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Intermittent Fasting Vs. Keto: Which One is Right for You?

Curious about Intermittent Fasting vs. the Keto diet? To help you decide which diet plan is the best, the article compares Intermittent Fasting and the Ketogenic Diet.

Emilia Moore
Intermittent Fasting Vs. Keto: Which One is Right for You?
Table Of Contents

Trying to decide between the Keto and the Intermittent Fasting diets? It's unlikely that you'll go a day without reading about or being acquainted with someone who is currently Intermittent Fasting or on the Ketogenic Diet.

Why? Because they work.

Both are beneficial for maintaining health and fitness, as they help lower blood cholesterol and excess fat storage. Nonetheless, there are substantial distinctions between them.

In that case, which one will help you achieve your goals? To help you decide which of these two diet plans is best, we'll compare and contrast Intermittent Fasting and the Ketogenic Diet.

What is Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting is a way of eating that alternates between periods of caloric restriction (fasting) and periods of normal food consumption. Though the intermittent fasting lifestyle differs greatly from the ketogenic diet, their mechanisms of action and advantages are similar.

Intermittent fasting is not a diet, and it's crucial to keep that in mind. In terms of diet, intermittent fasting is a pattern. What matters more than what you eat is when you eat. In its most basic form, intermittent fasting limits the time between meals, so stored fat can be used for energy instead of carbohydrates and protein.

The 5:2 approach, the Warrior Diet, and alternate-day fasting are only a few examples of the various variations of intermittent fasting. The majority of people who practice intermittent fasting do so to shed extra pounds.

It has been proven to have potential health benefits in various ways. For instance, research has shown intermittent fasting can boost cognitive performance and help stabilize blood sugar levels.

How Does Intermittent Fasting Work?

The body's metabolic pathways are reprogrammed during intermittent fasting, allowing more effective fuel utilization. Glycogen stores are tapped for energy when you're well-fed. When you're fasting, your body uses its fat reserves as energy. In contrast to the ketogenic diet, you can get most of your calories from other sources besides fat and protein.

The key to intermittent fasting is restricting the time between meals so that insulin and cortisol levels are at their best. Keeping insulin levels low during a fast causes blood glucose levels to drop, forcing the body to burn fat rather than glucose for energy, also known as fasting-induced ketosis.

Within the framework of intermittent fasting, how long do most individuals typically go without food?

On average, people eat for 8 hours and then go without food for 16 hours. However long you fast, as long as it's more than 16 hours, the benefits will be the same. Compared to the ketogenic diet's difficulty, intermittent fasting is a breeze. You must consume healthy, high-quality foods, as they are the most critical factor in your success.

Putting your body into a state of intermittent fasting is effective. By influencing insulin and cortisol levels and stimulating the production of human growth hormones, fasting can help change body composition.

Combining intermittent fasting with a nutritious diet is a powerful tool for establishing lifelong dietary stability. But fasting isn’t suitable for everyone, especially those with a very active lifestyle and gym enthusiasts, because it isn’t recommended to fast while working out.

What is the Ketogenic Diet?

The ketogenic diet (or "keto") is an extremely low-carb, high-fat diet.

The ketogenic diet aims to induce ketosis, a state in which fat is burned for energy. Changing your diet to one that is high in fat, moderate in protein, and very low in carbohydrates can help your body use fat for fuel instead of glucose.

As a result, your body will resort to its fat stores for fuel rather than simple sugars. Cutting carb intake to 20–50 grams daily shifts your body's primary fuel source from glucose to fat. Ketosis is a metabolic state in which the body uses a byproduct of fat breakdown, called ketones, as an alternative fuel source.

In addition to helping you lose weight, this diet offers many other advantages. The ketogenic diet has been studied for its potential to treat epilepsy and other neurological conditions and has been used to treat the former for nearly a century.

The ketogenic diet, for instance, has shown promise for easing cognitive symptoms in Alzheimer's patients. Moreover, it can potentially lessen insulin resistance, decrease triglyceride levels, and reduce other risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

How Does the Keto Diet Work?

The Ketogenic diet emphasizes fat consumption while restricting carbs. Consider high-fat foods such as cheese, sour cream, avocados, and coconut oil as an alternative to carbohydrate-heavy items such as pasta, bread, and sweet desserts.

In addition to consuming a lot of foods that are high in fat, you will also consume a lot of foods that are high in protein, such as eggs, beef, chicken, and mutton.

Also, you'll be consuming vegetables low in starch, such as asparagus, tomatoes, onions, broccoli, and peppers. However, you shouldn't be concerned because many keto-friendly dishes and meals are available.

Remember to keep things in perspective. Indeed, the ketogenic diet isn't suitable for everyone. It requires forethought, meticulous planning, a strong mentality, and unwavering commitment. This is the absolute lowest of low-carb diets.

Maintaining a carb intake below 20-50 grams per day might be challenging because virtually every food on the earth contains carbohydrates, except proteins like chicken, cattle, fish, and pork.

The ketogenic diet may temporarily solve your weight loss woes if you're hoping to shed a significant amount of weight quickly. However, you must remain in ketosis to experience the advantages of keto.

For this purpose, it is necessary to check your ketone levels daily. Use either a breathalyzer, blood test, or urine test. The first is the most reliable since it involves checking your blood for ketone levels.

Can You Pair Intermittent Fasting With Keto?

Combining Keto with intermittent fasting is quite successful. Keeping insulin levels low boosts ketones and improves the efficiency with which fat stores are used as fuel.

Keep in mind that the effectiveness of intermittent fasting is not dependent on consuming only high-fat foods and restricting your carbohydrate intake to 20-50g per day.

The most practical method of developing a long-term nutrition strategy is to ensure that you consume sufficient amounts of functional complex carbohydrates, lean grass-fed proteins, and healthy fats.

Potential Benefits of Practicing Both

The following advantages may accrue if you follow the ketogenic diet while also engaging in intermittent fasting.

Boosts Ketosis

Your body could enter ketosis more quickly with the support of intermittent fasting than with the keto diet alone.

Because your body, when fasting, shifts its fuel source from carbohydrates to fats — the same idea of the keto diet — this is the reason why fasting helps your body maintain its energy balance.

When you don't eat for several days, your body's insulin levels and glycogen stores drop, which causes your body to start burning fat for fuel on its own.

If you are following a ketogenic diet but are having trouble entering ketosis, incorporating intermittent fasting into your regimen may be an effective way to kickstart the process.

More Fat Loss

Combining the keto diet with fasting can help you burn more fat than just doing the keto by itself.

Because intermittent fasting speeds up your metabolism and encourages thermogenesis, often known as heat production, your body may start drawing on its reserves of resistant fat.

According to the findings of several researchers, intermittent fasting can effectively and safely reduce extra body fat.

Those who followed the 16:8 method of intermittent fasting lost about 14% more body fat than those who followed a normal eating pattern throughout an eight-week trial, including 34 males who engaged in resistance training.

People who practiced intermittent fasting shed an average of 7.3 pounds (3.3 kg) more fat mass than those who followed very low-calorie diets, according to a review of 28 studies on the subject.

Additionally, there is some evidence that intermittent fasting can help preserve muscle mass while dieters reduce their overall body fat percentage and increase their energy levels. This may benefit keto dieters looking to improve their athletic performance while reducing their overall body fat percentage.

Studies have shown that intermittent fasting can help reduce sensations of hunger and improve feelings of fullness, which may contribute to weight loss success.

Should You Combine Them?

It is likely safe for most people to combine the ketogenic diet with intermittent fasting. However, women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, as well as those who have a history of eating disorders, should steer clear of the intermittent fasting diet.

Before beginning the intermittent fasting component of the keto diet, people with specific medical issues, such as diabetes or heart disease, should discuss the strategy with their primary care physician.

It is vital to remember that combining the two techniques may benefit certain individuals, but this is not the case for everyone. On the ketogenic diet, some people may feel that it is too difficult to observe fasting or experience undesirable effects, such as excessive eating on days when they are not required to fast, irritation, and exhaustion.

Remember that while intermittent fasting can be used as a technique to hasten the process of entering ketosis, it is not a prerequisite for doing so. Anyone who wants to enhance their health by reducing the number of carbohydrates they consume should just adhere to a ketogenic diet that is balanced and healthy.


Both of these diets will result in a reduction in body weight. However, neither one of them can survive on their own for very long. If you stop doing them, you'll start gaining weight all over again.

The best solution is to use a combination of the two of them. Begin by following the keto diet, and then after a month, when your body has had time to adapt, you should transition to intermittent fasting. Because of this, you won't experience the common side effect of fatigue that comes with both diets.

Both of these diets come out on top when it comes to successful weight loss. However, doing both simultaneously will help you lose weight more quickly and efficiently.


1. What is the difference between intermittent fasting and the keto diet?

Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern that cycles between periods of fasting and eating. It doesn't specify which foods you should eat but when you should eat them. On the other hand, the keto diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet that involves significantly reducing your carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fat.

2. Which one is better for weight loss?

Both intermittent fasting and the keto diet can be effective for weight loss. However, the combination of the two would likely be even more effective than either alone.

3. Which one is better for overall health?

The keto diet has been shown to have numerous health benefits, including reducing inflammation, improving mental clarity, and stabilizing blood sugar levels. Intermittent fasting has also been linked with several health benefits, including improved insulin sensitivity and increased weight loss. However, more research is needed to confirm these potential health benefits.

4. Which one is easier to stick to?

This ultimately depends on each individual's preferences and lifestyle. Some people find it easier to stick to a strict diet like the keto diet, while others prefer the flexibility of intermittent fasting. Ultimately, the best approach is whichever one you can stick to long-term.

The Bottom Line

Intermittent fasting combined with the keto diet is a safe and potentially effective weight loss strategy. It can help you burn fat faster and more efficiently while providing numerous health benefits. However, always make sure to speak to your healthcare provider before beginning any new diet or exercise program. With the right support system and lifestyle changes, this dynamic duo can help you achieve your weight loss goals.

Reading List

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Emilia Moore

Emilia Moore earned her master’s degree in community health education from a well known University. She’s a freelance writer based in America whose work has appeared in various online publications, including not only DMoose, but other known blogging websites. Today, it's easy to find health

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