Tuesday, 7 January 2014

5:2 Diet | Follow My Progress

My first lunch on the 5:2 diet fast day

Disclaimer: I’m in no way a health expert; this blog post is merely sharing my thoughts and experiences. If you’re ever concerned about your health or a diet plan you should consult a doctor before starting.

A new year called for some drastic changes to improve my lifestyle and general health. Four years of unhealthy eating and near to zero exercise has really taken its toll on me, with my blood pressure and BMI suffering. I was always going to start eating healthier, counting calories but more specifically watching my carbohydrate intake. My two colleagues have been doing the 5-2 diet and thoroughly recommend it, so I thought I’d give it a try.

The premise of this diet is quite simple for 5 out of 7 days you eat your recommended calorie amount, 2500 for men and 2000 for women. Then you have two non-consecutive fast days, whereby you drop your calorie intake to 600 for men and 500 for women. This is called the ‘intermittent fasting diet’. People who have been successful with the 5:2 diet plan claim that they lose weight but also that you can gain increased lifespan, improved cognitive function and protection from disease.

There is a bit of science they explains why you lose weight, I’m not qualified to understand this, but the premise seems simple. If you continually lower your calories for an extended period, your body panics and starts storing any calories you do get, which in turn stops you losing weight. Whereby, if you fast and then have a completely normal eating day, your body is tricked and goes into ‘repair mode’ and then it burns fat to make up the calories that are missed.

However, the best part of this for me is the psychological part. For 5 out of the 7 days in the week you eat ‘normally’ trying your best to stay under your calorie intake. For 2 of the 7 days you eat super healthily, but whilst you’re feeling down in the dumps and hungry for the 2 days, you always know that eating something you really like is available tomorrow.

Of course, knowing whether this diet is just a fad, or whether it actually works is pretty far in the future, but for now I want to share my experiences with you on a weekly basis to let you know how I’m getting on. I will share my meals and snack ideas with you, as well as my thoughts and feelings as time goes on. I’ll be back on Monday to share my thoughts of my first week on the 5:2 diet with you. Until then, let me know your thoughts below!

As mentioned I’m no expert on this topic, so if you want to learn more you can visit this NHS article and this YouTube video.
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