Why didn’t Keto and IF or 5:2 work for me?

One of the reasons I’m doing what I’m doing – which is mostly TCD/Peat these days – is because IF, keto and carnivore didn’t work for me. You can read about my journey in a post I did. I never wanted to ‘diet’ even when doing keto I didn’t consider it a diet as it was something I was happy to commit to “forever’ if needed. I actually felt great on it. And my brain power was great. But I wasn’t losing fat or weight. At all. I followed so many keto podcasts and influencers and read all the troubleshooting guides.

I dropped the nuts, I dropped keto treats I would bake myself, I dropped the fat (at that point it was probably just low carb as I only really did meat/eggs + low carb vegetables and berries) and just had whatever came with the meat. I even did the super high protein thing with low fat (as I wasn’t having carbs anyway).

I have a sauna, I have a red light thing… I go hiking, I have an Oura ring, I take various supplements.

But the weight (and more importantly fat) wouldn’t melt off.

What did work for weight and fat loss was carnivore… until it didn’t. Strict steak and eggs worked… but that wasn’t something I wanted to sustain in the long term. And it was only when I added pork, duck and other meats that it stopped working and I started gaining weight again. Now I think it could have been the PUFAs but at the time I just didn’t understand. And then I came across a tweet talking about “The Croissant Diet”! And down a rabbit hole I went.

Originally I wanted to do Carnivore TCD. Basically carnivore diet + stearic acid and maybe add in cacao butter. But then one day I went hiking with a friend who heard I was on the Croissant Diet and of course… bought me a croissant!

I’m on this journey to work out the key to unlocking fat loss. And improve/maintain my health.

What’s working? I’m not sure! But one thing to note so far is that carbs aren’t the culprit for weight gain or weight loss. At least not for me! And PUFAs now affect me in a negative way but in the form of a headache. But by dropping the PUFAs totally it’s not like I’ve lost a tonne of fat.

What I know hasn’t worked for me is keto, intermittent fasting and fasting generally.

Keto – I felt great but limited fat loss beyond the first few kilos (which I gained back during when I was still keto’ing hard!)

Intermittent fasting – I tried OMAD. I tried 2MAD. I tried 5:2. Actually 5:2 (5 days of eating and 2 days of fasting or low calorie days) I did first and for about 1.5 years! And I was superstrict at the end and on my fasting days I would fast except for having cups of tea and coffee (no sugar of course!) and I would fast from dinner to lunch… the following day so effectively skip 4 meals or do a 36 hour fast for 2 days a week… for many months (I assume it was around 12 months as I started my 5:2 with <500 calories on my ‘fasting’ days.) I would drop 1kg on fast days but then gain it back on the non fasting days. And I wouldn’t say I was making up the calories on the days I could eat but I did eat whatever I wanted. I never really ate a lot of junk food or ultra processed food either…

Scrambled eggs on sourdough with mushrooms

So join me on my experiments on what may or may not work for weight loss. I have saved a number of snippets of how to lose weight/fat according to some Peaty people and will put together a series of blog posts discussing them and what experiments I will do on that front!


I've been on a health discovery journey for many years. From my own issues as well as my Mum's diagnosis with cancer as constant reminders that I need to find something that works that seems "natural" and doable!


September 13, 2021 at 8:15 pm

Wow super interesting! I’m in the same journey that you, it seems that you are describing my last 3-4 years! I have the same experience with IF, keto, carnivore… currently I’m adding some carbs (potatoes, rice, rice cakes, fruit and honey) and I’m losing fat for the first time in years! (I have lost some weight with carnivore, but regained all of them plus some despite keep doing carnivore).

Please, continue sharing your journey and experiments, I would love to read about it and learn some tips!

    September 14, 2021 at 1:52 pm

    Great to hear that others are on the same journey! Sometimes I feel I’m going a bit crazy 😀 but the good news is that I am able to stop… even if I have 3 ‘squares’ of chocolate. Who knew that I had that ability to stop!

October 24, 2021 at 7:48 pm

Hi Yvonne, I’ve been reading about your journey. How was the fat loss so far? Can you share what your normal day of eating is now? I’m trying the principle of TCD with ADF on carnivore but my fasting is more like dirty/fat fast. Only going on second week now and it seems to be working. I’ve been eating carnivore since end of 2018, but gained weight from last year since covid starts. I’ve been eating croissant/bread on weekend when I have breakfast outside. But other than that still eating carnivore with more butter/fat and cocoa butter.

    November 22, 2021 at 9:39 pm

    Hi Fenni!
    The fat loss hasn’t been continuing for me but I’ve been more Peat-y than TCD-y and avoiding fasting.
    At the moment I’m doing
    BF – eggs (poached) + fruit OR sourdough with butter and marmalade. Coffee (black) OR skim milk flat white (I’m in Australia so we have very non PC names for our coffees :D)
    Lunch – meat and optional cooked vegetables
    Dinner – meat and optional cooked vegetables
    Other foods – fruit (dried or fresh). Rarely chocolate. Sometimes home made ice cream or Haagen Dazs – vanilla or chocolate.

    Sometimes carbs (starch) wise I will have potato, sweet potato or rice. I have been known to have cheesecake but rarely.

    I’ll try and put together a post soon with my hybrid eating! But I feel that I need to get a good result before doing this…

Tammie Sokoloff
October 31, 2021 at 4:57 am

You’ve just described my life for past 3 years! Going to try this and see what happens. Seems too good to be true. Please post more on your progress, recipes and any struggles along the way. Good luck and God bless!

April 14, 2022 at 10:46 pm

Did you ever try very low-carb (keto or keto-carnivore), time-restricted eating, and/or fasting while keeping PUFAs low and saturated fats high? Such a diet would be largely ruminant meat, butter, ghee, and maybe eggs; but it could also include low-carb plant foods for variety and long-term sustainability, if boredom is an issue.

That would be the real test. The secret of the croissant diet seems to be less about the croissants and more about the dietary fat profile. So, why not do a croissant diet but without the croissants? If nothing else, it would be an interesting experiment.

Do you know of anyone who has successfully done a croissant-free croissant diet? It sounds like Dr. Paul Saladino’s diet prior to adding in sugar from honey and fruit. He had some issues with that diet, but some argue that he was maybe getting vitamin A toxicity from over-emphasizing organ meats.

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