Now a new research from the University of Surrey claims that such a diet is not bad for you, in fact, it could have real health benefits. Experts say fasting boosts muscles and heart and make them more resistant to disease.
For the study, the researchers asked 27 overweight participants to either follow the 5:2 diet or a daily calorie restriction diet and to lose % of their weight.
The people on the 5:2 diet followed the pattern for five days with the 600 calories limit on their two “fasting days.” While people on their daily diet followed the pattern of eating 600 calories less each day than their estimated requirements to control weight. Men ate roughly 1,900 calories a day and women ate roughly 1,400 calories.
The researchers found that those on the 5:2 achieved their goal of 5% weight loss in 59 days as compared to those on the daily calorie-restricted diet who reached the goal in 73 days. They also found the decrease in the systolic blood pressure by 9% in those on the 5:2 diet, compared to an increase of 2% in those following the daily diet.
The University said, “A reduction in systolic blood pressure reduces pressure on arteries, potentially lessening incidences of heart attacks and strokes,”
“For those who do well and are able to stick to the 5:2 diet, it could potentially have a beneficial impact on some important risk markers for cardiovascular disease, in some cases more so than daily dieting.”