How coffee can help if you’re intermittent fasting

How coffee can help if you’re intermittent fasting

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For the past several months, my 20-something daughter introduced my 49-year-old self to intermittent fasting, yet another diet regiment out there. This one, however, requires an organized combination of eating and fasting in a 24-hour period. Logic said I would have to give up every food and beverage in my life I craved in order to succeed.

To say I felt skeptical was an understatement.

(Photo by Nicolas J Leclercq on Unsplash

But according to Healthline, “Research suggests that intermittent fasting may promote weight loss and reduce risk factors for certain chronic conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s disease.”

Due to my own vanity and unwillingness to look my age, I wanted to see what fasting could do for weight loss leading into my summer vacation at the ocean. However, I wasn’t willing to give up my favorite guilty pleasure — COFFEE! In fact, I knew if I had to, the grumpiness (and withdrawal headaches) I would have to endure without my favorite beverage wouldn’t be worth looking like a swimsuit model — or a swimsuit model’s grandma.

What I found pleasantly surprised me — and will inspire others who want to try fasting but have a severe coffee addiction like me. Black coffee won’t “compromise your fast in any significant way” and actually contains some beneficial protein and other minerals. In fact, coffee may even boost the benefits of fasting, such as enhancing “brain function, reduced inflammation, blood sugar, and heart disease risk.” That’s even more of a reason to drink that cup of joe (or two or three) while in the fasting mode.

Need more inspiration to add coffee to your fast? Fasting – in combination with coffee — can also reduce mental decline. “Early research indicates that the caffeine in coffee may likewise promote ketone production, . . . a process linked to improved brain function,” the Healthline article states.

Moderate amounts of black coffee in your intermittent fasting cycle makes a difference (I always have three cups!)

But don’t add buckets of cream, piles of sugar, and other tempting additives if you want to see the benefits. Just consume as few calories as possible during the fast.

 “For instance, lattés, cappuccinos, and other high-calorie or sweetened coffee drinks should be off-limits during your fasting windows,” Healthline states.

 Rest assured, for those of you who salivate over straight black coffee like me, there is some wiggle room. If you have to add something to your coffee, only add a teaspoon of cream or coconut oil.

So if you don’t like coffee or don’t currently drink it, here’s a reason to start. More importantly, if you want to try a new health cycle, adding a healthy intermittent fasting regiment doesn’t have to mean eliminating what you crave. What I love most about fasting is knowing I can still wake up in the morning and enjoy the taste of my cups of coffee — as well as the health benefits I get from it!

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