I’ve read from a few sources (and some of them were even reputable) that a woman’s daily calorie intake shouldn’t drop below 1200. However, I’ve been eating â‰¤1000 calories a day* for the last 4 or 5 weeks, with only the occasional “splurge,” and I feel terrific! I have more energy, my pants fit better, and while I am losing weight, it hasn’t been disturbingly rapid. My hair isn’t falling out, my skin is only as dry as usual, my eyesight is fine. Of course, I don’t plan on doing this long-term, because I LOOOOVE food! The Mayo Clinic calculates my “maintenance” calories at 1500-1600/day once I hit my goal weight, and I will happily indulge in the casino buffet at VLV. I love a buffet (sung to the tune of I Love A Parade). I seem to be eating enough calories to not be malnourished. It’s not as though I’m sipping on Diet Coke and eating a box of Snackwells and calling it a day. I’m eating mostly fresh veggies, fresh fruit, and whole grains. For example, my lunch today was the following salad:
2 cups baby spinach
1/2 cup butter beans (canned)
1/2 avocado, diced
1 stalk celery, chopped
3 “dried plums,” diced (remember when they were prunes?)
2 Tbs crumbled feta
2 Tbs ginger-sesame dressing
Dinner tonight of steamed potatoes topped with nonfat yogurt and some salt-free Spike, which brings me up to juuuuuust over 1,000 calories, and I am STUFFED. (For anyone counting, that’s 19.3g of mostly monounsaturated fat, 29.6g fiber, and 28.4g protein).
So I’m wondering… what are the negative effects of eating too few calories over the long term? And how long is long term? What should I be on the lookout for?
*I mentioned in a post the other day that I’m using LoseIt to track my calories, and while it does suggest a daily caloric intake of just under 1200 for me right now, I am eating fewer than the recommended amounts only because I get distracted, not because I’m crazy. I frequently make plans to save room for some high-calorie, low-nutrition food (Cambozola!) for dessert, and then feel too full or don’t get around to it.
3 Replies to “Mmmmonounsaturated Fats”
You’ve discovered what I have…the types of things you eat is more important to being nourished (or malnourished) than an exact number of calories (or Points if you’re so inclined). I can lose weight eating 1500 calories because of my weight…if that’s a piece of chocolate cake, a couple of cokes and some chicken wings with fries, I’m not going to be very nourished…but I could still lose. Better to be healthy and that lunch, etc. sounds mighty healthy to me!! And, now I’m hungry…thanks 😛
I saw a show on PBS years ago (hosted by Alan Alda) where he interviewed a rather elderly man who was living on a very low calorie diet. Google “very low calorie diet.” It’s a real thing. His claims align with your experience. He had tons of energy (even at his age) didn’t feel hungry at all. Whole, healthy foods is the way to go. If only I could follow my own advice. . . Now where’d I put those Reese’s Pieces? 🙂
Eh, you’re doing just fine. There are even scientists out there touting the “starvation diet” for longer life. Tests on mice and rats show that overdoing it can end their lives sooner than that of a thin rodent. As long as you are getting the good fats (which you are), then all will be well.
I lost weight but also hair and skin moisture on that ding dang Medifast. You’re doing it much better.