What To Eat During Intermittent Fasting – A Guide
Wondering what to eat during intermittent fasting? If so, that must mean that you’ve already popped on over to my diet plan and decided just how you’re going to schedule your meals on Intermittent Fasting.
If not, go ahead and check out your diet options so you can plan when exactly you’re going to break your fast. Intermittent Fasting is notoriously flexible as long as you don’t expect an eating window bigger than 8 hours.
This guide is for the people who know when to eat, but don’t know what to eat. It’s going to be suggestions on what to make, starting with the basics, then I’ll throw in a few specific combinations and even a cookbook that I think might help.
NOTE: If you’re here, I’m assuming you’re ready to take your diet up a notch. This means consuming more whole foods, and less processed or canned foods. It also means you’re probably going to be cooking more – so make sure you have the time to do so. You can either set aside times during the days to cook, or you can do meal prep on a certain day of a week. Sunday is the most common one.
And if you’re wavering right now, getting frightened by the idea of changing your diet to healthier foods – don’t! I’ve had some pretty fantastic results with Intermittent Fasting + the Bikini Body Workouts, and I’m here to try and help you as best as I can.
This is not a meal plan – although I did make a post on diet plans before. This is more of a list of things you can eat/want to eat to improve your diet.
Eat as much water as you can.
No, but seriously. How many of you have set the goal of “a gallon a day” for yourselves?
Why am I hearing crickets chirping instead of affirmatives?
Water is the most important thing you can put in your body, and if you’re struggling to maintain your fasts, you’ll find that it can help suppress your appetite. Not much, but hey – when you’re taking it day by day, as you should be, every little bit helps. Not to mention the numerous benefits of hydrating your body, which allows you to function at a better level, helps your skin and mental health, and just generally improves your life.
Did you know that sometimes your body will think it’s hungry when really it’s thirsty? Some f̶o̶o̶d̶ water for thought.
If water by itself is hard to swallow (HA!) you can try adding a pinch of lemon juice, some cucumber slices, or go for flavored waters such as La Croix.
From water to Oatmeal. This is a spicy list so far, eh?
But there’s really no comparison to the G.O.A.T., Oats.
Oatmeal is a decently low calorie meal (before you start adding extras) that leaves plenty of room to eat more exciting foods throughout the day. You can change it drastically with additions, from bananas or blueberries to cinnamon or peanut butter. If you’re feeling really adventurous, you can combine them all.
Oatmeal is also rich in “good”, whole carbohydrates, so it’s an extremely low-guilty way to get your energy after completing your workout. Because you’re working out fasted on your Intermittent Fasting journey, right?
Oatmeal is also full of soluble and insoluble fible, which is incredibly heart healthy.
Simply put, Oatmeal is THE carb choice for anyone even remotely interested in their health.
Sweet Potatoes are another favorite of most health-conscious people. Plenty of carbohydrates, which is always good when finishing up a workout. But they are also decently high in fiber – and high fiber diets are excellent at curbing your hunger. Fiber will also limit fat gain when building muscle mass (eating at a slight surplus of caloric intake).
And don’t even get me started on all the potassium, vitamin C, Vitamin B6, and more. Sweet!
The Dietary Guidelines suggest you eat around eight ounces of fish per week. But seafood isn’t super available everywhere, so where you can get this will vary greatly. For some, turning to cans of Tuna might be the best option. Either way, you should definitely consider trying to get your hands on some fish.
They are excellent sources of Vitamin D, and tend to be remarkably low in calories.
You had to know this was going to end up on the list. Who doesn’t like Chicken!?
Chicken is remarkably healthy – high in Vitamin E, high in monounsaturated fat, high in Omega-3, and of course high in PROTEIN. Then – as long as you aren’t getting crazy with the cooking method, it’s also zero carb and very low in fat.
Chicken is my staple protein. I would advise that you make it yours as well.
These are a great source of nutrients and fat, but be warned. Because they are high in fat, they are also shockingly high in calories. Nuts, especially almonds or walnuts, are a good option to snack on, but limit it to around a handful a day.
Like Chicken, but worse. Not in taste, but significantly higher in calories and fat. Ground Beef is a very good option to eat, and something I would try and incorporate at least once a week, but you definitely have be cautious with how often you eat it.
I almost want to say “any and all veggies” but I’m not sure if there’s some sort of super-villain Veggie out there trying to ruin people’s diets. But yes, veggies are a welcome addition to any diet in just about any situation.
Vegetables are divided into five classes:
- Dark Green Vegetables
- Orange Vegetables
- Dry Beans And Peas
- Starchy Vegetables
- Other Vegetables
Dark green vegetables include broccoli, collard greens, leafy lettuce, kale, spinach, watercress and other green and leafy plants.
Orange vegetables include sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkins and a number of different species of squash.
Dry beans and peas include black beans, kidney beans, soy beans, split peas and tofu, and other types of beans and pea species.
Starchy vegetables include vegetables like corn, potatoes and green peas.
The starchy ones you want to limit, and dry beans and peas can go overboard as well (but are still FANTASTIC sources of proteins).
But the dark green vegetables category especially? Go absolutely nuts. Pun unintended.
These are some of the main food items I eat, and should give you a good idea of what to eat during intermittent fasting. There are, of course, many other foods you can cook, but the main takeaway from this list is why you can eat these things.
They are natural, unprocessed, have a good nutritional makeup, and serve a benefit. Some fat, some carbs, a lot of protein. Vitamin C, Vitamin B, Omega-3. If you start looking more into why you’re being recommend items, and not just what is being recommended, you’ll be arming yourself with the knowledge to make impromptu decision’s on the fly.
Wouldn’t you like to be able to go to a fresh new restaurant and pinpoint the options that is both completely new to you, and not going to wreck your diet?
Well knowledge is power.
Other Whole Foods You Can Eat During IF
I like to use a Keto cookbook to try and decide what I’m going to eat – the meals are, by default, no or VERY LITTLE carb, always whole foods, and very delicious.
If you’re looking for one, here’s one that was a best-seller and is completely free, you just pay shipping and handling.
For my carbs, I keep it simple. Oatmeal and/or Fruits and/or Sweet Potatoes.
Here are a few Intermittent Fasting recipes I’ve found on the web that seem pretty popular with my friends, however. I like to make a few of these on special occasions.
Home-Made Coconut Ice-Cream
Quick and delicious low-calorie, low-carb, low-sugar and gluten-free desert.
Follow this easy recipe to make your very own, low-calorie ice cream with a tropical twist without the need for an expensive or bothersome ice-cream making machine. This ice-cream is also low in carbs, low in sugar and gluten-free.
The nutritional content will depend on the amount of ingredients you use, as well as the brand of coconut cream you use.
Make only as much ice cream as you will eat in one sitting as it will not keep in the freezer (it will go as hard as ice) nor in the fridge (it will melt).
Preparation only requires that you put the coconut cream in the freezer for up to two hours immediately before use (one hour if the cream has been in the fridge). Don’t let the cream go solid as it will be impossible to beat it. It just needs to be semi-solid. It’s best to check on it every 20 to 30 minutes. Cream in a pouch makes it easier to do this, but if you can’t find any, just pour some well-mixed (because coconut cream separates on standing) coconut cream into a freezer bag (double-bagged is best in case the bag rips), tie a knot in it to prevent any leaking and place it into the freezer, this will make it easier to check on its consistency than if it’s left in a rigid container.
If you like you can also add some vanilla essence to taste and/or some Stevia (a natural, low-calorie sweetner).
Please note that this recipe produces a ‘soft’ ice cream, ie it will not be as hard as store-bought, ready-made ice cream.
Preparation and cooking time
You will need the following equipment:
- Coconut cream, as much as you like, ‘light’ or low-fat for a lower calorie count
- Vanilla essence, to taste, optional
- Stevia (natural sweetner), to taste, optional
- Place the coconut cream in the fridge overnight then in the freezer for an hour prior to making the ice-cream. If it hasn’t been in the fridge first, leave it in the freezer for two hours.
- Place the chilled/semi-frozen coconut cream and sweetener (optional) in the nutri-bullet and blast until the coconut cream goes solid enough that it no longer moves around in the nutri-bullet.
- Serve and enjoy straight away before it melts. Do not place it in the freezer as it will go as hard as ice.
- Feel free to share this recipe with your friends and followers on social media such as Facebook, Pinterest, etc…
Jumbo Prawns with Tomatoes and Garlic
- 1 tbsp mild olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, very thinly sliced
- 1 long red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped (or use ½ tsp dried chilli flakes)
- 150g/5½oz cherry tomatoes, halved
- ½ lemon, juice only
- 250g/9oz jumbo king prawns, cooked, peeled and deveined
- 3 heaped tbsp roughly chopped flat leaf parsley
- ground black pepper
- 160g/6oz green beans, steamed, to serve
Heat the oil in a small frying pan over a low heat. Add the garlic and chilli and cook very gently for five minutes or until the garlic is very soft but not coloured, stirring occasionally.
Add the tomatoes and lemon juice and cook for two minutes or until beginning to soften. Stir in the prawns and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring, until the tomatoes are well softened and the prawns are hot through.
Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the parsley, season with lots of pepper and serve with the beans.