie content.
A cup of black coffee carrying all the antioxidant benefits of coffee contains even less than 5 calories. So you can surely enjoy black coffee during intermittent fasting.
Furthermore, if you are really in the need of that caffeine jolt but do not like to sip on a hot, bitter cup of plain black coffee, you can even go for a refreshing cold press or iced black coffee.
Both of these tend to be less bitter as cold water doesn’t extract as many of the acids from the coffee beans as hot water does.
Also, if you are someone with a sweet tooth or love having your coffee with different additives to make it tasty, then you can also go for coffee that is brewed from flavored beans.
These coffee beans are infused with different flavors so you may satisfy your urge for a flavorful cup of coffee without adding any calories that may break your fast.
All of these coffee drinks can be consumed during intermittent fasting as they carry a negligible number of calories while providing you with your much-needed caffeine fix.
Again, it is important to keep in mind that these drinks are only low in calories if you drink them black.
Furthermore, the love for coffee shouldn’t let you forget that the benefits of coffee can only be reaped if it is consumed in moderation. Excessive intake can have unwanted side effects on your health.
Other Things To Consider During Intermittent Fasting
Though coffee tends to have positive effects on your intermittent fasting, make sure not to overdo it.
A single serving (around 240 ml) of coffee has about 100 mg of caffeine present in it. excessive consumption of caffeine from coffee could cause irreversible side effects to your body, including an increase in blood pressure and heart palpitations.
One study discovered that a high coffee intake of up to 3.1 liters (13 cups) in a day caused increased fasting insulin levels, leading to a short-term decrease in insulin sensitivity.
If your purpose of observing intermittent fasting is to increase your insulin sensitivity or improve your fasting insulin levels, you should be very much conscious about your intake of coffee.
Furthermore, excessive caffeine consumption could have adverse effects on your sleep quality. Poor sleep can harm your metabolic health over time, which could negate the benefits of intermittent fasting.
Most research indicates that up to 400 mg of caffeine in a day is safe to be consumed by healthy adults. This is equal to about 710–945 ml (3–4 cups) of regular coffee in a day.
Other Drinks To Consume While Fasting
If you want to cut off coffee and keep yourself hydrated and energized during your intermittent fasting, you can enjoy these drinks without any guilt:
- Green Tea
- Mint Tea
- Diluted Apple Cider Vinegar
- Fruits infused water
To Sum It All Up
Coffee has been observed to be safe during intermittent fasting as long as it remains black and free of additives. Therefore, black coffee tends to be the best coffee variant that you can enjoy while fasting.
According to health experts, your fast won’t be broken if you stay within 50-75 calories. Therefore, you should look for foods and drinks that can energize you while not adding to your calorie count.
The best drink that you can have in abundance during your fast is water, it’s not only essential for your body to function but also keeps you hydrated, that too with the cost of no calories.