• Autumn Bates, CCN, MS

Does Cucumber Water Break a Fast?

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New to Intermittent Fasting and wondering if your daily cup of cucumber water will break a fast? Today, I'm sharing everything you need to know about cucumber water and Intermittent Fasting so that you can start achieving your wellness goals!

Does Cucumber Water Break a Fast?

There are two ways to approach Intermittent Fasting. One is from a true fast perspective. In this circumstance, any food or drink (other than pure water) will break a fast. Typically this is used for religious or specific therapeutic purposes. The second method is fasting mimicking. During a true fast, the storing hormone, insulin, is low. This allows the body to naturally switch into fat burning (aka lipolysis). This low insulin state can be "mimicked" by not consuming any food or drink that will spike insulin. The two macronutrients that spike insulin are protein and carbohydrates. By only consuming pure fat ingredients and liquids, this can mimic the true fast and allow the body to continue using fat as fuel. If weight loss is your goal with Intermittent Fasting, either Intermittent Fasting approach can be used.

So that brings us to our question: does cucumber water break a fast? If you are using a true fast, then adding cucumber to water will break a fast. However, if you're using the fasting mimicking approach, the answer depends on how much cucumber is in your water.

Cucumber contains carbohydrates, which is one of the macronutrients that spikes insulin. A good rule of thumb is to aim for less than 1 gram of protein and/or carbohydrates in order to stay in your "fasted" state. Using 1/8 of a medium sized cucumber brings you at less than 1g of carbohydrates. So if you're using a few slices of cucumber, you're in the clear. However, if you juice 1/4 or more of a medium sized cucumber, this is where we start to get into a little bit of murky territory. At this point, the amount of carbohydrates and protein starts to exceed that one gram rule. This still likely won't be enough to cause insulin to be secreted. However to be safe, you can opt for 1/8 or less of a cucumber in your water during your fasted state.

Related: 3 Intermittent Fasting Rules You Should NEVER Break

Will Lemon Cucumber Water Break a Fast?

When combining multiple ingredients in your water, it's important to consider the compounding effect. Roughly 1/4 of a lemon alone is safe during the fasted period, just like how 1/8 of a cucumber alone is in the clear. However, when combined, the grams of carbohydrates and protein add up as well.

In order to stay under the one gram rule, you can aim for a combination of 1/16 cucumber (or a few slices) with 1/8 lemon (or 1 slice of lemon) when combining both in your water during your fasted state.

Related: How To Drink Apple Cider Vinegar With Intermittent Fasting

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Your Nutritionist,


Autumn Elle Nutrition

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This content (on www.autumnellenutrition.com and in marketing emails from Autumn Elle Nutrition) is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors, nutritionists and/or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. Neither Autumn Elle Nutrition nor the publisher of this content takes responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any nutrition, supplement or lifestyle program.

© 2020 by Autumn Bates, CCN

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