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Weight Loss
Moderators: spoiled_candy, Mollybygolly, devilish_patsy, nycgirl

Hey-- I know that on here they say that losing a pound a week, or having a daily deficit of about 500 calories, is safe as long as you're not below your minimum for your gender, but when I get over about a 400 calorie deficit, I spend the next day starving. For example, yesterday I burned almost 2000 between being alive and working out. Today I burned about 1900 on the same. Yesterday my deficit was 571, which was higher than I meant for it to be, but still not insanely over 500. So today, all day, I have been STARVING. I have also had this happen at lower deficit amounts,  like 400 as I said above.So today, I've got a deficit more like 200 (part of this is attributable to my celebratory beer for paying of my car, so fine.)

I honestly don't understand how people carry a daily deficit of 500 without flipping out and eating everything in sight or killing people. Those of you who can, how do you do it? I am not interested in losing weight faster-- I like the path I'm on and I want to keep it that way-- but I'm just curious how it works for you.

6 Replies (last)

Hunger is what you experience when your blood-sugars drop too low.   There are a few reasons why that could happen.

  1. ... not eating enough food in total
  2. ... going too long between meals
  3. .... eating foods that cause blood-sugars to go up/down too fast.

So if you're trying to live on reduced calories for weight-loss purposes which means #1 by definition then you have to pay particular attention to #2 and make sure you have a light meal or a small snack fairly frequently.  And then #3 comes into play i.e. that you choose wholefoods and wholegrains with a good protein and fibre content rather than refined carbohydrates and simple sugars.

I would suggest that since your profile says you're eating good foods and if I assume that you eat regularly then the reason you're still hungry may well be that 2000 cals probably isn't your true energy usage.   Of course, the final reason could be that you're not overweight.  You're actually at the idea weight for your height now and your body is unhappy at the prospect of losing more so you're being subconsciously prompted to eat more.

My daily deficits are usually between 500-1000, depending on the day. I don't really really seem to experience any more/less hunger the next day when I have a higher deficit.

I make sure to get some sort of protein in with every meal, whether it's nuts/oatmeal/yogurt at breakfast, deli meat/tuna or cottage cheese at lunch and chicken, steak or pork at dinner. I also try to abide by the 11/2 plate fruits/veggies, 1/4 plate grains, 1/4 protein at mealtimes. This breakdown helps give me long lasting energy from proteins, quick energy from carbs and bulk from veggies.

Granted, there are days when I just feel hungry regardless of what I eat. On those days I listen to my body and give it what it wants, but it doesn't necessarily correspond with a high deficit from the previous day. But everyone is different...


Anang, I totally feel you on this one! I'm having the same issue. My burn meter is 2050 and I'm eating 1500 cals, so a deficit is 550 a day. (I REALLY don't know how people can do 1000 a days for 2 pounds a week!) I can totally tell the next day when I've eaten on a deficit because I feel so hungry. I eat very good foods though, like 35% carbs, 35% protein, 30% fat, 40g fiber, and eat every 2 hours. Last meal is at 7pm and by 9pm I want to chew off my arm lol. Doing HIIT and weights and other cardio.

Well last night I was going over my food list. (I have to plan it all out for the week to stay on target) and because of the new weight scale I bought, I discovered I'm not eating as much as I thought. My goal of 1500 was actually 1280 plus my new addiction to vanilla soy milk at about 100cals more so even 1380. So some days it's a deficite of 670 and now I see why I might be hungry. Do you use a weight scale? Might want to look over your food to see if it's what you think it is. I'm going to up my intake and see how that goes.

I'm curious to know though how hungry people are on a 500 cal deficit? how much hunger is 'normal'



for me, the big deficit days come on the big exercise days, if i can burn 600-800 calories in a day, i can eat 300 or 400 more, and add 3-400 to my deficit, so run a higher one than i otherwise would. if i am not being super active then a 1000 calorie deficit would put me at risk because its just way too low. how to get a big deficit? work out! but if you work out, you do need to eat more, but you can do so and still create a bigger deficit. hope that made sense.

I'm one who can be hungry at a 500 cal deficit, but I also figure that the math is never exact and if I'm hungry, I should eat a little more--really a little, like 80 cals, and see if that helps. I'll eat more if I need to, but in small, measured portions so I'm not losing the success up to that point in the day.

I have made myself have constant snacks in between healthy some almonds, or handful of cheerios, or some fruit, etc. Evenings I have one slice of wheat toast with fat free butter. It's been more than 8 months and I hardly ever get hungery so the "blood sugar" info by GI Jane apparently makes sense.

6 Replies