Differences Between Keto Diet and Intermittent Fasting

Keto Diet and Intermittent Fasting have many similarities and many differences. How do they go together? Can they help one another? Maybe they are just two totally separate things and we are talking non-sense. In this article you are going to see what the two are and if you can combine them.

Keto Diet

The Ketogenic diet has become popular in recent years but it is not so recent. Medical research showed already decades ago that the Keto Diet can mitigate some medical conditions.

The Keto Diet is a diet that promotes Ketosis. Ketosis is a metabolic state where your body burn fat in order to produce energy. In normal circumstances the body prefers to burn glucose (sugars) first and in case these are missing then use fat. The Keto Diet forces the body to use fat through a change of macronutrients ratios. With the Ketogenic Diet an individual has to cut the carbs intake and increase the fat intake so the body uses the last as fuel.

The main principle of a Keto Diet is to start and stay in Ketosis, which is, use fat as fuel. To do this the actual rule to follow is to follow the macro ratios of 70% fat, 25% proteins and 5% carbs intake. The Ketogenic Diet does not limit what you can and cannot eat, it limits where your calories has to come from. As a consequence, however, the Keto Diet requires to cut most of the carbs food like pasta, rice, grains, bread, starchy vegetables, fruits, sweets and anything rich of carbs.

The main reasons to follow a Keto Diet are:

  • Treatment of medical conditions
  • Fat Loss
  • More stable level of energy

Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent Fasting, in short IF, is a way of eating consisting in alternating intervals of eating with intervals of no calorie intake. It has become popular as well in recent years although it is actually how our ancestors used to eat. In the past, humans used to eat only when they could find food through hunting and fishing and scavenging. With agriculture and progress food became more readily available. Society eventually established 3 main meals distributed in the day: break fast, lunch and dinner.

Modern society is kind of stuck with the belief that we need to eat 5 times a day: 3 main meals and 2 snacks. While this can be a good practice on a social environment as it facilitates human interactions, on a nutritional point of view we are far from needing 5 meals.

The main principle of Intermittent Fasting is alternating times of eating with times of no calories intake. There are different types of Intermittent Fasting however the most popular separates the day in two Windows. Eating and drinking food with calories is restricted only to a Window of 3 to 8 hours during the day. The other 16-21 hours you are not allowed to consume calories. Practising Intermittent Fasting means basically limit yourself to eat only a few hours of the day. Usually this results in skipping a meal and some snacks.

People can decide to follow Intermittent Fasting regimen for the following reasons:

  • Weight Loss, as a results of limiting the calories intake, having less time to eat will likely result in eating less
  • Convenience, you will be consuming less food
  • Practicality, less prepping and cooking
  • Use of fat, an extended period of time fasting will force the body to start using alternative fuel (fat)
  • Letting the body rest, you will give your body breaks from digestion, so that it can focus on other tasks

Differences Between Keto Diet and Intermittent Fasting

Keto Diet and Intermittent Fasting have several differences.

The Keto Diet is actually a Diet where you limit the food you can eat. Intermittent Fasting does not limit what you it but it limits when you can eat.

The Keto Diet has as goal to stay in Ketosis and use fat for fuel. It does that imposing specific macros ratios of 70% fat, 25% proteins and 5% carbs. Intermittent Fasting causes a reduction in the calories intake through limiting the time allowed to eat.

Keto Diet vs Intermittent Fasting Together?

It might sound strange but Keto Diet and Intermittent Fasting work very well together. Keto Diet and Intermittent Fasting can actually enhance one another.

While on a Keto Diet you can Fast and viceversa if you are following Intermittent Fasting you can use Keto Diet macros.

Some of the benefits of using them together are as follow.

Better Energy

Ketosis means that your body is using Ketones as fuel (converted fat) and Ketones provide a more constant energy. With Intermittent Fasting the body has to go through an extended period of time without calorie intake and Ketones help maintaining a good level of energy.

Improved Fat Burning

While the body is in Ketosis you are burning fat for energy. Intermittent Fasting has many hours with no “fuel” intake for external. Fasting in Ketosis will force the body to use more stored fat to satisfy the energy demand.

Feeling Of Satiety

Intermittent Fasting can give a feeling of starvation, hunger and cravings due to an extended period of time without food. The high consumption of Fat and presence of Ketones in the Keto Diet can relieve this side effect and give a feeling of satiety


As you can see the Keto Diet and Intermittent Fasting are two different things. While Intermittent Fasting limits your time to eat, the Keto Diet limits the food you can eat and the ratios. Despite some difference Keto Diet vs Intermittent Fasting is not a battle but a good partnership. The two can enhance each other if used in conjunction.

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