Calorie Query

I have been told that 1200 is the minimum calorie intake for women to prevent her body from going into a starvation mode.
I have been making sure I stay above this but below the 1690 MFP says I can have.
Now, if I start to really work out and burn calories doesn't that up the minimum that I must intake? Logic tells me that if I intake 1500 but burn 500 I am now below what my body needs to keep it healthy.
My biggest fear right now is that I am going to start burning more calories then my poor tummy can hold.
Is my thinking clear or am I totally off on this train of thought?


  • 1200 isn't really the minimum caloric intake you should have. The problem is that MFP has to use generalized statistics to figure out numbers, and when you get that low using (essentially) generic data the people that stray significantly from the bell curve can end up with really bad answers. Since really bad answers can have significant effects on your health, 1200 is the lowest MFP (and most people on the site) will tell you to go. Definitely below that I would be careful, and get feedback and okay from your doctor before doing so.

    Exercise calories should probably be eaten back at a rate of something like 75-80%. Frankly, caloric estimates on food always trend a little low, and caloric burn estimates on exercise (and especially the estimates equipment give you) trend really high. So take the actual numbers with a grain of salt.

    There are lots of snacks that are relatively caloric but good for you. Things like nuts and fruits can give you bursts of calories but also help with nutrient requirements. You can find a lot of suggestions around here.