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

166 replies

RachelMumsnet · 21/01/2013 13:10

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

OP posts:
DameFanny · 21/01/2013 14:05


Fishandjam · 21/01/2013 14:05

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

orangina · 21/01/2013 14:10

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 · 21/01/2013 14:13

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

Abitstressed · 21/01/2013 14:21

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 · 21/01/2013 14:31

Is this diet suitable if you are breast feeding?

tubsywubsy · 21/01/2013 14:39

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 · 21/01/2013 14:43

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 · 21/01/2013 14:50

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 · 21/01/2013 14:57

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 · 21/01/2013 15:51

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?

ohmeohmy · 21/01/2013 15:56

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

ohmeohmy · 21/01/2013 15:56

Ooh? Book!

anothertiredmum · 21/01/2013 15:57

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):

Laska42 · 21/01/2013 16:30

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 · 21/01/2013 16:33

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 · 21/01/2013 16:46

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 · 21/01/2013 17:01

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 · 21/01/2013 17:14

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 · 21/01/2013 17:40

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 · 21/01/2013 18:11

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 · 21/01/2013 19:01

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)


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WeShouldOpenABar · 21/01/2013 19:10

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 · 21/01/2013 19:13

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.

missmakesstuff · 21/01/2013 19:55

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.

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