Intermittent fasting 5:2

Intermittent energy restriction diets, such as the 5:2 intermittent fasting diet, clear fat from the blood quicker after eating meals than daily calorie restriction diets – reducing an important risk factor for cardiovascular disease.

In a study by the University of Surrey, overweight participants were assigned to either the 5:2 diet or a daily calorie restriction diet and were required to lose 5% of their weight. Those on the 5:2 diet ate normally for five days and for their two fasting days consumed 600 calories whilst those on the daily diet were advised to eat 600 calories less per day than their estimated requirements for weight maintenance (in the study women ate approx. 1400 calories, men ate approx. 1900 calories/day).

Those on the 5:2 diet achieved 5% weight-loss in 59 days compared to those on the daily calorie restriction diet who achieved their goal in 73 days.

Researchers found that participants who followed the 5:2 diet cleared the fat (triglyceride) from a meal given to them more efficiently than those who undertook the daily diet. The study also found a greater reduction in systolic blood pressure (the pressure in your blood vessels when your heart beats) in participants on the 5:2 diet.

5:2 Intermittent fasting

If like me you need to eat breakfast, 5:2 fasting may be a better option over 16-18 hour intermittent daily fasts.  Here’s an example of a 500-600 calorie diet:

  • 1 x black coffee
  • Breakfast: 1 large boiled egg (78 calories), 1 cup raw spinach (41 calories)
  • Lunch: 1 chicken breast (198 calories), 1 cup steamed broccoli (31 calories)
  • Dinner: ½ cup basmati rice (103 calories), 1 cup mixed vegetable stir fry (70 calories), 1 tsp olive oil (40 calories), 2 tsp liquid aminos