The new year is imminent, and who says the new year means new resolutions. After the holidays, a resolution comes up quite often, that of finally losing the weight gained over time! What could be better than following a low-calorie diet? Everyone knows that eating less is enough to lose weight! But is it really a good idea?
Low-calorie diet and weight control definition
A low-calorie diet is a diet that provides a lower number of kilocalories per day than usual. Its principle is based on creating a deficit balance: bringing less energy than what the body spends. In theory, the body is then led to dig into the adipose tissue and thus allow weight loss. Many diets are based on this principle. Among them, you will find the Dukan diet, the Thonon diet or the Atkins diet.
The ponderostat, or the “set point”, is the weight that is defined by your body. In other words, your body will do everything to reach this weight and to stick to it. Until you pay attention to the signals. That he sends you (hunger and satiety). It is often higher than the desired weight. Which explains why it is difficult to go below or to maintain a lower weight.
The low-calorie diet in practice
Most of the diets that are offered to you to lose weight are based on the principle of low calories. You, therefore, have the possibility to choose among many proposals. The importance is to find one that will satisfy you and that will make you feel good.
Who can follow a low calorie diet?
Please note, It is important to specify first of all that this type of diet can’t be followed by children, pregnant or breastfeeding women. Who wish to lose weight, the elderly, or people with significant health problems. Indeed, in these situations, basic needs are increased and it is important for health reasons to cover them.
Also, be careful if you only have a few pounds to lose and your BMI is considered normal or slightly overweight. Dieting is something that is not trivial. Rather, increase your expenses, practice regular physical activity. While having a balanced diet will allow you to slim down more safely and over the long term than if you follow a restrictive diet.
How many calories per day for a woman?
Due to the morphological difference, the needs between women and men are not the same. The minimum needs of women are estimated at around 1800 kcal per day. If you want to follow a low-calorie diet, there are several, more or less severe. They are often between 800 and 1200 kcal, which is much lower than your minimum needs.
How many calories per day for a man?
The minimum vital requirements of a man are estimated at 2100 kcal per day. Most hypocaloric diets, therefore, recommend lower ranges between 1200kcal (sometimes less) and 1500kcal.
How to go on a low calorie diet?
After having determined the number of kcal you want to have per day, to help you, you can bring a kitchen scale application on your phone to count your intakes and not exceed the threshold that you have set. fixed.
How to eat 1200 calories a day without being hungry?
The best way to reduce your calorie intake is to favor certain foods that are not too fatty, and which will allow you to eat your fill. For example, vegetables are low in calories and therefore allow you to eat your fill while meeting your goal. Other foods should be avoided because they are too high in calories. They will make you reach your goal quickly and leave you with a feeling of hunger that would make you fail in your diet.
What are the high calorie foods to avoid? Which ones to favor?
This type of diet is restrictive. It has two lists of foods: those authorized, and those prohibited, because they are considered too caloric:
- authorized: Fruits and vegetables (not all) lean meat, lean fish, eggs, whole starchy foods, legumes, low-fat dairy products, sweetened sweet products, low-fat products (in lipids and therefore hypolipidemic). All of this, of course, in limited quantities, so as not to exceed the daily intake that you have set for yourself.
- prohibited or to be avoided: deep-frying, dishes in a sauce, sugar, honey, jam, non-light dairy products, fatty meat and fish, added fats, crisps, aperitif cookies, alcohol, sodas and sweet juices, chocolate, white bread, rice white, banana, grapes, (too sweet according to these diets).
One day menu
There are 3 meals to respect, to which you can optionally add a snack if you need it. The quantities should of course be adapted to control your daily intake:
Breakfast: 1 slice of bread, 1 bowl of skimmed milk, 1 banana.
Lunch: Grated carrots, steamed green beans and 1 potato, 1 piece of chicken breast, 1 portion of light cheese.
Snack: 1 fruit
Dinner: Soup, 1 slice of ham, 1 low-fat cottage cheese.
Sport during the low calorie diet.
We have seen that the principle of the diet is to create a deficit balance between the contributions and the needs of the body. Increasing the body’s expenditure therefore makes it possible to increase the deficit, which in theory could be beneficial and facilitate weight loss.
The consequences of these low calorie diets
The principle :
Do not cover your minimum needs. This creates a risk of deficiencies and severe fatigue if you follow the program for the long term. In addition, ideally, this is done to get the body to tap into adipose tissue … However, it will not only do that, but it will also dig into your muscles. You will therefore lose weight quickly, but it will mainly be bone mass. You will therefore have less strength. For your health, it is therefore important not to follow this type of program for a long time, without medical advice and monitoring.
Putting in practice
During these programs, they show you lists of allowed and prohibited foods. In the long run, this is something that is difficult to hold: both because of your social life and your natural urges. These are restrictive diets, which will frustrate you and make you feel guilty, because the more something is forbidden, the more you want it.
One thing that is not prohibited is the consumption of fruits and vegetables. But if you are not used to eating fruits and vegetables regularly and completely, you risk having intestinal problems (diarrhea, stomach aches, bloating …)
To be able to follow these programs, it is essential to control portions, weigh them and count the kcal. It is a daily constraint which is heavy in the long term and which opens the door to eating disorders. In addition, since you cannot add a lot of fat (or even not at all), food can appear bland and you lose the desire and the pleasure of eating.
Let us raise an important point, this kind of diet does not cover your daily needs and will maintain the feeling of hunger throughout the day… And it will not be just time to adapt to new amounts… It will last throughout the day. from the program. Not easy to hold on and stay in a good mood all of a sudden!
It is also advisable to consume sweetened products. The only problem is that it amounts to deceiving the brain: you give it fake sugar, it will react as if it were real (allowing the sudden release of insulin and weight gain on the body in. long term). In addition, the body gradually becomes resistant and it needs to secrete more insulin to be able to manage the arrival of sugar or false sugar: beware of diabetes …
The result: how many pounds lost?
It all depends on your basic diet and the diet you choose to follow. At first, your weight loss can be dramatic. But who says dramatic weight loss also says undernutrition and other health concerns (as you can read in detail in the article on weight loss). Then very quickly your body will stop losing weight. The organism will go to sleep so that its vital functions will be assured and the rest will work slowly. Therefore it will burn less energy to protect itself. It’s a bit like a fireplace: for it to be efficient and to heat well, without you sweating a lot next to it, you have to put the right amount of wood in it. To be able to have a regular weight loss, it is the same principle, it is necessary to allow your body to function normally so that it loses regularly and durably.
Moreover, note that in the long term, 95% of this kind of diet fails: people regain weight quickly after finishing the diet. The question that must therefore be asked before embarking on this kind of program is: Do I want weight loss at a given moment that will not last over time? Or, do I want weight loss that is sustainable over time and does not lead to health problems.
An alternative solution: food rebalancing
Fortunately, healthy weight loss is not impossible. Start food rebalancing! Food rebalancing is based on listening to your bodily sensations and allows you to lose weight.
The principle is simple: eat everything, in quantities adapted to your needs. In order not to change all of your habits all at once and be able to maintain your weight, it’s important to take it easy and not cut out all of your old habits.
Do not hesitate to turn to health professionals to help you and accompany you in your project. If you wish, you can make a free appointment with a Qilibri nutrition expert for a slimming assessment.