Can a foodie successfully use the 5:2 diet

There is no doubt about it.  I love giving myself challenges.  There is another issue though.  Sometimes I don’t manage to succeed with them.  I first tried the 5:2 diet a couple of years ago.

Firstly let me explain what the 5:2 diet is. Basically on two days during the week you have to fast.  This fast means limited calories, for me as a woman, it entails reaching only 500.  For the other days you can eat what you want, but up to a point.  I have worked out that I can consume up to 1800 calories.  A big difference.  But even being fairly good during the day, it is amazing how easily you can reach that total (particularly with 1.5 pieces of cheesecake.)

I wanted to succeed but I didn’t.  I didn’t harness enough willpower to deprive myself or rather limit myself to 500 calories a day.  When I first tried this diet I had one day where I used up 80 of my 500 calories by eating a Lindt chocolate.  Treats should definitely not feature on fast days.  So clearly the only way was down from there.

I first heard of the 5:2 diet when I overheard other ladies at zumba class say that they were giving it a go.  Then they stopped speaking about it, and I went through a period of not going to zumba so I don’t know whether they are still doing it.

Then I read an article by Darren Rowse about how he has been on this diet.

So my interest picked up.

I started off by getting a book from the library by Kate Harrison and devouring that.  Then I bought myself a copy of ‘The Fast Diet’ by Dr Michael Mosley and read it rather quickly. Since then my Mosley library has increased.  I now own four of his books.

When I first tried the diet I followed Harrison’s soup idea more than getting inventive with what to cook on fast days.  Initially I found the hardest challenge on fast days was preparing meals for my husband and teen children and not eating what they were eating.  Particularly pasta dishes!

But late last year I re-watched the Horizon program where Dr Mosley talks about the diet and I thought to myself that I would like to give it another go.  The plan was to start the new year.

Plus I felt that I also need to exercise more.  But in terms of exercising outside I am a fair weather person.  Although as I love to walk I am trying to get to 10,000 steps a day.

Back when I first toyed with this idea, I wanted it to be a lifestyle change, but it wasn’t something that I’ve kept to.  Ideally I would like it to be a long term thing but I will see how I go.  There have been many studies of the health benefits of fasting in this way.

But I don’t think I could ever totally deprive myself of treats, like cake.  I enjoy eating too much.

Have you heard of the 5:2 diet? Have you tried it?  Do you know someone who has?

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2018

  • Philippa Challis

    Very difficult I reckon.

  • Anita Heiss

    I’ve tried it and really like it. I lost weight the first time I used it, and when I do it now on and off, I treat it as a way to give my body a break twice a week. It takes a few weeks to get use to it, but then I don’t find it difficult if I go to bed at say 5pm!!! 🙂 Just hard when trying to train for half or full marathons which require fuel most days.

    • Thanks for your comment Anita. I imagine it would be hard to do when training. I’m intrigued about you describing the diet as giving your body a break 🙂

  • Jessica M Hamby

    Good luck, Cathy – I haven’t tried it. If I don’t get enough food, I get really hangry – so any fasting period is usually teamed up with sleeping.

    • Thanks Jessica I think I’m going to need luck to persist with it 😉 I can totally identify with being hangry… perhaps fasting days will be early to bed days 🙂