Many people wonder whether it’s OK to consume stevia while they’re fasting, or if it should be saved for times when you’re allowed to eat.Weight loss and improved blood sugar regulation are some of the most popular reasons people choose to adopt an intermittent fasting practice.Autophagy is a natural bodily process that recycles damaged components within your cells.For safety purposes, a 150-pound (68-kg) person should limit their intake to no more than five 50-mg servings of liquid stevia per day.Since the potency can vary between brands, check the product label or contact the manufacturer directly to find out how much stevia the drops provide per serving.For instance, some stevia products contain small amounts of dextrose or maltodextrin, both of which are carbs and contain calories. .

Which Sweeteners Break Your Fast?

For the purposes of our sweetener discussion, we’ll break these goals down into the three largest fasting categories:.Surprisingly, some non-caloric and minimally caloric sweeteners actually do impact your insulin response, even without elevating blood glucose levels.Similarly, some zero-calorie sweeteners activate your GI tract even though they don’t end up metabolizing in any meaningful way.As we discussed in the first part of our DOES IT BREAK MY FAST series, if a sweetener does have calories, the type of calorie also has a large impact on fasting, especially for longevity – anything with amino acids stimulates an mTOR growth pathway which inhibits autophagy.Like erythritol, Allulose is found in small quantities in nature, and it’s only about 70% as sweet as regular sugar.The most common natural sugar substitutes you’ll see in lower calorie foods are Stevia and Monk Fruit.We’re going to go through each of the above sweeteners one-by-one to discuss their unique attributes and how considerations like caloric density, absorption, gut stimulation, and growth pathway involvement impact whether or not it will break your fast.One review submits that both stevia and monk fruit improve glycemic control and insulin sensitivity.In type 2 diabetics receiving a standard-American high carbohydrate meal, 1 gram of stevia actually reduced the post-prandial (i.e., post-meal) blood glucose response by 18%.However, another 16-week human trial with type-2 diabetics, showed no impact of 1 gram of stevia on blood sugar, insulin level, or body weight.So if you’re fasting for reasons related to blood glucose and insulin response, go easy on the monk fruit or skip it altogether.In one study using monk fruit, only trace amounts of its components showed up in plasma concentrations after oral consumption, so absorption was limited but it did occur.This study was done in mice and it is unclear how much the trace absorption will impact digestion in humans, but again, best to be wary of monk fruit if you’re fasting for gut rest.One animal model study suggests that mogroside V (the main antioxidant in monk fruit extract) actually has an activating effect on AMPK (a cell signaler involved in autophagy), so monk fruit could potentially be beneficial for a fast with longevity as the goal.In general, they are incompletely absorbed and metabolized, so they’re commonly used in foods for diabetic populations where the goal is to reduce sugar intake and level out glycemic response.Erythritol only provides 0.24 calories per gram, so the caloric contribution is minimal and it doesn’t have an impact on your body’s ability to produce ketones or burn fat.So you’ll be putting your gut to work to absorb erythritol even though it doesn’t contribute a significant number of calories to your diet.However, it is a protein free substance with minimal energy content, so we can assume that it likely doesn’t affect autophagy.In some cases, the response is about 16% to 25% of that coming from the equivalent dose of glucose, which may be enough to inhibit your body’s ability to produce ketones and burn fat.It may be hard to ingest enough xylitol to make a significant impact on insulin levels, so minimal consumption is likely fine for a fast with metabolic health as the goal.The form in which it’s consumed, often in extremely small quantities, means it’s unlikely to be a significant source of calories.Although research is very limited, one study suggests that xylitol may play a role in autophagy with lung cancer.Artificial sweeteners are zero-calorie food additives that have a sweet taste similar to sugar, but none of the calories.They’ve been a hot topic of debate in the nutritional world for decades, with little consensus on whether consumption has negative implications for overall health, so if you’re looking for a general rule-of-thumb, it’s probably better to avoid these sweeteners.Sucralose is derived from sucrose, but has a different chemical structure, so the body doesn’t recognize it as a carbohydrate.However, there are some recentstudies indicating that habitual use can alter the gut microbiota and potentially have negative impacts on glucose metabolism.Like erythritol and maltitol, Sucralose has been shown to stimulate hormone secretion in the gut after ingestion, specifically GLP-1.This is the big surprise for a lot of fasters – aspartame (aka “Equal”), the sweetener-of-choice for most diet sodas, is actually made up of amino acids.Aspartame is metabolized to phenylalanine, aspartic acid, and methanol in the GI tract.Phenylalanine, one of aspartame’s components, is an essential amino acid that stimulates mTOR and inhibits autophagy.Allulose is what is known as a ‘rare sugar,’ meaning that it is found in small quantities in nature, but can also be produced in larger volumes in a laboratory setting.Interestingly, consuming allulose with a carbohydrate meal has actually been shown to have beneficial effects on postprandial glucose levels, however, more research is needed to verify this result. .

Can Stevia Break Your Fast and Stop Weight-Loss?

For many, intermittent fasting while skipping breakfast is doable but drinking black coffee or tea becomes more difficult.But, the question many intermittent fasting practitioners ask is, how can something so sweet contain no calories and avoid glucose metabolism? .

The dangers of blindly following wellness gurus

Short term, fasting improves body composition and enhances mental clarity.Long term, fasting can delay age-related brain impairment (in humans) and increase lifespan (in animals).Autophagy — the process by which cells clear their accumulated debris — is responsible for the long-term benefits of fasting.There are a lot of big questions about how to make intermittent fasting work:.In a youtube video that has been watched more than one million times, Thomas DeLauer, a health and business coach, puts Stevia on the list of foods that will not break a fast.When I turned to the Reddit fasting community — r/fasting has 176K members — I found a widespread countervailing opinion, this time with an explanation.As can be seen in the photo shared on r/fasting of page 172 of The Obesity Code, Dr. Jason Fung explains why he says “no” to Stevia.The paper he cites found the exact opposite of what he would have us believe: Stevia, unlike aspartame, lowered post-meal blood glucose and insulin levels compared to table sugar.The volunteers in the cited study consumed Stevia as part of a pre-meal snack (cream cheese and crackers); not on its own.This small question revealed some important issues about how we consume wellness information. .

Does Stevia Break a Fast? [The FULL Story, Backed by Science]

Stevia is a “natural” sweetener (from a plant, but still highly refined) that has become very popular starting about a decade ago.Personally, I don’t see any reason why stevia would prevent you from burning body fat during a fast.That’s why fasting is especially beneficial for people with diabetes (or prediabetes), whose blood sugar levels tend to run excessively high.Recently I did a little self experiment (on the 2nd day of an extended fast) by drinking 2 servings (8 drops) of liquid stevia mixed with water, and then tracking my blood sugar.Conclusion: I don’t think stevia significantly affected my blood sugar level.Based on the available research and my own experience, I would say stevia is fine if you’re fasting to lower blood sugar, and may even be helpful.Multiple human studies (here and here, for example) suggest stevia does not significantly affect insulin levels.There is some animal research (using pancreas cells isolated from mice and rats) showing stevia may stimulate insulin secretion when glucose levels are very high (150 mg/dL or higher).Not only was that research done on extracted animal organs (as opposed to living humans), they also used unrealistically high glucose levels that you’ll probably never see when you’re fasting.Based on what we know, I think using stevia is fine if you’re fasting to decrease insulin levels.Side Note: If you haven’t read The Obesity Code, it’s a fantastic book and I highly recommend it.However, the author (Dr. Jason Fung) appears to have made an error when he stated that stevia raises insulin levels higher than table sugar.Ketones are the alternative energy source that your body makes from fat when you’re not eating carbs.Fasting will raise your ketone levels a lot more than just eating a ketogenic (low-carb, high fat) diet.I couldn’t find any research on stevia impacting ketone levels, but I doubt there would be much of an effect.For example, during a recent 5-day fast I used liquid stevia multiple times per day to sweeten tea and other drinks.Based on what we currently know, I think using stevia is fine if you’re fasting to boost ketone levels.This is partly because your body has a steady supply of fat and ketones for energy, without any wild swings in your blood sugar levels.(Don’t get me wrong, you’ll probably feel hungry when you first start fasting, but the hunger gets less and less over time.).For example, Dr. Jason Fung (author of The Obesity Code and several other books about fasting that I mentioned above) has noticed this phenomenon with many of his patients.(I did find some research on stevia and satiety, but the test subjects tended to be eating cookies (or something similar), not fasting.).I did find some “expert opinion” suggesting stevia probably won’t interfere very much with autophagy.Even though stevia may not affect our blood sugar, insulin, or fat burning directly to any significant degree, it does have indirect effects in our bodies.Research is still very limited, but there is increasing evidence that the makeup of our gut microbiome influences metabolism and various diseases, including diabetes, obesity, cancer, and even mental illness.At very high concentrations in a test tube stevia is harmful to DNA, but it doesn’t have these effects at reasonable human doses.While I don’t think stevia will significantly increase your risk of cancer, maybe you should avoid guzzling down Zevia soda by the gallon.(The same thing is true of most other supplements, such as apple cider vinegar or lemon water, for example.).When it comes to supplements and fasting, no two people are alike, so you’ll need to experiment and see what works for you. .

Don't Break Your Fast! Your Complete Guide to Sweeteners

However, this category also includes most sugar alcohols like xylitol, sorbitol, maltitol, and mannitol.They do contain carbohydrates, but the body does not fully absorb and metabolize sugar alcohols.That’s why if you consume large quantities of sugar alcohols, you could end up adding a lot of calories to your diet and suffer bloating, gas, and other intestinal upset (though your body should get used to it over time).The food industry uses these heavily to make a range of diet products.Common non-nutritive sugar alternatives include saccharine (found in Sweet N’ Low), acesulfame potassium (Sunett, Sweet One, Sweet ‘N Safe), aspartame (Equal, NutraSweet), sucralose (Splenda), luo han guo fruit extract (monk fruit), stevioside (Stevia in the Raw, Truvia, Stevia), allulose, and erythritol (sugar alcohol).It’s important to know that there is a lot of research highlighting the negative health impacts of many artificial sweeteners {*}.Discovered back in 1965, it is a common additive to diet sodas and chewing gum.It’s about 200 times sweeter than sugar and goes under the trade names of NutraSweet, Equal, and Canderel.It also likely breaks a fast aimed at metabolic health and fat loss.One of the most common sweeteners, sucralose (an ingredient in Splenda), is a sugar substitute that does not break down in the body and contains no calories.Sucralose will probably not break a fast aimed at autophagy since it contains no proteins and no energy.However, when used over longer periods of time, it does alter gut bacteria in a way that could also provoke insulin resistance {*}.Although it’s free of energy, most evidence points to eventual gain in body weight and increased risks of metabolic disorders including heart disease {*}.It’s the main ingredient in a popular sugar substitute Sweet N’ Low.From a weight-loss perspective, however, it appears to influence the insulin response over time and may eventually lead to weight gain {*, *}.Basically, this popular “flavor enhancer” and sugar substitute found in Sweet One.It also has been shown to spike insulin in humans and may lead to weight gain over time {*, *, *}.It is important to note, however, that all of them have to undergo some processing to make it to the store shelves.Specifically, stevioside and rebaudioside A (reb A) are the most common sweet components of the leaf extracted.Stevia may aid in weight loss without negative side effects over long-term use {*}.SweetLeaf Organic Sweet Drops – Flavored Stevia Sweetener – English Toffee is totally a favorite, but they are all great!SweetLeaf Natural Stevia Sweetener Packets – Pure Stevia with Inulin (this is a fiber that has many benefits including the ability to stabilize blood glucose and enhance the gut environment!).However, current animal studies suggest that it may have an impact on the gut biome and may produce a slight spike in insulin levels {*}.On the up-side, however, monk fruit contains no calories and is very high in antioxidants that may actually help stimulate autophagy.It’s naturally present in several foods like corn, fruit, and maple sugar.Although it contains some energy at 0.2 – 0.4 calories per gram, it does not affect insulin and blood sugar levels {*}.Erythritol forms naturally in small quantities in some foods like dried fruit.It’s only partially absorbed and digested by the intestinal tract, but due to that is a no if you are fasting for gut rest.In studies, it does not appear to stimulate insulin nor raise blood sugar {*}.NOW Foods, Xylitol, Pure with No Added Ingredients, Keto-Friendly, Low Glycemic Impact, Low Calorie – I would be careful with Xylitol for any kind of fast, but small quantities should not kick you out of autophagy or ketosis.Your intestines can partially digest sorbitol, so it probably is not great for a gut rest fast.Sorbitol contains half the calories of table sugar and may impact insulin {*}, and thus should not be consumed in large quantities for fat loss or autophagy.Just watch out for bloating and other digestive issues common to all sugar alcohols.The author and blog disclaim liability for any damage, mishap, or injury that may occur from engaging in any activities or ideas from this site. .

Can I Drink Coffee Stevia And Stay In Autophagy

As an alternative, artificial sweeteners like Stevia, Swerve, Aspartame, and Splenda will not harm your sugar and insulin tolerance, since they do not seem to make your blood glucose higher or lower.They are good for your heart, however they can be dangerous for other parts of your body as well.As an alternative, artificial sweeteners like Stevia, Swerve, Aspartame, and Splenda will not harm your sugar and insulin tolerance, since they do not seem to make your blood glucose higher or lower.They are good for your heart, however they can be dangerous for other parts of your body as well.Since stevia has a zero-calorie and protein-free form, it likely does not impact autophagy, making it perfect if you are attempting to gain a living while fasting for as long as you possibly can.According to research, intermittent fasting and coffee consumption inhibit cellular growth and cause autophagy to develop in the body.Aspirin, chamomile, reishi and elderberries are all thought to stimulate autophagy in various ways – including coffee, green tea, turmeric, ginger, Ceylon cinnamon, ginseng, garlic and ginseng, for example.bergamot, berberine, resveratrol and MCT oil are frequently taken by way of supplement. .

Small Changes, Big Results, Top 5 Autophagy Activating Hacks

Citrus bergamot is one of the best and healthiest autophagy activators in the world (plus it protects your heart), green tea polyphenols such as EGCG stimulate autophagy as well as a process called thermogenesis (the rate at which calories are burned), cinnamon is neuroprotective and can protect against cell damage and cancer, and coconut oil increases ketone levels, which have been shown to be pro-autophagic, while helping you feel full longer.Doing this just three non-consecutive days a week puts your body into an autophagy-activating rhythm, giving your cells a chance to rest and repair damage, and to clean up any waste or toxins they’ve accumulated.OMI’s patented Cellular Rejuvenation Complex, which lies at the heart of every product in the range, is comprised of the top ingredients clinically proven to activate autophagy: citrus bergamot, ceramides, trehalose, and caffeine.One of the best ways to achieve this, while also reaping all of the other benefits of exercise such as increased strength and endurance, is HIIT, or high intensity interval training, which involves working out in short bursts, resting, and then going for broke again.The great thing is that this can be done by tweaking any activity you already love to do, like swimming, running, or walking so that you’re cycling through bursts of exertion rather than committing yourself to a steady slog.Resveratrol, a super-potent polyphenol found in red grape skins, peanuts, and berries, has been proven in thousands of studies to do wonders for the human body. .


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