Intermittent fasting has no end of health benefits, despite this, you may want to know whether you can drink alcohol when intermittent fasting. In the article, we will take you through when to and when not to drink alcohol when intermittent fasting. This will ensure you get the balance between getting all of the benefits from your intermittent fast, whilst still enjoying a drink. Best of both worlds.
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Different Types Of Intermittent Fasting On Keto
There are a number of forms of intermittent fasting. None of these are unique to keto and can be done without combining them with a keto diet.
But seeing as you’re here, I’m guessing that you are interested in combining intermittent fasting with keto, oh, and a drop of alcohol.
Intermittent fasting is the umbrella term for going for a period of time without eating.
There is an eating window, followed by a feeding window.
People will fast for different periods of time.
Only when combining intermittent fasting with keto, you will eat all of your daily macros within the ‘feeding window’.
Generally, if you’re new to intermittent fasting, this is where you will start. Check out our guide to getting started with intermittent fasting.
One Meal A Day (OMAD)
OMAD stands for ‘One Meal A Day’, sometimes people will refer to this as one meal per day. The concept of this is simple, you only eat one meal a day.
For more on OMAD, we have a guide, on what is OMAD on keto.
Alternate Day Fasting
Some people interpret ADF as not eating on one day and then eating on the next. We would advocate the 36 hours due to the health benefits that the body starts to see at 36 hours.
Check out our guide on alternate date fasting with keto if you want to learn more about this.
Extended fasting is a form of intermittent fasting. When extended fasting, people will refrain from eating for a period of 36 up to 72 hours.
Some people will take an extended fast beyond 72 hours, however, we do not discuss fasts of these lengths here. If you are fasting for longer than 72 hours, this should be supervised by a medical professional.
If you are on any medications or have any health conditions or concerns at all, you should seek advice from a health care professional before beginning a fast.
Health Benefits of Fasting
For more on the health benefits of each type of fasting, check out each of the guides above for specifics.
The general health benefits you can achieve through fasting are;
- Fat Loss
- Muscle Definition
- Rebuild Your Immune System
- Deeper Ketosis
- Increased Autophagy
- Reducing Inflammation
- Resets Gut Microbiome
- Mental Clarity
- Hormonal Balance
- Insulin and Leptin Rebalance
- Weight Loss
See our guide to the keto fasting timeline to understand more about the health benefits which are triggered at different points on the fasting timeline.
Also, we are well aware that there are a lot of acronyms and abbreviations that are specific to the world of intermittent fasting, bookmark or print out our keto intermittent fasting key terms guide.
So, Can You Drink Alcohol During Intermittent Fasting?
Let’s cut to the chase, whilst you are in your fasting window (the period of time you are not eating for), you should not drink alcohol.
Blocks Fat Breakdown
Why? Alcohol has been shown to block fat breakdown, this is the exact opposite of what you are seeking to achieve by eating.
Also, let’s be realistic about this, how many of us get the munchies when we drink? My hand is up right now.
Whenever I go out drinking, I need to pre-plan my food and snacks so I don’t end up going off-plan and binge eating none keto foods.
Finally, drinking on an empty stomach can lead to the alcohol taking effect quicker.
So, again, to reiterate, you should not drink alcohol during your fasting period when completing your IF.
Check out our ultimate guide to drinking alcohol on a keto diet, for more on the net carbs in different alcohols, and our 5P plan for enjoying alcohol on keto.
If Not Alcohol, What?
- Black Tea
- Green Tea
- Balck Coffee
- Water (including mineral water)
None of these will spike your blood sugar and interrupt your fast.
Staying hydrated on keto, and when intermittent fasting is essential.
Can I Drink Alcohol During My Feeding Period?
Yes, you can drink during your feeding period, however, we would not advocate breaking a fast with alcohol. Reawaken your gut with healthy nutritious, keto-friendly foods before drinking alcohol.
Also, please be aware that your alcohol tolerance may be reduced through fasting. In simple terms, you may get drunker quicker, please be mindful of this and look after yourself.
Check out our guide as to what to eat to break a fast for more information on this.
Reminder: IF Is Not A Solution
Just a quick reminder, IF should not be used as a way to combat overeating carbs on a keto diet (aka a cheat day). Nor should it be used to combat overdrinking.
IF should only be undertaken for its health benefits and not as a solution to bad eating habits.
If you are considering having a cheat day on keto, check out our guide to this. We will take you through how to plan for a cheat day and what to do to overcome the impacts. Intermittent fasting is not the answer to this.
Final Thoughts on Drinking Alcohol When Intermittent Fasting
In summary, you should not be drinking alcohol during your fasting window when intermittent fasting. Doing so will only undo all of the hard work you have done through fasting. However, you can drink alcohol during your feeding window. We would not advise breaking a fast with alcohol and be mindful that post fasting, the effects of alcohol may be more pronounced.