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26.08.2015
Before you ever start calculating protein, carbohydrate, and fat ratios, and before you ever start setting calorie intakes, you need to focus on the quality of the food that’s going into your mouth. If you’re going to restrict your calorie intake, while simultaneously not eating a predominantly whole food diet, you are going to be severely lacking in nutrients. As you add in more and more healthy foods, the ability to eat the processed foods that made up the majority of your past diet starts to get pushed out. The cravings start to subside, and before you know it, your diet has slowly made the shift from predominantly processed foods, to majority whole foods. However, there may come a time when you want to lower your body fat from an already low percentage to an even lower one, and to do that, you might have to get a little more meticulous with your diet.
Read here to see how to determine correct portion sizes for weight loss without counting calories. Love this- if only we could everybody to take heed of this and stop jumping on and off the diet treadmill.
It might be a good idea to count the calories at first, when you begin to change your lifestyle.. Well, the possibilities are endless, but I like to mix my protein powder with frozen fruit and make a smoothie. When most people start dieting, they slash their calories and add a large amount of exercise to their daily routine.
Slows down thyroid production – Your thyroid is responsible for fat, carbohydrate, and protein metabolism, among other things. Lowers testosterone levels – An important hormone for both men and women, testosterone is just one of many hormones that are affected with severe calorie restriction [2]. Experiment – I laid out a plan to determine this number in – How Many Calories Should I Eat? And then there are the intangibles to eating higher calories – reduced hunger and cravings, improved mood, additional nutrients, and improved adherence to your plan.
Many people drastically cut calories to lose weight, however, as this article states, that is a self defeating plan. Question though- what about when you try to up your calories to fix it and you gain back crazy amounts of weight?
I didn’t stop though, because I had people making sure I was eating, etc, and a few months later got pregnant.
I have a similar situation and have no thyroid issues and mostly eat nutritional foods but am stuck unless I do the extreme and go below 1200 calories which is not recommended for long term. At your current size calories are going to have to be fairly low to lose more weight, especially if you only exercise 1-2 times per week. I never lost weight no matter what I tried except now…i eat every 3 hours, I have tricked my body into releasing my fat. I wish I would have realized then that I was simply creating too large of a calorie deficit and my body was compensating. I once did 1500 calories for about 18 months combined with approximately 80min of exercise daily between weights and cardio (3 days weights +45min, 4 days 80 min cycling). However the last 3 months were spent bouncing between 189-192lbs and I was extremely frustrated so I gave up, I eventually ended back up to 260lbs. Like the OP stated, it may be fine for a little while, weeks p, maybe even months, but then you hit a plateau and can’t do it anymore. But here’s another factor, working out daily for 80mins, with both weight and cardio training, you probably gained some muscle. By comparison, bodybuilder will eat upwards of 10,000 calories a day just to maintain their muscle, but their body fat % is very low. Without knowing your macro breakdown, I would add some protein and healthy fats to your diet. I have been playing around with eating more calories because my body seems to have stalled. What did you increase it from, and how long were you eating 2300 calories before you gained 5 pounds? Exercise uses calories, so you want to make sure you deficit is created (not too big) with the exercise added in. If you’re eating 1200 calories and not losing weight, do you think that creating a 1000 calorie deficit from there (eating only 200) calories will help you lose 2 pounds per week? Do yourself a favor and increase your calorie intake by close to 1000 calories per day and keep them from whole foods. Until your diet is 80-90 percent whole foods, you’re wasting your time counting calories. And guest what – a nutrient dense diet is going to make the weight loss process 10 times easier. Maybe that means you have a protein smoothie, or maybe that means you have a chicken salad loaded up with veggies. Once you have that and it’s become habit, adding in exercise is easy and fun, and you will actually get to see the fruits of your labor.


Many people have gotten down to single digit body fat without ever counting a single calorie.
As I said in the article, there are many benefits to counting calories, and I recommend everyone do it at some point in their life.
Simply using that initially motivated me with exercise too as it tells you what you have burnt off, not just watching what I ate, to help me get the balance better and I lost 4 stone in a year, and have kept it off, and developed the love of exercise and what it does for you.
The reason why your weight loss has stagnated is because you’re not eating enough calories to lose weight.
Your body has the ability to slow down thyroid output in an effort to maintain energy balance [1].
In a prolonged extreme calorie deficit, it is one of the first things that your body looks to get rid of, especially if you’re not providing a stimulus to keep it. At this pace, it will ensure that the majority of your weight loss is coming from stored body fat instead of muscle. Try raising your calories some, get in as many nutrients as possible, and your weight loss will start moving forward again.
Instead, follow healthy eating plans with plenty of physical activity and watch the pounds melt off naturally. I ate about 1600-1900 calories a day when pregnant (after I stopped puking all day long-which, by the way, I still gained weight doing. I would look into increasing your activity level some – possibly by adding in some walking each day as a habit.
You shouldn’t cut your calories so far back-your body NEEDS a certain amount (WAY MORE than 950) just for basic metabolic functioning. I’m wondering how long after u upped your calorie intake that you started to see results. At 259lbs (and no other info to go by), I’d be willing to bet you should be at a minimum of 2,000 calories just to support your BMR (no exercise).
I am working on that stubborn last couple of pounds and am working to find the caloric means to defeat them. Prolonged calorie restriction causes reduced thyroid levels, reduced testosterone, lowered leptin levels, decreased muscle mass, and reduced energy levels.
Weight loss and fat loss are not the same thing, and overly restricting your calories will slow your metabolism, and at the very least will negatively alter the ratio of fat loss to muscle loss during your weight loss. I am training for a half marathon and am running 12-16km 3-4 times a week and walk every other day. I guarantee you will start see changes in your body composition and you’ll have better workout performance too. I know that a long run burns around 800-1000 calls and of course what you are saying makes sense, if I burn 1000 and only eat 1200 I am trying to live on 200 cals (although I am not a stupid person, sometimes you dont think of it like this!) I will up my intake and let you know how I go.
I am not sure if 100 carbs is enough, but since decreasing my carbs and only eating carbs for breakfast and after my workout, I have noticed that I do not retain as much water…which is a plus. That means a diet that’s void of essential nutrients is going to make the weight loss process 10 times harder. I will note that highly motivated and skilled individuals will be able to work on creating exercise and nutrition habits at the same time. In fact, for some OCD people or people with eating disorders, it could be counterproductive.
They practiced portion control, and they ate less and less whole foods as their progress stalled out. Now I put my food into the app, but not obsessively because I know the values of the things i eat most often. I try to label pounds vs kg as much as possible, but volume and distance measurements slip my mind. Add in the extra exercise, and all of a sudden you have an extreme calorie deficit that is working against you. Your large calorie deficit might work for a few days or even weeks, but eventually your body will wake up and sound alarms that it needs to conserve energy. High leptin levels signal that it’s OK to stop eating, while low leptin levels are a signal to eat more energy. You will also give yourself the best chance to build muscle while you lose fat, which is what you should be striving to do.
Either that or bring your calories to just under maintenance and work on changing your body composition with strength training. Each day this week I have consumed between 550 and 950 calories and my carbs per day haven’t gone over 50. Try a much more modest deficit, use the calculators here on Coach Calorie, and try for changes you can live with. Unfortunately, it takes time to create a new set-point for your body, and drastically cutting calories isn’t how you do it. How can I safely increase the number of calories I consume each day to begin losing weight but not gain weight in the interim?


When upping your calories is it normal to gain a bit of weight before beginning to lose it?
It is possible to gain some weight if the majority of your increased calorie intake came from carbohydrates. Potatoes, lentils and the such contain much more starch than other vegetables so education on the caloric levels of vegetables is extremely important. It makes absolutely no sense that your body would eat muscle first when fat has absolutely no function. Your body needs those nutrients to maintain and preserve muscle mass and to provide a metabolic environment that is conducive to fat loss. I try and stick to around 1200 calories each day and am just not losing weight (5ft 9 and about 135lb) I am trying to lose a little bit of with but it jus won’t budge!
I read in one of your articles that 100g of carbs is needed just to maintain body functions, so maybe I am defeating my efforts by not eating enough carbs to supply my workouts.
Frankly, you’re too full to eat the bad food, as the fiber and water content of whole foods fills you up.
After practicing calorie counting for a while, you get the unique ability to look at a food and know its nutritional breakdown, and that can be very beneficial when it comes to practicing portion control. I am starting slow by changing my diet…drinking a gallon of water daily and reducing ( until eliminated) the processed foods. Someone who’s undereaten their entire life and is sedentary will need far fewer calories than the person who exercises a lot and has an active job. Sometimes I still go swimming if someone can babysit and my husband can come and I walk alot on my off days and even on the days I go to the gym as well. Not only to necessarily grow muscle, but maintain it and allow your body to dispense with its fat stores. My diet varies from day to day but I eat a lot of eggs, fruits, almond butter, and whole grains.
They also put me some machine to determine how many calories I burn just by living and the number came out almost 1700 cal. I would start eating 2000 calories, and if your weight still does not go down, increase it another 500. She doesn’t have all that much of an appetite, so what, she’s going to eat more than she needs?
While there are obviously many people eating too many calories to lose weight, there is a very high percentage of people who are having difficulty losing weight because they are exercising intensely all week long and aren’t providing the proper nutrition to fuel that activity. Instead, before you ever start taking food out of your diet, you start adding healthy food into it. Usually, that progress leads to them wanting to count calories and learn more about their food and fitness in general, but that only happens because they take their weight loss journey in steps. I doubled my intake to get to 1500 calories and since I eat whole foods that is a lot of food.
Keep doing this until you either start losing weight or you start gaining it CONSISTENTLY (ie over the course of at least 2 weeks).
I was forced to up it to 1200-1400 calories a day and cut back exercise and I gained 20 lbs in 3 weeks.. I know it doesn’t help, but when I try to actually eat like a normal person or exercise like one, I gain crazy amounts of weight.
I have a job that I work 55-60 hours a week then I go home toy family for dinner and to go to bed, no time or will for exercise. Just wondering how soon I might feel better so that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I think one of the calculators must have overestimated quite a bit, but finding the sweet spot for calories is getting difficult. I just want to feel a bit smaller particularly in the legs which feel bulky from all the running. Most women lose a ton of weight by breastfeeding alone and eating whatever and little exercise..
I am scared that if I reduce exercise I will put on weight even at 1200 cal as I spend most of the day in front of computer!
I run on high intensity 80% to 95% about 40 miles per week , I also do spinning classes 3 times per week which requires the same heart rate , I also do zumba at least 2 times a week , bootcamp once a week , and other 2 classes once a week . And once you get down to your essential fat zones, your body is forced to lose muscle by that point. Probably should have eaten a little more being pregnant, but I gained 60lbs as it was, so no.. A good example is olive oil used for sauteeing vegetables…there is 120 calories in just 1 tbl of olive oil.



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