There has been a lot of press recently about the Fasting Diet, and that Physicians in the UK highly encourage patients to adapt it into their current diets. But, there is also a lot of confusion regarding what it actually entails and how it works. It sounds pretty scary, and something that you couldn’t imagine making a part of your lifestyle, but once you learn a little more about it and the benefits, you may be a little more willing to give it a try.
Basically, it sounds like you are starving yourself, right? It does, but that is not actually the diet. The Fasting Diet is also known as the 5:2 diet, where you eat a healthy diet 5 days a week, and then two days a week cut your calories to 500-1,000 per day. Micheal Mosley is a Healthcare Provider (HCP) in the UK that has both written a book and made a documentary on this diet, so he is obviously a huge proponent of the Fasting Diet. The diet was first researched on rodents, and it was found that they maintained a lean body type and lower body weight when they intermittently fasted, which allowed for improved (steady) blood sugar levels and cognitive function in various tasks. After the results of the rodent study, the human researcher started following the diet himself and found similar results, and felt more productive and focused.
A controlled study was also done on 100 women in the UK that were overweight, that were given a standard Mediterranean diet 5 days a week, and they cut down to the lower calorie days twice a week in which they cut out carbohydrates and ate lean proteins (think fish, chicken, etc). At the end of the study the women on this “fasting” diet lost more weight than those that ate calorie restricted diets throughout the week and never flexed their food or calorie intake. Many of the women who were a part of the fasting diet group reported feeling better about themselves and more energized, so they felt it was easier to stick to the diet, and most of the participants continued on the diet even after the study was completed.
I know that this fasting diet will sound extreme to some people, but 1,000 is easily doable, as long as you plan for it, by drinking lots of water, and plan your meals, you can easily feel satiated on 1000 calories, as long as you spread small meals throughout the day.
Do you think you can rock it?
There are a couple of schools of thought: you can eat almost the same exact thing every day making your body into a well oiled machine, or you can flex your diet and calories to constantly challenge your metabolism by doing this fasting diet. The results are interesting, that people actually report feeling better, lose healthy amounts of weight, keeping a lean body, and have improved blood sugar levels. It is a lifestyle change more than a diet, and you do need to plan for it, but I think it is something that can be easily obtained, once you get over the mental aspect of the two low-calorie days.
Along with eating a clean diet, and exercise, you may surprise yourself and find this is a lifestyle change that works with you and helps you feel better overall and healthier! Of course, with any major lifestyle change, especially if you have any health issues, you should check with your HCP before starting.
Yours in Good Health