Intermittent Fasting for Beginners

Intermittent fasting is the ancient secret of health. It is ancient because it has been practiced throughout all of human history. It’s a secret because this powerful habit has been virtually forgotten.

But now many people are re-discovering this dietary intervention. It can carry huge benefits if it is done right: weight loss, reversal of type 2 diabetes, increased energy and many other things. I have produced this beginner’s guide you can learn everything you want to know about it.

Introduction – A Natural Part of Life

Intermittent fasting – isn’t that starvation?

No. Fasting differs from starvation in one crucial way. Control. Starvation is the involuntary absence of food. It is neither deliberate nor controlled. Fasting, on the other hand, is the voluntary withholding of food for spiritual, health, or other reasons.

Food is easily available, but you choose not to eat it. This can be for any period of time, from a few hours up to days or even weeks on end. You may begin a fast at any time of your choosing, and you may end a fast at will, too. You can start or stop a fast for any reason or no reason at all.
Fasting has no standard duration, as it is merely the absence of eating. Anytime that you are not eating, you are fasting. For example, you may fast between dinner and breakfast the next day, a period of approximately 12-14 hours. In that sense, fasting should be considered a part of everyday life.

It is perhaps the oldest and most powerful dietary intervention imaginable.

Consider the term “break fast”. This refers to the meal that breaks your fast – which is done daily. Rather than being some sort of cruel and unusual punishment, the English language implicitly acknowledges that fasting should be performed daily, even if only for a short duration.

Fasting is not something ridiculous and over the top, but a part of everyday, normal life. It is perhaps the oldest and most powerful dietary intervention imaginable. Yet somehow we have forgotten its fantastic power and ignored its therapeutic potential.
Learning how to fast properly gives us the option of using it or not.

How Does Intermittent Fasting Work?

At its very core, fasting simply allows the body to burn off excess body fat. It is important to realize that this is normal and humans have evolved to fast without detrimental health consequences. Body fat is merely food energy that has been stored away. If you don’t eat, your body will simply “eat” its own fat for energy.

Life is about balance. The good and the bad. The yin and the yang. The same applies to eating and fasting. Fasting, after all, is simply the flip side of eating. If you are not eating, you are fasting. Here’s how it works:
When we eat, more food energy is ingested than can immediately be used. Some of this energy must be stored away for later use. Insulin is the key hormone involved in the storage of food energy.

Insulin rises when we eat, helping to store the excess energy in two separate ways. Sugars can be linked into long chains, called glycogen and then stored in the liver. There is, however, limited storage space; and once that is reached, the liver starts to turn the excess glucose into fat. This process is called De-Novo Lipogenesis (meaning literally Making Fat from New).

Some of this newly created fat is stored in the liver, but most of it is exported to other fat deposits in the body. While this is a more complicated process, there is no limit to the amount of fat that can be created. So, two complementary food energy storage systems exist in our bodies. One is easily accessible but with limited storage space (glycogen), and the other is more difficult to access but has unlimited storage space (body fat).

The process goes in reverse when we do not eat (fasting). Insulin levels fall, signalling the body to start burning stored energy as no more is coming through food. Blood glucose falls, so the body must now pull glucose out of storage to burn for energy.

Glycogen is the most easily accessible energy source. It is broken down into glucose molecules to provide energy for the other cells. This can provide enough energy to power the body for 24-36 hours. After that, the body will start breaking down fat for energy.
So, that the body only really exists in two states – the fed (insulin high) state and the fasted (insulin low) state. Either we are storing food energy, or we are burning it. It’s one or the other. If eating and fasting are balanced, then there is no net weight gain.

If we start eating the minute we roll out of bed, and do not stop until we go to sleep, we spend almost all our time in the fed state. Over time, we will gain weight. We have not allowed our body any time to burn food energy.

To restore balance or to lose weight, we simply need to increase the amount of time we burn food energy (fasting). In essence, fasting allows the body to use its stored energy. After all, that’s what it is there for. The important thing to understand is that there is nothing wrong with that. That is how our bodies are designed. That’s what dogs, cat, lions and bears do. That’s what humans do.

If you are constantly eating, as is often recommended, then your body will simply use the incoming food energy and never burn the body fat. You’ll only store it. Your body will save it for a time when there is nothing to eat. You lack balance. You lack fasting.

Benefits of Intermittent Fasting

Fasting’s most obvious benefit is weight loss. However, there are far more benefits beyond this, many of which were widely known in ancient times.
The fasting periods were often called ‘cleanses’, ‘detoxifications’, or ‘purifications’, but the idea is the same – to abstain from eating food for a certain period of time for health reasons. People imagined that this period of abstinence from food would clear their bodies’ systems of toxins and rejuvenate them. They were more correct than they knew.
Some of the proven physical benefits of fasting include:

  • Improved mental clarity and concentration
  • Weight and body fat loss
  • Lowered blood insulin and sugar levels
  • Reversal of type 2 diabetes
  • Increased energy
  • Improved fat burning
  • Increased growth hormone
  • Lowered blood cholesterol
  • Prevention of Alzheimer’s disease (potential)
  • Longer life (potential)
  • Activation of cellular cleansing (potential) by stimulating autophagy (a discovery that was awarded the 2016 Nobel Prize in medicine)
    Reduction of inflammation

Advantages

Fasting offers many important unique advantages that are not available in typical diets. Where diets complicate life, fasting simplifies. Where diets are expensive, fasting is free. Where diets can take time, fasting saves time. Where diets are limited, fasting is available anywhere. Where diets have variable efficacy, fasting has unquestioned efficacy. There is no more powerful method for lowering insulin and decreasing body weight.

Different Ways to Fast

Shorter fasts (<24hrs)

Fasting offers infinite flexibility. You can fast for as long or short as you like, but here are some popular regimens. Generally, shorter fasts are done more frequently.

16:8
This involves daily fasting for 16 hours. Sometimes this is also referred to as an 8-hour eating ‘window’. You eat all your meals within an 8-hour time period and fast for the remaining 16 hours. Generally, this is done daily or almost daily.
For example, you may eat all your meals within the time period of 11:00 am and 7:00 pm. Generally, this means skipping breakfast. You generally eat two or three meals within this 8-hour period.

20:4
This involves a 4-hour eating window and a 20-hour fast. For example, you might eat between 2:00 pm and 6:00 pm every day and fast for the other 20 hours. Generally, this would involve eating either one meal or two smaller meals within this period

Longer fasts (>24 hours)

24-hour fasts
This involves fasting from dinner to dinner (or lunch to lunch). If you eat dinner on day 1, you would skip the next day’s breakfast and lunch and eat dinner again on day 2. This means that you are still eating daily, but only once during that day. This would generally be done two to three times per week.

5:2 fast

Dr. Michael Mosley popularized this variation in his book ‘The Fast Diet’. This involves 5 regular eating days and 2 fasting days. However, on these two fasting days, it is permitted to eat 500 calories on each day. These calories can be consumed at any time during the day – either spread throughout the day, or as a single meal.

36-hour fasts
This involves fasting for the entire day. For example, if you eat dinner on day 1, you would fast for all of day 2 and not eat again until breakfast on day 3. This is generally 36 hours of fasting. This provides more powerful weight loss benefit. The other great benefit is that it avoids the temptation to overeat dinner on day 2.

Extended fasting
You can fast almost indefinitely. Generally for fasts greater than 48 hours, I recommend a general multivitamin to avoid micronutrient deficiency. The world record for fasting is 382 days, so going 7-14 days is certainly possible.

Common Questions and Answers About Fasting

Who should NOT fast?

You should not fast if you are:
Underweight (BMI < 18.5)
Pregnant – you need extra nutrients for your child.
Breastfeeding – you need extra nutrients for your child.
A child under 18 – you need extra nutrients to grow.
You can fast, but may need supervision, under these conditions:
If you have diabetes mellitus – type 1 or type 2.
If you take prescription medication.
If you have gout or high uric acid.

Won’t fasting put me into starvation mode?

No. This is the most common myth about fasting. In fact, the truth is just the opposite. Studies conclusively show that fasting increases basal metabolic rate.

Can I exercise during fasting?

Yes. You should continue all your usual activities, including exercise, while fasting. You do not need food to provide energy for exercise. During this time, your system will burn body fat for energy. Excellent!

What are the possible side effects?

There can be a number of possible nuisance side effects. Here’s what to do if you encounter them:
Constipation is common. Less going in means less going out. You don’t need medications unless you experience discomfort. Standard laxatives can be used to help.

Headaches are common and tend to disappear after the first few times on fasts. Taking some extra salt often helps mitigate such headaches.
Mineral water may help if your stomach tends to gurgle.
Other possible side effects include dizziness, heartburn and muscle cramps.

Why does my blood sugar go up during fasting?

This is due to hormonal changes that occur during fasting. Your body is producing sugar in order to provide energy for your system.

How do I manage hunger?

The most important thing to realize is that hunger passes like a wave. Most people worry that hunger will continue to build until it is intolerable, but this does not happen. Instead, hunger comes in a wave. If you simply ignore it and drink a cup of tea or coffee, it will often pass.

During extended fasts, hunger will often increase into the second day. After that, it gradually recedes; and many people report a complete loss of hunger sensation by day 3-4. Your body is now being powered by fat. In essence, your body is ‘eating’ its own fat for breakfast, lunch and dinner and therefore is no longer hungry.

Won’t fasting burn muscle?

No. During fasting, the body first breaks down glycogen into glucose for energy. After that, the body increases fat breakdown to provide energy. Excess amino acids (the building blocks of proteins) are also used for energy, but the body does not burn its own muscle for fuel.It would be a long stretch of the imagination to think that our bodies store energy so carefully in the form of glycogen and fat only to burn muscle when it is needed.
Fasting has been practiced for thousands of years without difficulty.

Here are my top tips for intermittent fasting?

  • Drink water
  • Stay busy
  • Drink coffee or tea
  • Ride out the hunger waves
  • Don’t tell anybody who is not supportive that you are fasting
  • Give yourself one month
  • Follow a Paleo based diet between fasting periods. This reduces hunger and makes fasting much easier. It may also increase the effect on weight loss and type 2 diabetes reversal, etc.
  • Don’t binge after fasting

How do I break a fast?

Gently. The longer the fast, the more gentle you must be. For short duration fasts, eating too large a meal after fasting (a mistake that we have ALL done, myself included) will usually give you a stomach ache. While this is not serious, people learn quickly to eat as normally as possible after a fast.
Isn’t it important to have breakfast every morning?
No, it’s not. This is an old misconception based on speculation and statistics, and it does not hold up when it’s tested. Skipping your morning meal just gives your body more time to burn fat for energy. Since hunger is lowest in the morning, it is often easiest to skip it and break your fast later in the day. Learn more:

Can women fast?

Absolutely. The only exception is women who are underweight, pregnant or breastfeeding. Other than that, there is no reason not to fast. Women have problems during fasting, but so do men. Sometimes women do not get the results they want, but that happens to men, too.
Women have fasted for thousands of years without incident. Studies show that the average weight loss for women and men who fast is similar.

Isn’t fasting the same as reducing calories?

No. Not at all. Fasting reduces the time you spend eating and addresses the question of ‘when to eat’. Calorie reduction addresses the question of ‘what to eat’. They are separate issues and should not be confused with each other.
Fasting does reduce calories but it’s benefits extend far beyond that.

Will I lose weight?

Absolutely. It is almost inconceivable that you will not lose weight if you do not eat.
I call fasting ‘The Secret of Weight Loss’ because it is one of the most powerful dietary interventions for weight loss, yet it has been almost completely ignored it in recent years.


Cheat Days ARRRGGHHH!

I’m going to issue a warning right from the start – this is not going to be pretty. If you’ve already got this weekend’s “eat like a Pig day” planned out, you may want to reconsider reading, In the event you choose to keep reading – consider yourself warned.

My motivation for writing on the topic of ‘cheat days’ was fueled by a comment I received from a trainer at a well known gym in Cardiff.

Here’s the comment to give you some background:

“As long as you have a cheat day every week, who cares about baking stuff with coconut flour … just be a good Paleo dieter the rest of the week and gorge yourself on Saturday!”

I was so frustrated when I heard this, I cried inside a little bit. Just WHAT?!?!? I think the word gorge is what put me over the edge. I mean, really?? First off, food is meant to be ENJOYED. It is NOT meant to be GORGED on – that is NOT healthy for your body or your mind. This is exactly the reason I HATE 30-day challenges and “Carb Night” plans. It sets up a cycle of deprivation and then over indulgence . In the ‘cheat day’ scenario, food is being used as a ‘reward’ for good behaviour. Um, are we dogs? Have we not learned that eating MINDFULLY and enjoying our food is the goal of all of this? Is it okay to eat pizza, ice cream or a cookie? Hell yes! BUT eating them in mass quantities all at the same time is crazy.

Why? Because, if you start your ‘cheat day’ with a pile of pancakes or toast drenched in jam it’s highly likely you enjoyed the hell out of it. But if you followed that up with a mid-morning snack of a doughnut, lunch at your favourite burger joint (and yes, you did “like fries with that” and a milkshake too) and then polished off a medium pizza and a pint of ice cream at dinner – I’m going to go out on a limb and say that at some point you stopped enjoying your food and kept eating for no other reason than that you ‘could’ or felt you had to get it all in because, well, it was your ‘cheat day’. Go big or go home, am I right??

Reality check: if you 'pig out' on that “cheat day” you really CAN undo all or most of the good you did during the week, especially if weight or fat loss is your goal. These ‘gorge fests’ add up FAST – so if you’re not seeing the results you want, think long and hard about polishing off that package of OREOs or paleo cookies. And during this shovel it in session, are you ‘eating on auto-pilot’ or are you eating mindfully – tasting and enjoying EVERY SINGLE BITE? If you’re not truly tasting and enjoying your food – that’s a problem. Your goal shouldn’t be to feel miserable at the end of the day – it should be to feel satisfied and know that tomorrow you’re going to feel good. Food hangovers need not apply.

Now let’s talk about the name itself – “Cheat Day”. It just feels dirty and wrong. Is eating miserable on days that aren’t a glutton-fest? Do you dread your breakfast, lunch and dinner during the week? Are you choking down foods you hate just because some website told you it was healthy? Well, here’s the deal – you should be enjoying every meal that you eat and that includes less than perfect meals. There should be no feeling bad or guilt associated with eating. So, you had a cookie on Tuesday. Does that make you a bad person because your ‘cheat day’ isn’t until Sunday? Um, no. And is ONE cookie going to make you grow a third chin?

Now, eating an entire pack of Cookies with a pint of ice cream, a large deep-dish pizza and chugging a 2-liter bottle of Coke on Sunday – every week and that third chin thing might be more of a possibility. These ‘gorge-fests’ have a MAJOR impact on your blood sugar and insulin levels and not in a good way… Even more importantly – it’s HIGHLY likely you didn’t enjoy all of that food. Sure, it tastes good BUT when you reach a point of being satisfied it’s okay to be done. If you feel like you’re going to explode, you’ve crossed into binge territory and that’s not good for your body or your mind. Seriously, a cookie on Tuesday and a couple slices of pizza and a beer on Saturday will do a LOT LESS damage than an all-out food feast on Sunday and you’ll feel a hell of a lot better on Monday too.

Yeah, you heard me, it’s okay to have a treat and to ENJOY your food. This doesn’t mean eating only lettuce and dry chicken breasts all week so that you can ‘earn’ the right to gorge yourself on the weekend. What it means is that, if you want a damn cookie – it’s OKAY to have a cookie. Not a box of cookies, a tub of ice cream and a litre of coke, if a cookie is what you are craving and cookie may be all it takes to scratch that itch. And guess what? letting yourself enjoy the occasional cookie, slice of pizza, cupcake, etc. is going to go a lot further in satisfying those cravings than is one day of eating insanity. On top of that, in the long run, partaking in what many consider ‘off-limits’ foods on special occasions or when you are truly craving something will do LESS damage to your body and definitely to your mind. It’s HEALTHY to ENJOY food – and that means ALL food – broccoli and brownies!

Eating mindfully and stopping when you are satisfied – not completely miserable – is the key. Sit down when you eat. Turn off the TV, computer, phone, etc. and have a ‘moment’ – focus on the food. How does it taste? Smell? Feel and make you feel? Does it taste absolutely delicious or is just bland? If whatever you’re eating is just okay and you’re not really enjoying it (think stale potato chips, the last few bites of the dessert your kids didn’t finish, warm beer, etc.) then stop eating it – it’s not worth it and it will leave you unsatisfied and wanting more. That is not the goal. Also, remember that food will not fix your problems.

When you are craving something, check in to see if it’s a true craving and not stress, boredom, anger, etc. that’s fueling your need to munch. And for the god's sake – you don’t have to eat the whole thing if you’re satisfied with two bites AND it is highly likely you will live to enjoy another cookie or whatever your ‘poison’ is. This is not your last supper.

So, morale of the story: Don’t be an idiot. There’s no reason to jump on the restrict/binge “cheat day” or “carb night” train to justify eating foods that you truly enjoy. Eating like a greedy pig only accomplishes a couple of things:

1.) It makes you miserable and often there’s a food hangover the next day too
2.) It sets up the idea that certain foods are good and others are bad (NOT TRUE) and creates feelings of deprivation and guilt (NOT OKAY).
3.) It messes with your body and your mind – and not in positive ways.

Maybe, instead of being a ‘good Paleo dieter’ during the week and ‘gorging’ yourself on Saturday it would be a better idea to listen to your body, eat food that nourishes it and makes you feel your best. ENJOY everything you eat – everyday. If you can’t picture yourself eating the way you are right now 5 years from now – you’re doing it wrong. If you’re truly listening to your body – it will not let you down. The crumbs on the bottom on your third bag of Doritos on gorge-fest Saturday on the other hand…


Paleo Lifestyle for 2017

Tired of trying all these fad diets? Counting calories, points, cabbage soup etc. Sick of losing a couple of pounds one week then gaining the next?

Marvyn Bailey has some ideas – but they might not be what you think.

Owner of Marvyn Bailey Personal Training, paleo Nutrition writer and nutritionist says it’s his goal in life to fight the obesity epidemic and educate people on better nutrition, and with 25% of people in the UK classed as obese, he is determined to help us make the changes that will count for a better tomorrow for all of us.

The Paleo Lifestyle has successes to show that his ideas are sound, and he’s writing this article here to bust the myths that could be standing between you right now and the best version of you yet.

His no-nonsense approach to healthy living will definitely get you thinking about your new year regime. By Following Marvyn’s way of eating you may be surprised at the foods you can eat and he promises that those of us in search of a fitter, happier 2017 will try this and not look back!!!

“If you start this January going on yet another calorie-controlled diet, you will lose weight in the short term, but you will put it back on in the long term and end up fatter than you were before,” he says.

But if it sounds like dietary tough love, rest assured that he’s keen on all of us making the best choices we can for a healthy future.

“If you really want to do something different, then make a commitment to real food.

“Most of my clients follow my nutrition advice because they want to lose weight and then they stick with it because they feel so good.

“If you go on yet another calorie-controlled diet, the same thing will happen as has happened before.

“Everything goes wrong metabolically when you cut back on calories. You basically reset your body to needing less energy, so you constantly have to try and eat less and less to stay the same weight and your body just will not tolerate hunger.”

When it comes to being good to yourself, Marvyn is adamant – ditching the ‘processed foods’ that so many of us rely on and getting back to basics is the way forward.

“We’re shown the Eat Well Plate, or as I call it, the ‘eat badly plate’. We are told to follow this through the government’s healthy eating advice. It’s got cornflakes, white bagels, Coca Cola, chocolate, Victoria sponge, battenburg cake – you would not believe it, that is the role model plate for healthy eating.

“Some dieticians are running round telling people to have sugary cereal for breakfast.

“They’re happy with people having white pasta, white bagels. They’re telling people to base their meals on starchy food and that’s why we’re fat and sick.

Processed foods are a massive part of the modern diet, but that’s where we’re going wrong, says Marvyn.

“You would think it would be common sense that we should eat stuff that comes from the ground not from factories – but that is not universally agreed upon.

“I have researched the reasons why we are being sold this is the way we should be eating and I have come to the conclusion that the government and pharmaceuticals don’t want healthy thriving people who live into their 100’s with no health problems.

The pharmaceutical companies want sick people to sell their drugs to and the government don’t want people claiming pensions for 40 years after they have retired and another reason is the government earn millions and millions of pounds every year from unclaimed estates, if people live longer there will be less money left for them.

“For me, there should be no debate.

“If you could eat meat, poultry, fish, eggs, veg, fruit and seeds every day, that’s ideal.

“People think vitamins grow on trees, but you’ve really got to work quite hard to get all the stuff you need.”

The idea of a lower-carb diet is not a new one, but it’s what forms the central tenet of Marvyn’s healthy eating plan.

“When you look at the nutritional content of any animal & plant food, it just smashes any carbohydrate into the ground.

“These people saying we should eat bread should put their table of vitamins and minerals in bread up against my table of vitamins and minerals in liver, mackerel, eggs, steak or pork or any of them.

“There’s no contest.

“Why are you telling me to eat potatoes, bread and pasta when there are no nutrients in these things?

“It’s because you have an irrational fear of fat. Take that away and your whole pyramid crumbles down.”

Marvyn points out that the body needs fat and protein for energy, and that too much carbohydrate actually ends up being stored as fat – but he says that government guidelines are contributing to the misinformation.

“The Government tells us to have at least 1,100 of our 2,000 calories in the form of carbohydrates, that’s 55%.

“The body says, ‘600 calories of those I didn’t need, I needed them in the form of fat and protein, so I’m going to have to store those as fat and I can’t use them’.

“You could actually eat 1,200 calories a day, way less than you need, and you might think you’ll be losing weight like a good ’un, but the body might say, ‘You’ve eaten things that I can’t use and didn’t need’, which is why as a nation we’re not only getting fat, we’re getting sick.”

Another misconception held by the wider public is that hours of exercise is a centre point of weightloss, says Marvyn.

In fact, you may want to hold fire on spending hours and hours in that gym, if you’re keen to shed those love handles, because it’s a myth which he is keen to debunk.

“What I always say to people is, exercise is a great thing to do for every reason.

“So exercise because it’s good for your heart, it’s good for your mind, it’s good for your limbs, your bones, your muscles, your wellbeing and your mood.

Marvyn recommends to spending no more than 45 minutes exercising per day a maximum of 5 days per week, the sessions should be intense with a mixture of high intensity interval training, core strength and functional resistance work.

“scientific research tells us that too much exercise raises your Cortisol Hormone (stress level) and this will result in your brain telling your body to store fat, FACT, so when you see that person in the gym every day for hours and hours a day 6/7 days a week but they never seem to look any different the reason is they are doing too much!!!

“If you try to do more, your body is going to try and get you to eat more.

If you do nothing else for a happy healthy body, Marvyn says do one thing: quit sugar.

“When you quit, you’ll go through withdrawal for a few days – sugar hangover headaches, insulin cravings and all that kind of thing, but they will go in five days and they’ll be back feeling clean and clearheaded and not craving it, with stable blood sugar.

“People who do this can drop pounds in a really short period of time.

“Within five days we’ve had people drop easily 7lb.

“White flour and white sugar make you hold water – you drop 5lb in the first couple of days just with the body dumping the glucose stores, which is what it needs to do if you’re ever going to lose bodyweight.

“If you’ve got glucose anywhere, the body is just going to use that for fuel. Why would it have to break down body fat if you’ve got glucose available?”

Above all, Marvyn is keen for us to ‘stop kidding ourselves’, because then, and only then, will we be able to turn our backs on obesity in 2017 and the years ahead.

“Weight loss is about what you put in your mouth.

“It’s not about how long you do on the treadmill.

“I teach you about eating real food and doing natural activity, to use your bodies in the way in which we’ve evolved to use them.

“You can’t eat junk and get away with it. You can’t have a biscuit, because if you have one, you’ll want another one and you cannot exercise away a bad diet, you just can’t do it.”

Marvyn’s five golden rules for fat loss

1. Eat real food! Oranges grow on trees; cartons of orange juice don’t. Fish swim in the sea; fish fingers don’t. Cow graze in the field; Peperami sticks don’t. That’s the idea.

2. Eat three times a day. Snack on good fats & protein, nuts, boiled eggs and meat. We need to give our bodies time to burn fat and we can’t do that if we’re refuelling all day long.

3. Manage your carbohydrate intake – even what you think of as ‘good’ carbs. To the body, all carbs are, or break down into, sugar. Have non-starchy vegetables/salads at any meal. Limit fruit and starches (sweet potato) to one of the three meals. Fruit is sugar (fructose/glucose); starchy foods are sugar (glucose). If your body has glucose available for fuel it has no need to burn body fat. That’s the golden rule of weight loss – it’s not about calories.

4. Don’t count calories. Let’s say an average woman needs 2,000 calories – approximately 1,500 of those are for what we call basic metabolic needs. If you have flu and are lying in bed all day, your body still needs to fight infection and pump your heart and repair all your cells, and only fat and protein can do that. So you actually need to eat 1,500 calories a day of fat and protein just to do what your body needs to do.

5. Don’t get hung up on five a day. Five a day isn’t evidence-based. It was developed in 1991 by a meeting of fruit and veg producers in California, so it was basically an industry body that got together to make more money!!!