How to manage what to eat in social situations during your intermittent fasting window

  • 4 Minutes Read
Joanna Kriehn
Joanna Kriehn, MS, RDN, CDCES - Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist (CDCES)

Do you struggle with knowing how to navigate social situations while fasting? This diet plan–where you alternate between periods of eating and fasting–has shown promising results for weight loss and health improvement.

Read on to learn how to start intermittent fasting and what to eat during your "window" whenever you dine out or attend a social event.

What to eat during intermittent fasting window

Going out? Then, get familiar with your intermittent fasting plan to figure out what to eat in your "window"

While there are multiple intermittent fasting plans, finding the right one for you takes some trial and error. The 14/10 and the 16/8 are the most common and popular since you fast naturally while sleeping (between 7-9 hours a night). By delaying or skipping breakfast, you simply stretch out the nighttime fasting hours for a more condensed daytime eating schedule.*

Common intermittent fasting plans defined

Intermittent fasting encourages you to become aware of when you eat and have a plan, making you more mindful of your eating habits. You may snack or munch without even realizing it, leading to blood sugar spikes and weight gain. Experts say it takes a few weeks to get comfortable with an intermittent fasting plan. Take your time and experiment with different ways to integrate your plan into social situations.

Once you are comfortable with your plan, you will gain a sense of your eating and fasting window. You may find yourself out with friends during your intermittent fasting window, unsure what to eat or drink. Read on for our top tips for this situation.

There's such a thing as flexible fasting/eating windows, just right for your social life

Here are some common scenarios where a flexible eating window may be helpful.

Early morning engagements

Evening engagements

If you value the social aspect of sharing a meal with others, make an effort to consistently schedule your meals with friends and family during your eating window. This ensures you can maintain your intermittent fasting plan and reach your weight-loss and health goals.

Alternatives to eating when bored during long evenings

One way that intermittent fasting helps with weight loss is by eliminating evening snacking, which is often a slippery slope of food temptations. Try these tips to help you stick to your evening fast.

Need more ideas? Check out this blog post from MyNetDiary.

Find ways to socialize without food

Your social life may center around food and drink simply out of habit. Get creative and find different ways to connect with friends and family instead of focusing on what to eat during your intermittent fasting window. For example:

When starting any new eating plan, don’t be afraid to ask for help

Do you find it awkward to ask for help? Know that you are not alone. Many people find it challenging to ask for help. And yet, none of us nourish our bodies alone in a vacuum. Food has a place in all aspects of our lives. We share the responsibility of meal planning, grocery shopping, food prep, and often eating with other people.

You may find intermittent fasting more rewarding if you set yourself up for success and talk to your partner or family ahead of time about your plan. For example:

At the end of the day, if you have to let your intermittent fasting schedule slide occasionally to share a meal with friends or family, so be it. Just get back to the program as soon as possible, and don’t let this blip cause too much worry. Remember, it is all about progress, not perfection!

* Disclaimer: Intermittent fasting or time-restricted eating is not advised for individuals who are underweight, have an eating disorder, are under the age of 18, or for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Related content

Does intermittent fasting work for weight loss, and what should I know first?

How to figure out how much water you should drink plus an easy way to track it

Still new to MyNetDiary? Learn more today by downloading the app for FREE.

Weight Loss->Behavior Weight Loss->Diets
Jul 15, 2024
Disclaimer: The information provided here does not constitute medical advice. If you are seeking medical advice, please visit your healthcare provider or medical professional.

Start Your Free
Food Diary Today

Sign up Devices