If you’re doing either intermittent fasting or longer extended fasts, one question that typically comes up is what foods will break your fast.
Drinking lemon water is a common drink for me while intermittent fasting (along with sparkling or carbonated water like Pelligrino or Perrier). I enjoy the lemon water because of the added flavor compared to just plain tap water.
I’ll also recommend using real lemons to make your lemon water and not using artificial lemon flavoring. If you’re drinking a store-bought lemon water, double check the nutrition label and ingredients to make sure that there are not added sugars or artificial sweeteners added to the lemon water.
A single whole lemon is mostly water and only contains about 6 grams of carbohydrates, with about 1.5 grams as dietary fiber and 1.5 grams as natural occurring sugar. Lemons also contain Vitamin C, potassium, Vitamin B6 and other healthy vitamins and minerals while not adding any protein or fat.
Lemon Water Nutrition Info
I will typically add just a single slice of lemon to my water for added flavor, and tha small lemon slice adds less than a single gram of carbohydrate according to the USDA FoodData Central database.
Does drinking lemon water break a fast?
The good news is that sipping on lemon water will not break your fast. Lemon water contains minimal calories and would not be enough to cause an increase in your blood glucose or result in an insulin response. Drinking lemon water will also not knock you out of ketosis and should not decrease your blood ketone levels.
Healthy alternatives to lemon water for fasting
Sometimes I want a different flavored drink while either intermittent fasting or just when I want to change things up a little.
Some healthy alternatives to lemon water include:
- Cucumber water – (just add slices of cucumber to a gallon of water and let sit in the fridge over night)
- Lime water – similar to lemon water, but using slices of limes instead. I find that the limes offer a less tart taste and love drinking a glass of lime-flavored water after a hard workout.
- Ginger water – I usually do this drink as a hot drink by adding slices of fresh ginger to water and then boiling the water, so essentially I’m making a ginger tea. Remove the slices of ginger after boiling and then refrigerate any leftover ginger water for later.
- Mint water – My old house had a patch of wild mint growing right outside the backdoor, which made it easy to add fresh mint leaves to my water. When using fresh mint leaves, slightly bruise or crush the mint leaves to release its minty flavor.