Last January I jumped on the FASTer Way to Fat Loss program with my friend and coach, Deanna Pizitz (she’s no longer coaching, so I’ve joined my girl Brandi’s team). I’m so happy to have found a manageable lifestyle program that incorporates intermittent fasting, whole nutrition, carb cycling, and fitness. In just 6 weeks, I was able to learn so much about how the body digests food, stores fat and HOW to turn your body into a fat-burning machine. One of the major components of the FASTer Way Program is implementing an eating schedule called “Intermittent Fasting.”
In this post, you’ll learn about intermittent fasting and how to not break your fast in the mornings with drinks and more specifically coffee additives.
What is intermittent fasting?
It is not a diet. It is a time-restricted eating schedule. Fasting has been shown to help to support weight loss and improve blood sugar, brain function, and longevity.
How Intermittent Fasting Works to Lose Weight and Burn Fat
Here are the sciencey facts:
Your body is always in one of two states: fed or fasted.
In the fed state (anytime your body is digesting food), your body’s insulin levels make burning fat a challenge.
However, in the fasted state (8-12 hours after your body finishes digesting), your insulin levels are lower and better able to reach into your fat stores.
People rarely go into a fasted state throughout the day because most of us have been taught to eat breakfast as soon as we wake up. In fact, the traditional theory of several small meals per day keeps us from ever reaching the fasted state. In addition, that type of eating schedule regularly spikes our insulin levels which also hinders fat loss.
How to Start Intermittent Fasting
In the FASTer Way to Fat Loss, we practice a 16/8 intermittent fasting schedule. This involves eating all your meals in an 8-hour window and fasting for the remaining 16 hours.
Starting intermittent is easy. As I said, it is not a diet. It is an eating schedule.
Start by monitoring the time you eat or drink your last thing in the evening and then plan to skip breakfast. I usually stop eating around 8:00 or 9:00pm and don’t eat my first meal until 1:00pm the next day.
So what can you have during that 16 hour window to help curb your appetite? Well, water of course!
But what about coffee?
Coffee is a great appetite suppressor, so many of you might already be skipping breakfast if you’re an avid coffee drinker like me. HOWEVER, if you’re wanting your body to stay in that fasted state, you might have to change your coffee order up a little bit…
The biggest question about intermittent fasting revolves around what can break it. And since drinks are typically the first thing we consume in the morning you need to make sure that you’re not accidentally consuming anything that could break your fast.
How to NOT Break Your Fast
- In order to maintain your “fasted” and fat-burning state, your body cannot consume anything that it could use for energy (i.e. carbs, sugars).
- Low-calorie or zero-calorie drinks while fasting include black coffee, water, tea, bone broth, and apple cider vinegar.
Does Coffee Creamer Break Your Intermittent Fasting?
The answer to this question is a highly debated one.
Can you add creamer to your coffee while doing intermittent fasting? Yes and no.
Adding a little dose of creamer to your coffee is acceptable and will not completely break your fast, but rather might just slow down your fat-burning state.
Do I personally use creamer in my coffee? No.
Because there is so much information out there about what will and will not break your fast, I simply do not fool with using creamer in my coffee anymore. Problem solved! But I do understand that some people need a way to get creamer in their coffee or wean themselves off slowly.
Here are some of my favorite FASTer Way to Fat Loss approved creamers that won’t completely break your fast. *Remember to read the label to determine what the serving size is so you don’t go over 50 calories or have any fiber.
- Nut Pods
- Califia Creamers
- Coconut Creamer from Trader Joe’s
- Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss Almond or Coconut Creamer
I know that’s a ton of information to digest, but the rewards of intermittent fasting really are so beneficial. I’ve been practicing intermittent fasting for over a year now and it has helped me stay regulated, reduced acid reflux, and has lessened my stomach/digestion pain. I used to have frequent and excessive sweating at night and those have completely subsided because Intermittent fasting is said to help regulate and stabilize hormone levels. Another amazing result of incorporating intermittent fasting into my lifestyle is the reduction in belly bloat! Read how IF worked for me see my before and after photos in just two weeks.
Tips for Successful Intermittent Fasting
- Drink water plenty of water. Soda water (no juice or fruit) could help make you feel fuller
- Stay busy.
- Drink coffee or tea. Both of these natural drinks are supposed to help curb hunger. Just remember no sweeteners. Mostly black coffee is recommended for intermittent fasting and keto lifestyles.
- Ride out the hunger waves. Sometimes you’re really just thirsty!
- Give yourself one month to see if intermittent fasting (such as 16:8) is a good fit for you. I try and fast every day of the week, but sometimes I’ll give myself the weekends off to enjoy a fun Starbucks drink in the morning or brunch with family and friends.
- Follow a whole nutrition diet between fasting periods. See below how I break my fast and space out my eating periods.
Want to see how I break my fast? Here’s exactly what I eat in a week!
Join Brandi’s next Round (a 6-week program) and learn how to incorporate the FASTer Way into your lifestyle. Next round starts on August 2nd!
Can you have lemon water during fasting ? Also can you maybe explain carb cycling ?!
I’ve heard that lemon water is fine. Although lemon does have natural sugars in it so I wouldn’t use a lot.
Carb cycling is just an eating schedule where you alter your carb intake on certain days. So on the FWTFL we have 2 low carb days during the week. Remainder of week we eat healthy carbs like sweet potato, quinoa, and fuel our bodies back up. These days are paired with workouts that help support the nutrition you’re eating for optimal results.
Hope this helps!
Thank you so much !
Sharani Marie says
Thanks for this! I’ve just started doing intermittent fasting along and follow the 16:8 method and so far I’m loving the results. I feel lighter (I’m down 13lbs on my 3rd week thanks to https://theblakediet.com/ btw) and for some reason I feel so much better too. I used to have joint pains and they’ve lessened considerably for the past 2 weeks. I don’t know if there’s a medical explanation for that though. I’ve never been drinking so much water in my entire life too – must I say I HATE drinking water but with the help of a straw, yes a straw! I’ve been drinking up to 5 litres of water a day – I don’t know how I do it honestly. Straws are magic lol but seriously they trick you into drinking more.
I need to try this straw trick! Thanks for sharing!
Enidan S says
HI! Thanks for all this great info! I’m curious if organic stevia in coffee would break the fast?
I think that’s fine!
I use stevia plus 1 tablespoon of heavy cream per cup of coffee……is the cream going to break my fast? It has 1 g of carbs. I am a heavy coffee drinker. Should I limit the number of cups in a day?
I don’t think this will!
Hello! I drink sugar free hazelnut creamer in my coffee. Its about 15 calories. Does this break my fast?
I think you should be good on this in really small amounts!
Alexia Anders says
I am a type 1 diabetic. Would this be safe for someone like me?
Hi Alexia! I would consult your doctor or a certified coach. I do not have the credentials to give advice on that but I hope you continue to explore and find something that works for you! Thanks for visiting my blog and would love to see your over on Instagram! https://www.instagram.com/thesouthernsource/
What about French vanilla ground coffee? Tim hortons brand to be exact.
I just looked up the nutrition facts and it looks like it has some carbs in it. But might not be enough per serving to really matter. Do you use MyFitnessPal to track macros? It might be a good idea to scan the package and enter it in there to see what comes up !
Catherine Caravette says
Can I add a tablespoon of unsweetened coconut cream to my decaf coffee while I’m fasting?
Also, is it better to drink decaf coffee/tea during the fast?
I’ve used coconut creamer before and it’s fine!! I don’t think decaf matters. Caffeine helps curve appetite which helps fast longer!
My Dr just told me about Walden Farms Zero calorie coffee creamers, (and dressings) she says those wont break my fast because there’s nothing in it to spike my insulin. I’m getting push back from people in my IF community on facebook on this who simply think that creamers = fast breaker, and so i’m just looking for more info. Your article here directly says
“In order to maintain your “fasted” and fat-burning state, your body cannot consume anything that it could use for energy (i.e. carbs, sugars). Low calorie or zero calorie drinks while fasting include: black coffee, water, tea, bone broth, and apple cider vinegar.” So if in fact these creamers are zero calorie, then they should not break a fast right? Though i’ve also seen push back on things like bone broth as well.
This is good general information and what I’ve learned from my health coach and personal fasting experiences. From what I’ve read, everyone metabolizes differently so certain things can break one person’s fast, and not have any effect on another person’s fast. It’s all up for debate! Hope you found this somewhat helpful and/or entertaining to read. I’d listen to your doctor!
To wen myself off high calorie creamer, do you think it’s ok to add stevia and 0 sugar hazlenut creamer(Coffeemate – 15 calories per tablespoon) to my coffee?
Hey Becky, I think that’s a great start to going creamer free!
Just want to make sure your creamer doesn’t have any fiber. Check the label!
Donovan Bragg says
Does it have to be coconut creamer from Trader Joe’s? Or will so-delicious coconut creamer (French vanilla or original) be okay for my coffee?
Hey! Just check the label and make sure there isn’t any fiber or sugar!
Christine Knutson says
What about zero calorie coffee syrups?
Hi Christine, they should be good. Just make sure you check the fiber content is zero.
In high school I gained weight, and yet I often skipped breakfast then and my mom would always be telling me that I should not skip breakfast. I was intermittent fasting without realizing it, but yet I gained weight through out high school. Why did I gain instead of loose? Does IF only work if you realize you are doing it?
I also did this in high school not knowing, but I think the most important aspect of putting IF to work for true & maintainable weight management is the whole nutrition you couple with it. So, I’ve read that it REALLY matters how you break your fast. According to what I’ve read, you need to be breaking it with foods high in protein and/or whole vegetables. If you break it with chips or sugar, it really can throw your blood sugar into high gear and ruin the fast. Just some food for thought!
Hi!! I just stared fasting this week. It worked for me in the past. Someone recommended the Laird Superfood Creamer for my coffee. Will this break my fast?
Hi! I actually have not heard of this brand yet. Just make sure no sugar and no fiber!
Catherine Caravette says
What if any supplements can I take while IF? I have one supplement in particular that needs to be taken on an empty stomach. Microbiome X. Please let me know, thank you!!
ive been using cinnamon & stevia is that good?