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Weight Loss
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Recovery from starvation mode?

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how long do you think my body will take to come back to normal metabolism after the long starvation mode I imposed on him (mostly 800-1000 calories a day for 6 months and lots of gym). I've been eating a lot more (around 1400-1500 cals) everyday since 2 weeks and I slowed down the gym. Are 2 weeks enough to heal my metabolism? What do you think? I've been weighing myself everyday (I know it's too much  but it helps me stay on track) and I'm pretty much the same weight. I want to lose 4-5 more pounds but in a healthy way. What do you think?
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Two weeks isn't enough time, and how do you  know you're eating enough calories to keep out of starvation mode right now?  In order to figure that out, tell me your height, weight, your sex, and how many calories you're consuming now...and what your exercise activities are like.

You didn't screw your metabolism up overnight, so it's not going to repair itself that quickly, either.  Patience, exercise, and a correctly balanced diet are your friend in this case.

FYI....600 calories is considered medical starvation.  Women shouldn't dip below 1200 calories, and 1800 for men.

The more pressing question: Is your current intake enough to bring your metabolic rate back to normal? It depends on your age, height, weight, and level of activity. I suspect that if you're still working out regularly, and are young, that it may not be quite enough.
EDIT: I just looked at your profile: you're 5 feet tall (and a half, yes, I know people feel protective about that half), 120 lbs and 29 years old. You'll probably be OK on 1500 calories a day, and you will lose slowly but steadily.

It's normal to be the same weight after only eating healthily for two weeks. Your metabolism is ramping back up slowly because you are still restricting calories. If you eat at maintenance level, it takes about two weeks for the metabolism to return... so with a calorie deficit, it presumably takes a little longer. Honestly, if you were happy enough working out more, it's always best to eat more and exercise more - maybe you could go back to your previous gym routine and eat 1800 calories a day!

Thanks, I'll definitely eat more, i've realized that 1400-1500 may not be enough. I was thinking to do it gradually though. Since the first week, I was eating more like 1200-1300, now I'm more at 1400-1500, next week 1600-1700 and I should be good at that stage no? I lost 40 pounds over almost 2 years and I don't want to put it back!!! I really feel comfortable now at this weight and I'm scared of eating more. Yesterday I ate about 2000 calories and this morning my scale knew it!

The other reason I don't want to put on weight is that I'm getting married in May and my wedding dress is ready, so I need it to fit! I don't want to have to go to one of these reality shows, like Bulging brides or any stuff like that!!!!

600 cals is medical starvation???? Wow, last May one of my friend and I went to a doctor to follow a protein diet. She was eating 500 calories a day (under supervision) and me I was at 800 calories. For the firt couple of days, I felt dizzy and talked to the doctor about it, she did not tell me about the risks of screwing up my metabolism. Since I've been a member on CC, I can't believe the things I'm learning!!! I always thought that eating less and spending more would equal weight loss, I just can't believe a doctor would not tell you about this before you do such a drastic diet.

I did this protein thing to lose a bit faster because I got discouraged. Before I was followed by a nutritionnist who would refuse to weigh me and calculate the calories. Under her supervision, I loste 18 pounds in 6 months but it was not enough for me!!! After looking back at what I put my body through, I just can't believe it!!! Anyway, thanks a lot for all your answers, even though it's scary to eat more, I know it's the right way to go!


Just wanted to get some more input on this topic =)

have you done protein diet before?
No. I havent. I just count cals and stick to eating Healthy. Hopefully someone can give us some more answers on Starvation mode.
I just started a new forum (protein diets: GOOD or BAD?), hope to get some answers there!
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You'd think doctors would pay attention to such things, but they often don't.  I wish I knew why since it's basic.  Taking you below your BMR was dumb on their part, and when you do that, your body will cannibalize muscle tissue to fuel the body. 

Maybe it's as simple as they're tired of recommending a balanced diet and exercise.  They logically know these things, but people are much too impatient when it comes to weight loss.  A doctor knows from daily beat downs from his/her patients that the fat person doesn't want to hear "lose some weight", they know every day their patients want to lose weight FAST and often don't care about the risks associated with crash diets.

With high protein diets, you must drink a lot of water.  They can also lead to strong headaches, so you're better off going more with a macronutrient ratio of 45% carbs, 35% protein, and 20% fat. 

Starvation mode is any time you dip below the basic level of calories needed to sustain life as a couch potato.  You need X number of calories to pump blood, to think, to sleep, to digest, to dip below those, and your body assumes there's no food, so it puts a "lock" on your fat stores because fat is nothing but stored energy you've yet to burn.  It is hard wired into your DNA and is meant to keep you alive until a source of food becomes available.  It was necessary with the hunter/gatherer forefathers, but now all we have to do is head to the grocery store.  If you keep the "lock" on the fat stores, the body will break down muscle tissue and use that as a fuel source before it dips too drastically into the fat stores.

Ever notice a lot of anorexics die of heart attacks?  That's because the heart's a muscle, too.  It's not immune from being used as a food source in starvation mode.  ALL muscle tissue is game when your body's hungry. 

You want to preserve lean muscle because it burns more calories.  You want to lose fat.  If you want to lose muscle, then starvation mode is the way to go.  If you want to lose fat, get out of starvation mode and eat enough calories for your BMR, your workouts, and then subtract no more than 20% from your calorie intake.  Any higher cuts and you risk going back into starvation mode.

The question is how long does it take to get the body out of starvation mode and ready to lose weight again? weeks, months years, anyone know a time frame?
Wow, thanks, you sure know a lot about this stuff. I love this website, it's so usefull! Thank you again
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