Can You do Intermittent Fasting and Keto Together?

Both the Keto diet and Intermittent Fasting have seen their share of celebrity endorsement and social media popularity in recent years.  But why should you have to choose one of these diets over another?  Intermittent fasting (or IF) and Keto work well together as a combined diet.  The following article will explain what these two diets are, how they work together and how you can get the most benefits possible out of combining them. 

What is intermittent fasting?

Intermittent fasting is a diet that focuses on when you eat as opposed to what you eat.  On IF you can eat whichever foods you want as long as you eat them within a certain eating window.  There are different ways of doing IF but they all share one thing.  On IF you’re going to have a fasting window and a feasting window.  

During the fasting time you don’t eat anything.  The only things that you’re allowed to consume during this period are water and black coffee.  This fasting period is followed by a feasting period.  During this window of time you’re allowed to eat whatever you want as long as you stop by the time the next fasting period begins.

Popular IF times are 14:10, 16:8 and 18:6. The first number represents the amount of time that you’re fasting for (14, 16 or 18 hours) while the second number represents your eating window (10, 8 and 6 hours).  You can also do fasts on IF that are a full day long or you can go the opposite way and choose a fast for one day, feast for the next type of approach.

The hourly fast appeals to a lot of people because you still get to eat a meal or two each and every day.  This makes it easier to stick to while still providing great results.  Whole day fasts are harder to stick to because they require you to be disciplined for 24 hours or longer. 

There are many health benefits to IF.  The majority of people who begin IF do so because they either want to detox their body or lose weight.  IF can help you accomplish both.  But taking a break from digesting food you allow your body to rest and regenerate.  Fasting can also help get your hunger under control so that your body begins to recognize true hunger signals as opposed to ones that are caused by boredom or habit.

What is Keto?

The Keto diet is an ultra-low carb diet that seeks to change the way that your body sources energy.  When you eat a high carb diet your body uses glucose as fuel.  Glucose isn’t a reliable, steady source of fuel and it’s burned through very quickly.  This increases the number of hunger signals your body sends you as well as causing sugar highs and sugar lows throughout the day that can make it hard to function.

Keto restricts carbohydrates to 20-25g of net carbs daily in order to force your body to switch to using ketones as its primary energy source.  Ketones are sourced from fat which is why the Keto diet is so successful at burning away stubborn stored body fat.  You’re literally using your stored fat as energy.

Because fat is readily available and takes a while to burn through the Keto diet provides a steadier source of energy while helping you lose weight and stabilize your blood sugar levels.  On the Keto diet roughly 80-85% of your calories will come from healthy fats, 20-25% will come from protein and only 5-10% of your calories will be sourced from carbs. 

Should you combine IF and Keto?

IF and the Keto diet work very well together.  When you follow a Keto diet, you’re creating an effect similar to fasting in your body.  You don’t have enough carbohydrates in Keto to rely on glucose, so your body begins producing ketones.  During IF your body also produces ketones.  This is caused by an actual fast where your body doesn’t have any calories to convert into energy, so it uses your stored body fat in order to produce ketones. One of the main differences is that during Keto, the ketones that are produced tend to come from ingested fats while during IF the ketones are created from your body’s stored fats.  It’s easy to see how these two diets can work together. 

Benefits of combining IF and Keto

IF and the Keto diet actually tend to work better together than they do apart.  When you do both IF and the Keto diet at the same time, you’re going to experience a host of benefits.  You’ll notice improved weight loss because both IF and Keto trigger your body to produce ketones and burn stored body fat.  The fact that your eating is restricted to a shorter window will also help you to lose weight because you’ll naturally eat fewer calories.  This potent combination will also help reduce your hunger cravings and allow you to recognize true hunger.

Mental clarity is improved when you do IF and Keto together Your brain is a huge consumer of energy.  Because ketones are a very energy efficient source of energy your brain will be able to perform all of the tasks it requires while being fully supplied with ketones for all of its needs.  This allows your brain to run at 100% of its potential power which removes brain fog and improves your mental processes. 

Autography

Autography is the process by which your body’s cells are repaired and regenerated.  When you trigger the metabolic process of autography, you’re allowing your body to do a clean sweep of any defective or damaged cells.  This allows you to regenerate the cells that you need.  You can think of autography as being similar to the disk defragmenter or disk cleanup software on your computer.  Everything runs faster and smoother after it’s been run in the same way that everything in your body runs faster and smoother after you’ve engaged autography.

There are three main ways of triggering autography.  You can fast, restrict your protein or restrict your carbs.   Each way has different benefits and triggers a slightly different type of autography.  This is why combining Keto and IF together can be so beneficial to the health of your cells.  This combination triggers two of the three types of autography so your body can clean house very efficiently. 

How to best combine IF and Keto

If you’re looking to reap the benefits of a combined IF and Keto diet, then there are a few things that you should do.  For starters, your IF won’t help you produce ketones in any meaningful way unless you’ve fasted for 12-18 hours.  This means that you should choose a fast that’s at least 12 hours long in order to see results.  Your IF won’t begin the process of autography until 24 hours.  So, if you’re looking to give your cells a bit of a health boost you might want to mix in a 24 hour fast every once in a while, to trigger fasting autography.

If you’re new to IF then it’s best to start with a shorter fast and work your way up.  Begin by telling yourself you’re going to skip one meal (either breakfast or your nighttime snack).  This will allow you to gradually get into the swing of fasting.  If you decide that you’re not going to eat after your 6:00 dinner and you get up at 8:00 in the morning and have breakfast then you’ve already managed a 14 hour fast with the majority of it taking place while you’re sleeping!

It’s important to make sure that your body is getting the right types of nutrients during your Keto IF.  Because you’re restricting both carbs and the amount that you can eat throughout the day you need to pay special attention to what you’re eating.  Make sure your meals contain plenty of Keto friendly fruits and vegetables as well as the fats that your body needs to produce ketones.  And drink plenty of water!  Water can help stave off the hunger pains of IF, especially in the beginning days.

Fat bombs and the Keto diet

One of the best tools for combining IF and Keto is the use of fat bombs.  Fat bombs are keto-friendly snacks that give you a boost of healthy fats.  They’re easy to make and they’re a great way to break your fast while on Keto.  Because you’re eating less frequently it can be difficult to get the number of fats that your body requires during your feasting period.  Fat bombs help eliminate this struggle. 

In order to construct the perfect fat bomb, you’ll need a healthy fat such as avocado, extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil.  Fat bombs also often include full fat cream cheese.  Adding in some nuts and seeds can be a great way of getting some added nutrients and healthy fats. Sugar free sweeteners and flavorings can be used to create a desert flavored fat bomb while ingredients such as pepperoni and cheese can be used to create a more savoury fat bomb. 

Conclusion

If you’re considering combining Intermittent Fasting and the Keto diet, then you’ll be very happy with the health benefits and results that you get.  These two diets work better when used in combination that they do when they’re separate.  So pick a fasting period that works for you, get rid of the carbs in your diet and enjoy the added energy, weight loss and mental clarity that comes as a result.

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