Physical Health

“5/25/25” May Be the Easiest Viral Weight Loss Method–and It Isn’t Restrictive

5/25/25 method"
5/25/25 method
Graphics by: Aryana Johnson
Graphics by: Aryana Johnson

If we’ve learned anything from the weight loss trends touted as the be-all and end-all, it’s this: The “one best weight loss method” does not exist. After all, every body is unique, and the most effective way to lose weight is one that feels good for you. That said, there are weight loss formulas that take a more balanced approach and don’t equate weight loss and healthy eating with eating less or restricting foods, making them more sustainable in the long run. Case in point: the 5/25/25 method. “It goes against everything women are told about our bodies and our weight: Eat as little as possible and move a lot,” explained Julie Capozziello, the creator of the method and an online fitness coach. “I love rewriting the script for women’s health.”

I’ve often struggled with the nutrition part of the equation when I want to (healthily) lose weight. That’s why a method like the 5/25/25 method, which focuses on adding to your diet rather than restricting, caught my attention. Capozziello shared that it’s a great framework to use whether you’re first starting or trying to level up your health journey. Initially, I was skeptical, thinking it was just another fad; however, after delving deeper into the method and consulting with Capozziello and Leah Van Dolder, a seasoned weight loss dietitian and mindset coach, I realized that the 5/25/25 method could be the missing puzzle piece in reaching my health goals. Keep reading to learn what the 5/25/25 method is and whether it’s worth trying. 

What is the 5/25/25 method?

After struggling with restricting certain foods and binge eating, Capozziello started educating herself on the importance of fueling her body throughout the day and moving it in ways that made her feel good. Before it became known as the 5/25/25 method, Capozziello practiced its principles and started seeing real physical progress. So what exactly is it? The 5/25/25 method encourages you to incorporate five meals each day, with 25 grams of protein at each meal and a total of 25 grams of fiber per day. Capozziello said a day could look like this (noting that serving size will vary depending on the person):

  • Breakfast: eggs, turkey bacon, and toast
  • Lunch: steak salad with lots of veggies
  • Pre-Workout: rice cakes with nut butter and banana
  • Post-Workout: protein shake
  • Dinner: chicken, roasted potatoes, beans, and veggies

“Remember everyone’s dietary needs look a little different, so please use this as a guide/starting point, not as the perfect meal plan for you,” Capozziello advised.

How does it work?

By eating smaller meals with the foundation of protein and fiber, the 5/25/25 method stabilizes blood sugar, so you’re neither undernourished nor overfull—your body is well-fueled proportionally throughout the day. “Protein is the building block of muscle,” Capozziello said in the caption of her post. “It has the highest thermic effect of food and helps us feel satiated throughout the day.” Put simply, the thermic effect of food (TEF) is the increase in metabolic rate—the rate at which your body burns calories or energy—after you eat, and high-quality, protein-rich foods reign supreme in giving your metabolism a boost. Van Dolder agreed that a diet high in protein can help stabilize your blood sugar and make weight loss easier, and aiming for 25 grams per meal is a good base for most women. 

After learning that a majority of Americans are eating 14 grams or less of fiber per day and how much of a negative impact that has on our gut health and overall quality of life, Capozziello added 25 grams of fiber per day to her existing 5/25 method. “Eating this much fiber aids in maintaining regular bowel movements and promoting gut health by fostering beneficial bacteria,” Capozziello explained. “It enhances weight management by increasing satiety and slowing digestion down, which in turn helps with stabilizing energy levels.” Van Dolder also recommends getting a minimum of 25 grams of fiber daily, with an ideal range of 25 to 35 grams. 

How to try it for yourself

Have smaller, nutrition-dense meals throughout the day

Van Dolder noted that focusing on smaller meals can prevent overeating and support stable blood sugar levels. She added that planning your meals to include protein, fiber, and healthy fats can significantly affect how you feel and your ability to stick to a healthy eating pattern. Another day of practicing the 5/25/25 method could look like this: 

  • Meal One: Greek yogurt with mixed berries and a sprinkle of chia seeds
  • Meal Two: smoothie with protein powder, spinach, banana, and a tablespoon of flaxseed
  • Meal Three: grilled chicken salad with mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, avocado, and black beans
  • Meal Four: cooked edamame and an apple
  • Meal Five: baked salmon with quinoa and steamed broccoli

Finding it hard to make time to prep your meals? That’s OK. Buy some pre-cooked salmon fillets, chicken breasts, or hard-boiled eggs. If you’re able to carve out some time during the week to cook, Van Dolder suggested cooking in batches and preparing food that can be incorporated into multiple meals, instead of cooking single, one-off meals. 

Keep protein-packed staples in your fridge

Many women struggle to get enough protein in their diets, but having protein-rich options readily available makes it easier to meet your needs. Van Dolder recommended planning ahead and keeping her top four protein-packed staples in your fridge: Greek yogurt, tuna packs, edamame, and protein powder. 

Eat within three hours of waking up

Starting your day with a nutritious meal within three hours of waking up may promote hormone stability, and eating protein first thing in the morning helps stabilize your glucose and insulin levels—both can aid in weight loss. Van Dolder stated that eating sooner rather than later helps regulate your metabolism and energy levels throughout the day. A balanced breakfast can set the tone for the rest of your meals, ensuring you start your day with the right nutrients to keep you satiated. 

Is the 5/25/25 Method worth trying?

Every body is different and can respond differently to the same way of eating, and although the 5/25/25 method may work for some, it doesn’t mean it’s going to work for everyone. However, the 5/25/25 method is a more approachable means to losing weight; it’s not centered around taking away any foods, but rather adding in nutrient-dense foods your body needs to perform at its best: protein and fiber. “Weight loss is a byproduct of you focusing on proper nourishment and giving your body what it needs to feel fueled, strong, and energized,” Van Dolder said. “Nourishing your body with protein and fiber so that you’re feeling satisfied and energized can definitely aid in weight loss.” The bottom line? If you lose weight from trying the 5/25/25 method, great! But if it makes you feel better, even better.