Today was the start of week 4 for me on the 5:2 diet. If you haven’t heard of this yet, the 5:2 diet is more of a lifestyle designed around intermittent fasting. My first introduction to this was watching the BBC documentary ‘Eat, fast, and live longer’ by Michael Mosley. I was captivated and the research was all so convincing, I decided I had to try. The method behind this type of intermittent fasting involves restricting your calories on two non-consecutive days each week, and preferably including a long fasting period on each of these days. The ideal seems to be eating about 500 calories (for females, 600 for men), on your fast days and splitting these between breakfast and dinner.
“You should not only lose weight but also enjoy a wide range of health benefits. Studies of intermittent fasting show that not only do people see improvements in blood pressure and their cholesterol levels, but also in their insulin sensitivity.” http://thefastdiet.co.uk/why-fast/
Fast forward several months and I had finished breastfeeding and was free to start giving it a shot. I really struggled the first few times I tried fasting. I chose Mondays and Thursdays as I was at work, so easier to avoid snacking, and goes hand in hand with a bit of a lazy streak – no need to prepare lunches! The turning point for me was reading The Fast Diet, written by Michael Mosley and Mimi Spencer. If you’re at all inclined to give this lifestyle a go, I highly recommend reading the book. While the documentary sucks you in and gets you excited, the book describes how it works, what it will feel like, and gives you plenty of strategies for coping with the hunger waves.
Right now I’m proud to say I’m well and truly on track. I can almost relate to the comments of other ‘fasters’ who say they actually look forward to the fast days and the sensation of hunger. I’m about 1kg down, and have a few to go. But I can absolutely imagine embracing this as a lifelong lifestyle change, not just a diet or another fad.
Keep following and I’ll keep the updates a-coming!