Help please, a bit confused

This topic contains 10 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  TracyJ 6 years, 11 months ago.

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  • Hi, I have just started today, I am a vegetarian. For breakfast I had 40g of porridge with 195ml of semi-skimmed milk and 2 mugs of tea, again with semi-skimmed milk and no sugar, which I reckon is about 250 calories. My question is this, what to have for dinner? I was planning on making a vegetarian and lentil soup, so do I have to calorie count all the vegetables and weigh them? And can I add carbs, ie wholemeal bread or potato to take it up to the calorie count? I have a husband and 2 kids too, who aren’t vegetarian – generally I have the same dinner as them but swap the meat for a vegetarian option, how can this be incorporated into the 5:2 diet? Many thanks

    Gina you do need to count everything and keep it under 500 cals on a fast day. Your veggies won’t be much if they are low cal ones like celery, onions, carrots or tomatoes, but your lentils will add up and need to be counted. It really helps to plan ahead for fast days, esp if you are also feeding your family.

    It’s better to use up allowed cals with protein that will satisfy you, plus low cal Vegs or salad. Carbs will just make you hungrier as they lead to Insulin release which in turn makes you hungry.

    Also you will learn a lot if you read the book, or even just the info on this site. It’s simple once you understand it. Keep going as it all gets much easier and it’s a great way of eating! Good luck!

    I’ll add my voice to Nama’s above. A fastday is a fastday, stay as close as you can to your fastday calorie allowance or there’s no point doing it. If you save your calories for that one meal with your family then there’s no reason (as long as you’ve calculated the intake) that you shouldn’t eat with them as you prefer. It just takes a bit of forethought and calculation until you get used to doing it roughly in your head, without the need for scales and googling calorie content.

    If you struggle to ‘last’ until tea time to begin with then sure, split your calorie allowance through the day if you must but from personal experience I can promise you get used to fasting for long periods pretty quickly and it is the long fasting period that delivers many of the health benefits on 5:2 not necessarily just the weight-loss (which I’ve always just considered a happy side-effect).

    thanks for your replies, do you both go all day without eating and have your calories in one go? I’m so used to having breakfast, which is usually something like weetabix, bitesize shreddies, porridge or wholemeal toast that I think I might struggle without it. Any ideas on vegetarian breakfasts please>

    I’ve started today also & have had one Babybel mini so far. I’m going to try to save the bulk of my calories for as late in the day as possible.

    If you buy the Daily Mail this week each day there is a free booklet which contains recipes, ideas, FAQs etc. That’s what I’m planning on using to help me out.

    Gina it’s totally up to you how you spread your calories. I find it easier to get by on coffee, water or even a sachet of miso soup, then enjoy one bigger meal at night. But it took some experimentation. That’s the beauty of this plan, you can do it the way you prefer as long as you stay within the allowances. Also I find once I eat, I tend to be hungrier, so easier for me to just keep busy.

    Not really knowledgable with vegetarian plans, but what about eggs? They are a great food and very low in cals in comparison to cereal.You could have them with spinach or tomatoes for minimal cals. That’s if you are not vegan. I love breakfast but on two days a week I skip it and just have coffee. It’s worth it when the weight comes off!

    I’ve brought the book and the vegetarian meal planner on my kindle, but it’s not the sort of thing I would normally have for breakfast, I guess I have been conditioned for 52 years to eat certain things at certain times of the day and it’s just getting used to a new way of thinking. I will have a look at the daily mail though, thanks 🙂

    I am off to bed as it’s 1am in Aus….good luck Gina, persevere it’s well worth it. Your tastes will change if you persist. I have lost 11kgs since mid Sept and don’t feel at all like I am “dieting”! It’s only 2 days a week!

    Michael Mosley prefers to split his 600 calories between breakfast and an evening meal. I can manage no breakfast on a fast day but plan to have a light lunch and evening meal based on lots of veggies and some protein. I had a home made lentil and vegetable soup earlier today and still have enough calories to have meatballs and more veggies this evening but if I don’t feel hungry I won’t eat the meatballs.

    It’s all about keeping to your 500 calories on a fast day, but yes from what I have read the longer the fast the more beneficial the health effects. Trying not to make it too complicated and make healthy food choices – it’s early days yet!

    I’ve made a vegetable and lentil soup, but after years of being told not to count vegetables and give them free reign, I was amazed at how much the calories added up. I must admit I decided to start a fast day after having breakfast so I could have planned it better. I’ve been a vegetarian for about 30 years now, giving up meat and fish was no problem at all, but I am a cheese addict and have a very sweet tooth! I’m also going through the menopause so my hormones are all over the place, my gp prescribed antidepressants for the depression and anxiety which have developed through being menopausal, I have since found out they are also prescribed as an appetite stimulant for people wanting to put on weight! Which has probably not helped with the enormous weight gain over the last few years. I have a medicine review in the next week or so, so I shall be asking my gp if I can be given something else, or hopefully wean off them altogether. Thanks for the advice everyone xxx

    It took me a few weeks to get into my current eating pattern, during which I cut up celery, carrot & cucumber sticks and tried to last on those for as long as possible before 200kcal of porridge and then a 250-300kcal meal in the evening. I can’t even imagine being that hungry anymore (can’t remember the last time I was genuinely hungry at all to be honest). I’ve just had 2 weeks off (more or less) for Christmas, this is my first fastday after the hols and I’m hardly feeling a pang in comparison to those few weeks.

    Drink as much water as you can stomach (and other non-cal stuff if you need to) and just last out the hunger as long as you possibly can. Once you ‘break the seal’ it’s MUCH harder to put the hunger genie back in his bottle so I quickly came to the conclusion that just not eating AT ALL until my 1 meal, as late as possible in the day, was my best approach. It works and if you skip breakfast on non-fastdays too you get the extra ‘fasting’ periods and it helps you regulate your calorie intake on those days too. If you CAN manage on 1 meal, I’d recommend you sacrifice a few hungry days and do it.

    Because I never get to eat breakfast anymore and I can’t be bothered to cook on fastdays I usually have 500kcal of cereal, milk & a cup of tea for my fastdays. It sounds boring but because I don’t ‘get to have’ breakfast I actually really look forward to my late evening fastday breakfasts 🙂

    This works for me and has done for over 2 years. Work out what will work for you over that period and do that.

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