The 5:2 Diet is taking the world by storm. Anyone can follow its simple premise that you only diet two days a week by eating a quarter of your regular calories. Best-selling 5:2 Diet author Jacqueline Whitehart, herself a York resident, talks us through the diet and how it works for her
When I got back from holiday in August last year I knew it was time to lose some weight. A holiday diet of fish and chips and ice cream had left me feeling stodgy and jiggly in all the wrong places. But little did I know that the programme I watched on my first night back at home in York was going to have such an important impact on my life.
That night I watched the now infamous Michael Mosley documentary about fasting. I was intrigued that something so simple could not only help you lose weight but also by the health benefits that fasting could bring.
I turned to my husband and said “That’s the diet for me!”. And the following morning I started my first fast day. It really wasn’t that hard and the results were impressive. I lost 4lb that first week and then continued to drop about a pound a week for the next few months.
As I started to get compliments about how well I was looking I told anyone who was interested about this great new diet and soon had several friends and family hooked as well. In fact I ended up talking to all sorts of people about the diet – men and women, young and old, this diet seems to work for everyone.
As an early convert I became a bit of an expert on the subject and was constantly answering questions about the diet and giving people recipe ideas. That’s when the idea for a book hit me.
As a keen amateur cook I’m always creating new recipes and trying them out on my long-suffering family. Other people on the diet were eating the same thing every single fast day and getting bored as a result. I was much more experimental but also found I still needed to write the ingredients down so I could count the calories.
My first book The 5:2 Diet Recipe Book (an Amazon top five best-seller) all came from ideas I came up with in my kitchen here in York. The second book, The 5:2 Bikini Diet was released in May this year and includes loads of fantastic summer recipes plus an exercise program for your non-fast days.
Adding exercise to the mix helps you tone up as well as lose weight so you really can look your best for the holidays.
I’m really looking forward to my holidays this year. I feel and look so much more confident in myself. I’m now back to the weight I was before I had my three gorgeous children and simply maintaining my weight by fasting one day a week.
Use my website or Twitter – @52DietRecipes – to get in touch. If you see me around and about in York I’ll probably extol the virtues of the 5:2 Diet – it’s been nearly a year and I still can’t stop telling everyone how great it is!