If you’ve heard of the 5.2 intermittent fasting diet then you’ll know what a fasting diet plan is.
Years ago fasting typically meant not eating for extensive periods of time. This kind of ‘crash diet’ when used for weight loss is unhealthy and is rarely successful and is not what this easy diet plan is all about!
The 5.2 diet is based on a reduction of calories but at healthy intervals. For example, in a seven day cycle you would eat normally on five of those days and reduce that amount eaten on two ‘fasting’ day’s preferably nonconsecutive days, in the seven day cycle. A normal diet would be roughly 2-thousand calories per day with fasting days at a quarter of that. The general fasting diet plan guideline is 500 calories for women and 600 calories for men.
How the 5.2 Diet Works
What makes this fasting diet plan work is how it forces your body to burn energy stores more efficiently. After you eat, your body pulls energy from glucose, or the sugar, it has stored from the meals you have previously consumed. It typically takes about half a day for your body to consume all the energy available from sugar.
With intermittent fasting your body will switch to burning fat once all the immediate sugar has been used by the body. This works based on the fact that on fasting days you have reduced the amount of energy you are putting into your body, and so it forces the body to go to its fat reserves to access the energy it needs.
Is Fasting Really the Answer?
When you look at any of the diets to lose weight they all include some kind of calorie restriction. Even liquid shake diets and ones with supplements all feature some form of food or calorie restriction, even if they do not openly market this. Where fasting diets succeed is that when you follow the proper meal plan you continue to enjoy great meals that are hearty and nutritious. When you follow the fasting diet plan you don’t find that eating 500 calories is achievable just by following some simple guidelines and working out how you like to eat.
Fasting diet plans have been around for a long time but the 5.2 intermittent diet became popular in Great Britain when a BBC documentary followed reporter Michael Mosley whilst he was on the program. He not only followed the program for a total of five weeks, he lost close to 20-pounds. His quest to follow the program was driven by the desire to not only lose weight but improve his health as he has some scary health markers that he wanted to change so he didn’t die an early death like his father.
During the course of his investigation he interviewed many healthcare professionals about the benefits that resulted from a fasting diet. Aside from his weight loss, other more significant results were noted from blood tests that showed a reduction in both his cholesterol and glucose levels; which meant he went from the possibility of suffering heart disease or being prediabetic to being healthy once again in only 4 weeks!
The Easy Way to Lose Weight
The fasting diet plan is an easy way to lose weight because you can eat what you like as long as the food remains nutritious. You won’t be eating like a rabbit and you won’t be eating like a king, but you will be eating great food on your fasting days. A typical meal plan will be a breakfast of no more than 150 calories, 200 calories at lunchtime and 100 calories at dinner. If you add that up you’ll discover there’s still 50 calories left for some snacks before you hit the 500 calorie limit for women.
Now if you are thinking you are not a breakfast person or you prefer eating more snacks throughout the day; then that’s no problem because this is just an outline; you can in fact eat at whatever times you like throughout the day and make up the numbers however you like.
Don’t let those numbers scare you, either. There are many incredible meals you can make yourself at home to fit within those calorie limits. That’s one more reason why fasting diets are successful. If the meals are easy to make and they taste good, you are more likely to continue to stay on it long after your original fitness goals have been met and it can be easily incorporated to days at home or when you need to eat in the office or out on the road.
An example of a easy breakfast that most of us have at home is a hard boiled egg with some veggie’s to jazz it up a bit and you have just over 100 calories or a healthy filling breakfast smoothie can come in at a similar number. There are further plans and meal suggestions at the fasting diet plan or by getting yourself a good recipe book which will show you how you can eat a 5.2 diet meal plan and you will still feel somewhat satisfied.
The Bottom Line
Don’t be fooled by diet plans that make big promises but fall short on healthy and nutritious meals. Also, the more complicated the diet plan, the harder it is to understand and follow. That’s why a fasting diet plan is one of the best diets to lose weight.