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The 5:2 Thread number 20! Officially a score.

(972 Posts)
GreenEggsAndNichts Mon 20-May-13 08:27:06

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 a 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!

Miffytastic Mon 20-May-13 12:04:47

Monster - thanks. Did it make any difference to your weight loss do you think?

EstoyAqui welcome, you've done brilliantly :D

EagleRiderDirk Mon 20-May-13 12:04:54

estoy flowers fantastic weight loss and NSVs

Am still a bit weak from the tummy bug/food poisoning so definitely going to restart the squat challenge as I think I'll manage 50 today but not more. The cutest thing though, DD is joining in to motivate me (she's only 2 and I think she's already done more than me!!!!)

postmanpatscat Mon 20-May-13 12:29:42

Welcome and well done estoy

Does eating my breakfast in 2 instalments count as snacking? I couldn't eat my yogurt as I was nowhere near a spoon so I had it at morning break instead! I resisted the biscuits though but jaffa cakes would have been a different story

Dotty342kids Mon 20-May-13 12:39:16

Welcome Estoy sounds like you've done brilliantly! Reckon you can ditch those size 18 dresses for good smile

monster54 Mon 20-May-13 13:10:44

miffy not at the moment....I seem to have hit a bit of a plateau frustratingly....bouncing around the same 1.5lbs....

I'm doing 4:3 again this week to try and get it moving again...which will involve another consecutive fast as its unavoidable!!

Miffytastic Mon 20-May-13 13:44:27

Oh sorry to hear that Monster, plateaus (plateaux) are pants. I hope that my determination to one day be off this one will pay off and I will be sub 10 stone...

Whitecat Mon 20-May-13 13:50:36

Estoy welcome and well done. You've done a great job, written proof that 5:2 really works.

ceebeegeebies Mon 20-May-13 13:57:22

Estoy well done smile Have you done the basic 5:2? Have you been calorie counting on your non-fasting days? Am interested in what you have done to achieve such an amazing weight loss smile

Had a bit of an epiphany today - went to hellsoft play with DS2 and ordered a cheese salad pitta and a portion of curly fries which normally I would have wolfed down. I ate the cheese salad pitta and about half of the curly fries...and decided I wasn't hungry anymore and left the rest shock Unheard of before this WOE. I think I am finally learning to listen to my body ignores the fact that I troughed a 3-course meal yesterday afternoon

Heartburn is still a regular occurrence though, even if I haven't eaten a lot - it even occurs occasionally on fasting days hmm

awomanchanging Mon 20-May-13 14:17:28

miffy im on my first nfd, 3rd day with this wol. My first to days were fast days and honestly the second fast was veryyyy easy

virginposter Mon 20-May-13 14:19:53

Wow, Mimi looks great!

Miffytastic Mon 20-May-13 14:19:58

ooh thanks awomanchanging reckon I'm going to do it this week, get it out of the way. Just ordered some nice fasting food choices from ocado for tomorrow :D

Twinmama32 Mon 20-May-13 14:25:29

I'm also plateauing, have been 12st 8Ibs for about 3 weeks, I don't understand it as I've, for the last 2 weeks done 4:3 to mix it up but otherwise been doing as I would normally. Especially strange as I'm 5'7" so I've still got at least 1.5st to go so its not like I've only a small amount to lose! Very frustrating and quite disheartening....

Although on a positive note I had a NSV my trousers fell down the other day, bit of a shock, was at home thankfully, but I was thrilled! (Hopefully fell down coz of weight loss rather than bursting out of them blush

EstoyAqui Mon 20-May-13 14:35:26

Thankyou all for the comments.

ceebee I have been fasting on a Monday and Tuesday. I have not been limiting on my other days as I adore food and did not want to limit in any way what I could or could not have. On my fast days my pattern is 6pm Sunday I stop eating. I do not eat until 7pm Monday night. I normally keep my appetite down by drinking tea or water. At first this was hard but I am now used to this pattern. At 7pm I will eat with my DH. I try to prepare something light and healthy such as griddled pork loin with Greek salad or salmon with dill and herb rice. After dinner I do not eat again until 7pm Tuesday, again I will have a light healthy meal. On occasion I have eaten after my dinner on Tuesday but normally I am full from that so the next time I eat will be Wednesday morning and I am back to eating whatever I like.

I have even managed a 48hr fast as DH was away and I fell asleep with DD on our bed. I woke up and decided I still wasn't hungry and went back to sleep. I am suprised at this as I imagined I would have been ravenous but I genuinely wasn't! Its weird as so many aspects of what I believed about eating and dieting are being put under scrutiny. I am realising that this is a WOL and not a fad.

I have found that as time has gone on I do not even think about being on a fast on those days. Initially I did find it hard but I don't even notice now. (except TOM when I am conscious of wanting junk more) On my no fast days I eat what I like. Initially I wanted to eat all the off limits stuff but again as time has gone on this has lessened. I took my DCs to McDonalds the other day and I couldn't even finish a happy meal as I could feel it slowing down my body. I am finding on fast days I crave certain foods but when it comes to breaking the fast I realise that I do not actually want to eat them.

Aside from the weight loss here are the other benefits I have noticed: Flatter tummy overall. I still have the wobbly bit but I am generally not as bloated. I find it easier to fall asleep and stay asleep. I suffer from back issues and since losing weight I have not had my back 'go' at all. I can now do up a belt that I was wearing when I met DH. I feel less sluggish.

INeedThatForkOff Mon 20-May-13 15:13:00

Struggling with boredom and hunger on my FD today. Feeling a bit unwell so don't feel much like dragging the kids out for a walk either. Roll on 6 o clock when I can have tea!

erikab922 Mon 20-May-13 15:27:40

Hi everyone - do you fast when you're sick? Last week I picked up a really bad viral chest/sinus infection (which coincided with my first fast week) and I stuck to my two fast days. But this infection is kicking my backside, it's 4pm and I haven't eaten yet today and I just want to stuff my face with spicy food and go to bed. What do you guys do?

Itsaboatjack Mon 20-May-13 15:34:25

I'm feeling hungry today. Nothing I know I can't get through though.

I'm on board with the no snacking, at least during the week anyway. I managed it all of last week so trying to keep it up and turn it into a habit. I actually read about a study a while ago that had two groups of people eating the same amount of calories throughout the day, but one group were strictly on 3 meals a day and the others had snacks. Those that didn't snack lost the most weight. Hope that makes sense, I'm on my phone so typing difficult.

Itsaboatjack Mon 20-May-13 15:37:11

erica if ill I'll try and listen to my body, and if I do eat I try to make it nutritious rather than comfort.

But the important word there is try. Sometimes comfort food is all that will do. smile

Hope you feel better soon.

EagleRiderDirk Mon 20-May-13 15:44:36

erika I fasted as usual on my last fast day when I was ill but only because it was tummy related and the thought of food really didn't appeal. If it was any other illness and I was craving a bit of comfort food I'd give into it, and save fasting till I was better. Hope you feel well soon

swallowedAfly Mon 20-May-13 15:50:29

also struggling a bit. having a marmite drink already in the hope the saltiness hits the spot.

really must make this fast happen or i may never get back on board!

that mimi article was a bit dodgy - it's such a fine line between being honest about the reality we face with our feelings about our bodies and... endorsing the notion that thin means control and happiness. i don't know what i'm trying to say but that article was right on the line between honest and true to women's experience and reinforcing the idea that all a woman is is her looks.

Farewelltoarms Mon 20-May-13 15:57:17

I found the article a bit dodgy since she seems to be rather moving bench posts as opposed to her own weight loss - in book she says she started at 9.7. In that article she says she has had much bigger loss from 10.4. I only notice the numbers so much because she's the same height as me and that first 'fat' weight is one I've only ever been once in my adult life! I know she's trying to sell her book and good luck to her, but she is promoting a notion of thin that is very thin and, as you say SAF, very tied to self-worth. It's one thing for an unhealthy weight to impinge on your self-esteem, another to want to have a BMI of 18...

ELR Mon 20-May-13 16:00:31

Just checking in! Had a large glass of water and just made the kids homemade waffles which they are now scoffing with natural yogurt, maple syrup and blueberries..... Aaah the smell.
To be honest it's not too bad as fasting today. It's the nfd I have a problem with!

EagleRiderDirk Mon 20-May-13 16:03:51

saf Didn't you request a kick in the butt to help? You can do this, you know you can.

I agree on the Mimi article too. I can't quite say it either, it just didn't sit easy with me.

BetsyBell Mon 20-May-13 16:08:32

ELR I'm here too! No need as I'm on a fast day... tomorrow will be the real challenge. Kettle is on and a hot drink very much needed.

swallowedAfly Mon 20-May-13 16:14:54

so if she really was 9.7 at the start and has lost 21lbs that puts her at 8st which is below healthy bmi for 5.7 if i remember correctly (same height as me too). i'm guessing the 10.4 has been invented to hide the fact she is basically touting annorexic proportions of thiness.

thanks for the kick eagle.

swallowedAfly Mon 20-May-13 16:18:24

and tbh i do not believe that someone already that slim would lose 21lbs in 12weeks just by doing 5:2. does anyone find that credible?

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