If you're doing intermittent fasting, you might have figured by now that fasting isn't just a dietary change; it's a lifestyle. However, there may be times when your body needs some fuel during the fasting period.
While Bulletproof Coffee does break a fast, you shouldn't be so quick to shun it. The high-fat content in the coffee is not harmful to your weight loss goals. It can actually supplement your efforts while giving you some much-needed energy in the morning.
So, what is this grey area all about? Should you let go of your beloved Bulletproof Coffee, or does it sit well with your diet? This article will walk you through everything you need to know.
What is Bulletproof Coffee?
Bulletproof Coffee, also known as butter coffee or keto coffee, is coffee blended with some butter and/or MCT oil.
Entrepreneur Dave Asprey created this coffee under the Bulletproof brand name after a trip to Tibet, where he discovered yak butter tea. He tried to recreate the tea by substituting the tea for coffee and yak butter for grass-fed butter. He also added MCT oil to boost energy levels.
The result is a creamy and frothy coffee drink without the heaviness of sugar and milk. This coffee is not only high in fat but also has significant calories.
In the morning, people often consume Bulletproof Coffee for a quick energy boost, making it an excellent alternative to carb-loaded breakfasts. It keeps you satiated for a long time, and you stay in the fat-burning ketosis period for an extended period.
Here's a quick tutorial on how to make bulletproof coffee:
Health Benefits of Bulletproof Coffee
Bulletproof Coffee is widely used by people following the ketogenic diet for weight loss. However, it offers several other advantages as well.
Curbs Hunger Hormones
When you're in the ketosis stage, your body burns fat for energy and produces ketones. These ketones suppress ghrelin, the hormone responsible for your hunger.
Ketones also increase cholecystokinin (CKK), which makes you feel more satiated.
Encourages Faster Production of Ketones
Bulletproof Coffee contains high-quality Brain Octane C8 MCT Oil. This oil supplies a quick dose of energy and speeds up the production of ketones in your body.
MCT oil can help your body produce up to four times more ketones than just coconut oil.
Boosts your Metabolism
Coffee is an excellent drink to crank up your metabolism. A faster metabolism means you will burn more calories and be able to sustain more energy throughout the day.
It happens because coffee has thermogenic effects that create more heat within your body.
Stabilizes Blood Sugar
Carbohydrates and proteins need insulin to get metabolized. If you consume your morning coffee with milk and sweeteners, your insulin levels will spike, and as a result, your blood sugar levels will fall.
The low sugar levels might make you exhausted by lunchtime. Therefore, you should have more fats in the morning to keep your insulin levels low and stable. Bulletproof Coffee is a good source of healthy fats.
Promotes Your Workout Results
Intermittent fasting, coffee, and exercises are all factors that suppress your mTOR levels. When mTOR is suppressed, the levels tend to bounce back up, triggering muscle-building activity.
As a result, combining fasting, coffee, and exercise leads to better muscle-building results from your workout efforts.
Enhances Brain Function
Caffeine is said to improve brain function in the short term. It can enhance different aspects of brain function, such as vigilance, mood, reaction time, attention, and overall mental function.
It also stimulates the nervous system by promoting the release of neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine.
Provides Healthy Fats
Grass-fed butter and the oils in Bulletproof Coffee are all high in omega-3 fatty acids. These can help in reducing blood pressure, triglycerides, and the creation of arterial plaques.
Taking omega-3 fatty acids is also said to reduce depression and assist in weight management.
Does Bulletproof Coffee Break a Fast?
Although there are many different kinds of fasting options these days, a fast, in the traditional sense, means having no food at all. So, even one calorie breaks a fast. Therefore, Bulletproof Coffee does break your fast.
However, it doesn't mean that the coffee interferes with your goals. Depending on what you wish to achieve with intermittent fasting, Bulletproof Coffee might not be a problem.
People typically try intermittent fasting for any of these goals:
- Weight loss: It is the most common goal that people wish to achieve with intermittent fasting and a ketogenic diet.
- Physiological health: Some people try intermittent fasting to balance their hormones.
- Performance enhancement: Intermittent fasting is a great way to improve performance as it leads to high levels of energy on an empty but happy stomach.
Before we talk about why Bulletproof Coffee is not going to interfere with weight loss, let us clarify the basics of ketosis and ketones, to understand the process better.
When your body does not have adequate carbohydrates to burn for energy, it burns fat and produces ketones to fuel itself. This process is referred to as ketosis.
Why Bulletproof Coffee Doesn't Interrupt Weight Loss Efforts
Suppose you're trying intermittent fasting for weight loss. In that case, you aim to decrease your caloric intake and restrict it to a given feeding window. Moreover, you also want to up-regulate, which means convincing your body to boost the production of beneficial hormones.
Bulletproof Coffee pumps up your calorie intake in the form of fat. As ironic as it sounds, fat calories are not the food items that make you fat unless paired with carbohydrates or sugar.
The combination of caffeine and fat seems to smoothen out the effect of caffeine on the body and burn more fat.
How Does Bulletproof Coffee Affect Weight Loss In The Long Run?
In the long term, Bulletproof Coffee increases the ketone levels in your body. It helps your body ease into the ketosis stage.
Caffeine and MCT, the two heroes of Bulletproof Coffee, promote thermogenesis and enhance our metabolic rate. This rate is essentially the number of calories your body can burn in a given time frame.
An increased metabolic rate promotes weight loss, so Bulletproof Coffee doesn't hamper your fasting routine. Moreover, the coffee makes you feel full quite quickly and keeps you satiated for a long time.
It happens because the fat is immediately used for energy, and your body gets the message that it doesn't need more fuel for the time being.
Autophagy And Bulletproof Coffee
Autophagy refers to the body's way of doing away with damaged cells and promoting healthier cells. It is also understood as the process by which the body devours itself, which might sound uncomfortable but is excellent for your health.
If you want to reach ketosis or autophagy by fasting, you shouldn't consume carbs or proteins. Since Bulletproof Coffee only adds fats, along with negligible amounts of protein, autophagy isn't interrupted.
What's The Deal With Insulin?
Whenever we consume food, our pancreas produces insulin. The fat-burning process gets blocked in the presence of insulin. So, even the most minuscule amounts of sugar are not burned during this period.
While the ingestion of carbs or proteins kicks off insulin production, ingesting fats does not stimulate insulin.
As a result, fat-rich Bulletproof Coffee doesn't influence blood glucose levels. Technically, you break your intermittent fast, but you still remain in a fasted, fat-burning state.
Bulletproof Coffee Alternatives
If you can't get your hands on the magical potion that is Bulletproof Coffee, don't worry. We have a few tricks up our sleeves to help you out.
While you can make butter coffee at home, it will not be exactly like Bulletproof Coffee. Think of it as a close substitute.
Bulletproof Coffee is a rich and creamy blend of the unique Bulletproof coffee beans, unsalted grass-fed butter or ghee, and the creator's signature Brain Octane oil (MCT).
If you're trying to make something similar at home, start with a hot, freshly brewed cup of coffee, about 8 to 12 ounces. Add in about a couple of tablespoons of MCT oil and grass-fed butter and blend away!
You could also use ghee and coconut oil in your concoction. In fact, coconut oil happens to be one of the only natural sources of MCT.
All said and done; Bulletproof Coffee is not the enemy to a fasting diet or a keto diet. It does not interfere with the body's weight loss process and gives you a low-carb, high-fat energy boost.
If you look at fasting from a traditional lens, you're not supposed to consume any food. So bulletproof coffee does break your fast. However, if your end goal is to lose weight, you've got nothing to worry about.
The ultimate pairing of caffeine and fat is excellent for burning fat, and one cup is enough to sustain you for hours. Bye-bye cravings, and hello to a healthy life!
As long as you use small doses of MCT oil in your coffee, you're good to go. Minimal amounts of MCT oil will not significantly hamper your intermittent fast.
Small doses ensure that your blood sugar doesn't rise and your total calorie intake is not majorly affected.
Black coffee, which is coffee without sugar or cream, has negligible calories. Drinking regulated amounts of coffee is not enough to lead to notable metabolic changes that could break the fast.
Coffee even offers several health benefits on fasting, such as lowering blood sugar and insulin levels and promoting fat loss.
Ideally, you should not add anything to your coffee if you don't want to interrupt your intermittent fast. However, almond milk is a debatable addition.
To credit its low-calorie levels, some people find it acceptable to add a splash of almond milk to their morning coffee.
MCT oil is said to help balance blood sugar levels. It increases insulin sensitivity in the body and reverses insulin resistance.
It even improves the risk the overall risk factors for diabetes. However, there are no notable effects of MTC on reducing fasting blood sugar levels.
Coconut oil is a popular choice among those on the ketogenic diet as it is a low-carb, high-fat nutrient.
Consuming coconut oil in the morning, say with your cup of coffee, does not break ketosis. Instead, it can help your body maintain the ketosis stage.
No, coffee doesn't directly increase blood sugar or glucose levels. When you're fasting, plain black coffee will not raise insulin levels.
The caffeine in the coffee might hamper insulin sensitivity. However, certain other compounds found in coffee, such as magnesium, polyphenols, and chromium, can improve insulin sensitivity, balancing the effects of caffeine.
Ideally, it would be best to consume black coffee while fasting since it has a negligible number of calories. However, adding fats will not impact insulin and are perfect for a frothy cup of coffee.
You can add butter, ghee, a tablespoon of heavy whipping cream or half and half, sea salt, a splash of nut milk, or essential oils.
It is best to stick to just one cup of Bulletproof Coffee every day, preferably in the morning. However, once or twice a week, you can double your dose and have up to two cups.
Stevia contains no calories or carbs and, as a result, doesn't raise insulin or blood sugar levels. As long as you consume moderate quantities of stevia, it will not have major effects and break your fast.
Yes, you can refrigerate cups of bulletproof coffee and heat them later for consumption. The longer it stays in the fridge, the more you'll have to blend it since the fats tend to harden during refrigeration.