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Talk to Michael Mosley about Intermittent Fasting, Wednesday 23 January, 12pm - 1pm.

(167 Posts)
RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 21-Jan-13 13:10:22

On Wednesday at 12pm midday Michael Mosley will be joining us for a webchat and to answer questions on Intermittent Fasting (also known as 5:2 diet).

Michael is a medical Journalist whose BBC Horizon Programme in August last year first introduced the UK to Intermittent Fasting. His latest book The Fast Diet presents the science behind the diet, whilst his co-author, Mimi Spencer explains the practicalities and how to go about it. The idea behind Fast Dieting is that you eat normally for five days and then then consume just 500 calories (women) and 600 calories (men) on two fasting days each week.

If you're interested in finding out more, join Michael Mosley on Wednesday 23 January at 12 midday or post a question to Michael in advance here.

Mumsnet Academy is now offering you the chance to join 5:2 The Fast Diet Course with Michael Mosley, a one day course in Central London on Friday 15 February. Book your tickets

DameFanny Mon 21-Jan-13 14:05:31

[placemark]

Fishandjam Mon 21-Jan-13 14:05:54

Is it just as effective to eat nothing on the fasting days? Or is 500cal a better approach?

orangina Mon 21-Jan-13 14:10:26

If you find 500 calories difficult to manage to start with, is there any value in starting off with say 2 days of 750 calories and then work up (down?!) to 500 calories on fast days?

orangina Mon 21-Jan-13 14:13:32

(Sorry, should have read through before I pressed the post button.... grammar failure...)

Abitstressed Mon 21-Jan-13 14:21:04

Hello Dr Mosley,

I was just wondering if there is any potential positive effects on intermittent fasting on mild depression?

I wondered as I personally noticed one day I had to fast because of surgery and noticed my mood was better that day. Could have been complete coincidence of course!

Many thanks

Scroobius Mon 21-Jan-13 14:31:54

Is this diet suitable if you are breast feeding?

tubsywubsy Mon 21-Jan-13 14:39:52

I am on the second week of the diet and so far have found it quite easy to cope with the fasting days. I'm just wondering what exactly is meant by 'eating normally' on the non-fasting days. Does this mean eating at my usual rate (which is how I got to be overweight in the first place), or at, say, the average calorie level for a non-dieting person?

TreadOnTheCracks Mon 21-Jan-13 14:43:09

I am doing my 5th fast today (Monday), and it has certainly got a lot easier. I feel much better each day I fast.

My problem is I am eating to compensate the day before a fast and often the after ok all the time I'm not fasting.

I have quite a lot of weight to lose and bad eating habits are what got me here in the first place (emotional eating).

Any tips?

ajandjjmum Mon 21-Jan-13 14:50:36

Very interested to follow this. DD and I are both going to give this a go - she's doing her first fasting day today. Sadly, I'd already had breakfast before she decided! grin

Lesbeadiva Mon 21-Jan-13 14:57:28

Oooh! I have done this for three months now. I lost a couple of pounds. I do a lot of walking and yoga, I am a healthy bmi and body fat percentage. But I only eat regular amounts on non fast days, never above 2000 and mostly 1700 cals max. Why have I stopped loosing weight? I do this more for the long term health benefits now, but still have about 6 pounds I would like to shift. Any advice?

virginposter Mon 21-Jan-13 15:51:56

Dr Mosley
Have had great sucess with 5:2 (thank you so much) and I'm nearing my goal weight. Will doing 6:1 have the same health benefits as 5:2 i.e. did you have your IGF-1 levels checked whilst you were maintaining on 6:1?
Thanks.

ohmeohmy Mon 21-Jan-13 15:56:37

If you have a snack in the middle of your fast day like Mimi in your ooh isn't that just dieting?

ohmeohmy Mon 21-Jan-13 15:56:54

Ooh? Book!

anothertiredmum Mon 21-Jan-13 15:57:48

Hi! i was thinking of doing the intermittent fasting and having only juices or smoothies on the fasting day. What do you think of that?
Also, what do you think of Joe Cross's fasting (juices only for a period of time): http://www.fatsickandnearlydead.com
Thanks

Laska42 Mon 21-Jan-13 16:30:52

I'd just Like to say Thanks, Dr Mosley .. I've lost 21lbs on your diet since end August and am now well into normal BMIand almost at target weight .. You have quite simply have changed my life (if that's not too soppy a thing to say)grin..

But have an allied question = re HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training ) what would you recommend if you dont have any sports equipment ? (I sold my exercise bike as it just got used for hanging laundry in the end!)

I read somewhere that running up and down the stairs might be a good thing, or how about perhaps running on the rebounder?

Thanks again

gussiegrips Mon 21-Jan-13 16:33:53

I really like the diet, I like not having to think about food for two whole days a week, it feels really liberating as compared with other diet systems where you have to think about food all the blardy time!

However, I'm a "picker" - I tend to accidentally nibble on ingrediants as I make lunch/dinner. So, whilst I'm under the 500kcal on the fast days, I'm finding it hard to have an absolutely empty stomach.

Does it matter WHEN you eat on the fast days? Or, can you recommend some sort of stapling device for my giant gob instead?

thanks, this diet will change my life.

DameFanny Mon 21-Jan-13 16:46:57

Oh here's a question - I often have to take painkillers, so need at least a milky coffee for them to absorb - could I use the 500 cals on small lattes through the day, or would that prevent me going into fast mode? (it's been the downfall of previous attempts to do this)

Aftereightsarenolongermine Mon 21-Jan-13 17:01:42

Thank you so much for this diet it has changed the way I view food & its changed my life. I've lost 3 stone on this diet but my body fat percentage has gone from 45% to only 39%. I cannot exercise & was wondering whether I could do anything to lessen body fat percentage.

zebedeethezebra Mon 21-Jan-13 17:14:26

I've been doing this diet for a couple of months now. Its great!

Question: Once target weight is reached, what is the best method of maintenance?

Ashoething Mon 21-Jan-13 17:40:26

A couple of friends are doing your diet and raving about it. However all they seem to eat on the fast days are veg soup and bananas. I hate bananas! what else could I eat as 500 cals seems very low and I am a greedy pig! Thanks in advance for answering my question.

DyeInTheEar Mon 21-Jan-13 18:11:13

My DH is doing this diet and loves it and done well on it. I'd like to join him as have just under two stone of "baby weight" to shift. I am breast feeding (baby is 5 weeks old & EBF). Should I adjust the calories on fast days to compensate for BF (apparently you can have 200 cals extra a day to BF) or stick at 500 / or should I avoid diet completely in case it impacts on milk supply?

Thank you.

herecomesthsun Mon 21-Jan-13 19:01:54

I also have a question about the High Intensity Interval Training (if allowed). I do a lot of clinic work and don't have much time to exercise, nor much of a lunch hour. I wondered whether there might be any mileage in doing a few lunges or star jumps if I get a minute or 2 in between patients (mad though this might look to an outsider). Also, presumably you don't have to warm up and cool down for this? (I'm not sure of the science behind warming up etc)

WeShouldOpenABar Mon 21-Jan-13 19:10:45

Is there a period of time in which you should try not to have any calories enter your body?
Ive heard as long as you get a 16 hour stretch at some point without food it doesnt matter when you eat outside of that, is this true?

Sergra Mon 21-Jan-13 19:13:40

Dr Mosley, Would this diet be especially helpful to a PCOS sufferer who needs to lose weight? Opinion seems to be divided on whether fasting helps with this condition or not. Thank you.

Hi - I am only just beginning to try this diet - I have about 10lbs to a stone to lose to get to healthy BMI, I also suffer from IBS and have cut out carbs to help this. The fasting appeals to me because days without too much food might help my IBS, everything about it seems great. however I am concerned about the comments I have read that say it could be a problem to reproductive health and less healthy for women than men (or at least not as many benefits). We are currently trying for another baby and I am keen to know if more studies have been done into the effects on women who are TTC as there seems to be little mentioned in what I have read so far.
Thanks!

hippoherostandinghere Mon 21-Jan-13 20:04:03

Hi Dr Mosley, just want to thank you so much for introducing this way of life to me. I never would have believed how much my eating habits could change.

I haven't told anyone though about doing the 5:2 plan (or 4:3 as I've being doing) only my DH. People seem to have a negative view on 'starving' yourself, and think it's another fad diet. What would you say to anyone who challanged the WOE in that way?

Disclaimer I don't believe its starving yourself or a fad, but I think others might view it as that before researching all the details.

plus3 Mon 21-Jan-13 20:05:37

Hello - apologies I have not read your book, but my DH & I tried the diet following the BBC program. He did incredibly well on the ADF & I tried the 5:2.

I have ulcerative colitis & was wondering if it does indeed have a significant impact on inflammation in the body, and what are the benefits for the autoimmune system?

My problem was psychologically I found it difficult to not eat & wonder if this was due to being in the correct BMI range.

Basically - should I try again for the health impact? A lifetime of immunosuppressants and potentially steroids is not an attractive option!

Many thanks

catsrus Mon 21-Jan-13 20:18:33

another grateful viewer of the original horizon programme here! 25lbs lost since August and only a few lbs away from moving into 'maintenance' mode. I've found not eating until later in the day has become my preferred pattern (apart from the odd miso soup grin). I have found it positively mood altering and energizing - counter intuitive for most people but true for lots of us.

From what I have read there are two separate things involved in the health benefits and weight loss. One is the calorie restriction to 500 on a few days a week, the other is the length of time without calories (the whole restricted 'eating window') in any given day. Clearly I've cracked it in terms of weight loss so now I'm looking more closely at long term health benefits. My diet is already primarily plant based and healthy (I was just eating too much of it blush) and I don't have much of a sweet tooth (Just hide the interesting bread and cheese!).

So a couple of questions
1) how negligible does the calorie intake have to be to count as "calorie free" (do I have to bin the miso soup and drink my tea black?)
2) from the research you have seen would you consider that moving to a more general "eating window" restricted week might have equal or more health benefits than moving to 6:1? i.e. if I don't eat breakfast (and sometimes lunch) on a more regular basis then I assume my body goes into repair mode more frequently - or is that not the case?

again - thanks to you and the Horizon team - I have finally shifted the post menopausal weight and can wear my 'smart stuff' again smile I also feel more in tune with my body and it definitely doesn't feel to me like "being on a diet"!

lovelydahlias Mon 21-Jan-13 20:56:20

Hello Dr Mosley
Have there been any studies into the effects of the 5:2 on thyroid? I have an underactive thyroid and currently take 100mcg per day. I started the 5:2 diet in August and did it for 4 months. However it made me feel quite unwell - really stressed out, not sleeping, irritable, cold, incredibly hungry on non-fast days and I often had palpitations - all of these effects I also get when I do exercise classes such as spinning, I think my adrenal glands go into overdrive? Yet I'd got so far with it and was very reluctant to give it up (but my family were!). However the longer I went on with it the worse I felt. My husband also did it and continues to and has had none of these problems. Do you think these side effects could be linked to my thyroid?

TepidCoffee Mon 21-Jan-13 21:27:33

Hello, can I point you to this blog post at Paleo for Women and ask you for your thoughts?

It's a review of female-specific responses to fasting in the literature and makes a really salient point. So much research seems to be based on the male as standard. But women are, physiologically at least, entirely different and it stands to reason that our responses may differ from that of men.

As this site is largely made up of women, it would be useful to hear what you have found out about women specifically, rather than your 'general' findings, which on closer inspection will probably be geared towards men.

Right, now I'm off to read the thread and will probably discover that either a) the whole book is about women or b) thirty people above me have already asked the same question grin.

TepidCoffee Mon 21-Jan-13 21:29:39

Lesbea check out the blog I linked to, I think you'll find it really useful.

iclaudius Mon 21-Jan-13 21:58:05

Michael - my husband and I both 45 seem to live by this mantra and were delighted to see your program give it some credence.
I have had many children but keep my BMI at a steady 20 despite doing a LOT of eating whatever I want.
Are there any long term studies into this - sometimes I worry that we could be doing ourselves some unknown harm!

louise3louise3 Mon 21-Jan-13 22:01:06

Dear Dr Moseley, I too, would like to know if it would suitable for me. I have an under active thyroid and take 150mcg of levothyroxine per day although often feel exhausted. Blood tests show normal. I gained 4 stone after an operation for spinal fusion and at the same time thyroid problem was noticed. I have been unable to lose weight since except when pregnant with twins losing 2 stone without trying and then piling it all back on after giving birth. I'm pretty desperate - I weighed 8 stone for 25 years and now weigh 12 stone. Help.

bunty1 Mon 21-Jan-13 22:03:51

Hi there!
I read somewhere that you can also do this diet by eliminating the 500 cals all together twice a week. If this is so, is it possible to fast from say 5pm to 5pm the following day . I figure it would be easier for me this way as you can stop eating at 5pm , go to bed relatively satiated that night and you only have to wait until 5pm to eat again..... I generally don't get hungry until about 2pm so I figure I could do it this way quite easily....but does it affect how the diet works? Thanks!!

KoalaKube Mon 21-Jan-13 22:43:43

Hi Dr M just wondering what effect anti-depressants have on this way of weight loss. Currently taking 100 - 150mg of sertraline per day. Don't have much of an appetite but drink lots of milky decaff with 1tsp sugar prob 10 cups per day + water or no cal drinks (v thirsty all the time). I'll then have a meal of about 600 cals some evenings when I feel like it (i.e tonight I had 2 lamb chops and some brocolli). I've lost about 8-10lbs in weight in 6 weeks., but have 2 stone to lose to have healthy bmi and not be obese. I can cut out sugar and work harder to have a healthy food intake - just wondering what effect the ADs might have/are having.

thanks

claredanes Mon 21-Jan-13 22:50:36

I did this for a few months last year and found it very easy. I felt good too. Looking forward to the webchat.

SeriousStuff Mon 21-Jan-13 23:06:51

My husband trains regularly (quite high intensity) and wondering whether it's ok to do so on fasting days as he is burning much more than the 600 calorie allowance.

Thank you!

starlady Mon 21-Jan-13 23:08:16

Hi Michael, I've been doing 5:2 since Nov, and have lost about 8 lb. I'm now 11 stone 8 lb and 5 ft 11 and 42. I do feel a lot better - more energised, sleeping and breathing better, and mentally sharper. I put on 5 stone in the last 20 years (I was very underweight due to having Marfans syndrome). Which brings me to my question - the only negative study about blood flow to the heart.

My heart is checked yearly and so far so good, it's healthy. I'm on no medication. Haven't discussed with my gp, or seen cardiologist . I'm worried I will get knee jerk response. What's your take on blood flow issue?

IAmNotGeoff Mon 21-Jan-13 23:10:21

I have been intermittent fasting for four months now and feel great. I have lost 2.5 stone and am heading to a much better weight (I'm a 42 year old man currently 15 stone).
However, when I fast I am more frequently getting a headache. It's always to the left side of my head around the sinus area. Is there a connection and is there anything I can do about it?

duchesse Mon 21-Jan-13 23:26:15

Hi Dr Mosley (my friend used to go out with your brother D by the way, about a 1000 years ago), I've been doing the 5:2 for nearly 4 weeks now, respecting my recommended intake of calories on my non-fasting days, and have actually gained half a kilo in that time. On a fast day I have very occasionally dipped down 500g but essentially my weight has remained the same. I am at the very upper edge of the healthy range in terms of BMI and could stand to lose 10 kg as I have a very slender frame. Where am I going wrong?

duchesse Mon 21-Jan-13 23:29:42

I forgot to say that in common with other posters I have an underactive thyroid- not massively so as I'm only on 50mcg/day, but I do wonder if underactive thyroid may be the downfall of the 5:2 method? I feel otherwise well on fast days (in fact not really particularly hungry until about 20 hours into complete fast) and have plenty of energy.

NatashaMousse Mon 21-Jan-13 23:46:13

Thanks so much for the excellent Horizon programme, Dr Mosley.

Being in the extra-lean category, I am doing 6:1 for the health benefits (one 32-hour no-calorie fast per week and extra calories on other days to avoid weight loss). From the start I've experienced improvements in energy, mental clarity, and general disposition, but have not had blood work done. Can you share with us the results of your tests doing 6:1 as compared with 5:2?

If I may, I would like to second the request for answers to the questions about HIT without equipment, the anti-inflammation effects of fasting, and an eating "window" (daily or several times a week) vs. 6:1 for both health benefits and weight control.

Ezzza Tue 22-Jan-13 05:58:42

Dear Dr Mosley,

All my questions have been asked by others already, so I just want to say thanks for bringing this way of eating to the public’s attention. (No question in this post, just thanks, so you can skip it if running low on time.)

After a longish spell of illness I found myself just squeaking into the obese category without the mental energy to do the only method I’d ever had success with in the past: daily calorie restriction. A friend saw your program on Horizon and told me about it. I was sceptical but I watched it and thought I’d give it a go.

20 weeks on I’ve managed to lose 24lbs and BMI is down to 26.1 so far. I’m still finding this way of eating really easy to stick to and even managed to keep going through a weight loss plateau, which I’ve never managed to do before and the weight is coming off again now. Better than that though, I’m feeling much healthier than I did last year (problems with anxiety and sleeplessness significantly reduced).

I have no doubt that if it hadn’t been for the Horizon program that aired in August I’d be even bigger now than ever. Thanks for helping me to no longer be obese! thanks

Breadandwine Tue 22-Jan-13 07:46:54

I'm a 75-yr-old male, been practicing IF since last Feb, and I was delighted to see your programme back up all I'd read.

My question is: If we've completed a 24 hour fast - from 6pm until 6pm the next day, say - why do we then have to restrict our evening meal to <600 cals.

Thanks.

Some questions for later as I'll be at work when this is on:

Why are you advocating weight loss? A number of studies are showing that with he exception of extreme morbid obesity, the health risks are pretty ambivalent, with some studies showing those in the overweight category living longer than those who, following the BMI, are classed 'healthy'. (For example the recent review and meta analysis from the Journal of the American Medical Association by Flegel, 2013.). And others illustrating the subjective nature of statistics which suggest overweight and obesity is unhealthy (eg Ernsberger, 2009, Gaesser, 2009 Gard and Wright, 2005, Campos, 2004).

As I am sure you are aware, people with eating disorders are highly likely to listen to, and practice what you are recommending as a way to loose weight further (possibly 'tweaked' to their usual patterns of eating 5 days followed by even more severe restriction over 2 days). How are you going about ensuring that your 'diet' remains as un-triggering as possible?

Stellightful Tue 22-Jan-13 08:20:12

Hello Michael
I've loved reading the book and I have my 3rd weigh day tomorrow and hoping that I will have lost 5 or 6 pounds in that time. I know a lot of it is water but see this as a long term way of life that I can do. So thank you!

Anyway my question is in relation to the 5 eating days. Do people and did you go up to the recommended calorie intake (so 2000 for me, 2500 for you) on those days? It just seems too much and I feel that the weight will go on in those days (and from a sneaky look on the scales that is what is happening). What do others really do? There's not much talk about this and I wondered whether you thought it better to still stick to a 1200 say calorie restriction on the 'feed' days. My BMI is just under 30 so I have a few stones to lose. Many thanks.

Illuminata Tue 22-Jan-13 12:30:43

Hello Dr Mosley
Thanks for coming on MN
Am an apple and I am overweight, not obese but would like to lose 1.5-2 stone.
BUT I am thinking of trying to conceive in the next few months too.
Would this way of eating be a bad idea?
tia

MustGetMoreExercise Tue 22-Jan-13 13:03:49

In your book you mention that there are human trials being run looking at the impact of fasting on cancer, in particular will fasting improve the efficacy of chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Have you any update on these or do you know when the results will be published?

I'm interested because my husband had radiotherapy for prostate cancer 6 weeks after starting the 5:2 diet with me when we saw your Horizon programme. He has just had a PSA test and the result has dropped significantly - more so than the surgeon expected at this stage. We are obviously delighted.

tomorrowweeat Tue 22-Jan-13 13:26:42

Please could you explain why this diet is not suitable for type 2 diabetics. Also should Metformin dosage be lowered on fasting days?

androbbob Tue 22-Jan-13 13:28:28

Is this diet ok for type 2 diabetic who needs to shift at least 2 stone of weight. Diabetes is diet controlled only and has been for the last 5 years, but this will change as I get older if I do not shift the pounds. Any thoughts?

DoughaDeer Tue 22-Jan-13 13:54:08

Hi - I wondered how long it would be before they collared you into MN!

Been doing the Fast Diet since the programme and not really for weight loss - although that was attractive but for the other health benefits. I am now happily at a great weight and don't call it a diet - it's just something me and DH do. What I have noticed is significant lack of awful pre-menstrual bloating /mood swings etc etc. Seriously - it's radically changed which I'm surprised at as I'm heading fast into Peri-menopause!! Is this a reported (good) side effect?! Anyone else mentioned it.
Thanks. PS - book is fab grin

Allaquandry Tue 22-Jan-13 13:57:23

Same question as bunty, really. Could you have a lunch at 12.00, then fast until 12.30 the next day and then have a lunch? Seems like a cheat really as you only miss out on 2 meals, to 3. Not sure if this would derail the diet?

scripsi Tue 22-Jan-13 14:02:17

Drat, I will be at a job interview at that time! I do not particularly need to lose weight but have started using the fast because I have a very unfortunate genetic history - both of my parents died in their early/late forties, my grandparents likewise and I want to stick around for my DC.
Would it be possible to expand upon any research done on fasting for women (in particular) and those who are at a normal weight?

VenetiaLanyon Tue 22-Jan-13 14:09:29

Hi,

I only have about 7lbs to lose, currently exercise for 5 days a week and am considering trying this diet.

Considering the above profile, will it work for me? How do you calculate how many calories you should be eating on your normal eating days, and should you be exercising on fast days?

Thanks smile

Oblomov Tue 22-Jan-13 17:04:24

I am a type 1 diabetic, since birth, who has never had to diet before and found dieting extremely hard recently, because I kept going low and thus needing lucozade, which defeats the object.

There have been loads of great recipes and ideas on the 5:2 threads on Mn, but i bet there are loads of recipes, tit-bits of support and ideas, of zero calories noodles etc, from all over the world.
Could you , and Mimi from the Daily Mail, collate all the recipes , ideas, and support and bits into a book please?

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 22-Jan-13 17:07:08

If you're interested in hearing more about Intermittent Fasting, Mumsnet Academy is now running a one day course in Central London with Michael Mosley. 5:2 The Fast Diet Course will be held in Central London on Friday 15 February. Book your tickets

lljkk Tue 22-Jan-13 17:08:14

I am not interested in fasting, dieting or weight loss.

But I heard you on the radio saying something like Walking is the best exercise for weight loss, or perhaps the best for maintaining weight loss. I tried to Google but only came up with "3 minutes of activity" a day advice, nothing else (tied to your name) about the documented benefits of walking over other forms of exercise.

could you please clarify what you meant about the advantages of walking over other forms of exercise?

lljkk Tue 22-Jan-13 17:08:53

ps: with cited research studies, would be nice, by the way, about the walking advantages, I mean.

vix0306 Tue 22-Jan-13 17:21:10

I have been trying to follow the diet but think there must be something very wrong with me as I can't stick to the 500 cals a day (most people say this is surprisingly easy) and on the non-fast days I want to binge. This is also difficult as a lot of others following the diet say that they aren't tempted to overeat and in fact struggle to eat enough. There doesn't seem to be much guidance on what to eat on non-fast days apart from what you want. How many calories should I be eating and should these at breakfast, lunch and dinner?

I have suffered from binge eating disorder and all the dietary advice on recovering from an eating disorder is not to allow yourself to get hungry (by eating regularly) as skipping meals can lead to a binge. I find though that once I start eating I can't stop. I really want to be able to eat to hunger but I don't know what that is- I just think I have an uncontrollable appetite. I really want to be able to follow the 5:2 diet- Do you have any advice??

Oblomov Tue 22-Jan-13 17:29:08

Oh by the way, I am a type 1 on a pump, so can in theory, fast. I should be able to eat what I want, when I want, or chose not to eat at all, because my basals are set accordingly.
I have often been asked by my consultant to no carb, protein only for breakfast, So I do not se that this diet would be difficult.
Am intrigued as to why type 2's couldn't do , re posts below.

Marking place.

janmoomoo Tue 22-Jan-13 18:25:18

Great programme and interesting research.

I would also be interested to hear if hypothyroidism has any known impact on this diet.

I lost weight on this diet for four weeks but then started putting weight on. What are the common mistakes / pitfalls with this diet with regards to weight loss (that I probably fell into).

insancerre Tue 22-Jan-13 18:40:40

I have doing the 5/2 diet since august with dh who needed to lose some weight.
We have both lost weight, and now find that we are not as strict with the fasting days. I heard you on bbc breakfast say that you are doing 6/1 now to maintain the diet. Would you recommend we switch to a 6/1 now that we have lost the weight that we wanted to?
What are the health benefits for a middle aged man with high cholesterol, high blood pressure and a hiarus hernia (oh and a wheat intolerance too)?

thesun Tue 22-Jan-13 18:42:11

A bit of an odd question here, but is there an 'opposite' to this type of diet that would aid weight gain?
Or, can you offer any other advice on how to achieve this in a healthy way (like, would increasing the proportion of starchy/cereal foods eaten compared to other groups be a good way?)
Thank you

OxfordBags Tue 22-Jan-13 18:56:12

Hello Dr Mosley, I have a question that I hope you will respond to, as I'm sure, given the nature of this site, many MumsNetters will also be interested in knowing the reply. It's simple: is this diet regime suitable when you are breastfeeding?

I am still breastfeeding my son at 22 months, so I'm not as worried about side effects like reduced flow as I would have been if he was a lot younger, but I don't want to do anything that could adversely affect my breast milk, ie toxins being released into my milk or similar.

Thank you in advance. I've just got your book for Kindle and it is excellent so far.

TepidCoffee Tue 22-Jan-13 19:09:53

I should have been clearer in my initial post that the review I link to does not come out particularly favourably on the evidence of fasting for women.

Badvoc Tue 22-Jan-13 19:48:47

Hello dr Mosley
I watched the horizon programme and have read the book and I think it sounds great.
However.
I am finding it very hard to have only 500 cals on fast days.
I also find it hard when I am on my period.
Do you have any tips for making the fast easier to do? Time wise etc.
Is there aypnything I can do to assuage my pmt/hormone related binging?
Thanks! smile

happynewmind Tue 22-Jan-13 19:58:06

Can I just ask anyone , do you have to do the 2 fasting days together or is it ok to split?

I have 4 stone to lose and am an emotional eater.

Badvoc Tue 22-Jan-13 19:59:18

You can split it happy.

Issy Tue 22-Jan-13 20:10:24

Hello Dr Mosley

Could you summarise the benefits of the 5:2 diet other than for weight loss?

I'm 49 and don't appear to have a problem maintaining a BMI of 21 (although that may be about to change as I enter the menopause!), but am intrigued by the general health benefits of this regime.

Currently I run 3x a week and eat reasonably well.

Thanks

inmindsight Tue 22-Jan-13 20:14:21

Thanks, It really works for me, but I need to switch my mind in to doing it and I am also easily led by others...... It is great as you can start any time any day again after a failure and just carry on. Now on my way back to normality after the excess of Christmas and New Year (actually it was the whole of Nov and Dec....)
thanks again for a very enjoyable program.

happynewmind Tue 22-Jan-13 20:24:44

Thanks Badvoc

thedicewoman Tue 22-Jan-13 20:33:32

already asked but I'll ask it again, is it ok to do while breastfeeding?

great298 Tue 22-Jan-13 21:18:10

Hi,
Thanks Dr Mosley for publicising the diet. My question is:
Why did the researchers who were featured in your programme share this with info/diet with you instead of publishing the work themselves? Is it because they are still doing further research and there might be side effects/risks we need to consider before undertaking this diet?

izcullen Tue 22-Jan-13 22:02:09

Hi - I have 2 questions if that's ok:

Firstly, I take metformin for PCOS and need to take this with a meal otherwise I get terrible tummy problems. How could I work round this on fast days?

Secondly, I get very bad heartburn if my tummy is empty for a stretch of time, which I envisage happening on fast days! Is there anything you can suggest to ease, or work round this problem? Might it clear up after a few weeks on the plan?

Yours very gratefully,
Isabella.

GreenEggsAndNichts Tue 22-Jan-13 22:03:47

Hello Dr Mosley, thanks so much for finally stopping by. smile As you and your researchers know, we're big fans of your work over on the 5:2 threads.

My question is: have there been (or do you know of any planned upcoming) studies regarding differences in the way male and female bodies react to this diet? From responses to our threads, and articles I've read online, it seems as if this works extremely well for weight loss in men, and in post-menopausal women, but might be hit or miss with younger women of childbearing age. This could just be anecdotal, but it does seem worthy of a study if someone were so inclined.

Also, I realise this is making two questions, but I think this is the number one most popular question worth clarifying for the many people who ask us on the threads: are we to assume that on non-fast days, we should be eating approximately our TDEE allowance? Obviously we all have different definitions of "eat what you want", as that's how we gained excess weight in the first place!

I really appreciate you taking the time to answer our questions. thanks For myself, I've probably lost 18 pounds since August, and I'm extremely pleased with that. Christmas, for the first time in a very long time, was not riddled with guilt over what I "should" or should not be eating!

Nyx Tue 22-Jan-13 22:04:58

Marking my spot so I can find the thread again later. I will say I have been doing this since new year and am loving it. I feel fantastic. I have never ever dieted or counted a single calorie in the past - I did need to, but never had. This way of eating is so simple and yet I have felt benefits already. I'm fascinated by it and am looking forward to reading the webchat (will be working while it is happening though).

growingweeble Tue 22-Jan-13 22:25:56

I recently tried fasting but felt so awful. I became really cold, foggy head, legs wouldn't work. In the middle of the night I had to drink some coca cola to make me feel better (I never normally drink coke, but felt I needed sugar quick).

I didnt have a blood test so can't be sure what my blood sugars were doing. I'm healthy, as far as I know, without any medical conditions.

What is a normal reaction to fasting, and when should you seek medical help?

growingweeble Tue 22-Jan-13 22:32:48

I should have added that I am breast feeding an 8 month old. I increased by calorie allowance to about 700 to give some allowance for that.

chroniclackofimagination Wed 23-Jan-13 00:32:05

Hi, just wanted to add my voice to the others asking if the 5:2 is OK for breastfeeding mothers. I'm exclusively feeding a 10 week old and am 2 stone overweight post-pregnancy. I don't want to risk my baby's wellbeing but would love to try this way of eating as the science makes sense and it would fit so well into our lifestyle.

risemere Wed 23-Jan-13 08:26:47

Would Dr. Mosley please clarify if the Alternative Day Fasting regime is 24 hours or 36 hours? It is unclear if the standard regime ( small breakfast, small dinner) is preceded by a night's sleep (i.e. no food) and followed by a night's sleep ( no food)! So, after you small dinner, do you fast until your 'normal breakfast' on the following day. In other words, 'what is a day'? Thank you.

MiddleEnglish Wed 23-Jan-13 10:07:12

Hello,
I'd like to ask a similar question to Risemere and Breadandwine. I bought the book on Monday, read it yesterday and am on my first fast today! I started the fast at 6pm yesterday. So at 6pm tonight, do I break the fast with a proper dinner, or should I stay within my 500 cals for the entire day until breakfast tomorrow?

I know we're only meant to ask one question, but I'm also putting a vote in for another question asked downthread about women of childbearing age. After I watched the Horizon program I did a bit of Googling and found some stuff on the web that suggested this diet wasn't suitable for these women - do you have any more info on this?

Thank you!

Curryqueen101 Wed 23-Jan-13 10:31:23

If I exercise on Fasting days, is it possible to totally or partially offset the calories burned (I have an exercise bike which tells me the amount of calories used) against food intake?

Salbertina Wed 23-Jan-13 10:39:39

Hi Michael

I started trying the Genesis IF diet on which I believe your version was based.
Which would you recommend for women with a family history of breast cancer?

Ditto qu. re this diet for women of childbearing age.

Thanks

Hi Dr M. I really enjoyed your programme on this and was impressed at your results. My experience of 'naturally slim' people is that they tend to eat more like this (feast one day, fast the next couple of days) than to eat the same amount each day.

My question is whether this diet is more compatible with certain types of food. I'm thinking particularly of whether it is more beneficial to eat low GI / low carb, particularly on the fast days. I wonder if eating all your 500 calories as high GI carbs would make this way of eating very difficult to stick to.

Kirsty3333 Wed 23-Jan-13 11:14:33

Hi Dr Mosley, I was wondering what your thoughts were on VLCD as a weight management tool? Looking at sensible, controlled calorie intake every day?

Thanks!

LouiseMarie Wed 23-Jan-13 11:23:34

How many extra calories would be recommended on fast days for breastfeeding mums? Have completed 2 days over the past week but am really hungry and feel I make up for it by eating loads the next day! Is that normal?

Thanks!

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 23-Jan-13 11:51:19

Michael is here and ready to start. Welcome to Mumsnet Michael...

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 11:51:46

Hi everyone, I am here at Mumsnet HQ surrounded by busy looking people, drinking black coffee and resisting biscuits

justonemorepie Wed 23-Jan-13 11:52:27

Hiya,
I've been doing ADF since 3rd Jan and I am pleased with the results.
I keep getting told that 'breakfast is the most important meal of the day' and on a fast day I don't eat until the evening. Can you give me a quick come back for those who don't endorse fasting re breakfast. I find myself drawn into lengthy conversations about the benefits of fasting.
Many thanks

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 11:54:13

LouiseMarie

How many extra calories would be recommended on fast days for breastfeeding mums? Have completed 2 days over the past week but am really hungry and feel I make up for it by eating loads the next day! Is that normal?

Thanks!

i am conservative about these things and would not actually recommend breast feeding mums do fasting. I think you have enough to cope with anyway and the energy demands are high. Not aware of anyone who has studied this in humans

Salbertina Wed 23-Jan-13 11:55:34

Hello Michael, love a coffee please, smidgeon of cream but no biscuits as fasting today wink

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 11:56:29

justonemorepie

Hiya,
I've been doing ADF since 3rd Jan and I am pleased with the results.
I keep getting told that 'breakfast is the most important meal of the day' and on a fast day I don't eat until the evening. Can you give me a quick come back for those who don't endorse fasting re breakfast. I find myself drawn into lengthy conversations about the benefits of fasting.
Many thanks

People may say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but all breakfast means is when you break your fast. Some people like eating in the morning (i do) others prefer to eat later in the day. In the trials run by Dr Krista Varady the 500 calories were eaten all in one meal, at lunch

OOoh, black coffee and resisting biscuits... fast day Mr. Moseley?

(I'm a breastfeeding ADF'er, incidently)

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 11:59:06

Kirsty3333

Hi Dr Mosley, I was wondering what your thoughts were on VLCD as a weight management tool? Looking at sensible, controlled calorie intake every day?

Thanks!

Sensible controlled calorie intake is great if you can do it. The problem is lots don't manage. That is why 5:2 was invented. Dr Michelle Harvie of the Genesis Project in Manchester did a randomised trial comparing standard low calorie diet with 5:2 and found after 4 months women were twice as likely to stick to 5:2, lost more weight and had better biomarkers

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:00:55

TravelinColour

Hi Dr M. I really enjoyed your programme on this and was impressed at your results. My experience of 'naturally slim' people is that they tend to eat more like this (feast one day, fast the next couple of days) than to eat the same amount each day.

My question is whether this diet is more compatible with certain types of food. I'm thinking particularly of whether it is more beneficial to eat low GI / low carb, particularly on the fast days. I wonder if eating all your 500 calories as high GI carbs would make this way of eating very difficult to stick to.

I have a big section in my book, The Fast Diet, about GI and carbs, particularly on fasting days. I recommend relatively high protein, low carbs, low GI on fasting. The recipes in book based on that principle

happynewmind Wed 23-Jan-13 12:05:20

Ok I am starting today, I have put 4 stone on following an emergency complete hysterectomy and the following early menapause as a result.

I cannot really exercise much at the moment as I am in pain a lot and waiting for more surgery. I have a very high rate of cancer in my family so am interested in the benefits of this.

What I would like to know about are any side effects both long and short term and how long before I can expect decent weight loss.

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:06:07

Salbertina

Hi Michael

I started trying the Genesis IF diet on which I believe your version was based. Which would you recommend for women with a family history of breast cancer? Ditto qu. re this diet for women of childbearing age.

Thanks

My diet is not directly based on the Genesis IF diet, but I am certainly aware of Dr Harvie's work and she has a book coming out soon which i am looking forward to reading. As you may know women on her 2 Day Diet not only lost weight but showed increased insulin sensitivity and reduced inflammatory markers, all of which reduce cancer risk. I asked Dr Mattson, who is the guiding genius behind this work about women of childbearing age and he said there was no known risk. If you starve women then their fertility will be threatened, in a reversal manner, but intermittent fasting is not anything like starvation

tomorrowweeat Wed 23-Jan-13 12:06:23

Why is this WOE unsuitable for type2 diabetics and should you reduce Metformin dosage on fast days?

BIWI Wed 23-Jan-13 12:07:28

I'm a long-term low carber, and have lost 2 stones recently. I still have around half a stone to go. However, the adoption of this way of eating and especially my commitment to it, is actually about the long-term health benefits that it offers.

I was especially interested in your programme because of the long term health benefits that you suggested that fasting can achieve. I have toyed with fasting (either 5:2 or intermittent fasting) but not really got the hang of it yet!

I am 53 and menopausal. Is there any evidence or suggestion that fasting is any better or more difficult once we are past the menopause?

mintycake Wed 23-Jan-13 12:08:27

Hi Michael
Can you tell me is it better to fast consecutive days or space them out? Also does it matter what makes up the 500cals on fast days?
Thanks

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:09:09

happynewmind

Ok I am starting today, I have put 4 stone on following an emergency complete hysterectomy and the following early menapause as a result.

I cannot really exercise much at the moment as I am in pain a lot and waiting for more surgery. I have a very high rate of cancer in my family so am interested in the benefits of this.

What I would like to know about are any side effects both long and short term and how long before I can expect decent weight loss.

The only known side effect is that you will get hungry and won't be able to stick to it. The first few weeks can be tough so good to join a support group. To be properly evaluated need long term trials, but i would add that all the great religions advocate fasting and have done so for centuries without any serious suggestion that it is harmful. I personally never go for more than 12 hours without food. Water, lots of it, is essential

virginposter Wed 23-Jan-13 12:09:34

Hi Dr M

Does 6:1 have the same health benefits as 5:2 and did you have your IGF-1 levels checked whilst doing 6:1.
Many thanks for changing my life smile

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:10:37

tomorrowweeat

Why is this WOE unsuitable for type2 diabetics and should you reduce Metformin dosage on fast days?

I think that people are rightly cautious about type2 diabetics and fear of going hypo. If you are thinking of you should discuss with your doctor

phlebas Wed 23-Jan-13 12:14:03

I've been doing IF since last summer (after the Horizon programme), in that time I've lost 21kg & have 17kg to go to get to my goal weight.

My question is about maintenance - is it better (for health) to sick with 5:2 or change to 6:1? How do you manage not to lose more weight?

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:16:19

GreenEggsAndNichts

Hello Dr Mosley, thanks so much for finally stopping by. smile As you and your researchers know, we're big fans of your work over on the 5:2 threads.

are there any studies regarding differences in the way male and female bodies react to this diet?

Also, are we to assume that on non-fast days, we should be eating approximately our TDEE allowance? Obviously we all have different definitions of "eat what you want", as that's how we gained excess weight in the first place!

I really appreciate you taking the time to answer our questions. thanks For myself, I've probably lost 18 pounds since August, and I'm extremely pleased with that. Christmas, for the first time in a very long time, was not riddled with guilt over what I "should" or should not be eating!

Most of the studies so far have been done with women, overweight but premenopausal. The benefits seen in women (compared to a standard low calorie dietg) include losing more weight, being able to stick to and reduced inflammatory markers (important for things like breast cancer and asthma).

There is some evidence that men find it easier to exercise in the fasted state, and burn more fat, but not seen studies that say if the same is true one way or the other with women.

I believe that one reason this approach works is because our bodies were forged in a climate of feast or famine. It would be strange if women never went hungry in the past

Huggy1234 Wed 23-Jan-13 12:18:26

As this is relatively new, how can we be sure of the long term benefits?

Started to do this with DW a few months ago - seems to be the easiest 'diet' to do. PLus with busy lives doing 5:2 we make sure the 2 days are on busy days when we take kids to activities etc so don't have time to eat. Does seem to make sense as I think it's all too easy to eat more than the recommended amount daily so having 2 days off helps to balance this out.

No question really - just think it's a simple idea plus like the idea of the longer term health benefits.

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:20:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:22:56

Badvoc

Hello dr Mosley
I watched the horizon programme and have read the book and I think it sounds great.
However.
I am finding it very hard to have only 500 cals on fast days.
I also find it hard when I am on my period.
Do you have any tips for making the fast easier to do? Time wise etc.
Is there aypnything I can do to assuage my pmt/hormone related binging?
Thanks! smile

The first few weeks are the toughest, and it is a good idea to join a support group, like ones you will find here on Mumsnet or facebook. I have a website, thefastdiet.co.uk which is also quite active. This is a very democratic movement and hugely self supporting.
The reason for 500 calories is that was the figure the scientists have researched. There is nothing magic about it. If 600 works better for you, fine. The main thing is those calories should be satisfying, satiating and nutrient rich. Loads of recipes around online, in our book The Fast Diet, etc etc

Badvoc Wed 23-Jan-13 12:25:13

Thank you!
Will definitely be trying again.
I have already lost a stone by fasting so I know it works.
I will check out the website, thanks again.

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:25:34

Some people have asked what regime i am currently on. Well i did 5:2 until i had dropped to my target weight, 12 stone. My wife, a GP, then said i was looking too gaunt so i switched to what i call 6:1. I do my 600 calorie thing once a week and a few days a week skip lunch. That way 2-3 times a week i go for 12 hour periods without food. Haven't had my bloods retested yet but feel fantastic on it

Salbertina Wed 23-Jan-13 12:27:00

Just wanted to say thanks for answering my message directly. So appreciative of how you've brought this mainstream. Will public health messages catch up??

AntiDiet Wed 23-Jan-13 12:28:00

Can someone tell me how I actually get on this webchat? Or am I on it and just nothing is happening? Sorry- first time doing this. Really interested to learn about this.

BIWI Wed 23-Jan-13 12:28:38

You're on it, AntiDiet!

duchesse Wed 23-Jan-13 12:29:04

You're on it AntiDiet! You just need to do the same thing again and ask your question.

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:30:15

mintycake

Hi Michael
Can you tell me is it better to fast consecutive days or space them out? Also does it matter what makes up the 500cals on fast days?
Thanks

I started out doing Mondays and Thursday because it suits my life. Some people prefer consecutive days. Does it matter? No-one knows. These days, as i mentioned before, i'm largely doing 1 day a week and skipping lunch. Will check my bloods and see how they are doing. If glucose and cholesterol up will revert to 5:2. In terms of dementia risk first human trials due to start soon

LizzC Wed 23-Jan-13 12:30:27

Hi Michael, Unfortunately I missed the Horizon programme (and didn't know there was a book out either - think I must have had my head in the sand!). Is there anywhere I can watch this episode, and you could also let me know what the book is called please. Many thanks LizzC

AntiDiet Wed 23-Jan-13 12:31:03

I have also heard the above (from WeShouldOpenABar) about 8 hours stretches. Surely this can't work!

AntiDiet Wed 23-Jan-13 12:32:11

Thank you! DOH!

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:32:32

The biggest changes i have seen in myself, apart from significant weight loss and improvements in biochemistry, is my attitude to hunger and to vegetables. I used to snack as soon as i felt a pang, these days i just let it go. I knew veg was good for me, but used it as a garnish. Now i pile my plate. Someone contacted me via my twitter account, @drmichaelmosley the other day to say she had eaten veg for the first time in her life and enjoyed it!!

LizzC Wed 23-Jan-13 12:33:44

I was the same AntiDiet you are not alone! her her makes me feel more human!

SeriousStuff Wed 23-Jan-13 12:33:59

LizzC try this http://vimeo.com/50912488

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:36:06

LizzC

Hi Michael, Unfortunately I missed the Horizon programme (and didn't know there was a book out either - think I must have had my head in the sand!). Is there anywhere I can watch this episode, and you could also let me know what the book is called please. Many thanks LizzC

The book is called The Fast Diet; i should add there are a number of others out there called some variation on The 5:2 Diet, written by people who have little or no science training, simply saw my prog and copied it. I've read a couple of these books and they were not good.I have higher hopes for Dr Michelle Harvie's new book though not seen it yet

LizzC Wed 23-Jan-13 12:36:10

SeriousStuff - Great, thank you

virginposter Wed 23-Jan-13 12:37:26

LizzC both a link to the programme and the book are on the mumsnet 5:2 threads.

LizzC Wed 23-Jan-13 12:38:03

Many thanks Michael, will be hunting it down later; sounds like just what I am looking for.

AntiDiet Wed 23-Jan-13 12:38:46

Dear Dr Mosley,

I wonder if you could say something about the theory that going for long periods of time without eating slows down your metabolism and disrupts your leptin and ghrelin balance so that you are more prone to putting on an holding fat. How does the 5:2 diet not fall into this trap? I'm sorry I also did not catch the horizon documentary and have looked online, but cannot find it.
Many thanks

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:39:26

Salbertina

Just wanted to say thanks for answering my message directly. So appreciative of how you've brought this mainstream. Will public health messages catch up??

Public health people are rightly cautious. I think it is fair enough to say, "wait and see". There are a couple of new studies coming out that will hopefully add support to The Fast Diet approach. I hasten to add, this is not my scientific work. I pulled together the work of leading scientists into what i hope is a doable approach. They were very pleased by the programme and by the response

KittyMem Wed 23-Jan-13 12:41:17

Hi Michael,

I was wondering if you could outline your eating plans for a typical fast and a typical non-fast day?

I love the 5:2 diet, but I am conscious about making the most of my 500 calories and getting everything I need.

Thanks,
Kitty

MustGetMoreExercise Wed 23-Jan-13 12:42:16

I posted a question about research on cancer treatment and fasting further up the thread. On reflection, that is probably hard to answer here and now, so I'll amend it to asking if there will be an update to the Horizon programme and if so when?
Thanks so much for original programme and book - this is sustainable in the long term!

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:43:19

AntiDiet

Dear Dr Mosley,

I wonder if you could say something about the theory that going for long periods of time without eating slows down your metabolism and disrupts your leptin and ghrelin balance so that you are more prone to putting on an holding fat. How does the 5:2 diet not fall into this trap? I'm sorry I also did not catch the horizon documentary and have looked online, but cannot find it.
Many thanks

The claim that you have to eat regularly in order to keep you metabolism revved up is myth. Numerous studies have looked into this and found no difference in the metabolic rates of people eating their calories as either 3 meals a day or 6. Nor is there any evidence that not eating for a couple of days triggers some metabolic slowdown. There is some evidence speeds it up. It certainly turns on fat burning. The thing we know is that when you start to lose weight, on whatever diet, you metabolic rate will slow simply because you are carrying around less weight. That is why you eventually plateau

Badvoc Wed 23-Jan-13 12:45:04

Is anyone else a bit frustrated that almost everything we have been told for years regarding healthy diet and exercise is..well..just wrong??
The diet industry - and it is an industry - is making money from outdated science.
sad

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 12:46:49

KittyMem

Hi Michael,

I was wondering if you could outline your eating plans for a typical fast and a typical non-fast day?

I love the 5:2 diet, but I am conscious about making the most of my 500 calories and getting everything I need.

Sorry Kitty, not enough space. General principles are you should eat more protein on fasting days, lots of veg, drink lots of tea and water. I largely avoid carbs. The importance of eating protein is that it is not well stored and after 24 hours without you might be running short. If you want recipes then buy The Fast Diet, go to our website thefastdiet.co.uk or one of the zillions of others out there that have recipes on them (though i cannot vouch for trust worthiness of content)

Salbertina Wed 23-Jan-13 12:47:08

Yes, I understand the need for caution.. However, it would be good to see IF up for discussion, at least, in a bid to to reverse obesity trends. I believe many Gps refer overweight pts to weight-watchers. So assuming there is enough of an evidence base in future to support IF, why not GP "prescription" to adopt a 5:2 diet for certain patient groups?

duchesse Wed 23-Jan-13 12:47:29

Badvoc I'm afraid it does not surprise me at all. Most diets are designed to sell something. Oh so good for you polyunsaturated hydrogenated vegetables oils have been marketed as better for you than natural oils and fats for decades with no discernible effect on heart disease.

Yermina Wed 23-Jan-13 12:47:32

Is there any evidence on how this diet impacts on mental health in the short term? I've noticed that short term fasting me feel mentally 'well'. Is there any physiological explanation for this?

virginposter Wed 23-Jan-13 12:48:08

Dr M

Please let us know the results of your next blood test as many of us are nearing our goals and would like to get maximum health benefits.
Thank you so much for answering our questions today.

LizzC Wed 23-Jan-13 12:48:22

Hi Michael, I saw the programme in which you did (I think it was) just 3 minutes of HIT training per week. Is this something you still do and incorporate it with this newly adopted eating plan? Many thanks

BIWI Wed 23-Jan-13 12:48:26

Very, Badvoc. And angry about it too. So many vested interests, though, in the whole low-fat/low cal/diet industry.

MUMoo7 Wed 23-Jan-13 12:49:03

DP is on this 5:2 diet, follows it quite consistently but is in a very bad mood most of the time, in particular on fasting days. Any tips for that, other than avoiding him? The whole thing turning into an ordeal for the entire family, especially at weekends, even though fasting days are strictly during the week.

Bordercollielover Wed 23-Jan-13 12:49:04

Your Horizon documentary has changed my life. At 57 I am slimmer, lighter, more energetic and more positive than at any time during the last 15 years. Thankyou.
My question: I have a friend with Type 2 Diabetes. Is there anywhere she can go for help and support to try IF? Her GP is not supportive.

KittyMem Wed 23-Jan-13 12:49:13

Thank you Michael - an egg white omelette with lots of veg for dinner for me then!

BIWI Wed 23-Jan-13 12:50:04

What's wrong with the yolk, Kitty?!

SpiralSkies Wed 23-Jan-13 12:50:05

I'm intrigued that, when you reached your target weight, you adopted 6:1 rather than simply fasting for the number of hours deemed to improve biomarkers rather and then eating >600 cals? Or am I oversimplyfying the science by thinking that we can get the health benefits of fasting without the weight loss?

duchesse Wed 23-Jan-13 12:55:53

My question is still (I popped it in a few days ago so right at the bottom of the thread now) why am I not losing any weight at all on the 5:2 (now switched to ADF) despite sticking to it and definitely have 10 kg to lose?

Salbertina Wed 23-Jan-13 12:57:01

Badvoc, not just frustrated, I'm rather indignant about it!
One wonders about the interests of the food/farming/diet industries and how they've been protected at the expense of people's health! The big supermarkets are also not going to want mass numbers of us reducing our weekly shop by what 22% each week! And what's the diet to peddle in simply fasting (Ww, SW et al)?

TalkinPeace2 Wed 23-Jan-13 12:57:02

Not a particular question,

Just a thankyou for publicising a way of eating that is working excellently for so many people of all ages and backgrounds that does not involve lots of expensive meetings, books or faddy foods.

You've made many WW and SW leaders unhappy but a lot of us a lot happier.
Keep up the good work.
:-) TiP

Badvoc Wed 23-Jan-13 13:00:30

Salbertina...I was horrified when my sister who is quite overweight and has been for some time was told at WW and could drink as much diet drink as she wanted.
Great! All that sucrose and aspartame!

KittyMem Wed 23-Jan-13 13:02:03

Egg yolk = more calories, higher cholestrol.

Egg yolk generally contains around 3x the calories of the egg white. So when I'm eating 500 calories a day, I like to stick to what I can get most out of!

TalkinPeace2 Wed 23-Jan-13 13:05:48

PS as somebody who now has a BMI at the lower end of the healthy range, I'm dithering whether to drop to 6:1 from 5:2, or relax even more at the weekend!
Am so used to not eating on a Monday now I'll not give that up ...

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 13:06:29

Issy

Hello Dr Mosley

Could you summarise the benefits of the 5:2 diet other than for weight loss?

Losing weight if you are overweight is itself a good thing (the recent report that being overweight is good for you is flawed for reasons i go into on thefastdiet.co.uk)
Benefits include improved insulin sensitivity, reduced inflammatory markers (leading to reduced risk of cancer and possibly improvements in asthma); possibly reduced risk of dementia. They know that rats put on a 5:2 diet (they didn't volunteer) were less likely to develop dementia and their brains produced higher levels of a substance called BDNF (brain derived neurotrophic factor) which leads to production of new brain cells and may explain why people on 5:2 frequently report feeling sharper. Human trials about to start

MichaelMosley Wed 23-Jan-13 13:07:06

That's all from me. I have a series starting on Thursday night on BBC2 at 9pm called Genius of Inventions which is really good fun and full of fascinating content. I am also doing a programme next Monday with Dr Alice Roberts about Flu and I am on the Sarah Milican show on Tuesday at 9pm. So if you want to avoid me, flee the country. I also chat and answer questions on twitter @drmichaelmosley

Thank you!

smile
Will request the book at the library.

anniewhit Wed 23-Jan-13 17:53:50

Hi- I have looked for this info myself and am not clear. On the 5;2 fasting diet- does it matter when or how I have my 500 calories. ? I have been having them spread throughout the day- with out a 12 hour period in between meals. Is that ok? I have been eating loads of veg and making soups. My appreciation to anyone who can answer as my next day is due tomorrow!

ubik Wed 23-Jan-13 19:17:30

Thank you so much. I have lost a stone. flowers

FrannyMB Sun 27-Jan-13 22:15:22

Hi Michael, loved your programme last year particularly from a health perspective (although losing a couple of pounds would be nice too).
I started last week but my question is this: I am a runner and I am training for a half marathon in May. I'm not too worried at the moment when my distances are low (2-3 miles) but not sure how fasting will work around longer runs (1 - 2 hrs). The advice is to eat sufficient protein and carbs after longer runs to repair muscle damage and refuel etc. Would you recommend moving to 6:1 as my mileages increase and until after the race when it will drop down again - or is there a better way?

Gordonsmummy Tue 05-Feb-13 18:09:33

Dear Dr Mosely,
I find it much easier to eat absolutely nothing on a fast day, although I do drink plenty of black coffee and water. I presume this is OK? I haven't had any ill effects so far.
Many thanks

Jack100 Fri 08-Feb-13 11:59:32

Help please, thinking of giving it up. Been on 5:2 for 2 weeks now but lost Nothing. Will give it another week but v fed up now! Any advice??

Aftereightsarenolongermine Fri 08-Feb-13 14:40:02

jack please come & join us on the main thread (no 12). Sorry I can't do links on my phone but you will get lots of support there. Also it takes a while for the weight loss to kick in. I've lost over 3 stone on this since August so it's definitely do able.

joanann Wed 13-Feb-13 12:05:38

I started dieting on 7th Jan 13 on Dukan I lost 6lbs then started weigh twatchers. I have done the fast diet for 3wseeks and others days watch my calories keeping to about 1200 but ia have not lost a pound and in fact put a pound on last week. Can you help? I am 5'3 and way 148lbs.
Joanann

angie51 Fri 22-Mar-13 13:20:49

Anyone else like me doing the IF and not losing weight? I have lost 3lbs in 6/7 weeks of doing this. I know there are health benefits as well and I have no intention of stopping but would like a bit of a weight loss. Any one any ideas?

uneamie Thu 28-Mar-13 15:24:17

I am not sure if I am allow to post links. I looked around and it seems like it's OK. Anyway. I just created a 5:2 Diet Web site, blog and message board. I invite anyone interested in this diet to stop by and help me get this community rolling. I love this diet....only one that has worked for me. Thanks all!

[http://www.fivetwofastdiet.com]

uneamie Thu 28-Mar-13 15:26:08

I am not sure if I am allow to post links. I looked around and it seems like it's OK. Anyway. I just created a 5:2 Diet Web site, blog and message board. I invite anyone interested in this diet to stop by and help me get this community rolling. I love this diet....only one that has worked for me. Thanks all!

www.fivetwofastdiet.com

phingers Fri 05-Apr-13 14:38:23

Hi all, there's also a great forum called Fasting Forward. It's been running since Feb this year and is becomming an active and useful community for those already succeeding with 5:2 or thinking about embarking on the 5:2 way of life (and other fasting methods). We'd love to hear your fasting stories which might help to inspire or motivate others, or come and find information or help if you're struggling, or post your recipies for others to try out.
We also have a facebook page

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