2. How It Works

By significantly reducing caloric intake on two days, followers of the 5:2 diet eat around 3,000 to 3,500 calories less each week than they would normally consume, resulting in an average loss of one to two pounds. The person can choose any two, non-consecutive days for these fasting periods, and because they are eating normally on the other five days, proponents explain that they are not losing vital nutrients.

Days of restricted calories StephanieFrey / Getty Images


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