Weight Loss
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I eat between 800 - 1000 calories a day... and i no what your thinkin..

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... i no your thinking "NO thats not healthy! starvation mode! anorexia! you wont lose weight your body will store your fat in starvation mode blah blah blah" 

but listen.

Ive lost 12 pounds so far, got 43 more to go (mainly because i cut out bread pasta butter meat coke and anything with sugar)

i eat 800 - 1000 calories a day and i feel fine... all the time.  I have a TON of vegtables, fruit, ryvitas, water, cereal, quorn hell i was even allowed a small amount of chocolate ice cream today!  but everyone keeps telling me "its not healthy".  I never have hunger pains or anything i feel great... better than ever actually.


so is this really that bad?

should i be eating more even though i feel much much better than before?

Before i gorged on midnight pasta cheese coke ect now i dont even have a little of any of those things i feel fantastic. i mean i was unable to run a mile every few days now i do a couple a day.

Is this really 'not healthy'?

Edited Jul 20 2009 17:30 by Sheila
Reason: Locked Please refer to Post #15
16 Replies (last)

Yes, it's really not healthy.....  Malnutrition won't harm you straight away but it will affect you in the end.  Which is why it tends to get classed as 'a bad idea medically'.  If you never have hunger pangs that's because you've lost your appetite - a pretty classic sign of a damaged metabolism.  You may end up overeating at some point because starved bodies are quite resourceful and will want you to catch up.  The biggest downside of crash-dieting is that when you eat anything approaching a normal amount of food again you blow up like a life-jacket with the toggle pulled..... nasty.

You'd feel just as good and lose weight just as fast on 1200-1500 cals a day. 


Posting Guidelines

Calorie Count's mission is to promote healthy and sustainable weight management. Please help our moderators follow this vision and respect the following guidelines.

  • Promotion of starvation diets or habits that exhibit signs of an eating disorder ("pro-ana", "pro-mia", etc.) is prohibited.

Ok, you are new, so I'm going to literally copy/paste what I just posted on someone else's thread about 2 seconds ago, so bear with me.  It's good advice.

Please know that Calorie Count cannot and will not support you eating less than 1200 calories a day.  If you are a teen, the number is actually 1500. We consider this unhealthy and CC is all about HEALTHY weight loss or weight maintenance

From Mary Hartley, Calorie Count's Director of Nutrition: "By eating only 800 calories, you will not get enough energy, protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals and other components of food. In time, you could become malnourished, which can cause severe health risks such as respiratory infections, kidney failure, blindness, heart attack and even death."

Here is a brief reason why never less than 1200 from the Advice section of Calorie Count Plus, under the Q&A tab:

Why must I eat at least 1,200 calories a day when I want to eat less?

In order to get the daily food servings you need for a balanced diet, it takes about 1200 calories a day. With careful planning, you could have a balanced diet on 1000 calories, but the restrictiveness of a very low calorie level can lead to binging and weight cycling, which will take you further from your weight loss goal. What's more, very low calorie diets can cause excessive muscle breakdown and metabolic adaptations, which can drive down your calorie requirements. In the end, you'll need fewer calories to maintain a higher weight. 

Your body needs at least 1200 calories per day to survive.

Here is a very rough scientific break down provided by a dietician for a 5' 2", 19 year old female weighing approximately 100 pounds, sitting around all day and doing nothing:

-The heart needs 12% of the calories (144 cals)
-The kidney needs 12% of the calories (144 cals)
-The Liver needs 23% of the calories (276 cals)
-The brain needs 23% of the calories (276 cals)
-The skeletal muscle needs 30% of the calories (360 cals)

So what if you feel ok now. You said yourself that you know that this is  low.

Even if you don't think you are hungry it doesn't mean your body doesn't need more fuel.

What is so wrong with losing weight at the reccomended pace, and taking your time? I bet you took your time gaining it (just like the rest of us)

You may be losign it now, but you WILL plateau soon, and you WILL gain it back eventually.

I am no professional so all I can tell you is to use the tools here to find out what you are supposed to do, and don't expect anyone here to support an unheallthy lifestyle.

What are your stats? If you give your age, height, weight , activity level,etc, someone can help you more.

Okay, since you're going to ignore all the advice telling you to eat more, since you're convinced that it's not bad, here's a different question: Do you want to lose fat, or do you want to lose muscle?

Because your diet right now is designed to leave you "skinny fat," because you're burning up your muscles instead of burning fat. Your body can physically only burn a certain amount of fat per day, and any deficit over that amount will come from your muscles and lean tissue. It's much easier for your body to burn muscle than fat, and with your current plan you are almost certainly losing more muscle than fat. 

Not to mention all the other health risks.

If you actually care about doing this right, and want another really good tool in addition to the ones on here, try this:


How would you answer someone who said the same thing to you but was eating 600-800 cals per day? What about 400-600? what about 200-400? I'm sure at some point you would say that's not enough despite them saying they were full and felt fine and healthy. All the other posters are saying that to you at the levels you are eating at for the same reasons you would say to someone eating alot less than you. You aint eating enough

The fact that you HAD to post to ask if eating 800-1000 is truly unhealthy shows that you already know you are wrong in the way you are going about your lifestyle/weight loss. You will more likely gain all the weight back plus more if you continue to do this, you will stop losing weight. Seriously, listen to peaches, gi-jane and use the tools on this site to figure out how much you need to eat. slow and steady is key to keeping the weight off. Good luck!

You know that that amount is too low. Maybe you'll lose but you'll be malnourished in the process, it's almost impossible to get all your nutrients on such a lot amount- I should know I used to have an eating disorder. And btw you're not headed down a good path. First it's 800 calories, then 600, then before you know it you're justifying 200 calories a day. I think you'll find if you eat 1500ish calories you'll feel just as good, and even better because you're getting the nutrients you need.

teee hee hee.. i think we should let this poster experience the joys of crash dieting. shur why would the hundreds of thousands who have fallen flat on their face in the same trap deter her from doing as she's doing.

clearly she has found the key to successful weight loss and she wont soon incur the awfulness that comes with starvation mode, plateaus, fatigue (i mean serious frickn fatigue). the loss of muscle - precious muscle which actually burns calories for you. and oh how rapidly the weight returns in its flabby masses when finally you succumb to the hunger (which you dont feel now - but when you do, you'll feel like you'v ben hit by a truck - no amount of food will satisfy you!)

yup i think you should ignore all the great advice you'll find on this site. maybe set up your own company "Magical miracle weightloss" even go on Oprah!. you have obviously finally cracked it!

Eat more and exercise more.  You can have an insane deficit (the difference between what you are taking IN in calories and what you are BURNING in calories) but not break the rules of this site.  

People here will tell you that a large deficit is bad - for a number of reasons - and they are right - but screw that for now - you are motivated and will lose a lot of weight until you become unmotivated - and then you will probably gain it all back.  You might not though.  Basically it's up to you.

The ideas on this site work - and if you follow people like GI-Jane - who is pretty much always right (versus me - who is pretty much an opinionated bastard) you WILL lose weight.  That said - if you follow your routine (but eat more for God's sake) and exercise like a rabid animal - you will lose one hell of a lot of weight.  

And if you're heavy - don't worry about things like "starvation mode" until you get thin.  Remember though - going off on your own theories of dieting are more likely to lead you to failure than success.  If you do decide to do your own thing PLEASE POST OFTEN - variety is the spice of life - and don't let yourself get down over the advice of others - they are only trying to help.

Original Post by polkastripe:

... i no your thinking "NO thats not healthy! starvation mode! anorexia! you wont lose weight your body will store your fat in starvation mode blah blah blah"

actually, I wasn't thinking that at all...I was thinking it's spelled "know" and "you're". I don't say it to be mean- I can take misspelled words OR crash diets, but I can't take both in the same post :P

If you really believe in what you're doing, why did you post asking if it's ok?

btw, before I knew better, I tried a 1000 cal/day crash diet. I know from first hand experience that you don't eat a "TON" of anything! Yes, 4 cups of baby spinach is only 25 calories, but we aren't built like bunnies. You need protein and healthy fats as well and they have cals that add up quick (for ex, salmon fillet- 150cals, 1/3C of almonds- 270)

I know it seems like a good idea, but your body really will thank you if you up the cals. You can eat more and still lose.

i used to eat around 1000-1200 cals per day for a couple of years .im 17. and i lost weight,yes. i didn't feel easily fatigued or malnourished but over the years i've put on the weight i've lost and more. so it really is a short term weight loss method.

Can I just smack myself in the forehead now?

You won't listen to me. I know you wont. But let me just say I've done this before. 600-800 calories a day. Until I started passing out in the shower. It ruined my organs. Your organs NEED 1200 calories at the minimum just to function. Those organs inside of you need to run. They burn calories all on their own. And that's why you need 1200 calories. I broke my gallbladder *sadness* and I'm sure other things suffered as well. My hair started falling out, my nails were brittle, low blood pressure, COLD hands.

Just EAT 1200 calories. Please? Just so I don't feel like this was a waste of my time sharing my past with you.

Will you gain weight? Yes. A good 5 pounds the first few weeks. After that your body will fluctuate to your new dietary intake, and you will start losing it again. But JUST EAT!

The SECOND you eat normal again, and you will, you will gain a lot of the weight you lost back because your body will hang on to every morsel in an attempt to save the damage that was done to it.

I mean is losing 43 pounds unhealthily worth gaining back 50?

Don't eat less than 1200 unless you want the medical problems that go along with those 50 pounds.

It's not only bad for you but it is against the mission and goals of Calorie Count.

There is no way that on so few calories you are fuelling your body with what it needs. The minimum intake for a sedentary female over 21 is 1200 calories per day. For a sedentary female under 21 or a man over 21 it is 1500 per day, and a sedentary male under 21 1800 per day. And believe it or not, that’s only the sedentary minimum. Unless you are very, very short and small, and/or if you are working out it is very likely you will need even more calories than those minimum guidelines.

If you are 21 or older use CC's tools to work out your BMR so you have a number to work from for your diet: . If you are under 21, CC's tools are inaccurate and you should use this calculator instead: http://www.bcm.edu/cnrc/bodycomp/bmiz2.html as you are still growing. Yes, even in the later years - there's more going on inside of you that you simply can't see.http://caloriecount.about.com/cc/calories-bur ned.php

Eating too low a calorie intake, or having a deficit from your BMR greater than 1000 results in something called "survival mode", where your body holds every last thing it can get in expectance of a famine. Water, food, calories. Explained:

  • Dieting & Metabolism - This article explains starvation mode and why undereating is counter productive.
  • The Body Neglected - This is what happens when you undereat for an extended period of time. 
  • "Obesity on 700 Calories" - A tale of starvation mode's devistating effects, and proof you don't have to be underweight to be starving.
  • From Ask Mary, the segment provided by our CC nutritionist Mary Hartley: On the dangers of undereating and what it does to your body.

The physical dangers that come with undereating are numerous. You put yourself at risk of osteoporosis, of loss of fertility if you lose your period, hair loss, electrolyte problems, a weakening of the immune system, low blood pressure, blood disorders such as anemia, heart problems, and even death. The mental woes that come alongside can be just as devestating. Depression is common in undereaters, as well as distorted perceptions and problems like Body Dysmorphic Disorder.

Crash dieting will do nothing to help you lose weight as the weight will likely come straight back on, and undereating can easily do more damage than good. Think about it - your health or your vanity? Weight is easily lost if you do it in a healthy and sustainable manner which is what CC is all about. 

I think you ought to read the following link: An Unofficial Calorie Count Guide to a Fad-Free 2009. It covers the basics of calorie counting, largely in how to do so safely and sensibly without resorting to drastic methods.

And please remember:

Posting Guidelines

Calorie Count's mission is to promote healthy and sustainable weight management. Please help our moderators follow this vision and respect the following guidelines.

  • Your post is subject to modification or deletion by our moderators. Repetitive, off-topic, disruptive, and frivolous posts will be removed. We will take down any posts that violate either the letter or the spirit of any of these rules.
  • Promotion of starvation diets or habits that exhibit signs of an eating disorder ("pro-ana", "pro-mia", etc.) is prohibited.


if you really felt okay eating this amount you wouldn't be asking the forum about it.

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