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Intermittent Fasting as a Female with Cacao

Updated: Sep 4, 2023

Have you tried intermittent fasting with good quality ethically produced cacao?

I highly recommend it. I've personally found it offers me a creativity boost and powerful healing. Whilst writing my book - "Wonder Full Women. Attune & Bloom. Eat, Move & Meditate with the Seasons." - I would get up early in the morning, brew up some cacao, and then settle down to write for a few hours. It helped keep my mind clear and in flow. I have also found intermittent fasting with good-quality cacao settles inflammation in my body and really helps my digestive system.

Intermittent fasting is when you consume food within a shortened time period during the day. Typically you eat during a 6-8 hour window and then fast for the remaining 16-18 hours of the day. The easiest way to do this is either skip breakfast or dinner. I find skipping breakfast easiest, and I break my fast at around noon.

Dave Asprey explains that Bulletproof Intermittent Fasting is an effective biohack and has a key difference: In the morning, while you are taking a break from solid food, you drink a cup of Bulletproof Coffee. Bulletproof coffee contains good quality fats which help people not feel hungry and still allow insulin levels to drop significantly. You can find further information in his book called "Fast This Way"*. I don't drink coffee as it inflames my nervous system, so instead, I use ethical cacao as my biohack whilst intermittent fasting.

Let me share my 5 top tips with you to safely intermittently fast with cacao as a female.

Tip #1 - Caution with Intermittent Fasting as a Female

Intermittent fasting impacts the female body differently than the male body. Men and women have different hormone levels, and this results in them requiring different dietary patterns. It's important to note that female bodies are built for childbearing, so they are much more sensitive to shortfalls in energy than men. If women take fasting too far it can send a stress signal to the body - "Emergency! There is a famine. Don't reproduce." As a result, cortisol levels rise and a rapid decline in sex hormones can occur. This can lead to irregular periods (even temporary infertility), hair loss, sleeplessness/insomnia, anxiety, and poor bone health. So it is important to learn to listen to your body and not take intermittent fasting too far as a female.

Women can still get all the benefits of fasting WITHOUT compromising their health by following these important intermittent fasting guidelines for females:

  • Don’t intermittent fast every day.

  • Don’t exercise too heavily or do high-intensity interval training whilst intermittent fasting.

  • Never fast when pregnant or breastfeeding.

  • Don’t fast if you are underweight, have a history of an eating disorder, or are anaemic.

  • Don’t fast if you are recovering from an illness or are unwell.

  • Don’t intermittent fast during your period or the few days prior; this is when your metabolism is high and you need more energy.

  • If you are perimenopausal try shorter intermittent fasts and don’t do them back to back until you are sure they are working or are beneficial for you.

  • There is a tremendous range in the way women’s bodies respond at and after menopause, so your response to fasting will also change. Be flexible in your approach to intermittent fasting.

  • Please check in with your GP before fasting, particularly if you have an underlying health condition.

  • Listen to your body. Signs of adrenal exhaustion and fasting too much may include craving salty and fatty foods. Try adding good quality salt (Himalayan, Murray River salt) and healthy fats into your diet and take a break from fasting for a while.

Tip #2 - Make Sure You Use Good Quality, Ethical Cacao.

Cacao farming has a horrific history of unethical production. I will not go into the gory details here, but PLEASE make sure you are purchasing and consuming cacao from ethical sources. Check for Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance and/or B-Corp certification. I highly recommend Living Koko's ceremonial grade 'Head & Heart' cacao. Living Koko's Head & Heart contains no extras, it is just pure cacao. I have provided the link to Living Koko's website below.**

Tip #3 - Intermittent Fasting Benefits

  • Helps heal your gut

  • Reduces inflammation

  • Makes your body burn fat

  • Evokes the body's self-cleaning system (autophagy) and detoxification process

  • Reduces your risk of type II diabetes by improving insulin sensitivity

  • Reduces your risk of most chronic diseases

  • Slows ageing from oxidative stress

  • Improves mental clarity

  • Enhances creativity

  • Enhances your ability to enter into a spiritual and/or meditative state

"Intermittent fasting enables you to put the amygdala and the whole reptillian part of your brain in its place, so that you can be fully human, more fully yourself, less burned by your fears." – Dave Asprey.

Tip #4 - The Best Way To Prepare Your Ceremonial Grade Living Koko Cacao for Intermittent Fasting.

  1. Like coffee and tea, we all have our preferences regarding strength, flavour and texture. The amount of cacao used will depend on the brand and your personal preference: 1 tsp - 1 dsp for a gentle dose, 1 - 2 heaped dsp for creativity, clarity and alertness, 3 + dsp for ceremonial strength.

  2. To a small saucepan or Turkish teapot add 200ml water and your desired dose of cacao. Heat to a gentle simmer while stirring.

  3. Add MCT oil and continue stirring: 1 tsp of MCT oil if just starting (5ml), then you can slowly increase up to 1-2 tbsp/day

  4. Some people like to add a dash of good quality salt, to round out the bitterness of the cacao.

  5. Slowly pour it into your favourite cup, inhale the delicious smell, and then drink mindfully.

Tip #5 - The Best Time of Year to Intermittent Fast with Cacao

Currently here in Melbourne, Australia, we are heading towards spring. Spring is naturally a time for cleansing, internally and externally. It is a time to cleanse ourselves of the heavy food residues of winter and of any stagnant emotions and unhelpful habitual patterns. So, it is a perfect time to try intermittent fasting with good-quality cacao.

The yang seasons of the year, spring, summer, and late summer, are naturally more conducive to fasting. Be cautious with fasting during the yin seasons of autumn and winter, as this is a time when our body needs to reserve energy.

To finish up...

If you are not fasting and would like to enjoy the benefits of good quality cacao you can add milk to your cacao and a natural sweetener (honey, maple syrup etc). I like to use unsweetened Pure Harvest Organic Almond Milk.

You can find more detailed information on the health benefits of intermittent fasting and cacao in my book.

Please leave comments and/or questions in the comment section below. I wish you all the best with your intermittent fasting with cacao.

xx Freya

* "Fast This Way. Burn Fat, Heal Inflammation and Eat Like the High-Performing Human You Were Meant to Be." 2021, Dave Asprey.


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Aug 21, 2023

Thanks for sharing. I was wondering what TCM oil brand you recommend and how often you recommend intermittent fasting this way.

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Typo - MCT oil 😘


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Never thought to do it with cacao! Brilliant. Will definitely be trying it. Thanks for sharing 🙏🏻🌸💚

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Ah, you will never look back! Cacao all the way 😁 😁

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