Back to the fast after Christmas

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Back to the fast after Christmas

This topic contains 28 replies, has 20 voices, and was last updated by  gippygirl 3 years, 11 months ago.

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  • Back to the fast after Christmas

    ‘No fasting for me during the last fortnight. My house, like the rest of the nation’s homes, has been groaning with food – and I defy anyone to saunter past a plate of mince pies without sneaking one in. Ditto sausage rolls. Quality Street. Ferrero Rocher. I also had my annual tussle between brandy butter and cream on the Christmas pud, and settled (as is traditional) for both. But, new year, new me, and I’m back on the programme and fasting today.

    It actually comes as a relief. I was beginning to feel stodgy, like a walking, talking Christmas pud myself, and I missed the loose, lean feeling that intermittent fasting brings. There’s a pleasant sensation of control and clarity that comes with fasting, the very opposite of the post-holiday slump that usually descends at this time of year, when you can barely be bothered to reach for the remote.

    Today, then, it’s my usual fasting breakfast of muesli (Alpen No Sugar) with unblanched almonds, hazelnuts, dried cranberries (festive) and pomegranate seeds (fashionable). To be honest, I have taken to slinging pomegranate seeds on anything that doesn’t actually move, à la Ottolenghi, Nigella, Nigel Slater, Lorraine Pascal, all of those TV cooks. In 12 hours or so, I’ll have a generous watercress salad with crumbled feta, balsamic and probably more pomegranate seeds. Shame not to. So pretty.

    Mimi you say “There’s a pleasant sensation of control and clarity that comes with fasting,” and tats it in nutshell I think. We begin to enjoy fast days and look forward to them because there seems to be a metabolic as well as psychological “feel good” effect.

    I’ve lost 30 pounds since watching Michael’s programme in August. Another seven to go and then I’ll be on 6:1 for ever! I have so much more energy and, at 63, have started running and am contemplating a half-marathon in September. I’ve been a yoyo dieter most of my life, but see this as a lifestyle rather than a diet.

    So inspiring Gingernut. A half marathon?? Let us know how you get on!

    Hi guys, just started my first fast day, was wondering, i know its 600 calories (im a man) but what if you exercise? i tend to walk 5 miles a day this burns around 300 calories at 4mph pace, does this mean i could have 900 calories food intake, or does it just not work like that. thanks

    It doesn’t work like that, as explained in the book. You don’t eat extra to compensate for what you burn in the day. Just your 600 cals 🙂 Anything extra you burn, well just think of it as a bonus! Exercising in a fasted state apparently burns off more fat (or something along those lines – I don’t have the book handy, it’s on loan to a friend!).

    Hi, just joined the group and have a question – is it okay to do the fast day during a 24 hour period over 2 days – for example start at 4pm one day and end at 4pm the following day? It just feels it might be more flexible. Any thoughts?

    Hi, just bought the book and are finally motivated to do somerhing about my excess!! 20lbs!! can anyone tell me if its ok to start this diet if your on warfarin, also has anyone had palpitations from this diet! Only when I’ve skipped lunch previously it seems to make me shaky!! Will this pass?

    Hi, I have just completed my first week on this fab diet….it’s so easy in comparison to the many other diets I have been on. I am amazed to find I have lost 7lbs in one week. I have a lot of weight to lose but I will take it one step at a time and so far so good. I am having two meals a day on my fating days one at 11 am and one about 5 pm is this far enough apart for the health benefits ?

    Jilly – 7lbs in week one is extremely fast – but probably a lot of that is water. Expect a slowdown in future weeks, so don’t be disappointed if weight loss slows to a healthy pound a week. Try to extend you fasting window to 12 hours+ – studies have shown that this is when the health benefits start to kick in. Have a look at Brad Pilon’s excellent http://www.eatstopeat.com – he is a ‘total 24 hour’ faster, but there’s lots of extra science on his site which may help. Best of luck, and let us know how you get on.

    Twiglet – if you are on Warfarin or ANY DRUG, you MUST see your GP when embarking on any diet plan. As the book makes clear, this is a sensible precaution, particularly as the science of intermittent fasting is in its infancy, and the first rule is to be cautious. I suggest you see your doctor before any further fasting.

    Thanks Mimi for your help, I unfortunately missed the Horizon programme has anyone got any ideas whereas I can download it, I have looked on BBC i player and I can’t find it there or will it be repeated soon?

    Does there have to be an 8 hour gap? Can you divide into three tiny meals? Thanks Fi.

    .. am waiting for my book to arrive BTW!

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    andie – I also fast for 24 hours on a Tuesday and a Thursday. I have dinner on Monday and Wednesday evenings and only have water or black tea until dinner on Tuesday and Wednesday. Lost 44lbs since August and gone down 2 trouser sizes. Feel great.

    During the summer I found it easy to go from dinner on the day prior to my fast days to breakfast after the fast day. But with the colder weather I go from dinner on the day prior to fast day, to dinner on fast day. This is still a 24 hour fast, but more manageable for me during the winter months. Reading the book at the moment and finding it a real boost. Interested in any comments on my approach, I see a few others adopt a similar method.

    I’ve only been on the diet for two weeks but according to my scales I haven’t lost any weight! Any tips, not sure where I’m going wrong.

    ejhood – I started the diet back in September and had a similar experience. Was disappointed but stuck at it and have now lost a stone in weight and seem to be changing shape, too. Wondering if it just takes a wee while for your metabolism to adjust?

    Mimi? That Brad Pilon site screams out that Growth Hormone levels RISE during stopping eating! I thought one of the health benefits of fasting was that TGH1 lowered!!??

    Been fasting now for five or six weeks intermittently and I look and feel great, and my BP has dropped to normal, the first time in years!

    Hi! can you tell me if it’s ok to only have under 1000 calories on some of your feeding days! My appetites shrunk!!! Been on the diet since November and have lost 10lbs!

    I would like to know the answer to lizmumbles question too. Have completed my 1st week & am delighted to have lost 51/2lbs but am not eating up to my TDEE on feed days as appetite is for the first time in my life diminished!Whilst I understand I’m not in danger of falling into the much bandied about ‘starvation mode’ I don’t want to risk having to eat minimal cals to maintain. Any knowledgeable souls have any thoughts? Mimi I read your piece in You on Sunday, don’t want to take time away from your little girl!!!!

    Hi have started to fast today for the first time with my hubby (he has quite a few stone to lose) I do feel really hungry and quite light headed but I do have a heavy cold at the moment (probably not the best time to start)! I’m really hoping that this works as my hubby has tried Lighterlife before but just puts the weight back on when he starts to eat ‘normally’ again.

    Hi Latest Fan – what a kind message! Lily is doing just fine, and getting loads better at the flute…
    My appetite on non-fast days diminished too. I think this is part of the recalibration that takes place when you fast – so I ensure that I eat well on non-fast days, taking in lots of nutrients and the odd treat. I wouldn’t make any rules though; the point is to feel liberated when you are not fasting. Good luck to all – and particularly to Ann (and others) on their first fast day. Let us know how you fare.

    Thanks for your response. I can continue to eat led by appetite with confidence! Have been eating 1000-1200 most non fast days although TDEE is 1850. Yesterday was a HUGE feast day, I dread to think how many cals but a special occasion, delicious lunch with lashings of alcohol! I felt sooo uncomfortable later in the eve & slept terribly, am actually relieved to be fasting today! It has amazed me how quickly this woe has altered both my attitudes & appetite. Thanks v much.

    However was lovely to enjoy such a lunch ‘guilt free’.

    Hi been on diet for a week …. no difference yet 🙁 can I ask when is the best time/day to weigh myself each week?

    Hi, I’ve just started the 5:2 lifestyle after buying the book. As I train 3 times a wk at the gym im wanting to shift that last 10 pounds round my middle that is difficult to shift. After speaking to a friend who is a fitness instructor he worried me by saying that i will loose muscle mass before i start to burn any fat ergo undoing alot of the hard work i have just done over past months.
    Is this strictly true or a false perception of 5:2 diet ?

    Wow I didn’t even gain a miniscule of weight over Christmas did a fast day yesterday 28 th but I found that the last 6 months have given me a sense of eating until I’m full instead of over eating. Since starting this way of eating I have lost 6 kilos. I have a little way to go perhaps another 6 but because of back surgery 16 months ago (4 new discs and 30 cm of spinal fusion) I have had trouble before and after surgery for obvious reasons. This way of life was originally hard for me, my husband always looked forward to fast days and I would dread them. Now I enjoy them too and we plan them together and make sure we have the right ingredients in the fridge before our 2 consecutive days. Love it I can maintain the positivity when I feel the results. Clothes fitting easily and instead of trying on 6 outfits to see which one is the most flattering, I can just slip into something and go! Love it! Thanks for your series Dr Mosley. You have gives me great confidence and hope.

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