Do Pickles Break Intermittent Fasting? Expert Answer


Intermittent fasting has gained widespread popularity as a method for weight management and overall health improvement. However, amidst the information available, there’s a lingering question: “Do Pickles Break Intermittent Fasting?” Let’s delve deeper into this topic and explore its nuances.

Understanding Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting involves alternating periods of eating and fasting, with various schedules such as 16:8, 18:6, or even longer fasts. The goal is to stimulate metabolic processes like autophagy and promote fat loss while maintaining muscle mass.

Do Pickles Break Intermittent Fasting?

The answer is more complex than one might think. While pickles are low in calories and carbohydrates, they contain small amounts of both. Therefore, consuming pickles during fasting might disrupt the fasting state. However, the impact largely depends on individual goals and the specific fasting protocol.

Glass jars of pickled cucumbers and tomatoes on stone background.
Image by BalashMirzabey on Freepik

Considerations When Including Pickles in Your Fasting Regimen

  1. Caloric Content: Even though pickles are low in calories, their consumption can still elicit an insulin response, potentially interrupting fasting.
  2. Electrolyte Balance: Some individuals find pickles beneficial during fasting due to their electrolyte content, which can help prevent dehydration and maintain energy levels.
  3. Personal Preference: Ultimately, whether to include pickles in your fasting routine depends on personal preference and tolerance. Some individuals may find that pickles help curb hunger cravings, while others may prefer to stick strictly to water during fasting periods.

Alternative Options for Breaking a Fast

For those who prefer to avoid the potential disruption caused by pickles, there are plenty of other options for breaking a fast. Opt for nutrient-dense, whole foods that won’t spike insulin levels excessively. Consider incorporating leafy greens, lean proteins, and healthy fats into your first post-fast meal to ease back into eating without causing digestive discomfort.


In conclusion, while pickles may technically break the fasting state due to their caloric and carbohydrate content, the extent of their impact varies among individuals. Choosing pickles in your fasting regimen should be based on personal preference, goals, and tolerance. Experiment with different approaches to find what works best for you, and always prioritize nutrient-dense foods when breaking a fast to support overall health and well-being.


WebMD Editorial Contributors. (2020, October 5). Are There Health Benefits to Eating Pickles? WebMD; WebMD.‌

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