Are you practicing intermittent fasting or planning to get started? Going several hours without food can be a challenge for you. For newbies to surge through the fasting period, some support through specific beverages may help.

For intermittent fasting, the ideal beverage is calorie-free, as it does not break the fast. These beverages make you feel full by suppressing your appetite and helping you stick to your fasting routine. Therefore, making your intermittent fasting journey easier.

Read on to explore what you can drink during intermittent fasting and what should be avoided to get the most out of an intermittent fasting routine.

Key Takeways:

  • Intermittent fasting (IF) allows for flexibility in food choices during eating windows.
  • Zero-calorie beverages like herbal teas, vegetable juice, plain water, electrolyte drinks, apple cider vinegar, and black coffee are best to consume during the fasting window.
  • Other beverages like sports drinks, protein shakes, fruit smoothies, soda, and alcoholic beverages, can disrupt the fasting state or make it more challenging to adhere to the fasting protocol.
  • During the intermittent fasting eating window, choosing drinks that don’t spike insulin levels but provide sufficient nutrients is important.
  • Intermittent fasting is highly individual, what works for one person may not work for another. So, experiment with different beverage choices to find what works best for you.

What is intermittent fasting?

Intermittent fasting is a kind of eating that involves alternating between eating and fasting intervals. It does not prescribe specific foods to eat, but rather when you should eat them. The 16/8 approach (fasting for 16 hours and eating within an 8-hour window), the 20/4 method (fasting for 20 hours and eating for 4 hours), the 18:6 method (eating normally for 6 hours and fasting for 18 hours), and the eat-stop-eat method (fasting for 24 hours once or twice a week) are some of the various types of intermittent fasting.

Various studies suggest that intermittent fasting helps with weight loss, improves metabolic health, and potentially increases lifespan.

10 beverages you can drink during intermittent fasting

When you practice intermittent fasting, you typically go without food for a set period of time before eating again. However, there are certain beverages you can consume during the fasting window that won't break your fast because they contain minimal or no calories. Here are some options:

  1. Water:

    This is the best choice for staying hydrated and supporting bodily functions without breaking your fast.
  2. Plain Tea:

    Plain tea (green, black, or herbal) are generally okay to consume during fasting periods as they contain very few calories and can help suppress hunger.
  3. Herbal Tea:

    Herbal tea like green tea, peppermint, chamomile, or hibiscus do not contain calories, are rich in antioxidants, and offer a variety of health benefits. Enjoy these plain or with a slice of lemon for added flavor.
  4. Sparkling Water:

    Flavored or plain sparkling water without any sweeteners can be refreshing and won't break your fast.
  5. Apple Cider Vinegar:

    Adding a small amount of apple cider vinegar to water may help with appetite control and has minimal calories.
  6. Bone Broth (in moderation):

    While bone broth does contain some calories, it's low enough that it typically won't disrupt your fast significantly. However, it's best to consume it in moderation.
  7. Electrolyte Drinks:

    Zero-calorie electrolyte drinks can help replenish electrolytes lost during fasting, especially if you're engaging in physical activity.
  8. Vegetable juice:

    Freshly squeezed vegetable juices, such as celery, cucumber, kale, or spinach, can provide essential nutrients and hydration during your eating window.
  9. Kombucha:

    Kombucha is a fermented tea beverage that contains probiotics and may offer digestive health benefits. Choose varieties with a low sugar content.
  10. Black coffee:

    Plain black coffee is calorie-free and can provide a boost of energy and focus during your eating window. Avoid adding sugar, cream, or other calorie-containing additives.

Remember, the key to intermittent fasting is to keep your calorie intake minimal during the fasting window to maintain the metabolic state of fasting. It's essential to listen to your body and adjust your beverage choices accordingly based on how you feel during fasting periods.

Drinks to avoid while fasting

While intermittent fasting (IF) allows for flexibility in food choices during eating windows, some beverages may disrupt the fasting state or make it more challenging to adhere to the fasting protocol. Here are some drinks to avoid while intermittent fasting:

  1. Calorie-containing beverages:

    Any drink that contains calories can break the fast. This includes sugary drinks like soda, fruit juice, energy drinks, and sweetened coffee beverages.
  2. Alcoholic beverages:

    Alcohol contains calories and can disrupt the fasting state. Additionally, excessive alcohol consumption can impair judgment and lead to overeating during the eating window.
  3. Creamy or milky beverages:

    Beverages like lattes, cappuccinos, and milkshakes contain calories from milk or cream and should be avoided during fasting periods.
  4. Sweetened beverages:

    Even zero-calorie sweeteners can trigger an insulin response in some individuals, potentially breaking the fast. It's best to stick to plain water or unsweetened beverages.
  5. Fruit smoothies:

    While fruits are nutritious, blending them into smoothies can concentrate their sugars and calories, potentially breaking the fast. Stick to whole fruits during the eating window.
  6. High-calorie or sweetened tea:

    Some teas, particularly those sweetened with sugar or honey, can contain significant calories. Stick to plain, unsweetened teas during fasting periods.
  7. Bulletproof coffee:

    While popular with some people in the IF community, bulletproof coffee (coffee blended with butter and oil) contains calories and can break the fast. Instead, choosing black coffee or plain tea is a better option.
  8. Sports drinks:

    These beverages typically contain calories in the form of sugars and electrolytes. Stick to water to stay hydrated during fasting periods.
  9. Protein shakes:

    Even if they're low in calories, they can stimulate an insulin response, potentially breaking the fast. Save them for your eating window.

Remember, water is the best beverage choice during fasting periods, as it's calorie-free and helps keep you hydrated. Additionally, listen to your body and adjust your fasting plan according to your individual needs and goals. If you're unsure about a particular drink, it's best to err on the side of caution and avoid it during fasting periods.

Top 5 Drinks to enjoy during the eating window

During your intermittent fasting eating window, it's important to choose drinks that won't spike your insulin levels significantly and help fulfill your nutritional needs. Here are some options for you to choose from:

  1. Protein smoothies:

    Blend ingredients like protein powder, leafy greens, fruits like berries or bananas, nut butter, and unsweetened almond milk. This drink supplies a good ratio of carbohydrates, healthy fats, and protein.
  2. Greek yogurt smoothie:

    Blend Greek yogurt with fruits, leafy greens, and a tablespoon of nut butter for a creamy, protein-rich drink.
  3. Avocado shake:

    Mix together ripe avocado, unsweetened almond milk, a touch of honey or maple syrup, and ice for a creamy, satisfying drink rich in healthy fats and fiber.
  4. Homemade nut milk:

    Make your nut milk using almonds, cashews, or another favorite nut. Blend with water and strain for a creamy, nutrient-rich drink. You can sweeten it naturally with dates or a touch of honey, if desired.
  5. Chia seed smoothie:

    Mix chia seeds with your choice of milk (almond, coconut, etc.) and let it sit overnight to thicken. Add flavorings like vanilla extract, cinnamon, or cocoa powder for variety.

These drinks are generously loaded with calcium, protein, B vitamins, zinc, iron, minerals, phytonutrients, dietary fiber, and antioxidants. The intake of these drinks supports your fasting regimen by providing essential nutrients required for the normal functioning of the body.

Drinks for fasting window

Drinks to avoid

Drinks for eating window


Calorie-containing beverages

Protein Smoothies

Plain tea

Alcoholic beverages

Greek yogurt smoothies

Herbal tea

Creamy or milky beverages

Avocado Shake

Sparkling water

Sweetened beverages

Homemade nut milk

Apple cider vinegar

Fruit smoothies

Chia seed smoothie

Bone broth (in moderation)

High-calorie or sweetened tea

Electrolyte drinks

Bulletproof coffee

Vegetable juice

Sports drinks


Protein shakes

Black coffee

Summing Up


Intermittent fasting (IF) is a dietary approach that alternates between periods of fasting and eating. During the fasting periods, consuming calories is restricted.

Remember, the key to successful intermittent fasting is to stay hydrated, listen to your body, and choose beverages that support your overall health and fitness goals. Also, it's essential to be mindful of portion sizes and any additives that may contain calories or affect insulin levels.

However, drinking certain beverages (that are allowed) to stay hydrated can ultimately support the fasting goals.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Does a 10-calorie drink break intermittent fasting?

In terms of a 10-calorie drink, such as a very diluted beverage or a drink with a small amount of added sweetener, it's unlikely to trigger a significant metabolic response that would break the fast for most people.

If your primary goal with intermittent fasting is weight loss, a 10-calorie drink consumed occasionally during fasting periods is unlikely to hinder progress significantly. However, if you're fasting for other reasons, such as autophagy or metabolic health benefits, it's generally recommended to stick to zero-calorie beverages like water, plain tea, or black coffee during fasting periods to ensure you're staying in a fasted state.

Can you drink hint water while fasting?

Hint water is a flavored water product that contains no calories, sweeteners, artificial flavors, or preservatives. It typically consists of water infused with natural fruit essences for flavor. Since Hint water contains no calories or sweeteners, it is generally considered acceptable to consume while intermittent fasting.

Can you drink Coke Zero while fasting?

Coke Zero is a sugar-free, zero-calorie soft drink that has artificial sweeteners like aspartame and acesulfame potassium added to it. Since it contains no calories, consuming Coke Zero during intermittent fasting technically wouldn't break the fast in terms of calorie intake.

However, there's some debate among health experts and intermittent fasting practitioners about the potential effects of artificial sweeteners on fasting. Some argue that even though these sweeteners are calorie-free, they may still trigger an insulin response in some individuals, potentially affecting the metabolic benefits of fasting.

Ultimately, whether you choose to drink Coke Zero while intermittent fasting depends on your personal preferences, goals, and how your body responds to it.

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