Keto And Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent Fasting, or “IF”, is relatively new and is used as a supplement to your diet. It revolves around the timing of your food intake and can have some benefits in the long run. There are quite a few people misinformed on fasting, so we’ll clear that up and explain how intermittent fasting can be useful.
On your ketogenic journey, it’s important to know that your success is not only dictated by eating enough fat and protein and restricting carbs. When you eat, how often you eat, and how much you eat have a substantial impact on your health and function as well.
What Is Intermittent Fasting
A phenomenon called intermittent fasting is currently one of the world’s most popular health and fitness trends. It involves alternating cycles of fasting and eating.
Many studies show that this can cause weight loss, improve metabolic health, protect against disease and perhaps help you live longer.
Most people already “fast” every day, while they sleep. Intermittent fasting can be as simple as extending that fast a little longer.
Types Of Intermittent Fasting
- The 16/8 Method: Fast for 16 hours each day. The 16/8 method involves daily fasts of 16 hours for men and 14-15 hours for women. On each day, you restrict your eating to an 8-10 hour “eating window” where you can fit in 2-3 or more meals.
- The 5:2 Diet: Fast for 2 days per week. The 5:2 diet, involves eating 500-600 calories for two days of the week, but eating normally the other 5 days a week.
- Eat-Stop-Eat. Eat-Stop–Eat is an intermittent fasting program with one or two 24-hour fasts per week.
- Alternate Day Fasting. Alternate-day fasting means fasting every other day, either by not eating anything or only eating a few hundred calories.
- One Meal A Day. Eat one big meal day, whenever feels best, and then fast the rest of the day.
- Spontaneous Meal Skipping. Another more “natural” way to do intermittent fasting is to simply skip 1 or 2 meals when you don’t feel hungry or don’t have time to eat.
Intermittent Fasting On Keto
At first glance, the keto diet and intermittent fasting don’t seem like they have a ton in common.
One drastically changes what you eat (the keto diet includes eating mostly healthy fats, with fewer proteins and carbs), while the other changes when you eat (intermittent fasting).
They do have a common link, though: Ketosis, or the state when your body starts burning fat for energy instead of carbs, can be achieved in two ways. By fasting or by following a ketogenic diet.
Basically, intermittent fasting might add to keto’s fat-burning effects. In fact, some people use intermittent fasting to jump start ketosis. Intermittent fasting may drive blood-sugar levels down, which can promote or enhance ketosis.
Make sure you’re paying special attention to those keto ratios (as a reminder, they’re: 60-75% of your calories from fat, 15-30% of your calories from protein, and 5-10% of your calories from carbs).
Fasting On Keto Tips
- Make sure you still eat enough. Intermittent fasting does help you naturally eat less during the day, but be sure you’re still eating nutritious ketogenic foods to avoid any deficiencies or metabolic issues.
- Measure your ketone levels. Even though fasting can really help you stay in ketosis, it’s still important to make sure you aren’t eating too many carbs or doing anything else to kick you out of ketosis.
If intermittent fasting feels uncomfortable at first, give yourself time to adjust. Your body will get used to fasting and you’ll find that as time goes on, and the longer you eat a ketogenic diet, you’re not as hungry in between feeding periods as you used to be.
While intermittent fasting is not a necessary part of eating a ketogenic diet, it’s definitely compatible (and highly recommended) if you want to double down on benefits and meet some new health goals!