At work I like to maintain my thought clarity and I find the best way to avoid the 'sleepies' is to not eat a big lunch. My preference usually would be to not eat anything but socially it's not acceptable to go outside for a lunch break and sit there not eating any food. Hence I often take an orange as a convenient food.
I like to think there is benefit to fasting.. going from 6am to 7pm without a meal helps me develop real hunger. I also like the idea of giving my digestive system a break. I don't know much about the fasting thing as I don't have any weight issues.
To those who do some 12 hr fasts / compressed eating windows, do you think of a small piece of fruit as negating the benefits of a fast (because technically it is no longer a fast.. but what makes a fast so good anyway?)?
If you question "what makes a fast so good anyway", in other words, the whole premise of a fast, you have bigger questions needing to be answered than whether eating an orange "technically" breaks a fast.
There are many possible benefits to IF'ing. Are you fasting as a method to benefit from autophagy, mental clarity, or any other reasons? Or, are you only looking for convenience and the "hunger factor"? What are you eating for breakfast prior to the start of the 12 hour fast? I find that if I eat a breakfast full of healthy fat and a reasonable dose of protein, I can easily go 12 hours without feeling true hunger. Eating an orange or other fruit during that time, for me, would spike hunger within a couple hours and I'd choose instead to snack on some veg. Mark's Daily Apple might be one good place to start further research on the benefits of IF. He recently wrote a series:
I'm a bit confused by the societal pressure thing. Why isn't acceptable to go sit outside and sit during your lunch break instead of eating? Maybe it's just me, but I don't really care what my coworkers do on their lunch breaks.
The only real benefit from a 12 hour fast is that you're not eating constantly. It will probably naturally encourage good food choices because real food lasts longer and doesn't cause cravings. There's not really anything to break though. The benefits of fasting generally need at least 16 hours + an intense workout, or 24+ hours.