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The 5:2 fast

Discussion in 'Diabetes Discussions' started by viviennem, Jan 26, 2013.

  1. viviennem

    viviennem Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Some of you may remember Dr Michael Mosely raising the subject of the 5:2 intermittent fasting diet in one of his diet/exercise programmes on the BBC last summer. I think the much-missed Defren tried it.

    I get my Radio Times on a Friday and faithfully read it through from cover to cover, planning my week's viewing and listening (how sad is that?). In the current one (ie, beginning today, Saturday 26th January 2013) there's a very good pull-out supplement on this very subject, explaining it and including some recipes for the restricted calorie fast days.

    I find it very interesting that this supplement sort-of "mentions" restricting carbohydrate intake - just as the Hairy Dieters programmes skirted round the subject but were very definitely doing it. Is the official "high carb low fat" line being very gradually undermined?

    Anyhow, I think I might give this 5:2 intermittent fasting diet a go. I'd still like to see the justification for why a 5' 3" slightly-built male can have 100 more calories over the day than a robustly-built 5'8" woman! (not that that's me - I'm 5'6" and still obese! But not morbidly obese any more :D )

    Viv 8)
     
  2. janeislay

    janeislay · Active Member

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    I've been meaning to try this since watching the TV programme a while back. Agree - don't see why men should be allowed more calories than women in all cases.

    There's one major obstacle to my doing it, 'tho - deciding which those two fasting days are going to be :lol:
    Jane
     
  3. Valerie_london

    Valerie_london Type 2 · Member

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    My partner (...well now ex-partner) used this method last year and very quickly got down to a far better weight (from 15.10 to 14 stone, though he is now back at around 14.6 - 14.8 4 months later) in about 2-3 months. It took him a while to get in the swing of it, but once he did, he started doing the fasting days 4-5 times a week. He tended to have something like a huge BLT (whole pack of bacon) salad - no bread, or an omelette with cheese and bacon - basically something mainly low carb, for lunch.

    He said it was a very liberating experience not to have to bother with evening meals and breakfasts and saved money too. Generally (aside from a couple of notable blips :shock: ) his non-fasting days were fairly sensible.

    But the sheer simplicity of it, and the fact he was able to do it without any real problems, made it his most successful weight loss method ever, and he still reverts to it occasionally when the pounds start to creep on.

    However, I know of others (mainly women) who have had to give up early on, due to feeling faint, dizzy and generally not coping well. Personally I'm not sure I could do it, but then I'm lucky to not have to worry about my weight, so don't need to.
     
  4. Indy51

    Indy51 Type 2 · Expert

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    There is some evidence that while fasting can have excellent effects for men, the effects on women can be detrimental, especially pre-menopausal women. I'd suggest anyone thinking about trying it read the following blogpost:

    http://www.paleoforwomen.com/category/fasting/

    Two particular concerns are that women (a) "did not experience increased insulin sensitivity" and (b) "actually experienced a decrease in glucose tolerance" which don't sound like particularly good things for Type 2's.
     
  5. Indy51

    Indy51 Type 2 · Expert

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  6. LauraMac

    LauraMac · Member

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    Hi Guys. There are a couple of issues I want to raise tonight. My husband is on an all-night working session, so no sleep for a bit.

    5:2 - As I've said before, it works for me. I struggle a bit late morning, I can get a wee hypo and it doesn't feel great. Eating cereal for breakfast does not work for me, I have to eat a banana either with oatcakes or toast and peanut butter, that tends to work okay.

    I have bought a new book in the last few days, I got it from Amazon for £4 (half the cover price) and it's called 'The 5:2 Cookbook: 100 Recipes for Fasting', by Angela Dowden who is quite a well-known nutritionist. I am happy to recommend it, with two caveats: a) she says in the intro that diabetics should not do intermittent fasting - rubbish, it can definitely be done safely with insulin adjustment, and b) she gives snack ideas of 50 to 100 cals. Now personally, I think this is a bad idea. You cannot snack and make intermittent fasting work! Tough but true!! My understanding as a scientist is that you have to leave a minimum of 5 hours between meals to get the weight loss and body chemistry benefits. 8 hours is better, if you can hack it. I can't. Not and lead a vaguely normal life, work, chase after the kids etc. But, with these cautions, it's a helpful and encouraging book.

    The second issue is more personal. Late last autumn, I had major gynae surgery. I am largely over the op now but not feeling good. There is every sign that I am going into the menopause (aged 41) and my GP yesterday confirmed that the blood test results back this up, too. Weep! This was not meant to happen. Can any one tell me how this is likely to impact my BM control? To be honest, I feel very depressed and angry. I feel like I cannot cope with managing another major medical problem and I fundamentally expect minimal or zero support from the NHS. My GP is nice but a bit clueless and overworked. I already spend about two hours a day in actively managing my asthma (via nebulisers and salt pipe therapy) and my Charcot foot/diabetic foot cares. I don't know how I am going to cope, with reduced sleep, night sweats, dizziness, rapid heartbeat etc. I just feel like this is the last straw. I was due a Diabetes Clinic appt in February, a routine review one. The hospital has changed it 5 (yes, 5) times and now it has gone back to mid-July, ironically I will almost certainly have to change it now, as it clashes with our family holiday plans. This is just so ****! I want to weep and throw things when I hear Mr Cameron in the media, wittering about protecting then NHS on his watch. The NHS is fried! I feel it provides only the barest safety net these days.

    Ideas, friends?
     
  7. viviennem

    viviennem Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Did they tell you why they think you're going into the menopause? Why do you think you are? Were the blood tests the two (FSH - follicle stimulating hormone - and luteinizing protein) which are used to confirm it? (I think I've got the names right!). Do you still have your uterus and both ovaries? If so, why the early menopause? The age does differ for all of us, but 41 is early.

    Not everyone has problems with the menopause. I had a Mirena coil in place during mine, to stop dysmenorrhoea (bad periods but no-one knew why :roll: ), and when it came out 5 years later I was through the change. Maybe you could ask about one - see if it would help? It's loaded with progesterone.

    I was about 50 when I had my menopause, and not diabetic, so I can't help much there.

    There are various things you can eat/drink to assist with menopausal symptoms, I believe, such as nuts-and-seeds mixes. Search on Google - they are not all cranks. Ask your GP what will help; ask him to refer you to the hospital gynaecological clinic - are you still on their list after major surgery? Ask them for help.

    You may still be suffering from a form of physical shock after the op., even if it was months ago. Depression is certainly likely after a big op., even more so after the long winter we've had. You could well be short of Vitamin D because of the lack of sunshine. Also, have you been checked for low thyroid? That can cause depression-like symptoms.

    41 is young, but unless you wanted more children there are a lot of positives in this. No more contraception, for instance; no more packing STs for when you're away; no more constantly having to check you're equipped. No more PMT and bloating. And in my case, no more heavy blood loss and debilitating pain. You won't turn into a wrinkled hag overnight, and you won't lose your libido, either!

    Have you discussed HRT? I never tried it, but I know a number of women who swear by it. Read around about it , talk to your gynaecologist, and make up your own mind. I'm sorry you have such bad experiences with the NHS. I'm lucky, I guess.

    Do go talk it through with the gynaecologist. He should be able to help.

    Best of luck with it all. Think about the positives, eat well, and try to get some sunshine on your skin. And let us know how you go on. :D

    Viv 8)
     
  8. LauraMac

    LauraMac · Member

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    Dear Vivienne,

    I am awestruck at how much better your experiences of the NHS have been than mine. I think I should move N to N Yorks! I was discharged by Gynae after my op without even a post-op check, they just said to ring them if I was worried. The after-care was hence non-existent.

    Yes, I am definitely menopausal, they left me some ovarian tissue to try and prevent an early menopause but it hasn't worked and the blood tests confirm that I am. Also, I am getting headaches, night sweats, dizziness, palpitations etc. My GP has recommended a book by Marily Glenville but unless I want HRT, the GP has little to offer. I don't want HRT. I have just found a copy of the book in a charity shop, we'll see if it proves helpful.

    All I really want is to have a life and to feel moderately well again but that seems too much to ask. I am really disappointed by the almost total lack of response to my appeal - no offence to you, Vivienne. Maybe it just means that all female diabetics have an experience of the menopause that is just too awful to mention/remember!

    Thanks.
     
  9. viviennem

    viviennem Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi, LauraMac

    I'm so sorry you're feeling so bad and not getting any help - I know I've been very lucky in my experiences with the NHS.

    One thing I might try in your position is to phone the secretary of the consultant who dealt with your op, explain how you feel and that you don't think you're getting enough advice, and can you see him again, please? That has worked for me in the past - maybe I'm just lucky in my consultant's secretary, too!

    I'd never go through the appointments system again - the direct approach seems to work better. If you can't find a direct number on the hospital's website, phone their switchboard and ask for the direct line to Mr So-and-so's secretary. Or it may be on any correspondence you've had from him.

    Maybe you could start a Menopause thread on here by copying-and-pasting the relevant part of your original post onto a new thread in a different section of the Board Index. The lack of response from other members may be because not everybody is interested in the 5:2 fast, so didn't pick up on your early menopause query. That thread didn't attract much attention.

    Go and hassle your GP about underactive thyroid and a Vitamin D test. In my experience, if I make enough nuisance of myself I get some action. I get on very well with my usual GP, but there is no doubt that bursting into tears all over him gets results. Usually they are tears of frustrated rage, but the result is good! :lol:

    And you could ask your GP to refer you back to the consultant. It does sound as if you've not had enough aftercare.

    Good luck!

    Viv 8)
     
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