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Food: Dr Mosley’s all-new Fast 800 Diet

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Food: Dr Mosley’s all-new Fast 800 Diet

I first wrote about intermittent fasting – what I called the 5:2 diet – in The Mail on Sunday almost seven years ago. At the time a growing body of scientific evidence suggested this way of eating – restricting calories, albeit quite drastically, two days a week – was not only one of the most effective ways to control weight but could also help us live longer, healthier lives. The science is even more persuasive nowadays. This week I’m excited to unveil my all-new Fast 800 diet. It’s my best plan ever, based on the latest scientific findings that show the health and weight benefits of intermittent fasting along with a dietary approach that promotes rapid weight loss. Losing weight fast initially may actually help you keep it off. That may surprise you – it did me at first – but the findings add up. Now, in the Fast 800, I’ve combined the new science with everything I’ve learnt personally since my earlier books in one easy-to-follow programme.

Avocado, cucumber & mint shake

Avocado, cucumber & mint shake


It’s all explained in the super-handy 32-page Fast 800 Diet Planner that comes free with today’s Mail on Sunday. It’s a must-read pocket guide packed with everything you need to know about the Fast 800 approach, and how to start. I invite you to get stuck in. You’ll discover:

✸ Why 800 calories is the magic number when it comes to successful weight loss.

✸ How to get started with the rapid weight loss stage (800 calories per day for the first 14 days).

✸ Why I also include the principle of Time Restricted Eating (TRE), aiming to have a 12-hour overnight fast each day.

✸ How and when to transition to the New 5:2 (800 calories for at least two days a week, with a suggested 14-hour overnight fast).

✸ Why, in the Fast 800, I’ve decided to include meal replacement shakes as part of my plan for the first time.


Welcome to this bonus recipe pullout to accompany the Fast 800. It’s true that in the past I had reservations about the role of shakes in weight loss. A lot of the commercial shakes you can buy contain added sugar and they often taste artificial. But healthy, homemade, nutrient-rich shakes can be a very different matter. That’s why, despite my earlier scepticism, I think they can have a place when you are on a diet. They’re convenient, easy and can help ease your way into the Fast 800. Using 200-calorie shakes to replace the occasional meal has a number of practical benefits:

✸ You don’t have to think too much about what to buy and cook for every meal.

✸ You have a quick and easy solution when dashing out in the morning or to take to work for lunch.

✸ You’ll be getting a decent amount of vitamins and other essential nutrients in these shakes.

✸ You’ll be consuming healthy plant-based fats which help you absorb vitamins.

✸ You could experience a reduction in cravings: our shakes are designed to be filling and keep you satiated.

Iced berry shake

Spanish-style shake

Iced berry shake; Spanish-style shake


Include our shakes as part of your 800-calorie days or create your own along the same lines, aiming for something fairly low in carbs, containing plenty of protein, enough fat and decent amounts of fibre to keep you feeling full and encourage fat burning. But don’t rely wholly on homemade shakes; you need to get most of your 800 calories from wholefoods and real meals. Think of these shakes as a tool to help you kick-start the Fast 800; they certainly aren’t meant to be for ever. That’s why I recommend that even at the beginning of the Fast 800 you get most of your calories from wholefoods. If at any stage you lapse and need to get back on track, feel free to reintroduce shakes but regard them as a useful reboot rather than a way of life. Let me know how you get on. You can write to me ( Visit my website, for more information about meal replacement shakes.

Now for the recipes… 


As with any weight-loss plan, always see your doctor first. Seek medical advice if you have a history of eating disorders, are taking prescribed medication, have a significant medical or mental-health condition, are pregnant or breastfeeding. Don’t go on the diet if you are under 18, are very lean or underweight (BMI below 21 for a woman), are recovering from surgery or are generally frail.



Save 20% on Dr Michael Mosley’s new book

The Fast 800 by Dr Michael Mosley is published by Short Books, price £8.99. To order a copy for £6.74 until 19 January, visit or call 0844 571 0640; p&p is free on orders over £15. 

Be sure to read Dr Mosley’s column every week in The Mail on Sunday. 

Visit for more information about the programme and advice on how to lose weight, stay healthy and live longer.


Additional recipes: Justine Pattison. Food photographs: Adrian Lawrence.

Food styling: Amy Stephenson. Additional food photographs: Will Heap


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