‘FASTING FEELS LIKE PRESSING THE RESET BUTTON’
WH Features Editor Nikki Osman has been following the 16:8 diet for six months
‘Like most people, I came to fasting via the 5:2 – in my case, after a treat yo’self trip left me half a stone heavier. Twice a week, I’d have a miso soup for lunch, followed by an M&S low-cal ready meal for dinner. Six weeks later, I was back at my usual weight. Then along came the 16:8 – the diet that promised I could have my cake and eat it too, as long as I ate every last crumb before 9pm. And in January this year, I decided to give it a go. I’ve never been a big breakfast person, so eating my first meal at 1pm works for me. Coming to my lunch hungry gives me a good idea of what I want to eat, and I enjoy my meal more for it. I’m a grazer,
so it gives me free rein to snack on fruit, nuts or chocolate in the afternoon. And the 9pm cut-off reduces mindless eating after hours. It’s the reason that, six months on, I’m still eating this way – I’ve found a diet that’s sustainable for me. Following it Monday to Friday gives me the routine I need to eat healthily. I never feel deprived, but it keeps my late-night ice cream and wine at bay.
That said, I don’t clock-watch. If I’m halfway through a meal come cut-off, I’ll finish it, and when my social life gets in the way, I’ll sack it off and start again the next day. For me, any eating plan becomes unsustainable the moment you start to resent it. But every Monday, it feels like I’m pressing the reset button. And for me, that’s the thing I like most.’