Being able to take a steady supply of food for granted is a very recent phenomenon. Our ancestors went hungry for periods of time, and there are advantages to that. The 5:2 diet isn't just about losing weight. Fasting gives our bodies an opportunity to repair our cells.
Intermittent fasting is successfully done by many people, but there are also many people who can't do it. You need try and see for yourself.
However, before settling on intermittent fasting, you need to really be getting good nutrition. Part of getting good nutrition involves counting calories and nutrients, improving bad habits (like getting rid of junk food addiction), improving sleep etc. Intermittent fasting cannot magically solve these problems for you, and before considering intermittent fasting, you need to have solved all these issues. Once these are resolved, it can help you go the extra mile in dropping a few more percentage points of body fat. For example, if you are (as a woman) struggling around 15% of body fat and want to drop to 10% body fat... Intermittent fasting can help you do that.
``Don't break the chain." -Jerry Seinfeld ``Moments of silence are part of the music." -Anonymous
Even on the 5 days where you can eat more, you cannot just go hog wild and eat whatever/ however much you want, grazing and stuffing yourself. Those 5 days are supposed to be good solid nutrition, even though you might end up eating more calories. Rachel Ray featured a couple people who did this 5:2 thing (a while back, on her show) and they quickly found out that it doesn't work if you use the 5 days to load up on junk and crap.
I could never do it, myself. It's much easier and I'm more comfortable, eating within my Spark range every day. I can't imagine doing it (the 5:2 thing) for the rest of my life. I don't personally know anyone who eats that way, as a way of life. BTW, I lost the weight and have kept it off over 2 years. No more yo-yo dieting for me. No more "quick fix", no more starve & binge. It doesn't work over the long haul.
Edited by: MISSRUTH at: 4/28/2014 (06:44)
Ruth in Cookeville, TN Central Time Zone
Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think - Christopher Robin to Pooh
0 Days until: Spring
Fitness Minutes: (23,497)
843 4/28/14 5:03 A
Why would you do this to yourself? I think that one of the best things about Spark is that it really promotes the idea that there are no quick fixes or magic pills to weight loss; at the end of the day, it is really all about calories consumed vs calories burned. (and yes, I know it is not that simple, because we all burn calories differently, but the basic premise is the same). Starving yourself twice a week so that you can overeat five days a week falls under the category of "quick fix" for me. Are you going to live your life this way? If you can really see yourself doing it forever, then sure, go ahead and do it, but otherwise, I would not.
I don't think it would actually harm you. Yes, our bodies need a certain amount of nutrients to function, but it's not like there is a 24 hour clock in your head that notices exactly when you get them. If you get more than enough protein or whatever on the other days, your body will be fine. It's not like you're fasting for an extended period of time.
But even though it won't harm you, I think that it sets up bad ideas about eating. As someone else said, it becomes kind of a binge and punishment scenario, rather than about learning to make good eating decisions.
If you want the ability to eat heavier on some days of the week--say you have a standing dinner date with friends and want to have a couple glasses of wine, or dessert--you can eat at the lower end of your calorie range five days a week, and then have the banked calories to use on the weekend. If your range is 1,200-1,500 and you eat 1,200 calories a day for five days, then you have an extra 1,500 calories available to you on the weekend. It's like a whole extra day of food!
If you have formed the habit of checking on every new diet that comes along, you will find that, mercifully, they all blur together, leaving you with only one definite piece of information: french-fried potatoes are out. ~~Jean Kerr
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. ~~Anais Nin
Life is too short for self-hatred and celery sticks. ~~Marilyn Wann
I know this would never work for me. I love food too much to forgo it 28% of the time (2 days out of 7). I'd rather eat moderately and consistently every day, than excessively for 5 days + barely-at-all for 2 days. The 2 days would feel "punitive" to me, a punishment for "going overboard" the other days. And i know from past experience that the "punitive" mindset gets me nowhere good, ever.
Goal 1 - break 200 (46 pounds lost)**DONE** Goal 2 - leave obesity behind (BMI 29.9, at 185#) **DONE** Goal 3 - BMI = Normal (154# or less)
current weight: 164.0
Fitness Minutes: (34,195)
22,341 4/27/14 8:33 P
Some people can manage this without any noticeable problems but I do caution you!
My son and his friend BOTH tried this. My son regularly worked out at a Gym - his friend not so often. My son found he couldn't exercise on the days he was fasting (not consecutive days) but then it got that he was too tired to work out on his NON fasting days, too. They both lost some weight, but at what cost? His friend returned to his normal eating pattern sooner than my son. My son said after that it SEEMS simple, but it was also impacting on his ability to work!! They were both healthy eaters in the first place.
I think that shows that your body really DOES need a regular supply of calories to function properly. For a woman the brain alone requires (if I remember correctly) 50 - 600 calories daily ... and THEN there is the rest of your body functions, i.e. heart, lungs, etc. etc.
If you find that weighing your food and using the nutrition tracker too bothersome, then you would be better off to downsize your plates and use the "1/4 lean protein/1/4 complex carbs/balance fruit/veges" method and ensure that you get in some healthy fats, too, AND at the same time, limiting your sweets, juices, ice-cream, fast food.
Well, is this something you plan on doing for the rest of your life? If not (you are doing it to drop 15 pounds or whatever), what happens when you hit your goal and go off the diet?
That's how people start a lifetime of yo-yo dieting.
You state your love of food, yet two days a week you plan on starving yourself. And I do assume that for those 2 starvation type days, you will have to count those calories.
I lost my first 25 pounds via counting alone. No exercise. Took me about 5 minutes of my time per day. I had no days of starving myself. In fact, I had no days of any kind of discomfort. I ate plenty of food, 7 days a week, and lost weight. I also love food too much to be miserable when "dieting".
The best exercise in the world is to bend down and help someone up.
current weight: 121.0
Fitness Minutes: (64,533)
4/27/14 4:40 P
So I'm trying this new 5:2 diet because 1) I hate counting calories for seven days a week, 2) I love food too much, and 3) it fits perfectly into my busy work schedule. If I pick my two diet days to be from 6pm - 6pm, how do I do this? Do I just restrict myself to 500 cals for that 24 hour period, or do I not eat anything at all til 6? I'm constantly running around, so either are doable - I just don't want to skip dinner on any days (sounds unhealthy, and miserable). Anyone have any advice? Has this worked for anyone else?
SparkPeople, SparkCoach, SparkPages, SparkPoints, SparkDiet, SparkAmerica, SparkRecipes, DailySpark, and other marks are trademarks of SparkPeople, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
SPARKPEOPLE is a registered trademark of SparkPeople, Inc. in the United States, European Union, Canada, and Australia. All rights reserved.