Given the health benefits of both keto and intermittent fasting, it’s no wonder why many people want to combine the two for faster results.
Both intermittent fasting and keto impact your body in similar ways.
They both also bring about changes in your body:
Each method forces your body into a state of ketosis, which leads to:
- More ketone gets produced in the body
- Lower blood sugar levels
- Improve mood
- Better mental clarity
- Promote fat loss
- More weight loss
But while they both bring about similar results, they work and implement differently.
Here’s a quick overview of how each works.
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What Is The Keto Diet?
The keto diet or ketogenic diet is a high fat, low carb diet that limits your carb intake to about 20 to 50 grams per day.
This reduction of carbohydrates forces your body to enter into a metabolic state called ketosis.
When this happens, your body becomes incredibly efficient at burning fat for energy. It also turns fat into ketones in the liver, which can supply energy for the brain.
Keto diets can cause massive reductions in blood sugar and insulin levels. This, along with the increased ketones, has numerous health benefits.
The keto diet lowers blood sugar and insulin levels. It shifts the body’s metabolism away from carbs and towards fat and ketones.
That’s the goal of a keto diet, to achieve and maintain ketosis to allow your body to use ketones for fuel.
The way to reach this metabolic state is through your diet. On a keto diet, you need your macronutrients to be in the following ratio:
- 5-10% Carbohydrates
- 70% fat
- 20-25% protein
It’s a diet comprised of low-carb, high-fat and moderate protein.
What Is Intermittent Fasting?
Intermittent fasting involves cycling between periods of eating and fasting. This means going without food for a set period of time and then eating during a particular window each day.
There are many different intermittent fasting methods or schedules to choose from. These include the 5:2 method, the Warrior Diet, the alternate-day fasting, 16/8 method.
The most popular and common intermittent fasting method is 16/8 fasting.
It’s a simple 16/8 split where you eat during an 8-hour window. You then fast for the remaining 16 hours.
So How Can They Work Together?
Many benefits of intermittent fasting and keto are very similar. More often than not, they overlap.
Both the keto diet and intermittent fasting lead to ketosis, fat loss, weight loss, and other health benefits.
Yet, they employ a completely different approach.
This makes combining the two a total sense. It creates a win-win where you can double your efforts without compromising the integrity of the other.
So how do you combine the keto diet and intermittent fasting successfully?
Luckily, it’s quite simple.
You first choose a fasting schedule that works for your lifestyle. It may be a 16/8 method, 5:2 method, alternate-day fasting, or even some other pattern of fasting.
What’s crucial is you go with what works best for your schedule, so you can easily stick to it. The most popular fasting method is 16/8 fasting.
With this, you split your day into 16 and 8. You have an 8-hour eating window and fast for the remaining 16 hours.
This is an effortless way to fast because you can include your sleep into the 16 hours of fast. Especially, if you are ok with skipping breakfast every day, this is a total champ for you.
With this 16/8 fasting method, a sample daily schedule looks like this:
- Wake up at 7 am and drink a glass of water or black coffee.
- Skip breakfast and fast through the morning.
- Eat your lunch at 11 am.
- Snack if needed around 2 pm.
- Eat early dinner at 6 pm and finish eating by 7 pm.
- Fast from 7 pm to 11 is the next day.
When combining this with a keto diet, all your meals including lunch, snacks, and dinner are keto meals. There is no change there.
Keto fasting is really about planning your keto meals around your fasting schedule.
What Are the Cons?
So, doing intermittent fasting and keto diet sounds all positive and it’s even easy to start and effortless to stick to.
Are there any negatives or cons of doing the two?
There can be.
Both of these dieting methods are somewhat extreme in their own way.
Keto diet places so many restrictions on your food choices and macro intakes.
Fasting places a long period of eating ban on a daily basis.
Combining the two can be too much of a change for some and it should be approached with caution. It can also bring an added layer of challenges and complications that add risks to some dieters.
If you have a history of an eating disorder, diabetes, or other illness, you’d want to stay away. And the same goes for pregnant women or breastfeeding mothers.
If your life also demands full energy at all times or involves frequent traveling and eating out, fasting can be a challenge.
And lack of compliance can also result in no result or worse, stall the progress of your other diet.
As with any diet, before you start a new way of eating and change your dietary habits, seek expert help in your area.
Be sure to consult with your trusted health care provider to make sure your new diet and/or eating pattern is right for you.
OK, So Final Word?
Both intermittent fasting and the keto diet offer an effective way to achieve ketosis, burn fat and lose weight.
While you can certainly focus on one method over the other, combining the two may help to achieve the results faster and reap more health benefits.
If you are looking to start keto fasting, approach it with the utmost caution.
As with any other diet and fasting, keto diet fasting will cause a big shift in your food choices as well as your eating schedule. Be sure to consult with a doctor in your area to determine if it’s right for you before you start.