Not losing weight?

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  • Not losing weight?

    Hi Michael,
    My wife has lost 1.5 stones doing IF and is loving it, but I feel a little deflated I am not seeing weight loss. I will get my bloods tested to see if cholesterol has fallen (incidentally my BP has gone from ELEVATED to COMPLETELY NORMAL) but it would be fantastic to lose some weight too. Any thoughts gratefully appreciated. I await your book with some excitement.

    I am surprised that you aren’t losing weight and I wonder if on your non fast days you should try a higher protein – lower carb approach (lots of stuff on this in the book). You should also try to identify if there is something in your diet that is particularly calorie rich. Typically it will be drink (alcoholic or fruit juice or lattes) as you can drink a lot more calories than you can eat without ever getting satiated.

    Thanks for the response. I drink lots of fruit juice so will watch that and with your book will give it a determined go starting next week.

    I’m a Type 2 diabetic and am trying to lose weight to reduce insulin resistance. I take metformin to reduce gluconeogenesis, however, even after fasting for 36 hours (2 sleeps and one working day) I still have blood sugar readings that indicate normal blood sugar range and that I’m not in any form of ketosis (I’m looking for evidence that I’m in dietry ketosis to know I’m burning fat).
    I’ve now been doing 5:2 for 3 weeks and so far have not lost any weight and I’m beginning to wonder if my liver’s determination to keep pumping out sugar is inhibiting fat burning. I eat a low carb diet most of the time I’m not fasting (some days are very low). Am I at risk of gluconeogenesis taking place by burning muscle instead of fat, which could ultimately make resitance worse as I’ll lose metabolically active tissue. Any advice?

    My daughter is 32 and was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis 6 years ago. Will this diet help her to “repair” She does not need to loose weight.Please help, I am desperate to help her in anyway I can.Thank you

    Jeanette CLegg – I’m not sure anyone could answer your question. A lot of the effects are only being studied on the general population just now, and even then the studies are fairly small scale. I haven’t found anything pertaining to MS. There is some thinking that in some cases MS is related to circulatory issues of the brain, so improvements to the vascular system may indeed help. However, I believe that the vascular link is not for all MS cases and is currently subject to ongoing research (search for CCSVI).
    Whilst not always supportive on unproven approaches any changes to diet should be done in discussion with at least her GP so that some monitoring can be done on any effects. I’m not a medical doctor, but have a number of friends with MS. Sorry I can’t be more help, but I didn’t like the thought of your comment remaining unanswered when you are clearly desperate for alternative avenues.

    Stephen Ward – I’m not an expert at this, but I think your body will maintain “normal” glucose levels at all times, even if you are in ketosis. (Unless you have recently eaten carbs and have raised glucose levels of course. You won’t be burning any fat in this case.) As I understand it, it’s not black and white, glucose or fat, it’s a grey scale, so your body might be generating 80% of it’s energy from glucose or just 30% or whatever, as long as glucose levels aren’t raised. So if you have normal glucose levels you are probably burning more fat than normal because of your reduced calorie intake, but you may or may not be in ketosis.

    I’m stuck too. Been following 5/2 since October and have lost around 10 lb – but could easily lose that again. Was sticking before Christmas, put on a bit over the holiday and started again right afterwards. Now back to where I was. Had not been exercising much for the last few years but have now added static bike most days (building that up, now at 20 mins). Had been having 3 meals on my 2 days but have moved to breakfast and dinner. Still no shift. Any advice or ideas?


    Maybe try lunch and dinner, which gives you a longer gap without food? (from dinner the night before until lunch). Or if you can manage it, save all your cals for dinner. I changed to that after a couple of months and felt it gave me a boost. Plus I get to have a really good sized meal for 400-500 cals!

    Just wondering whether anyone has heard anything about eating a low carb, high protein diet on non fast days and whether it has any effect or otherwise? Going to weigh myself for the first time tomorrow to see if there has been any change.

    I started the Fast Diet yesterday and feel amazed that it was so easy. I don’t feel hungry today and still have plenty of energy. Because I have a couple of stone to lose before summer, I have decided to try eating mainly protein on non fast days. I have tried most diets in the last 40 years but am optomistic that this diet could be the answer to my prayers. It would be fantastic to finally stop the yo yo diet habit. At 65 I am keen to keep my weight under control. The added health benefits are reason enough to fast a couple of days a week, I feel excited to have found something that has the ability to slow the ageing process. I am cynical after years of falling off the wagon on yet another new diet! But am ready to give this my all.

    I have been onthe Fast Diet for approx 6 weeks. Only did 1 day fasting over xmas for 2 weeks and am not losing any significant weight. An average fasting day is:
    Fat free Yogurt (100 calories) for breakfast, homemade spinach soup (100 calories) for lunch and steamed salmon and a broccoli for dinner (300 calories).
    Can anyone give any suggestions?
    I am not giving up but thought I would have seen an improvement by now.

    Hi Jallen – do you have a lot of weight to lose or just a little? While many lose a relatively large amount of weight in the first 4-6 weeks, as with most diets a loss of around 1lb a week is seen as healthy and sustainable in the long term. If the weight is coming off, even slowly, surely this is something to be pleased about – afterall, what other diet lets you eat normally most of the time, but still lose weight?

    As for suggestions, you may find it helps to increase the amount of time between feeds. For example, skip breakfast and save those cals for lunch, thereby giving you around 16 hours of fasting from dinner the previous night until your fasting lunch. Or possibly better yet, save all your cals for a dinner on your fast day (it’s not as hard as it sounds :)).

    Also bear in mind that ‘fat free’ foods are a con and actually contribute a great deal to making us fatter. Check out ‘the men who made us fat’ documentaries, real eye openers!

    One last point to consider is how many cals are you eating on your feed days? If you’re counting cals or restricting then you may need to increase your intake those days, as your body may be in starvation mode. Let us all know a bit more about your situation and perhaps we can help with more tips 🙂

    can u really eat what u want on non fasting days? I have 4 inches I would like to lose off my waist.

    Hi, I being doing the 2 day fasting since August after the program on BBC & I lost 1.1/2 stone but I prefer not to eat at all, because if I eat, I want to continuo eating & if I don’t eat & don’t feel hunger, but I drink a lots of water trough the day to keep my tommy thinking that is having something & to avoid head aches. The idea that I can eat normal the next day, take the stress of a diet away & I enjoy even more my food on the eating days. It is so easy for me no to eat that day, and that never happen before with any other diet. My bigger motivation is the health part & if I loose weight it is a bonus.

    Hi Sammie, the idea is that you can it what you want but not as much as you want, you still need to try not to exceed the calories that a women should have a day.

    Hi, thank you for your comments.
    I have about 1.5 stone to lose.
    I will certainly try skipping the breakfast and just try lunch and dinner and see if that give me a boost.

    I have never really wanted anything at breakfast time and spent 60+ years forcing something down as per the current wisdom. I know it doesn’t work for everyone but for me it feels so much better missing out breakfast altogether that I am missing it on non-fasting days too.

    This really interests me. I’m waiting for the book and I just have one question that I can’t find the answer to. Do I have to fast on the same two days every week or can I move them around as long as they are both in the same 7-day period.

    You can move your days around Alan. 5:2 is really flexible like that so as long as you do 2 days a week, it doesn’t matter which days they are (though ideally not consecutive). A lot of us try to stick to the same days each week because a routine helps us, but others find it better to pick and choose days around social commitments, work & home life etc.

    Saw the program, bought the book starting tomorrow going to do Mondays and Thursdays. Don’t really need to loose much weight half a stone would be nice, I am 55 and have noticed it creeping on around my tummy. It is the other benefits i am after, the increased energy and clarity of mind especially. I will start with two days see how it goes. I want to get my husband to do it too, but he’s not too keen at the moment, so I will have to lead by example. Excited to see what happens

    Hi Michael and Mimi. I have been reading up on the subject of intermittent fasting and the many different ways of doing it. I want to embark on this for all of the reasons other than weight loss, and was hoping to combine parts of the Warrior Diet approach with your approach. It seems that you get the true benefits of fasting if you actually fast for 14-16 hours AFTER you have digested your last meal. Warrior dieters do this every day and just eat an evening meal. That’s too extreme for me so i hope to follow that principle twice a week (eat my evening meal at about 7pm and not eat again until about 4 or 5pm the next day to get the best length fast). So, do you think that will be effective? If I don’t want to lose weight, I suppose I don’t have to limit the calories for the rest of that day to 500 and can just eat normally (or does the limit of 500 calories you suggest on a fast day give additional benefit other than weight loss?)

    Hello, I have read the book from cover to cover and am on my first week of the Fast Diet. tuesday I stuck to the 500 calories but I became very shaky and felt quite sick….1) is this normal?
    2) I would prefer to do the plan where you stop at 2pm and start eating again at 2pm the following day, which is mentioned in the book. However do I still consume 500 in calories between that time frame or nothing at all because its a shorter time period? I am usually a high protein diet person but have gone a bit crazy on the carbs on my non-fast days as a result of being able to eat what i like…i am concerned this may no lead too much weightloss!! All help and advice much appreciated!

    My self and my wife started this about 4 weeks ago and decided to fast on Mondays and Thursdays. Now, I do not need to lose any weight as I am just over 6ft tall and weigh 10.5 stone – yes I am a beanpole! My wife wants to lose a little – she started out at 5ft 9 inches and weighing 11 stone 8. Neither of us as far as we know have any major health issues, although I have always had asthma (weel controlled) and my wife developed Trigeminal Neuralgia a few years ago. We are not expecting any noticeable change in any of our symptoms but it will be interesting to see if a general improvement in well being, has a knock on effect. So firstly I have to say, it feels great just to have that break from 3 square meals a day. The regime is easy. If you have a semi decent set of kitchen scales and can look up calories in the book or on the web, you can just eat the same as everyone else but in smaller quantities. This way you don’t get bored or stressed having to cook separate meals or keep making the same “low calorie” option on fast day. With 4 growing children, that makes it easy. Anyway, just wanted to say thanks for the great program, the book and all the good comments and encouragement on here. It feels like a great thing to do and my wife and I feel (at the moment anyway) that this is the sort of thing we will just carry on doing, simply because it feels good….. if that makes sense. Meant to add that 4 weeks in I am pretty much the same weight but have lowered my fat % and my wife has lost about 7 pounds. Nice steady sustainable weight loss for her and that’s with lovely food and drink at the weekends, no worrying about cakes puddings, treats etc. Cool eh?
    Anyway on my fast day today, so had small bowl of porridge this morning with skimmed milk and will wait until this evening to sit down to a small meal with my wife and a 40cal hot chocolate before bed. happy days! keep it up everyone!

    Hi, I’m on week 3, day 5, and the scales haven’t moved?! My only weakness is cups of tea/ coffee with milk and one sugar – but I am counting these in my allowance and leaving as long as possible between meals/ drinks as recommended. Could these be responsible for my lack of weight loss? I’m managing to stick to my 500 cals and fasting from teatime to teatime, e.g. if we finish evening meal at six I count 500 cals from then to next eve at 6pm. Always manage first 12-14 hours without anything. Please help I’m on the verge of giving up!!

    Hi, I’ve just started this after reading the article in the Radio Times and I’m on my second fast of week 1.

    I only want to lose a few pounds predominantly around my waistline and thought that this would be a lot easier than counting calories etc. I’ve decided to approach it by waiting until around midday to have a meal of 300 calories and then have the remaining 300 in the evening around 7:00.

    My main area of concern is around exercise – I usually do a five mile run 3 or 4 times a week – I didn’t run on Monday which was my first fasting day but I have today which is my second fast day. So at the moment I’ve probably burned up far more calories than I’ve consumed today and will probably only just break even after my second 300 calories tonight. I found the first day very easy and then ran 5 miles on Tuesday but I have had no ill effects so far and feel fine – am I ok continuing like this?

    Hello ! I have just begun the fsat diet….can anyone answer my question? Must I consume the whole 500 calories or is this the uppermost limit?
    I have found I can totally fast until dinner time, and then only have about 200 or 300 hundred calories.
    Is it less beneficial to have less calories, or more so?
    thanks in advance.

    I fast on Mondays and Thursdays, I find weekends my problem! I can loose 2lbs each fast day, which is great, only to put them back on at the weekend!

    I usually eat late on normal days or have a snack before I sleep. This is normally as late as 10pm. Is it still okay to do this the night before fast days?

    Any comments please on doing this Diet whilst unwell. I have flu – into second week and friends have said dont fast. Well, postponed my fast days slightly so now need to do 2 back to back. Just wondered whether any guidelines on doing this. The old saying ‘feed a cold’ etc? INcidentally loss has been up and down whilst having flue – presume par of the course?

    @liz – I was wondering the same thing. I can lose 1kg and then by Monday I have made up most of the amount. I assume I am just eating too much on the weekend. I fast monday and wednesday – I am trying to incorporate Friday but seem to fail.

    Anyone else have this problem and/or solution?

    Hi Mr Rat – I wouldn’t fast when you have flu. As I say in the book, you need to feel well and strong to face a fast day. Get well, and then try. I had flu for a fortnight after Christmas and fasting went out of the window (simply sitting up was tricky enough!). I soon got back on track though. Good luck and best wishes

    Wish I had an answer for why some people lose weight swiftly and some at a more measured pace, while some (a minority) may not lose – at least in the short term. MM suggests checking what you are drinking on a fast day (keep it no calorie). Everyone’s metabolism is different, and while there is strong clinical evidence (and overwhelming anecdotal evidence) that the IF is a brilliant weight loss tool, it may be that one individual achieves very different results from the next.
    I would say keep going, remembering the many health benefits of Intermittent Fasting rather than concentrating solely on weight loss. The science is still young, and human trials on all these unknowns should hopefully give us more evidence-based answers soon.

    Hi – I started last week and so far think its great. What are your thoughts on foods such as Count on Us range that show a calorie content.

    After trying many many diets over the years I came across your book a few weeks ago and decided to give IF a go. I hadn’t weighed myself for a few months (as I’ve not been ‘good’) and was pleasantly surprised when I weighed myself just before embarking on IF – I weighed half a stone lighter than was expecting which was a good kick start. This is now week 2 for me (I fast Mondays and Thursdays) and last week I had lost a lb.

    The odd thing is I haven’t changed my eating habits on my non-fast days and although I’m only a lb lighter my tummy feels a lot flatter and not so bloated.

    Although I cannot pretend that I love the fasting days I definitely do feel so much better by the following day – much more energetic. It’s a massive bonus that it fits around my family too.

    Overall I have two and a half stones to lose. I hope to reach that by the end of the year.

    I want IF to be a way of life for me now and hope that the years of trying to find the right diet for me have finally come to an end! Thank you!!

    Saw the programme. Bought the book. I was really excited because the research made sense. Not just a gimmick.
    Fantastic to wake up after a fast day.
    Ooh what goodies will I eat? But then I don’t.
    Always sleep really well on a fast day as well.
    Have lost the weight I needed, but unfortunately I still cannot control my Sunday binge. Never mind. Fast day Monday
    Micheal Mos is king of the Fast Diet and my hero.

    Hi All I have read the book and the science behind it all had me gripped. I have started it today but i have 2 questions
    1. Been on a very tight budget for food anyway im i ok fasting for 2 consecutive days having only drinks?
    2. I was always told that if you dont eat often or fast when you do eat your body stores it all as fat is this true? i know the book says different but cant get it out of my mind.
    having read the book i question if my years of eating very irregularly and going good lengths of time without food have actually helped me maintain a good weight having stayed the same weight for 18 years.
    its only now through age and lack of work and exercise i am noticing an increase in weight. I look forward to seeing if it works.

    Thanks for your comments Ayshe and KirstRVN. Loving all the positivity!
    Tori – some trials have been consecutive, and plenty of people fast completely (ie only drinks). The reason we don’t advise it is that it’s very hard to do! MM devised the 5:2 plan to achieve compliance – the calories are there to make a ‘fast day’ easier, doable and sustainable. But, as we always say, you need to find a patterns that suits you. Have a look at our friend Brad Pilon’s website for more on full fasting. He speaks a lot of sense.
    He also has a good take on your second question, and there’s plenty on that subject in the Fast Diet book too.

    Hi, I also want to share a counter-view to those who are losing weight. I’ve been on 5:2 Fast (starting at 9pm night and first meal is a late lunch at 2pm the next day) for a month. I initially lost 2lbs but have since put it back on again so I’m back at my start weight. V demoralising:( However I have lost about an inch from my bust and half an inch from my waist so my other half says this counts more than weight loss. I’ve also at the same time started a new commute to work, biking 30 mins there and 30 mins back, so I’m hoping the lack of weight loss is muscle gain!! Definitely not drinking calories (having been a pass WeightWatcher, I know what it’s like be obsessive on calories). I’m hoping that the next month will see some weight loss though! I don’t overeat on Feast days but I don’t watch what I eat and the thought of going back to have to calorie count is what got me on this diet in the first place… Any advice?

    I’m wondering about the 500 cals for women and 600 for men. Both my friend and I are starting this today but she is 5ft 8 with 10 lbs to lose. I am 5 foot with the same weight to lose. If I were to eat 1800 calories 5 days a week I would definitely put up weight- so how do you balance it for the different heights as I often find it hard to get info for those us small people with not too much to lose

    I’m confused. On the front of the book it says “eat what you want most of the time”. Been reading the comments here and most people are “dieting”, sticking to low carbs and keeping their calories down on “feast” days.The last thing i want to do is another diet!!

    Is the 5:2 diet OK for osteoporosis sufferers?

    I’ve just finished my first week having lost 6 lbs. I’ve tried the 2pm: 2pm fast which was hard but I stuck to it and then went to 12 hrs fast, having breakfast and lunch. Found that I had to drink lots and lots as I’m prone to constipation but otherwise feel fantastic. I am not overindulging on my non fast days but eating normally what I fancy, even a bit of chocolate and cake, stopping when I’m full. I totally love this diet as fit the first time in my life I feel that I can stick to something. I got 45 lbs to loose altogether and feel very positive. Thanks for the discovery !!

    Hi – On the 5:2 for the 2nd week, but today had a blip and broke the fast. Had Black coffee this morning and planned to have last meal at around 6.30 this evening, but was tempted by a bowl of home made lentil soup at 3pm. Should I have another day as a fast day? – And last meal was at 20:00 last night.

    It’s entirely up to you whether you write this off as a fast day or not. If you can estimate how many cals was in your unplanned lunch you can probably still stay under your 500 cals with a small dinner. Seems a shame to write it off if you don’t have to, when you went so long without food!

    The great thing with 5:2 is the flexibility though, so you have to do what feels right for you 🙂

    Hi shiningmoogie – thanks for that. Kinda figured it out after I sent the post. On the safe side – I am going to count the soup as 250k/cal & have steamed veg with small piece of protein to stay < 500. Will defo plan better for my next fast day.

    Been on the diet for about 8 weeks, and lost about 8pounds, slow but sure. Going away for 8 weeks on Friday to visit family in Australia. Not sure it will be possible to keep the diet going, will I put the lost weight back on??

    err, yes!

    Hi, I’ve been following the 5:2 plan for just a few days (started on Monday) and have done 2 fast days. A sneaky peek at the scales this morning showed a loss of 2.6kgs! As this was following a fast day, I am not expecting it to be quite as much on Saturday when I usually weigh, but even so… I’m not finding it hard, and am feeling fantastic. This seems to be the way to go!

    @minerva – I think it depends on how you eat when you’re over there. On 5:2 you have been losing weight because of the calorie deficit. While away if you overeat you are likely to regain some weight, but it’s possible that with care you can maintain the weight at least rather than gain. You may find it beneficial on some occasions to skip a meal or even two, for example if you know you’re going to have a busy day followed by dinner out, why fill up in the day when you can save yourself for a lovely dinner? 🙂 This way you can get in a few 0 cal shorter fasts (ideally 16 hours or more, eg from dinner the night before until lunchtime or beyond). This may help in maintaining.

    just to say give this a go for 30 days now, over 2 years ago lost over 75lbs and changed my life totally but over 2012 stated to creep on the weight again.
    saw the article and thought this is worth a try.
    the main reason my farther has dementia and diabetes and has been over weight for many years and i need not follow the same path.
    in just over 5 weeks i have gone from 218lbs to 201lbs i do exercise frequently and whilst fasting and weight loss may be the easiest way to measure what affect this is having, but inside and in my head I feel great, training is good and sleep is good, you start to realise what you put in your mouth has such a big effect on your wellbeing.
    I can’t say I have been good on non-diet days as I have wanted to see what I can eat and still loose or maintain the current weight loss (not saying I wish to keep it up) but after a weekend over indulgency fish and chips full Sunday roast puddings and a special fried rice and crispy beef I lost 3lbs
    I did train hard and burnt over 900-1500 cals per session has anyone else seen the limits I mainly did this to see if holyday’s and family functions would have a dramatic effect on the eating plan or on me and my weight


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