Advanced search

The 5:2 Thread number 46: Wild about Satan's Whizz (Diet Coke) ? Lazy Low Carbers, Pissed-off Piscatorians, Voracious Vegans, Ferocious Flexitarians,....... IF/5:2 can help you lose weight healthily.

(1000 Posts)
BigChocFrenzy Sat 21-Jun-14 15:02:51

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

The 5:2 diet was featured on BBC 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 similar, except you fast on 3 days in the week.
ADF (Alternate-day fasting) 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 fast 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.

FD = Fast 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 : breadandwine’s 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 ExerciseThread2 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 l^ow 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 4cm 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%).")

If you’ve been researching IF you may have come across this article which is highly negative about women with BMI in the normal range. Here’s our response to that:

- With a healthy BMI, those who want to be leaner will usually find weight and waist loss to be much slower than for overweight folk, since less fat and inches are available to lose.

- The women with healthy BMI already had healthier blood sugar than the men in the study. Hence nothing really needed improving.

- Women exercisers who reported health problems on IF were NOT doing 5:2, but the
much tougher ADF or 16:8, combined with heavy lifting (often multiples of body weight)
were often starting from already ultra-low BF 12-16% range.^
-Many were already missing periods or had EDs before IF, due to the low BF %, over-training and over-stressing.

5:2 is a gentler form of IF than ADF or Leangains and there’s plenty of anecdotal evidence from longterm 5:2ers, now with healthy BMI, who are continuing to have very positive results and experiences on this WOE.

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!

And lastly, a few FAQs/Healthy tips :

- WATER: Start each day with a pint of water; and drink plenty during the day.
- HOT DRINKS: No limits on tea or coffee any day, just count any milk / sugar calories on FDs.
- FDs: Concentrate on protein & veg; avoid / reduce starchy carbs & sugar, including juice. Soups & stews are good; ready meals are fine. Old hands skip breakfast & save most cals for supper.
- NFDs: No rules, but to improve health, try to cut down on added sugar, artificial sweeteners, fizzy drinks, junk food. A few treats per week are good though! Aim to average TDEE over NFDs each week, but you may under-eat by say 20% on 3 NFDs to save calories for weekend.
- CLENCH for health: Men & women should exercise pelvic floor daily.
- BFers: start with 1000-cal FDs; optionally, reduce to 700 cals gradually. You can return to 1000 if growth spurts or sleep-deprivation require more fuel.
- SLEEP: Everybody needs enough sleep, or it may slow weight loss.
- EXERCISE: is healthy & can help weight loss if you do NOT eat back exercise calories. Fasted training can burn more fat. HIIT works well with 5:2/IF.
- Do NOT fast: if pregnant, under 21, over-stressed, have EDs, severe anxiety, any illness, even a bad cold. When ill, your body usually needs more nutrients and less stress. So don't force yourself to eat, but if hungry then eat nutritious food to TDEE & cut out junk, added sugar, fizzy drinks.
- CHECK with your Doctor: if you have diabetes, any other endocrine condition, or if taking ANY prescribed medication (fasting may affect absorption rate)

BigChocFrenzy Sat 21-Jun-14 15:03:17


Welcome to our NEWEST 5:2 thread

Please fill up the OLDThread first


Eatriskier Sat 21-Jun-14 19:55:07

flowers bigchoc

SunshineofRay Sat 21-Jun-14 22:24:26

Marking place. Thanks bigchoc thanks

BetsyBell Sat 21-Jun-14 22:25:11

Thank you BCF smile

ELR Sat 21-Jun-14 23:00:44

Thanks bcf

Baloostika Sun 22-Jun-14 14:10:16

Marking my place here. Happy Sunday! smile

Dotty342kids Sun 22-Jun-14 17:20:00

Marking my place. "See" you all tomorrow for FD Monday grin

PrimalLass Sun 22-Jun-14 17:25:58

I have missed at least four threads so marking place to make sure I am in this one smile

PhoneSexWithMalcolmTucker Sun 22-Jun-14 21:02:51

Delurks. Again.

I started doing this in January and had two weeks of surprisingly easy 5:2ing; then I got a job interview after three years of SAHMing, then I got the job...and now I'm the biggest I've ever been hmm So here I am again!

Monday and Wednesday were good FDs for me before, but I am planning to go to an exercise class tomorrow night and can't decide whether it's better to leap into fasting and exercise all at once or save the FD for Tuesday. Any thoughts? I am pretty unfit My instinct says fast tomorrow and just go for it, as I am likely to be hungrier the day after an exercise class so first FD would be pretty miserable.

For the record, I am 5'3", currently 11st ffs, horrible flab ring around belly, feel creaky and tired. I am 39. I want to live! grin

almostthereagain Sun 22-Jun-14 21:07:17

Thanks bc & have (another) lovely holiday.
Yes go for it phonesex

PrimalLass Sun 22-Jun-14 21:20:29

Phonesex - I am 5'5", started at 12st4 and am now 11st2, and 40! 5:2 is the best diet ever. I hope to hit 11st this week.

BigChocFrenzy Sun 22-Jun-14 21:22:39

Welcome, Phone
Since you say you are unfit, I suggest you get used to fasting and exercise separately before combining them.

So, work hard at your new exercise class Monday evening, then have FDs on Tuesday and say Friday - the latter might help limit any weekend over-indulgence.

If you can, try to exercise 3 x weekly, to build up your fitness and reduce some health risk factors.

PhoneSexWithMalcolmTucker Sun 22-Jun-14 21:30:08

Thanks for the welcome and encouragementsmile BigChoc I rate your advice as I know you are an exercise guru on these threads. The other complicating factor is that I have to go to a funeral on Friday, which means driving 200 miles on Thursday night and then another 150 the next morning, followed by 150 back same day and 200 the next morning...I might just make a snap decision tomorrow as to which FDs.

Coveredinweetabix Sun 22-Jun-14 22:25:20

I'm coming back to these threads as need to get back on the straight & narrow. My weight has been varying between 10st 8 and 10st 10 for ages now so I know what I need to do to maintain but ideally want to lose another stone and definitely at least 6lbs as that will finally get me down to a healthy BMI. I think what is stopping me from properly losing at the moment is discipline over not picking off the DC's plates & similar, having had a few nights out so drinking and not having found anything to replace the Zumba class I used to go to & which finished at Easter. The exercise thing is partly logistics as nothing else local starts after 7.30 which is just too early as, on the days I work, I'm not home until after that &, on the days I'm at home, DP isn't home before that, partly due to going out & partly due to wanting to spend the evenings gardening.
I've just done a check on my TDEE. I put it down as sedentary as three days a week I am desk bound & don't do any formal exercise but on the other four days I am at home with two pre-schoolers so am not exactly sat down all day! Does this mean I am "lightly active"? Which gains me another 250 calories? I can't see me sticking at 1560 cals for the rest of my life but 1820 is crucially different!
Phone I am always hungrier after I exercise. Therefore, my strategy was to fast on a Zumba day, do the class (8pm - 9pm), home, 30 mins tidying up, shower, bed & then demolish a large breakfast the following morning.

dollybean84 Sun 22-Jun-14 23:12:43

Hi everyone I'm a newbie but lurker for a long time! Just wanted to jump in a say thanks for all the help and advice and to share my journey so far. I've been doing 5:2 for 10 weeks and lost almost a stone and a half which I am delighted with! I've been a serial yo yo dieter all my life and maintaining a healthy weight has always been a struggle for me. I was in a very dark place at the start of the year having reached my heaviest weight ever, I'd completely given up on myself and resided myself to the fact that my children were my priority and my appearance didn't matter. I decided to just go for it after reading some of the inspirational stories on here and it has quickly become part of my everyday life. No going back smile

Gumblossom Sun 22-Jun-14 23:48:58

Jumping back in. I have completely fallen off the wagonand have gained weight. Not happy! It was a series of events that conspired against me but now there are no more excuses.

I seem to have early morning insomnia - waking at 4 am and not going back to sleep. Then I feel tired all day and give up fasting before lunchtime sad .

So I have just had a hot water and lemon to start the day. I am in a meeting all morning but I will take water and keep hydrated.

Can't wait to feel the fasting fabulousness that I used tofeel.

Shingler Mon 23-Jun-14 04:24:24

Hi there

I am doing my first ever FD. I live in Australia and I think it's only taken 2 years for Michael mosleys programme to air here. I got the book on Friday have spent the weekend reading it and I felt ready to start today. I had a fresh fruit salad at 7am and am aiming for grilled salmon and rocket and spinach salad at 7pm. I'm drink water and keeping busy. :grin

BigChocFrenzy Mon 23-Jun-14 05:45:18

Welcome Shingler, Dolly
Well done on your success, Dolly Be proud of yourself

Welcome back Gum You'll get back in the swing and relearn when to eat.
Whatever time you wake up, just stick to your water and lemon until lunch.

Everybody: the rest of us are still on the OLD Thread45

You'll have quicker response posting there.
Don't worry, I remind everyone there before the old threads close

nims1981 Mon 23-Jun-14 06:45:23

Hi everyone, I'm having trouble keeping up! I completely blew my week on Friday by eating everything I could find. I went back and logged it and was up to over 3000 cals. I have been keeping up the exercise but feeling pretty rubbish after blowing out both my fasts last week. I have decided to try giving up logging on map on NFD's as I think that might be what's causing me to binge.
I'm back to fasting today so good luck all Monday fasters and congratulations on all V 's, wish I had some to report

Dotty342kids Mon 23-Jun-14 09:03:41

phonesex you're almost exactly the same height and weight as me smile. I was a regular 5:2er last year and got down from 11st 8lbs to 10st 4lbs. But fell off the wagon after Christmas and have crept back up to 11st. Came back on here for moral support and encouragement last week and am feeling nicely motivated again. Let's crack this together eh? grin
dollybean congrats on your losses so far, that's brilliant - I love posts like yours smile

PhoneSexWithMalcolmTucker Mon 23-Jun-14 09:27:39

<high fives Dotty>

dollybean brilliant inspiration there, well done you smile

BigChocFrenzy Mon 23-Jun-14 11:51:33

Nims Some folk find they are less stressed when they stop mfp ..... because they no longer see how much they are over-eating.
It normally doesn't actually cause over-eating.
Also, it is better to mfp before eating rather than after the fact.

Anyway, if you do drop mfp, then first weigh and measure your waist. Compare measurement after 2 weeks, to check they are moving in the right direction.
Obv if your clothes start getting tighter, rethink.

dollybean84 Mon 23-Jun-14 12:58:48

I love the cleansing ritual of a Monday FD smile thanks for the well wishes! I've been a dedicated elasticated jeans wearer for the last 2 years but I had a clothing cull over the weekend and am pleased to say those sexy bad boys are gone for good- this is forever after all!smile The main issue I've had is controlling my overeating on NFDs- there's been a fair few cake scoffing rampages over the weeks :/ I think the reason I've lost as much weight as I have is due to it being relatively early days and I want to sort this out before I hit a plateau and fasting becomes counterproductive. I keep reminding myself all my hard work will be for nothing if I have a blowout every NFD! Well done on your losses everyone smile it was reading these threads that finally got me motivated!

PrimalLass Mon 23-Jun-14 13:00:10

I just had to do a 2-minute business pitch and am high as a kite because of fasting and too much coffee. At least I looked way more enthusiastic than usual grin

This thread is not accepting new messages.