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The 5:2 thread number 35 - A new year’s resolution you’ll want to keep? Try 5:2 - it's not a diet, it's a lifestyle. Whether you want to shift fat, get healthy or discover some missing self control -

(1000 Posts)
BetsyBell Wed 08-Jan-14 17:11:23

The continuing thread for those of us following the 5:2 fast or other forms of fasting such as 4:3, ADF, or daily 16:8.

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 normally - or approximately your Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE - see explanation below). 4:3 is the same except you fast on 3 days in the week. Alternate-day fasting (ADF) is just how it sounds; you fast every other day. 16:8 is another form where you stick to only eating in an 8 hour window each day, therefore fasting for 16 hours each 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 or app 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 TDEE calculator to help you figure out how many calories you should be eating in a day.

NFD = Non fast day

NSV/LSV = Non scale victory/Lifestyle (change) victory

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

Lurkers and new starters: please just jump in and post - you'll find a lot of support here and we’re a friendly bunch.

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:

Other Threads
All our previous threads can be found by browsing through the fasting section of the site.

Tips and Links : Another thread which breadandwine has started is a good resource for some of the tips and links 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!

Inspirational: eatriskier’s thread has some lovely inspiring stories which are worth checking out if you want some motivation to get started or keep going through a plateau. Please add your own too.

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

Exercise: bigchocfrenzy has an incredibly informative and helpful exercise and fitness thread for discussion and advice on combining 5:2 with an exercise regime.

Maintaining: 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.

Other links
This is a BBC article regarding Michael Mosley's findings, which was featured on Horizon - link to that programme here.

This Telegraph article comments on the diet and gives a brief overview by Dr Mosley himself, very informative if you're just starting.

This blog post 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.

This link nicely demonstrates that there are many body ‘right’ body shapes and types, because what we are actually aiming for is low body fat for fitness and health.

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 article 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. (Though anecdotal evidence from these long-running threads may suggest otherwise…)

A BIG THANK YOU to all who have been contributing. 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.

A HUGE THANK YOU to Greeneggsandnicht for putting together all this info and resources into one concise OP text, much appreciated by so many 5:2ers!

Come join us, and tell us about your experiences with this way of life!

TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:21:15


5:2 is for life, not just till you get to "target weight" whatever that means

tee hee thread full

TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:20:39

Toning up will make your muscles denser so your clothes will fit better even if the scales do not budge

TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:20:06


TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:19:51

There is NO SUCH THING as a failed fast day - there is only a fast day deferred

TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:19:22

Eat mindfully : you will find yourself eating better

TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:19:03

Put down the chocolate and walk out of the kitchen, you can have it another day

TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:18:36

Before you have a biscuit from the tin at work, ask yourself how well all of your colleagues wash their hands wink

TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:18:04


TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:17:48

STAND UP WHILE TYPING - burns more calories

TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:17:29


TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:17:16


TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 20:17:07


BigChocFrenzy Tue 14-Jan-14 20:01:03



Nice new shiny THREAD 36 is HERE


BiscuitsAreMyDownfall Tue 14-Jan-14 20:00:01

Good idea regarding a bath Glue I have put the water on and about to run myself a lovely hot bubble bath. Thanks

lubeybooby Tue 14-Jan-14 19:54:37

Deux I've just had dinner on my first FD. 450 cals of chicken, broccoli and asparagus and I feel a bit high too! I go to bed quite late so I've left 50 cals leeway for something before bed if needed.

Managed a total fast time of 23 hours from 8pm yesterday. Really chuffed! I think this just might be possible (I have a lot of weight to shift)

TalkinPeace Tue 14-Jan-14 19:54:36

well done on discovering the mantra

Nobody, ever, ever needs to snack between meals.
Proof : simple
breakfast to lunch = 5 hours
lunch to supper = 5 hours
supper to middle of the night = 5 hours - and golly gosh, we don't struggle to not eat in the middle of the night


Intermittent fasting in all its forms is not a weight loss diet
it is a Way of Eating for the rest of your life
that happens to bring you down to a healthy weight

I regularaly get told
"ooh, but you are slim, you don't need to fast"
no you silly boot, I'm slim because I fast hmm

Gluezilla Tue 14-Jan-14 19:51:46

Thanks When

I felt so energised that I did way more housework than normal today and I don't feel bloated and stuffed like I usually do.
I think this will make me more mindful of what I eat on NFD

WhenSheWasBadSheWasExhausted Tue 14-Jan-14 19:47:55

Glue You are so right. Sleep-deprivation makes you hungrier and reduces self-control

Well that would explain a lot - bloody kids [smile. Although ds hasn't stopped feeding all day, that's got to be good for weight loss.

gluezilla love the name and well done on your fast day. It's a fast day for me too and I'm on 800, including a cup of tea later.

Gluezilla Tue 14-Jan-14 19:45:00

Thanks Toffee and everyone for your support smile

Deux Tue 14-Jan-14 19:42:51

Did/does anyone feel kind of spaced out on a FD after having something to eat?

I've just eaten, about 30 mins ago, a small tin of tuna drained of spring water and 50g of pickled onions chopped into it and I feel a little bit like I may have had some illegal substances. smile

Please tell me that someone else has felt like this or am i having some kind of weird metabolic reaction?

It's quite a pleasant feeling and i'm not freaked out or anything. I quite like it in fact. I suppose i feel a little bit 'high'.

farrowandballs Tue 14-Jan-14 19:41:51

Yep TDEE is 1803! No idea where I got 1400 from???

BigChocFrenzy Tue 14-Jan-14 19:40:16

Glue You are so right. Sleep-deprivation makes you hungrier and reduces self-control. Oops, sorry for those kept awake by fractious DCs !

All newbies: Don't worry if you go over the 500 cal FDs at first. You would still have a large calorie deficit. I spent 2 months struggling to do even 800 FDs. It suddenly clicked, then I could easily manage 500.

farrowandballs Tue 14-Jan-14 19:39:52

dotty and NAT yes I think youre right! Will look again.
gluezilla 524 is amazing for first FD. I only managed. 700 odd the first time - was easier the next 2 bit IM always slightly over. I am pretty sure a couple of calories here and there cant mean much. <hopeful>

ToffeeOwnsTheSausage Tue 14-Jan-14 19:38:57

Well done Gluezilla!!

ToffeeOwnsTheSausage Tue 14-Jan-14 19:37:44

I am cold. I am tired. I am tummy achey.

Does anyone find that on normal eat days they eat dinner and it sets off the munchies. I have 300 ish calories left but just want to eat. I fasted yesterday, have had 3 meals today but just want to eat.

I imagined eating some chocolate and it showed me it is comfort/hoping it would give me energy eating that I want to do.

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