You’ll undoubtedly have heard of the Fasting Mimicking Diet. Hailed as the ultimate way to fast and an amazing way to lose weight without those horrible hunger pangs, this is definitely a unique diet with a lot of benefits!
Developed by Professor Valter Longo and based on extensive research and social proof, the Fasting Mimicking Diet (or FMD) allows you to reap the benefits of fasting…whilst still eating food.
Yep, you heard that right! No more long stints without eating… The Fasting Mimicking Diet is a way to keep your body satiated whilst still reaping the benefits of fasting.
The FMD has not only been proven to cause weight loss but also has a number of other associated health benefits including improved brain function and a reduced risk for cardiovascular disease.
Professor Long sells the ProLon Fasting Mimicking Diet as a five-day pre-packaged meal kit but, since this costs over $200 per meal box, many choose to figure out the principles of FMD for themselves.
This is totally doable but can be overwhelming when you are starting out.
Don’t worry, though! This article is going to break the Fasting Mimicking Diet down and allow you to do it yourself with ease…
You follow the FMD for 5 days out of the month for one to six months at a time. The rest of the time you can eat whatever you would on your usual diet.
The basic principles are as follows…
On day 1 of the fast, you will eat around 50% of your normal calorie intake and, for the next 4 days, you will then reduce this to 35-40%. If you aren’t sure, you can calculate your caloric intake based on a number of factors, including your weight and activity levels.
On day one of FMD, the food you eat should consist of 10% protein, 56% fat and 34% carbs. On the other four days, the ratio will be 9% protein, 44% fat and 47% carbs.
You can use macro tracking apps to figure out the correct ratios. Remember that it is always best to plan your meals in advance when you are on a macro-based diet or fast.
Before we go into detail on the type of foods you should be consuming during these fasting days, it’s important that you understand the theory behind FMD…
The meals that you eat during these 5 days are designed to nourish your body whilst triggering your body to respond as it would during a fast. In fact, whilst eating on the FMD, your body doesn’t realise that you are taking in food.
As a result, it should be noted that, while short term fasts like the FMD are much better for the body than long term fasts, it is still best to avoid intense exercise during your fast. As with any diet, you should also ensure that you are healthy enough to begin with before you put your body through it.
Fasting Mimicking Diet- Foods:
As a rule, the foods that you eat whilst trying the Fasting Mimicking Diet should be plant-based with a high micronutrient (vitamin and mineral) content.
One day one, use the few extra calories that you get to your advantage by fuelling the body with healthy fats and complex carbs.
If you’re stuck for ideas on what you should be eating during your Fast Mimicking Diet, we have included some rough ideas here…
Bear in mind that most of these dishes should be homemade so that you are able to track macros precisely.
Either your lunch or dinner will consist of a lighter meal and most people find that it is easier to make dinner the lighter meal. The options we have included here reflect this but, if this doesn’t work for you, you can definitely swap out the lunch and dinner ideas.
- Avocados and greens powder
- Mixed berry fruit salad with almonds
- Blueberry chia seed pudding
- Lemon, kiwi, banana and strawberry smoothie
- Carrot and walnut soup
- Sweet potato and kale salad
- Zucchini noodles with sautéed vegetables
- Kale risotto
Olive tapenade and vegetable slices
-Apple and almond salad
-Curry with tofu and vegetables
- Olive tapenade and vegetable slices
- Apple and almond salad
- Curry with tofu and vegetables
- When you start eating again after the five days are up, ensure that you take it steady and reduce your portion sizes. Your body will not be used to consuming large amounts of food in one go.
- It is a good idea to supplement with multi-vitamins during your fast if you aren’t sure that you are getting in the right amount of micronutrients.
- As with any diet, remember to drink plenty of water! You can also drink up to 4 unsweetened herbal teas a day and one coffee if you can’t do without the caffeine.
- If you struggle with sticking to the restricted calories, remember that you can spread them out throughout the day and you don’t have to eat them in three meals.
- If you have a lot of sugar in your diet prior to starting FMD, it is a good idea to try to wean yourself off before starting the fast so that you do not struggle with cravings.
Remember to bookmark this DIY plan to refer back to in case you get stuck for meal ideas or need some added motivation during your fast!
Florence, aka Flo, is the lead editor at keto.fm. Obsessed with nutrition, Flo used the keto + a one meal a day (OMAD) diet to lose 50lbs in under half a year.
After experiencing the benefits first, both mentally and physically, he became one of the many keto ambassadors online.
He is currently working towards becoming a NASM Certified Nutrition Coach.