Wondering how much is too little?

So I'm eating healthy stuff throughout the day, but it's low cal. If I get to the end of the day and I'm under 1200 is that going to hurt me or will I actually just lose weight the less calories I eat no matter what. I figure as long as my activity stays the same shouldn't I be able to eat around 800 and lose weight at a nice rate? (I still eat up to 1500 some days but am trying to stay at 1000.)

Replies

  • missiontofitness
    missiontofitness Posts: 4,074 Member
    FatPixiee wrote: »
    So I'm eating healthy stuff throughout the day, but it's low cal. If I get to the end of the day and I'm under 1200 is that going to hurt me or will I actually just lose weight the less calories I eat no matter what. I figure as long as my activity stays the same shouldn't I be able to eat around 800 and lose weight at a nice rate? (I still eat up to 1500 some days but am trying to stay at 1000.)

    800 is not sustainable or healthy for keeping up basic bodily functions. Bodies need fuel to breathe, pump blood, ect. You may feel "fine" now, but it will catch up to you. You cannot meet your nutritional needs with that amount. Minimal amount of calories per day advised is 1,200. 800 per day is advised under strict doctor supervision/recommendation only, and only for the morbidly obese.
  • atypicalsmith
    atypicalsmith Posts: 2,742 Member
    What are you eating that is healthy that will allow you to only eat 800 calories a day?
  • AllOutof_Bubblegum
    AllOutof_Bubblegum Posts: 3,646 Member
    Yes, eating too little certainly CAN hurt you. Aside from setting you up for massive binges later on after you've restricted your diet too long, a diet under 1,200 calories can cause lean muscle loss, chronic fatigue, bad skin/hair/nails/sex drive, as well as lowering your BMR (the minimum number of calories you need to keep your organs functioning) to an unsustainably low number. Meaning you can actually train your metabolism to need less to function, and you'll gain weight like crazy once you start eating normal amounts of food.
  • TnTWalter
    TnTWalter Posts: 345 Member
    make sure you log it. sometimes i think i did really well until i add it up...so log as you go. and i agree with others, not good for you long term.
  • livingleanlivingclean
    livingleanlivingclean Posts: 11,755 Member
    Fat is healthy. And vital. Eat more of that.

    (I'm guessing you're not as it's calorie dense)
  • Whitezombiegirl
    Whitezombiegirl Posts: 1,044 Member
    you'll gain weight like crazy once you start eating normal amounts of food.

    Whilst I don't condone chronic under-eating there are extended periods of time when I have eaten very low cals- and when returning to 'normal cals', I didn't gain weight any faster (or in greater amounts) than I lost it. An excess of 3500 cals is still about 1lb of fat (or there abouts). The VLC did'nt actually change my metabolism to make me gain more than I would have eating an excess than before the 'diet'.

  • runrascal
    runrascal Posts: 53 Member
    Yes, eating too little certainly CAN hurt you. Aside from setting you up for massive binges later on after you've restricted your diet too long, a diet under 1,200 calories can cause lean muscle loss, chronic fatigue, bad skin/hair/nails/sex drive, as well as lowering your BMR (the minimum number of calories you need to keep your organs functioning) to an unsustainably low number. Meaning you can actually train your metabolism to need less to function, and you'll gain weight like crazy once you start eating normal amounts of food.

    Erm... not sure this is factually correct. Your BMR is determined by your body mass and age, so reducing weight will reduce BMR by definition. The BMR indicates your bodies minimal calorie requirement per day to keep going and is not affected by your calorie intake, unless that lowers your weight. If you eat less than your BMR requires then your body burns body fat to make up the energy deficit - and that is how you lose body fat. You cannot train your body to need less to function, it just needs what it needs.
  • Sued0nim
    Sued0nim Posts: 17,456 Member
    edited June 2015
    FatPixiee wrote: »
    So I'm eating healthy stuff throughout the day, but it's low cal. If I get to the end of the day and I'm under 1200 is that going to hurt me or will I actually just lose weight the less calories I eat no matter what. I figure as long as my activity stays the same shouldn't I be able to eat around 800 and lose weight at a nice rate? (I still eat up to 1500 some days but am trying to stay at 1000.)

    Are you hitting your protein and fat macros as a minimum?

    Are you getting a wide range of nutrients? Like iron, potassium, Vitamins, calcium, minerals etc

    If you stick at 800 calories a day you will basically be in a diet that will strip your body of LBM far faster than is necessary and may lead to hair, skin, nail problems, fatigue, irritability, hormonal issues, mood swings, gallstones, liver impairment, kidney issues, formation of gallstones (really painful), eventual osteoperosis, blood pressure issues, heart conditions and in some cases death

    so do you think that might be a bad idea?
  • FatPixiee
    FatPixiee Posts: 59 Member
    Well it's more like sometimes I just find myself at the end of the day and I haven't eaten that much. Like days where I mostly eat vegetables. And I don't want to just pile it all on at the end of the day. Those are some good points. And the fat thing, yes, I 've seen that keep people from losing weight until they upped the fat intake. It's hard to eat the normal amount every day. I'm so prone to binging it's like I want no food or I want ALL THE FOOD. I'll talk to my doctor about it. I have an appointment soon, so yeah I'll bring this up. Maybe I just need to pre plan exactly what I'm going to eat each week. Thanks y'all.
  • strong_curves
    strong_curves Posts: 2,229 Member
    Pre-planning will help you. Also, if you aren't using a food scale you're probably eating more than 800 calories anyway.
  • TeaBea
    TeaBea Posts: 14,517 Member
    edited June 2015
    FatPixiee wrote: »
    So I'm eating healthy stuff throughout the day, but it's low cal. If I get to the end of the day and I'm under 1200 is that going to hurt me or will I actually just lose weight the less calories I eat no matter what. I figure as long as my activity stays the same shouldn't I be able to eat around 800 and lose weight at a nice rate? (I still eat up to 1500 some days but am trying to stay at 1000.)

    800 is not sustainable or healthy for keeping up basic bodily functions. Bodies need fuel to breathe, pump blood, ect. You may feel "fine" now, but it will catch up to you. You cannot meet your nutritional needs with that amount. Minimal amount of calories per day advised is 1,200. 800 per day is advised under strict doctor supervision/recommendation only, and only for the morbidly obese.

    This^

    Is your diet medically supervised? If not, then you are not adequately fueling your body.

    1200 (net) is the lowest minimum MFP recommends. If you are having trouble reaching 1200 then you have a very limited view of what "healthy" foods are. Calorie dense foods have small portions, but lots of calories. Nuts, nut butters, avocado, olive oil, full fat dairy, eggs.....add some of these and you will have no trouble meeting 1200.

    Your comment "days where you eat mostly vegetables"....those would be days that you aren't meeting protein goals. Protein is so important for bodily functions (blood, cells, muscles).
  • Kalikel
    Kalikel Posts: 9,626 Member
    My body is just hungrier on some days and less hungry on others. I've been paying attention to it for a couple years. I had and have a lot of weight to lose, so I've gotten to know me and my eating very well.

    Since the end game is always on my mind and I do not plan to be weighing out raisins and nuts for the rest of my life, I practice eating to my hunger. That's what I'm going to do when this calorie-counting insanity ends, so I work on it now. I have days where I don't count, but guess and pay attention, too. End game, end game, end game, lol.

    I have my 800 days and my 1800 days. A lot more under my goal than over, but it fluctuates.

    Pay attention to things like which foods have more or less calories than you'd have guessed and what size a portion looks like. Notice which foods and drinks, if any, cause you to crave things. If you binged, why? Were you starving? Do you have emotional issues? Make mental (or physical) notes about which foods make you feel fuller.

    Everyone is different. A lot of people swear that fat makes them feel fullest. For me, it's fiber, for sure.

    Some people find that if they eliminate foods from their diet, they will later have a breakdown and binge on it, so they eat those things on a regular basis - keep it steady! Others find that eliminating is much easier - out of sight, out of mind!

    As you go along, you'll learn a lot and be able to make changes that help you be even more successful. :)