The 5:2 Thread Number 23: Summer's really here - time to melt off those extra pounds!

(1000 Posts)
BetsyBell Mon 08-Jul-13 22:49:12

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.

NFD = Non fast day

NSV = Non scale victory

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:

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

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!

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. 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 diet!

Itsaboatjack Tue 09-Jul-13 08:56:43

Eagle not so I've noticed yet but I shall be mindful of that for WI day tomorrow.

saf hope you're having a great holiday. And yes we seem to finally be having a summer here, hope it lasts.

Itsaboatjack Tue 09-Jul-13 08:57:49

Dotty I'm fasting with you today smile

akarucker Tue 09-Jul-13 09:25:32

Started off my nfd this morning with a giant bowl of granola. Bad idea - it's started off a day of sugar craving. Silly! (It was scrummy though - Waitrose)

BetsyBell Tue 09-Jul-13 09:39:17

I am happy to say eagle that I have NOT noticed any upturn in the scales recently grin, in fact appear to have maintained my low weight despite lots of merry eating and wine over the weekend.

I wasn't going to weigh in until Friday as I was assuming one fast wouldn't be enough to shift the excesses. I was wrong grin grin

NFD here, just thinking about what I fancy eating - coffee first though!

Breadandwine Tue 09-Jul-13 09:43:54

Also can anyone recommend some decent but not expensive scales?

Cat98 there are some scales recommended on the Tips and Links thread. Not sure about the price though!

Thanks for teh new thread Betsy!

I used Weighwatchers scales - from memory they were about £25 from Tesco. They give weight, bmi, body fat and all that malarkey.

Fast day was yesterday - first in a while. I felt a bit off colour during the afternoon - wont go into details but had to go buy some diocalm. I wasnt really hungry but I did have some dry toast, so my calories for the day will probably be a bit over 500, but not by much. Plus my weight will be off if my body's trying to sort itself out.

Greek yoghurt wiuth strawberries this morning, feeling a bit perkier.

cat I use these
www.amazon.co.uk/Salter-Ultimate-Accuracy-Electronic-Scale/dp/B005YSYL8A

I had a slight upturn (1lb) on the scales but there's a TMI reason and also a lot of exercise yesterday so my guess is that it's more to do with those reasons than the heat. Just found it interesting that some people are noticing large hikes for no logical reason. Got to be a fluid retention issue I think.

melanie hope you feel better soon

MissUnicorn Tue 09-Jul-13 10:16:58

Morning all!

I'll be fasting with you today Dotty & itsaboat.
No snacks or meals split up. I'll be having a prawn stirfry this evening.

Dotty342kids Tue 09-Jul-13 10:25:12

Ah glad to hear I have some company itsaboat and missunicorn. Hope your days go well!

morning all, bit glum after the scales only showed a 1 pound loss in 1 week, but maybe the heat/fluid retention is at play, or maybe it is just my body only loses 1 pound a week on 5:2, if I want to lose more I need to do more fasts or eat less the rest, anyway, I am determined not to be downhearted, it's just teh scales, and we all know how they can fluctuate, so i'm off for a lovely swim at the lido in this hot heat, trying to avoid eating as long as possible, it's a NFD, but a coffee with a dash of cream is my treat so far and maybe some baking later!

thanks to betsy for new thread, have a good day all x

Itsaboatjack Tue 09-Jul-13 10:39:33

Mmm missunicorn a prawn stirfry sounds good, I was wandering what I was going to have tonight

icecreamcrackers Tue 09-Jul-13 10:48:36

Hi everyone I started 5:2 on thursday. Can I ask when does every wiegh themselves is it after the second fast day or should it be the thursday morning.

Weighed myself this morning after second fast day and so far for the first week have lost 6.7 lbs according to mfp, im aware I will probably put some back on though.

TonytheFish Tue 09-Jul-13 11:28:05

I weigh every day. But, I chart with Libra.....which tbh, if you are like me and do feel the need to weigh everyday, is a must. It just smooths out the ups and downs you can get, esp on this WOE. I can fluctuate anywhere up to 4lbs up and down on different days.

So, I use libra, and it gives me a trend line, so it basically smooths out those fluctuations, and I get to see my lovely red trend line moving downwards.

However, on MFP....I chart in that weekly, and put in the Monday Morning weight, whatever it is, as I do not fast on weekends, so in my head, I "trust" the weight more, even following 2 feast days.

Like today, I am down to 15 stone 5....however, I fasted yesterday, so am fully aware tomorrow, it will go back up to maybe 5 stone 7/8 and that is fine, I know I am heading downwards and can see my trend going down.

Dotty342kids Tue 09-Jul-13 11:40:27

I weight every day too, just out of interest and I don't find the fluctuations a worry. I just "count" the weigh in that I do after my second fast day of the week. So, fast Mon and Thurs usually and only really take note of the Friday morning verdict from the scales smile

somewherebecomingrain Tue 09-Jul-13 11:52:38

Hiya marking my place.

Am off the wagon. Appetite all over the place - very hungry in morning, not at all in the evening. Makes it hard to start a fast day or even a 16:8. Yet hunger fades after 5pm snack so have v small dinner or nothing.

Am also not snacking (tm tip) apart from my 5pm snack which is obv my natural dinner time . Not because I'm trying - just don't need to.

This WOE has kinda reset my metabolism, habits and hunger - v interesting.

Have maintained at 11.12 and just going to watch the scales and see where they go and do an FD when it feels right.

AphraBehn Tue 09-Jul-13 12:05:40

Can I ask a question about 16:8? Do I need to exclude fluids in the 16 hour period (including cups of tea)? I thought I might be able to manage it today but have already had tea.

Itsaboatjack Tue 09-Jul-13 12:15:20

Alphra I don't exclude fluids, I still have my cup of tea in the morning. I wouldn't go so far as to have a latte but I don't think a splash of milk hurts.

AphraBehn Tue 09-Jul-13 12:17:05

Thank you. Think I'll be able to do it then.

Southeastdweller Tue 09-Jul-13 12:57:04

I sympathise Dotty. How’re you holding up? I was also up extra early and couldn’t get back to sleep. At work now grumping all over the place and my legs are feeling achey. I don’t usually struggle on FD’s but it’s one hell of a chore when you’ve had little sleep and I feel like a Pret egg may sarnie and their chocolate rice cakes would sort me out…but will have soup only. Will run errands after work then go to the gym. Afternoon off tomorrow to look forward to plus nice food which reminds me to take out the cheesecake from the freezer tonight smile

mttum Tue 09-Jul-13 13:53:07

Hi everyone, haven't posted for a while, as a) not much to report due to deciding not to weigh self during July, and b) super-busy time with DD attending concert at Alton Towers, piano exam, transition to high school days etc. Glad to get back to work for a rest!

I have been lurking when I get the chance, though, and still finding all the activity and communication very supportive, thanks. I did cheat a bit last Friday too; although I didn't weigh myself I did measure my waist, and - half an inch off! Good news for me cos I'd been stuck for a few weeks in terms of both weight and inches, and if anything the waist measurement is the more important for me right now.

Not sure if this is what did the trick, but I had 3 fast days last week, one of them zero cals, and the other two under 500 cals and protein (tofu) only, no fat or carbs. Pretty relaxed on the NFDs though, so quite chuffed smile

Quickgirl Tue 09-Jul-13 14:09:23

Hello, this is my first post although I have been lurking for a while and find this thread a great help. I've been doing 5:2 for 10 weeks and have lost 18lbs which I am so happy with. The last week I have been eating over on NFD, and today I seem to have slipped back in to my old habit of eating far too much sweet things. Please give me a kick to stop me!!

virginposter Tue 09-Jul-13 14:10:08

mttum good NSV, looks like you've cracked it smile

Cat98 Tue 09-Jul-13 14:17:03

Thanks for the scales recommendations. Will have a look at what I can find. I'm still charting a 5 lb loss from starting weight (this my 5th week) so far so I am pleased, I am not counting or anything on my nfds though I do one additional day where I 'mini fast' - fast all day but eat a proper non cal counted dinner.
Seems to be working for me albeit slowly and with fluctuations!

Wow lots of delurkers which is lovely

16:8/breaking the fast in general - I don't count milk in tea as breaking the fast but I do count it towards my calorie intake

I WI on Monday mornings, I need the kick up the arse by following my post NFD w/e weights!

mttum Tue 09-Jul-13 14:30:08

Thanks vp smile

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