Lisa Gee, 47, from Wigan, started on the 2-Day Diet to reduce her risk of developing breast cancer. The diet, pioneered by Prevent Breast Cancer’s Dr Michelle Harvie, involves two days of a low carbohydrate, low calorie diet and five days of a healthy diet.
When I was 23 my mum fell ill, but she just brushed it off and insisted she didn’t need to see a doctor. She was getting progressively worse and was eventually referred to hospital, but they couldn’t find anything wrong. She had a laparotomy so that the doctors could try to figure out what was happening, where they discovered that she had advanced ovarian cancer. At the time – this was 24 years ago – there were no tests for ovarian cancer. The doctors estimated that it had gone undetected for around a year, and by then had progressed too far to treat it. She died the next day, at the age of 61.
Her sister – my aunt – died of breast cancer. She went through it twice before it spread to her bones. As there is a strong family history of cancer, I was referred to Wythenshawe Hospital for genetic tests by my doctor. I tested negative for the BRCA gene – my mum wasn’t a carrier either – but I was offered more regular mammograms to monitor any potential changes.
When I heard about the 2-Day Diet through Prevent Breast Cancer, I thought I might as well give it a go, especially as up to 25 per cent of cases of breast cancer could be prevented through lifestyle changes. I didn’t go into it with any expectations and I wasn’t particularly unhappy at my weight so I wasn’t putting any pressure on myself – so you can imagine my surprise when the weight started dropping off! Most diets take a bit of adjusting to, but I found the 2-Day Diet much easier to follow.
Monday and Tuesday are usually my ‘diet’ days, where I cut out carbohydrates and keep my calorie count low, but they never feel restrictive. In fact, it doesn’t really feel like a diet, as I never deprive myself of anything – I usually have bacon, eggs, mushrooms and tomatoes for breakfast, a tuna salad for lunch, and roast chicken and vegetables for dinner on the low-calorie days. It’s all about moderation, and I have found that the longer I stick to the diet – it’s been over a year now – the less I crave unhealthy food anyway.
The 2-Day Diet is second nature to me now – I don’t even think about it, it’s just my lifestyle. I have become more active, too – when I started the diet, I went for a walk around the block with my friend Alison, and just thought “I don’t want to do this!”, but we stuck with it. In September we walked 10k for charity – receiving a medal at the finish line was an incredible moment, as I never thought I’d be able to do that!
When I started the diet I was 17st 12lb and a size 24. In a year, I have lost 6st 6lb, and the other day I fitted into a size 12 – I haven’t been that size since I was about fifteen! My body fat levels have dropped from 42.5 per cent to 24 per cent – I can’t believe what a huge difference the diet has made to my life. I recently went to see a doctor for the first time in ages, who was in complete shock at my weight loss, and congratulated me for it.
The 2-Day Diet has completely changed my relationship to food and is just so easy to follow – and of course, it has reduced my risk of developing breast cancer. I would wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone.
Find out more about the 2-Day Diet and how you can get started here.