Eating 1x day to stay under calories



  • WanderingRivers
    WanderingRivers Posts: 612 Member
    Suzid17 wrote: »
    If you like pasta, just try cooking your own....whatever type you like and maybe throw in a can of stewed tomatoes. That should help you keep more full and won't have all the sodium, etc. Try baking a couple of potatoes and nuking them up when you're hungry....they are better and you can usually get a bag of potatoes pretty cheap. But definitely cooking your own stuff is cheaper. GOOD LUCK!

    I don't keep stewed tomatoes in the house because DH hates them. (It's a texture thing.)

    If I make pasta for me, I usually melt some butter (real butter, not the fake stuff. It's one of the few things I splurge on) and sprinkle parm on it but that's not something I can do for work lunches.
  • nadler64
    nadler64 Posts: 124 Member
    edited January 2016
    First: NO DIET PILLS. I promise you'll regret it. Save your money and buy real food.

    Second, plan your meals in advance. If you budget your grocery money, budget your calories the same way.

    Third, lots of vegetables. Go easy on fruit as they are mostly sugar and will bump your carbs (and calories) up too high. And you must include at least 20g protein and some fat in every meal; they will help you stay satisfied (notice I didn't say full, just satisfied). Lowfat is baloney and WILL NOT help you lose weight. I do best on 40% carbs, 30% fat, and 30% protein per day (by calories, and I'm at 1200 to 1400 per day) - YMMV.

    Finally, know that it will take your body and your appetite some time to adjust to fewer calories and less food in your stomach. Give it at least a week. Keep in mind that this is a marathon, not a sprint. If you're looking to lose a lot of weight fast without medical supervision, you're setting yourself up for failure.

    Good luck.

    (If you're interested in seeing some of my daily logs to see how I do it, PM me. I've lost and kept off 25 pounds by doing it ^^this way^^.)
  • WanderingRivers
    WanderingRivers Posts: 612 Member
    Oh! Packets of tuna are usually around $1. Make a sandwich with that, light mayo, a little pickle relish, and pepper. Accompany that with some baked chips or veggies.

    I work in a small office. Tuna would NOT be a good idea.
  • nordlead2005
    nordlead2005 Posts: 1,303 Member
    edited January 2016
    Worst idea ever? I started tracking yesterday and thought I was doing OK only to see I was 300 calories over goal for the day. I am not even sure how to stay full on 1400 calories a day with a limited grocery budget. ($50/week) I am debating just not eating save for dinner and and getting some diet pills to crush my appetite.

    $50/week for 1 person is $7/day, or $2.38/meal, which honestly is pretty easy to hit (and more than I spend to feed myself). A cheese burger (~450 calories, less if you don't add mayo) is $0.65 for meat, $0.21 for cheese, $0.65 for bread, or $1.35, leaving plenty for toppings or side dishes. Granted, my prices would require you to freeze the meat and eat it often (to get better prices), but isn't unrealistic. You can then top off with a side salad with a light vinaigrette dressing for ~60 calories.

    is a good resource for ideas for food that is cheap and good.

    If you want to stay fuller longer, eat things that are higher in protein and fiber as they will probably keep you fuller than a carb heavy meal. I know that if I eat a muffin (almost 500 calories and all carbs) I'm hungry very quickly afterwards. If I eat a burger it lasts me a lot longer.

    EDIT: also, there is nothing wrong with 1 meal/day (essentially intermittent fasting), but if you need appetite suppressants to do it, then it isn't for you.
  • RobPA1
    RobPA1 Posts: 48 Member
    Ramen has a ridiculous amount of sodium. Not good for retaining water.
  • RobPA1
    RobPA1 Posts: 48 Member
    I find a handful of walnuts really curbs my appetite through the day.
  • erinproctor23
    erinproctor23 Posts: 1 Member
    One of the absolute BIGGEST things that has helped me stay full throughout the day is just drinking a lot of water. So many of us have heard how important it is to drink plenty of fluids, but sometimes I think we mistake thirst for hunger. For my average day, I typically have a protein drink for breakfast and don't eat anything else until lunch. In between, I have a 25oz bottle of water that I fill up and finish. I can honestly say I don't get hungry until that next meal. After lunch, I fill it up again, get another 25oz (2/3 of the water my body needs for the day, at this point) before I leave the office. If I can get more (maybe part of another fill up), I'm usually in good shape to not overeat at dinner! The only negative (since water is SUPER cheap) is that you may find yourself going to the restroom more often, so time yourself and pace! I've also found it helpful to get different water flavor enhancers, in case things get a little boring. Hope this helps! :)
  • rosebette
    rosebette Posts: 1,659 Member
    I have a family of 4 (3 big guys), and usually spend around $50 a person. I'm on around 1200 a day and have an open diary if you want to check out mine. I just came back from vacation, so I just started tracking again yesterday, but yesterday was pretty typical, except for the bagels (We bought tons of fresh bagels in Montreal that we have to get rid of, and if you're going lo-carb, I wouldn't recommend them). I usually have peanut butter on an English muffin or cereal for breakfast and half a sandwich with lean deli meat for lunch. If canned tuna turns off your co-workers, you can try canned chicken; in winter, I often bring microwavable soups, such as Healthy Choice or Campbell's Chunky Select. The Healthy Choice are around $2 to $2.50 a container and around 250 calories. The garden veggie is loaded with vegetables and much healthier than Ramen. Boneless chicken breasts and thighs are good for supper and often under $2.00 a lb.
  • NerineLuna
    NerineLuna Posts: 76 Member
    My usual lunch at the moment is 2 whole wheat wraps, one with peanut butter + apple slices (I like granny smith because they're slightly sour), one with chicken/turkey (those sandwich/deli slices) + bell pepper. You will use about half a small apple or half a bell pepper per wrap. The cost of peanut butter is rather negligible, and you can buy a whole bunch of whole wheat wraps once they're on sale. For those two wraps, I come in at about 400-500 calories, depending on how much butter and peanut butter you use.

    Quick totals and cost estimates:
    Let's say you're eating this every day - I would not recommend eating the same thing every day, but just for cost analysis - that's 7x2 = 14 wraps. So 3.5 bell peppers and 3.5 apples. Make that 7 apples so you can eat the other half of the apple together with your lunch, which will make you feel more filled without adding a whole lot of calories. One jar of peanut butter will last you a couple of weeks, and one package of sandwich/deli sliced chicken/turkey should probably last you a week as well.

    14 wraps = 3 dollars
    4 bell peppers = 2 dollar
    7 apples = 2 dollars
    chicken/turkey = 1 dollar
    1 jar of peanut butter = 2 dollars
    Total = 10 dollars, 8 if you already have the peanut butter.

    So depending on your local prices (and whether you can stock up on things like wraps and peanut butter during a sale), you would come in around the same price as your current ramen, a bit lower on calories, and on average just a whole lot healthier than plain ramen.
  • WanderingRivers
    WanderingRivers Posts: 612 Member
    I just feel frustrated because a) I have a budget that I have to stick with and b) I am the only person who is honestly trying to lose weight in the house so I have to cater to other people's food choices and try to lose weight which is why my brain tripped to eating only 1X/day and using appetite suppressants.
  • megomerrett
    megomerrett Posts: 442 Member
    Good response @joolsmd - I'm on 1200 a day (only just back but last time I was tracking I was on 1200 per day and eating 3 meals and snacks).

    Big question - are you exercising? I know some people will shout down this view but if you burn off say 200 on an exercise bike or jogging or whatever floats your boat that's more calories you can eat. CICO as they say.

    Eggs are cheap, filling and versatile.

    Cook up a big batch of something you love and freeze it in single portions, take it out as and when. Tinned chopped tomatoes are a great sauce base, low in calories, high in veg content (obviously). Ideas include:

    1.chorizo and bean stew (chorizo ring + tin of tomatoes + tin of mixed beans + 1 onion + 3 garlic cloves + paprika/chilli powder/seasoning)
    2. fish curry (cheap fish - whatever is local and available to you + tinned tomato + curry spices (cumin, coriander, garlic, ginger are favourites of mine) + optional fish stock cube)
    3. quorn mince chilli (quorn mince + tin of tomatoes + chilli powder + tinned beans)
    4. beef stew (cheap cuts of beef/stewing beef/whatever + tinned tomato + carrots, suede, parsnip, onion, garlic + stock + marmite (if you fancy it) + herbs (whatever's in the cupboard/garden + spoon of wholegrain or English mustard)

    Buy cheap cuts of meat - they work best in slow cooked stews which are also super filling. Use seasonal or frozen veg.

    Forget the diet pills. If it was as simple as that we'd all be on them.

    If you're only going to eat once a day (which sounds like my own personal idea of hell), 1400 is a helluva lot of calories to be throwing at one meal!

    One day is nothing but the idea of tracking is to spot where you eat/drink more than you think. 300 cal spread across the day can be done less drastically than cutting an entire meal (or two).
  • jacksonpt
    jacksonpt Posts: 10,413 Member
    Worst idea ever? I started tracking yesterday and thought I was doing OK only to see I was 300 calories over goal for the day. I am not even sure how to stay full on 1400 calories a day with a limited grocery budget. ($50/week) I am debating just not eating save for dinner and and getting some diet pills to crush my appetite.

    It's fine... there are a lot of people who do this type of thing. Look up Intermittent Fasting.

    On a side note, if you've only started tracking yesterday, give yourself some time. You'll get the feel for how to manage your cals. Also, try prelogging food in teh morning to see how your day will shape up. You can move foods around and swap foods in and out based on what you want and your calorie/macro needs. When you've got it all set, you have your plan for the day.
  • dergit
    dergit Posts: 1 Member
    edited January 2016
    It's called "intermittent fasting" and is a legitimate way of eating although it may lead to larger hormonal fluctuations in women than men which is why some women quit it after a short while and men can find it easier to stick to. It has largely been popularised under the name "lean gains" and since been picked up by many bodybuilders year-round or during their cut phases...

    Basically, you eat all your calories in an eating window (say, 6-8 hours) and fast during the rest of a 24 hour period. It used to be called "skipping breakfast" but there's a lot more science and bro science around it now.

    Some studies suggest it boosts HGH production and cortisol, others say it has virtually no effect on you whatsoever, neither beneficial nor detrimental. I've yet to see convincing evidence of slowed metabolisms etc. from not eating for a few hours...

    Meal timing has been largely debunked (eat right before bed if that's your thing, it doesn't matter... also, don't worry about getting your protein right after working out etc...) so eating all your calories and macros in one big meal results in the same as eating it in six small prepped meals.

    It's very hard to over-eat in one meal, though... so if nothing else, IF is a way of making restricting calories easier for some. Black coffee, sparkling water and small snacks (fruits, nuts) can help getting used to not eating during the day and pushing that meal further into the day.

    For me (80kg, male, 29, 187cm), black coffee for breakfast, an apple or a banana sometime before lunch, a small lunch (600-800 kcal) and a large dinner (1.000-1.200 kcal) at 7pm or so have been an easy way of maintaining a healthy deficit (100-400 kcal every day) for the last six months. My friend is exactly the other way round though: She doesn't really eat dinner except for some snacking but needs a large breakfast "to start the day". I'd be miserable around the clock if I ate 6 * 300 kcal during the day or something... Going to bed hungry is not something I can do.

    No matter how you eat... raising TDEE by working out (doesn't have to be in a gym: bodyweight exercises, go for walks, do HIIT are three free and effective options) is your best bet at being able to eat to satisfaction and lose weight. You can't outrun a bad diet but you can raise your daily allowance considerably.

    And: start with a small deficit. If your daily expenditure is 1.800, don't go for 1.400 right away. Cut 10-15 % and see what happens... (weigh yourself every day and take averages to eliminate water weight fluctuations). The numbers calculated by myfitnesspal and other formulas are just estimates and for orientation, they don't know your exact body, lifestyle and metabolism. If nothing happens, cut 10 % more but never go below your BMR (unless you're already at a very low body fat percentage and know exactly what you're doing). Small incremental adjustments work much better than throwing everything at your metabolism and giving up after a month or two.

    Whatever works for you... skip the pills, though.
  • gkirbyw
    gkirbyw Posts: 15 Member
    My office doesn't have a microwave, and like you am trying to keep costs down without smelling the office out at lunch times. Take a look at my lunch today (chicken & chorizo sarnie with a small amount of butter on one slice) which was good and not too calorific yet filling. You could have cold pasta with a mix-in sauce from home. You could make a frittata (onion, peppers, new potatoes, or whatever you like) which are very low cal and can be served with some salad or just on its own (these can be eaten cold).

    I find it easier to skip breakfast (bad i know) because i get hungrier in the afternoons. I just have an options hot chocolate (40cal) for breakfast to keep me going. You can make a good dinner with very little calories. My favourite is mashed potato with only a tiny tiny amount of butter/milk and with lots of salt. Someone told me when you crave butter it is just the salt you really crave :) Add more salt to foods if you are finding things bland.

    Also I have my freezer stocked full of ready meals Asda/Tesco/Morrisons are good and do £1 ready meals which is an easy way to control your calories especially for the lazy cooker.

    Also I hate water and love juices. I am swapping juices for diluted squash, which I drink from a glass instead of a bottle as I find it subconsciously makes me drink more. I am also having more veg than fruit because fruit is sugary. :):):)

    A good snack is weight watchers chocolate pots (chocolate yoghurts), or cooked chicken or I sometimes have a mug of cereal if I am hungry between meals.
  • SingRunTing
    SingRunTing Posts: 2,604 Member
    Skip the diet pills. They can range anywhere from useless to harmful. Please don't take them.

    1 meal a day is fine if that works for you. Some people would prefer to eat once a day and stuff themselves because they like that full feeling rather than eating a little all day. It is a form of intermittent fasting, so read up on that if you are serious about trying it.

    Other than that you mention that you are struggling to eat because you eat with other family members. Why can't you eat what they are eating and just control your portion sizes? When I started out, I didn't change WHAT I ate, just HOW MUCH of it I ate. As I got further along, my diet has changed somewhat and my husband doesn't mind the healthier foods either. But it was a gradual shift, not an overnight overhaul.
  • babyseal_24
    babyseal_24 Posts: 26 Member
    The best way to eat cheap is by buying bulk rice and dried beans and seasoning them to suit your taste. Brown rice is better for you and soaking it makes it even healthier, so soak both of them the night before. It's got plenty of protein.

    We recently started making our own yogurt in our crockpot. Heat one gallon of milk until it's almost boiling, let it cool down, add about 1/4 cup of live yogurt- it'll say "live active cultures" in the ingredients, we use Chobani or Fage, but it's a personal taste thing- and stick it in a slow cooker on warm overnight. As long as you use the same type of milk as the yogurt- 0% milk for 0% yogurt- the calories will be the same as on the original container. Yogurt is really full of protein and really good for you.

    Buy big bags of carrots. They're also cheap and last FOREVER. You can also buy the sale fruit and either eat it immediately or freeze it and add it to smoothies.

    Potatoes aren't actually bad for you - people just feel the need to add a bunch of stuff to them to make them tasty. It's really easy to pop a potato in the microwave for a few minutes and add a dollop of greek yogurt (trust me on this one).

    Try not to buy box meals like Hamburger Helper or mac 'n cheese too often - they're full of sodium, which is easy to get addicted to and makes everything else bland tasting. Seriously, go a week without eating anything super salty and you'll feel much better about eating bland food.
  • Jacwhite22
    Jacwhite22 Posts: 7,015 Member
    Do what you want. If you want to eat 1 meal eat 1 meal. If you want to eat 20 meals eat 20 meals. Doesn't really matter metabolically speaking.
  • jessicarobinson00
    jessicarobinson00 Posts: 414 Member
    There are ways to really draw out $50/week, but sometimes you need to meal plan. I usually take our local flier and build menus from the sale if pork chops are what's on sale, we have pork chops, sweet potato, and peas..if chicken is on sale: lemon pepper with steamed carrots and onions.
    **In my opinion chicken and frozen veggies are the best bang for your buck.
    Some meal ideas: Breakfast: Eggs ($1.99/18 count) and toast ($1.99/loaf) Grapefruit/oranges for fruit... Lunch: Tuna w/ wheat thins (the individual sweet/spicy tuna $1.00/pack and they are awesome), sardines $.88/pack, roast beef (1lb pack is $2.98). Dinner: 5 lb bag of chicken tenderloin: $10.98, bag of carrots $.99, portabello mushrooms $1.98/pack, frozen broccoli/peas $.98 (I add a bag to nearly EVERYTHING I make as a filler).
  • nordlead2005
    nordlead2005 Posts: 1,303 Member
    I just feel frustrated because a) I have a budget that I have to stick with and b) I am the only person who is honestly trying to lose weight in the house so I have to cater to other people's food choices and try to lose weight which is why my brain tripped to eating only 1X/day and using appetite suppressants.

    Unless their food choices are things that won't keep you full (like I said, muffins for me), then just eat less of whatever they eat. I eat all the same things everyone else in my family eats. I eat the same things that my parents eat when I go over their house. When I'm over my parents I pick what I want to eat and serve myself, so I often pass on the bread or carb heavy side dishes and fill up on the protein and fat sources.

    Also, I'm not no carb, but you could classify me as low carb. About 35% of my daily calories come from carbs while I'm eating at a deficit. It gets closer to 45-50% if I'm eating at maintenance (basically, when I allow myself more snacks I choose carbs).
  • vczK2t
    vczK2t Posts: 309 Member
    $50/week would allow you to get a LOT of good foods that you can make, NOT ramen noodles. is it just you? if yes, then you have NO excuse for eating 2 ramen noodles and only 1 meal. you can plan meals and snacks and get really good stuff for $50/week. Heck, me and my husband have a budget of $50/week and we make it work easily.