The Calorie Deficit

Okay, so I get the Calorie Deficit. I am on 1200 per day so in theory let's say on a day I don't work out I used 1700 (I have a pretty sedentary job in an office). So I am in Deficit 500 calories right?

Now I work out 20-30 mins six days a week on max workouts plus my sword fighting. So let's say I have now used 2,200 calories this day.

I have 1,000 extra calories I have used. Will this cause me to lose weight or will this put me into starvation mode?

Because I know if you are burning too many calories and not taking in enough your body goes into starvation mode and begins to retain calories. But is this only if you go under your BMR?
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Replies

  • malibu927
    malibu927 Posts: 17,568 Member
    Starvation mode does not exist. 1200 and eating back your exercise calories is more about getting in the proper nutrition you need to keep your body running. However, you can't exactly guarantee you burned 500 calories working out, as MFP and machines tend to overestimate calories burned. This is why most people only eat back 50-75% of their exercise calories.
  • PapaverSomniferum
    PapaverSomniferum Posts: 2,677 Member
    Yep. Starvation mode is a myth. Don't worry about it.
  • erindunphy
    erindunphy Posts: 46 Member
    As long as you have a deficit at all you will lose weight! It's true, starvation mode is a myth :) However if you have TOO much of a calorie deficit, you run a higher risk of burning muscle instead of fat. We tend to overestimate our calories burned and underestimate calories consumed, but as long as you're seeing progress, then keep doing what works for you! :D
  • Charliecatesq
    Charliecatesq Posts: 100 Member
    How do you all know its a myth? Was there a paper? Genuine question if not clear!
  • TimothyFish
    TimothyFish Posts: 4,925 Member
    The first law of thermodynamics requires that if you burned more calories than you ate that the energy has to come from somewhere, so that means it would result in weight loss. "Starvation mode" just means that your body doesn't have enough energy to function properly. Basically, you would lose weight more slowly because you aren't able to do the exercises needed to burn the extra calories, not because your body is retaining calories.
  • malibu927
    malibu927 Posts: 17,568 Member
    How do you all know its a myth? Was there a paper? Genuine question if not clear!

    If you're only eating 700-800 calories a day, you're still going to lose weight. You don't get fat being malnourished (well, you do if you're eating nothing but junk food actually, but that's another story).
  • Liftng4Lis
    Liftng4Lis Posts: 15,151 Member
    Starvation mode is a myth and you should be eating half, (gives room for miscalculations) of your exercise calories back. Would you still lose weight with a bigger deficit? YES, but remember the winner here loses weight while eating the most.
  • ndj1979
    ndj1979 Posts: 29,148 Member
    starvation mode as espoused on certain MFP threads is a myth ..starvation mode in the real world is a real thing..

    for example - someone says " I skipped breakfast, now I am in starvation mode" = myth; or, "I only ate 1000 calorie today I am in starvation mode" = myth ..

    in the real world, you would have to eat nothing for at least a week to go into starvation mode and even then you still might not be in it; or, you would have to chronically under eat like 500 calories a day for a long time and then you would be in starvation mode. Think starving people in Africa or holocaust survivors…..

    In reality, what most people will suffer is metabolic adaptation where you chronically understand it lowers your metabolism. So if you lose on say 1500 a day, but for some dumb reason only eat 500 a day for six months or something, then your metabolism will slow down to where you would lose at 1000 a day or something like that...
  • ndj1979
    ndj1979 Posts: 29,148 Member
    ndj1979 wrote: »
    starvation mode as espoused on certain MFP threads is a myth ..starvation mode in the real world is a real thing..

    for example - someone says " I skipped breakfast, now I am in starvation mode" = myth; or, "I only ate 1000 calorie today I am in starvation mode" = myth ..

    in the real world, you would have to eat nothing for at least a week to go into starvation mode and even then you still might not be in it; or, you would have to chronically under eat like 500 calories a day for a long time and then you would be in starvation mode. Think starving people in Africa or holocaust survivors…..

    In reality, what most people will suffer is metabolic adaptation where you chronically understand it lowers your metabolism. So if you lose on say 1500 a day, but for some dumb reason only eat 500 a day for six months or something, then your metabolism will slow down to where you would lose at 1000 a day or something like that...

    that's still not starvation mode...

    well that is my understanding of it ..

    so feel free to clarify …

  • sheldonklein
    sheldonklein Posts: 854 Member
    edited November 2014
    Forget the starvation mode label. Is calorie deficit subject to diminishing or negative returns, and if so, under what conditions? Science preferred over folk wisdom.
  • njmark72
    njmark72 Posts: 99 Member
    Here's the deal.... The less calories over time your body takes in the less calories your body will require and the less calories it will burn. You cannot just keep losing and losing at the same rate. Eventually you will slow down. The trick is to keep your inner-motor running and burning up those calories you are taking in. Experiment, find the balance that is right for you, its different for everyone.

    Good luck.
    Mark
  • Sued0nim
    Sued0nim Posts: 17,456 Member
    to answer your question

    check over the week that you're in defecit - it doesn't matter day to day - but in general weekly you should stick to it

    the app reports are great for this - because they show the last 7 days, plus give you a daily average, plus tell you exactly how many calories you are under / over by against your target calories - I check them daily to make sure I have enough calories for treats and nights out each week
  • TimothyFish
    TimothyFish Posts: 4,925 Member
    starvation mode is a myth

    Oddly enough, there are plenty of medical professionals who would disagree with that statement. That fact is, our bodies do try to conserve energy when we aren't eating enough. For example, if you don't eat enough, you might sleep more than usual. The real problem is that people have created this mythical concept in which the body stores fat, no matter how little we eat and how much we exercise. That isn't possible.
  • Wronkletoad
    Wronkletoad Posts: 368 Member
    Oddly enough, there are plenty of medical professionals who would disagree with that statement.

    hey Timothy - legit question - this is actually one of the "work conversations" of the morning, and medscape, science based medicine, etc aren't cooperating. which publications / sources for med profs who disagree - there's a bet (which they've just changed) now! (morning excitement!)
  • ndj1979
    ndj1979 Posts: 29,148 Member
    herrspoons wrote: »
    Starvation mode, or, more correctly, starvation response, only occurs when you have depleted your body of glucose, fatty acids, and then fat.

    For the purpose of dieting, it's a myth.

    agree ...

    but, for people that have pro-longed starvation it does in fact exist...or would you not agree with that? Just curious ...
  • Medilia
    Medilia Posts: 230 Member
    Okay so can someone answer the question instead of debating starvation mode lol?

    I will pose it differently. My BMR is 1200 - in theory my diet is already 500 deficit if I was to make it another 500 Deficit (1,000) Do I need to eat back any calories?
  • acorsaut89
    acorsaut89 Posts: 1,147 Member
    ndj1979 wrote: »
    starvation mode as espoused on certain MFP threads is a myth ..starvation mode in the real world is a real thing..

    for example - someone says " I skipped breakfast, now I am in starvation mode" = myth; or, "I only ate 1000 calorie today I am in starvation mode" = myth ..

    in the real world, you would have to eat nothing for at least a week to go into starvation mode and even then you still might not be in it; or, you would have to chronically under eat like 500 calories a day for a long time and then you would be in starvation mode. Think starving people in Africa or holocaust survivors…..

    In reality, what most people will suffer is metabolic adaptation where you chronically understand it lowers your metabolism. So if you lose on say 1500 a day, but for some dumb reason only eat 500 a day for six months or something, then your metabolism will slow down to where you would lose at 1000 a day or something like that...

    But in the case you're talking about - isn't that survival mode? Like holocaust survivors, when they were liberated the pictures of them looked like pretty much thinly veiled skeletons. I don't think that shut down function and this one the OP is talking about are both starvation mode. Or is (genuine)starvation mode and survival mode the same thing? I don't know a lot about it, so I'm just asking.
  • ndj1979
    ndj1979 Posts: 29,148 Member
    Medilia wrote: »
    Okay so can someone answer the question instead of debating starvation mode lol?

    I will pose it differently. My BMR is 1200 - in theory my diet is already 500 deficit if I was to make it another 500 Deficit (1,000) Do I need to eat back any calories?

    are you saying that 1200 is a 500 calorie deficit for you ..? So you maintain at 1700? Your question is not t hat clear..

    If you reduce another 500 then you would only be eating 700 calories a day and that is not considered safe and you will definitely damage your metabolism...
  • acorsaut89
    acorsaut89 Posts: 1,147 Member
    edited November 2014
    Medilia wrote: »
    Okay so can someone answer the question instead of debating starvation mode lol?

    I will pose it differently. My BMR is 1200 - in theory my diet is already 500 deficit if I was to make it another 500 Deficit (1,000) Do I need to eat back any calories?

    You should, here's why.

    If you eat 1,200 calories but you burn another 500 ish from exercise then you're only netting 700 calories. When you net below a certain number of calories, you start to lose lean body mass or LBM and you can experience symptoms of VLC (very low calorie) diets such as hair loss, loss of energy, and over the very long term the same effects those who have dealt with anorexia for a sufficient period of time. You should net 1,200 calories if that's what you're aiming for.

    But please take that with a grain of salt because I know nothing about your other stats: how tall are you, how much you weigh, what you want to weigh, what kind of exercise you can commit to, etc. More information is really needed, and I'm not asking you to disclose your personal stats I'm just letting you know it's hard to tell when you really don't know the whole picture.

    Also, start measuring your food. You might find that you're consuming more than you think you are and this could hinder progress for it, especially when you have such tight margins for food intake.

    Finally, your profile says you want to lose 56KG or 123lbs. That's a big amount of weight to lose. So I would hinder a guess that your middle + of the 200lb - 300 lb range. With this in mind, you didn't gain that weight overnight right? You've more than likely been eating at a very high level of intake for quite some time. With this in mind, why are you cutting so drastically? If you are used to say, 3,000 calories/day which you may have been eating and not even known it, then if you start by cutting to 2,500 and then to 2,000 and so on you'll probably see quicker results.

    I'm 5'9, I weigh 250lbs and my TDEE is approx 2600 and my BMR is just under 2000. I eat at 2000 every day and I'm losing so I think maybe recalcuate these numbers? OR you want to lose an unrealistic amount of weight . . . . one or the other.

    As you can see with the photo I added, you'd have to be 5'0 and 125lbs for your BMR to be even close to 1200. I don't think you want to weigh 2lbs? I think if you re-calculate your numbers, you'd get a much better number you'll probably be able to maintain more. Also, look at your TDEE and subtract anywhere from 15-20% of that number to lose - 20% for aggressive weight loss.

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  • ndj1979
    ndj1979 Posts: 29,148 Member
    acorsaut89 wrote: »
    ndj1979 wrote: »
    starvation mode as espoused on certain MFP threads is a myth ..starvation mode in the real world is a real thing..

    for example - someone says " I skipped breakfast, now I am in starvation mode" = myth; or, "I only ate 1000 calorie today I am in starvation mode" = myth ..

    in the real world, you would have to eat nothing for at least a week to go into starvation mode and even then you still might not be in it; or, you would have to chronically under eat like 500 calories a day for a long time and then you would be in starvation mode. Think starving people in Africa or holocaust survivors…..

    In reality, what most people will suffer is metabolic adaptation where you chronically understand it lowers your metabolism. So if you lose on say 1500 a day, but for some dumb reason only eat 500 a day for six months or something, then your metabolism will slow down to where you would lose at 1000 a day or something like that...

    But in the case you're talking about - isn't that survival mode? Like holocaust survivors, when they were liberated the pictures of them looked like pretty much thinly veiled skeletons. I don't think that shut down function and this one the OP is talking about are both starvation mode. Or is (genuine)starvation mode and survival mode the same thing? I don't know a lot about it, so I'm just asking.

    My understanding of starvation mode is when your body starts canabalizing muscle for energy ..so if you do not eat for a pro-longed amount of time then your body will start turning on itself for energy ..