Coffee is, without a doubt, one of the most popular beverages all around the world. It contains enough caffeine to keep you awake, it smells good, and also tastes good. It’s no wonder that it managed to stay popular among people year after year.
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Meanwhile, there’s a small yet continually growing group of people who partake in intermittent fasting— the practice of eating in a small window before fasting for a long period of time. During the fasting period, the individual isn’t allowed to consume anything that contains calories. One popular item that is allowed during a fast is coffee. But the last beverage’s inclusion has created confusion. Can you actually consume coffee if you’re fasting?
According to recent reports, you can! Coffee is a more than acceptable beverage to consume if you’re fasting. Whether you’re someone who regularly partakes in intermittent fasting, or you’re fasting for a whole other reason entirely— you can still have coffee. How long you’re fasting for doesn’t change this fact either.
While this is certainly good news for those who fast regularly, there’s no specific important caution or limitation to keep in mind. However, any coffee you do consume while fasting must be black. There are no exceptions; you can’t add any cream, milk (either dairy milk or any plant-based milk), or sugar to your coffee. The reason is simple— you cannot consume any calories while you’re fasting and these times do contain calories. Anything that can be added to coffee will only add unnecessary calories, thus causing you to unwittingly break your fast. It also adds carbs, fat, and sugar— more things you aren’t supposed to have while fasting.
For some people, drinking black coffee is no big deal. But if you haven’t tried black coffee before— or you simply can’t stomach the taste of it— you’re not totally out of luck. Many grocery stores sell no-calorie sweeteners such as Stevia or Sweet N’ Low. This alternative in particular is allowed during a fasting period because it doesn’t impact a consumer’s blood sugar or insulin in a negative way. So if you hate black coffee, relax— there’s still hope for you after all!
This isn’t the only thing you should keep in mind if you plan to consume coffee during a long fasting period. Experts have revealed that drinking coffee on an empty stomach can create a lot of negative side effects that are both physical and mental. The physical effects can include heartburn, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and an upset gut. Meanwhile, the mental effect is that it can intensify both anxiety and jitteriness. If you’re worried that any of these effects will happen to you, you can skip coffee altogether. Other calorie-free drinks such as black tea and water, or sparkling water can fill in the void left by coffee.
So for those that are considering intermittent fasting as a way to lose weight, or have recently begun doing so already, you don’t need to fret about missing out on coffee. As long as it’s black coffee, you can still enjoy it while in the midst of a fast. So sit back, relax, and enjoy your morning brew!
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