Is two days of intermittent energy restriction per week a feasible weight loss approach in obese males? A randomised pilot study

Nutrition & Dietetics Aug 14, 2017

Conley M, et al. – The possibility of 5:2 diet achieving ≥5% weight loss and greater improvements in weight and biochemical markers, when compared to a standard energy–restricted diet (SERD), was scrutinized in obese male war veterans. The findings deduced that 5:2 diet was a successful but not superior weight loss approach in male war veterans. The determination of long–term effectiveness of the 5:2 diet and its effectiveness in other population cohort warranted additional investigation.


  • The enrollment comprised of 24 candidates.
  • They were randomised to consume either the 5:2 diet or a SERD (2050 KJ (500 calorie) reduction per day) for 6 months.
  • Estimation was performed of the weight, waist circumference (WC), fasting blood glucose, blood lipids, blood pressure and dietary intake at baseline, 3 and 6 months by a blinded investigator.


  • Enrollees in both groups considerably reduced body weight (P = <0.001), WC (P = <0.001) and systolic blood pressure (P = 0.001), after 6 months.
  • Mean weight loss was 5.3 ± 3.0 kg (5.5 ± 3.2%) for the 5:2 group and 5.5 ± 4.3 kg (5.4 ± 4.2%) for the SERD group.
  • Mean WC reduction for the 5:2 group was 8.0 ± 4.5 and 6.4 ± 5.8 cm for the SERD group.
  • No notable variation was depicted in the amount of weight loss or WC reduction between diet groups.
  • No marked change was reported in the diastolic blood pressure, fasting blood glucose or blood lipids in either dietary group.

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