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The 5:2 Diet Thread number 18! Breaking out the summer wardrobe?

(999 Posts)
GreenEggsAndNichts Mon 22-Apr-13 10:51:27

The continuing thread for those of us following either the 5:2 diet or the alternate-day fasting diet.

The 5:2 diet was featured on Horizon in August 2012, and essentially requires you to fast for 2 non-consecutive days per week. The other 5 days, you can eat what you like, or approximately your TDEE (see explanation below). Alternate-day fasting is just how it sounds; you fast every other day. By "fasting", we mean that we keep our calorie consumption very low, around 500 calories on average for a woman, 600 for a man, on those days.

You'll find on these threads we use a number of acronyms. If you're new to the threads, or Mumsnet in general, they might not make much sense.

WOE/WOL = Way Of Eating/Way Of Life. We use this term instead of "diet" as many of us see this as something to do in the long term.

MFP = My Fitness Pal, a website many use for keeping track of the number of calories they're eating.

TDEE = Total Daily Energy Expenditure, quantifies the number of calories you burn in a day. This measure is best estimated by scaling your Basal Metabolic Rate to your level of activity. TDEE is critical in tailoring your nutrition plan to desired fitness goals. Here is a link to a calculator to help you figure out how many calories you should be eating in a day.

ADF = Alternate-day Fasting, as it says on the tin, fasting every other day rather than 5:2.

Michael Mosley has recently unveiled a new website to accompany his new book on the subject. Please go check them out, as he's the whole reason most of us are here!

I know a number of people lurk on this thread, as this is currently quite popular. Please just jump in and post if you're new- you'll find a lot of support here.

Here is a list of links to get you started with this way of eating. Please let us know if you find a new article or some other information online:

First things first, here are links to some of our previous threads: most recent one before that another one!

Another thread which breadandwine has started is a good resource for some of the links and tips that get lost in these big threads. In addition to sharing links, we try to condense some of our top tips for fasting there. Keep in mind, we all do this differently, so these are just tips, not rules. This might be a good place to catch up with us if you're feeling a bit lost!

frenchfancy has a recipe thread over here, please post any low-calorie recipes there so they don't get lost in these bigger threads!

If you've been at this a while and are moving on to maintaining your goal weight, there is a thread here to discuss that.

Here is the link to the BBC article regarding Michael Mosley's findings, which was featured on Horizon.

There's a link to the aforementioned Horizon programme here.

A blog post here gives some of the scientific explanation for why this way of eating helps you to not only lose weight, but improve your all-around health.

A Telegraph article which comments on the diet and gives a brief overview by Dr Mosley himself, very informative if you're just starting. (I highly recommend this for an overview)

A study discussed here gives commentary specifically addressing the effect of this diet on obese people (both men and women), with regard to both health and weight loss. ("After 8 weeks of treatment, participants had an average 12.5 lbs reduction in body weight and a 4 cm decrease in waist circumference. Total fat mass declined by about 12 lbs while lean body mass remained relatively constant.) it also mentions "Plasma adiponectin, a protein hormone that is elevated in obesity and associated with heart disease, dropped by 30%. As did LDL cholesterol (25%) and triglycerides (32%).")

Something to consider if you are currently your ideal BMI: this appears to suggest the benefits for women at a lower BMI might not be seeing the same health benefits that are found on men at their ideal BMI.

A BIG THANK YOU to all who have been contributing, btw. Most of us are learning this way of eating as we go along. All of the links above have been posted by others in our previous threads, and they've been very helpful. Sorry if I haven't given credit where it's due, but it was just enough of a job getting all the links re-copied and back into one post.

Come join us, and tell us about your experiences with this diet!

GoodtoBetter Wed 08-May-13 11:05:40

2nd fast day. Feeling knackered, bad tempered and have a headache. don't think it's related to fasting though...just one of those days. Could kill for a bacon butty and a cup of tea though.......sad

postmanpatscat Wed 08-May-13 12:17:52

GoodtoBetter my mantra for today's fast is "Hunger is doing me good and it's what got me to my goal weight" ! Hope you're soon over the 'hump'!

systemsaddict Wed 08-May-13 12:20:00

Quick update. A couple of months in now and I have lost half a stone, effortlessly, while attending parties and conferences on my non-fast days so haven't felt restricted at all. I am now consistently below 30 BMI and below 190 pounds which was my first big goal, and losing about 2/3 of a pound a week - slow but completely consistent!

I have also had the weird side effect that I am feeling driven to declutter the house at the same time as decluttering me, it feels like there is some kind of general cleansing process going on .... I am catching up on things which have been lurking for literally years waiting to be sorted out, which I really didn't expect!

GoodtoBetter Wed 08-May-13 12:27:12

Yes, I'm trying to visualise hunger pains as my body burning fat!

systemsaddict Wed 08-May-13 12:33:04

GoodtoBetter I think my second fast day was one of the hardest; the first one had novelty value and by the third or fourth I was starting to get used to it, it definitely gets easier over time. Good luck getting through today!

Dotty342kids Wed 08-May-13 12:53:58

Well done systemsaddict, that's good to hear. I'm another "slow but steady" loser with a total of 9-10lbs lost since mid Feb. I feel so good on it though! Can't say as it's causing me to declutter my house smile but I am feeling positive, healthy, energetic and able to enjoy my eating days freely. My next goal - having just about snuck under 11st, is to get to 10+a single digit. Feels like a long way off but I'm in no rush. Clothes are fitting me nicely now and if I get down to that I'll definitely have to buy some new ones so need time to save up!

DesperateDietingHousewife Wed 08-May-13 13:14:56

Quick post while mother-in-law has popped out!

Dropped a pound overnight even though I had an eating day (with cake and biscuits) yesterday-what's that about??hmm-not complaining though!

Fasting today as MIL has heard about the diet and was surprisingly complimentarysmile.

Have a good day everyone.

GreenEggsAndNichts Wed 08-May-13 13:19:15

We're approaching the end of this thread, so I've started a new one here.

This thread will close soon, please bookmark the new thread. If you have new questions, it's best to start them there rather than lose them at the end of this one

See you on the new thread, folks. smile

ponygirlcurtis Wed 08-May-13 13:26:06

Hello all, I had my second fast day yesterday, did ok, and this morning I haven't been hungry at all until nowish, so have just had water (and that's my full 16hrs fasting). Wednesdays are normally a difficult day because of working/running about/seeing my STBXH/generally getting to the end of the day, collapsing and feeling the need to buoy myself up with food and wine. And although today is not a fast day, I want to get away from emotional eating. So I've planned a dinner of oven-baked chicken, roasted veg and cous cous, nice and simple but tasty. Might have a wee choccie treat afterwards, as long as it's wee.

Chocupid, sorry to hear about your situation. I left my husband nearly a year ago, and all I've done is eat eat eat (hence being here now). Really well done for sticking with it through such a difficult time.

Hope everyone is having a good day.

INeedThatForkOff Wed 08-May-13 13:27:01

Thanks for that, I'll read up and think about joining you soon then smile

Miffytastic Wed 08-May-13 13:45:45


Just my opinion, but becuase you're breastfeeding I'd say make yourself drink at least 4 pints a day, maybe just set a reminder on your phone or something, or make a jug up and drink your way through that.

MeNeedShoes Wed 08-May-13 14:44:27

Thanks Miffy. I just don't want to drink which is bonkers.

GreenEggsAndNichts Wed 08-May-13 14:48:40

Good idea to make up a pitcher or something and have it around to remind you that you need to drink at least that much for the day. It's so easy to forget when you're BFing!

systemsaddict Wed 08-May-13 15:17:05

MeNeedShoes I find I can struggle to drink on fast days too, and then can end up headachey or spaced out by the evening, I think it's worse as a lot of our liquid comes from foods normally. I try and deliberately have 'wet' foods to try and make up for it when I can, so I will usually have soup for my first fast day meal, then maybe a bit of yoghurt with my dinner. I drink a lot of coffee too - not wonderfully hydrating but better than nothing!

wonderingagain Wed 08-May-13 20:02:43

It's a NFD for me today and I don't feel I want pudding. Tried to eat a biscuit earlier but didn't feel like it.

Choco sorry to hear about your husband. I hope losing the weight has been a bit of compensation for it and makes you feel a bit better about yourself.

I hope I get this de-cluttering bug that's going round. Could so do with it.

ceebeegeebies Wed 08-May-13 20:48:24

Quick I the only one who is still gluttonous on their NFDs? You all keep posting about howyou aren't eating much/not hungry and I haven't noticed a difference. I can still be a piggy pig on my NFDs blush

Chocupid Wed 08-May-13 21:02:08

Thanks wondering and pony its giving me something to focus on tbh. And as dotty says helps keep me motivated knowing he will see me and think shit what have I done, where as I will be thinking of all the excess baggage I've dumped as well as the weight. X

Anja1Cam Wed 08-May-13 22:11:18

ceebeegeebies yes - me. I really have to make a conscious effort to rein in my snacking blush. Hence no major progress in the last couple of weeks. At least I'm not gaining....

Off to new thread now....

swallowedAfly Thu 09-May-13 07:01:10

morning all. i've only skim read i'm afraid as yesterday was my busy day.

bizarrely i am 10.11.4 today - i weighed myself three times - first two said 10.11 bang on but i couldn't believe it so i've gone with the third. yesterday wasn't a fast day but i didn't eat all day at all due to being busy then didn't go too mad later on. i'm confused but happy. maybe it's just getting my period that has finally released me back to my lowest.

haven't done a fast at all yet this week between bh mon, tues feeling weird and wednesdays being off limits. so today better be the day.

don't like the sound of that virus. yesterday i felt really grouchy and not myself and had lots of aches. must be more cheery today as it looks like the sun is making an effort smile

good luck fellow fasters.

postmanpatscat Thu 09-May-13 08:16:55

saf we've moved...see you on #19!

Well done on 10.11 anyway!

GoodtoBetter Thu 09-May-13 12:34:51

Feast day today <mwahahaha!>. grin

wonderingagain Fri 10-May-13 10:13:02

Choco Absolutely! You go girl! Dump that baggage! grin

dines Sun 12-May-13 17:54:44

Hello everyone fast day for me tomoro did have one last week so iv put on about 4 pounds sad really need to get bk into the swing of it.. feel really stodgy and bloaded. Has anyone had a week off fast before and was it easy to get bk on track?

chasingtail Tue 28-May-13 07:40:50

Hi everyone - back on the Fast Diet after a 2 month break (where I seem to have put on all the weight I lost, if not more sad.

Well we are are due to leave for a last minute break on sunnier shores in 3 weeks (shhh, don't tell the school!) and am hoping that I can lose a reasonable amount of weight if I stick rigidly to the plan.

does anyone have any suggestions/tips for quick weight loss on this plan? Would 4:3 help kick start things? Am only looking at about 8 pounds, so hoping this would be achievable, combined with some proper exercise? Cannot bear the thought of shoe horning my way into my cozzie the way I am at the mo pigs wrestling in a sack spring to mind! shock.

realise 3 weeks is a really short time frame but would be great if i could at least shift some weight.

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