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The Alternate-Day Diet Revised: The Original Up-Day, Down-Day Eating Plan to Turn on Your "skinny Gene," Shed the Pounds, and Live a Longer and Healthier Life Paperback – 31 Dec 2013
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About the Author
After more than twenty years in private practice, Dr. James Johnson, a former assistant professor of otolaryngology and instructor in plastic surgery at Louisiana State University School of Medicine, retired to pursue his long-time interest and do further research in calorie restriction in collaboration with scientists at the Gerontology Research Center of the National Institute on Aging. He has conducted studies on the effect of alternate-day calorie restriction on weight loss and general wellness. He has published articles in peer reviewed journals, including Medical Hypotheses and Free Radical Biology and Medicine. He has been interviewed and/or quoted in the popular press, including the Independent (London) and Woman's World.Dr. Donald Laub is the former chief of plastic surgery at Stanford University School of Medicine.
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Never one to read just one book on a subject, I bought both The Every Other Day Diet by Krista Varady and this one by James Johnson. Both books have their differences. Varady doesn't really go into the underlying science in depth, in contrast to Johnson. Varady asserts that the 25% of calories on the fasting day optimises weight loss by minimising muscle loss; Johnson by contrast says that total food abstinence on each fasting day would be optimal in maximising the effects of the SIRT1 gene, but the 25% is a concession to the fact that no-one would be able to stick to such a diet, and it still has a sufficient effect. Varady seems to make no concession to extra calories on a fast day if your are exercising, whilst Johnson allows increasing from 500 to 1000. Varady argues that the dieter should step on the scales every day, Johnson says once a week.
Personally I have not been calorie counting on the fasting days but just having one meal in the evening and trying to exercise a certain amount of portion control (and definitely no 'extras', e.g. wine). I think I have been finding this easier to maintain than 5:2 because of the establishment of a routine with every other day - with 5:2 you get back into normal eating for a few days then think "Oh God I've got to fast again" when the next fasting day comes around. Combined with my normal gym routine I have been losing around 1kg per week so far as expected.
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So I thought back to when I was my smallest and felt the healthiest. I started doing some research into Intermittent Fasting and learned the specifics of what I had essentially been doing years ago.
Since beginning up-day-down-day, I have lost a ton of belly fat (rather quickly too!) and lost basically any cellulite I had. I went from having to eat before bed if I didn't want to wake up feeling sick, to where I will occasionally just fast on my down days. I don't know if it's from losing weight or cutting down on inflammation, but running is much easier now. I have so much more energy (down days included). I thought I was past the point of being able to manage my sugar by watching my diet, but now even alcohol doesn't cause it to be that out of whack
People will look at you like you're crazy, but if you're not having luck with traditional diet techniques, why not try something different? After all, insanity is doing the same thing over again and expecting different results
Not bad for a post-menopausal, low exercise, female.
In fact, quite healthy. I experienced several life-enhancing non-scale victories on this journey. For example: I achieved very stable and consistently high energy levels. And arthritis from an injury decades ago - that was crippling my right hand - just went away.
By adjusting my Down Day/Up Day calories I have maintained the weight loss effortlessly. And pleasurably. DH and I love to cruise. The last three cruises I ate what I wanted and returned weighing - lol - exactly what I weighed when I left.
During 2012, a lot of scientific studies about intermittent fasting were published. By reading the first version of this book, and many studies, I learned a tremendous amount about how my body, health, and weight all work together. I bought the new version of this book because this is a life style I intend to follow for the rest of my life...and I want to learn more and more about it.