The Right and Wrong Ways to do a Low-Calorie Diet
March 03, 2017 at 9:36 AM
Both low calorie (800 to 1,500 calories per day) and very low calorie (under 800 calories per day) can be used to jumpstart a long-term weight control plan. Both, as well, provide short-term and quick weight loss, and as a result, its model is used for a variety of fad diet plans.*
Because of the range of possibilities out there, there are a variety of ways to approach LCD and VLCD programs. For some general guidance, learn about how to go about either plan, and what to avoid.
Good Habits for LCD and VLCD Plans
For those whose BMI falls within the obese range (above 30), VLCD plans help you lose anywhere from three to five pounds per week, totaling to roughly 44 pounds over a 12-week span. At the same time, this sudden weight loss helps improve such conditions as diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.*
However, living off 800 calories per day isn’t sustainable, nor is it meant to be. Rather, it offers short-term weight loss, and with the right approach, a patient can adjust his or her lifestyle choices, instead of resuming old habits. So, with this in mind, “good” VLCD and LCD programs:
- Are done with a doctor’s or nutritionist’s guidance, so you know which foods to eat, when to schedule your meals, and how to incorporate physical activity. Never attempt to drop your daily caloric intake this low on your own.
- Have a variety of different foods. More variety often means you’ll feel full and you’ll be getting a complete nutritional profile. Consequently, programs focused on specific foods or food groups – for instance, the grapefruit or Atkins diets – are very limited and frequently leave an individual hungry, which then leads that person to drop the plan and resume old behaviors.
- Ensure you approach the diet as a lifestyle change. Unfortunately, LCD and VLCD diets can have a yo-yo effect if a patient doesn’t permanently change his or her approach to selecting and eating food. Instead, for long-term weight loss, realize that your eating habits will be different, even when you start eating more calories per day.
Habits to Avoid
As the flipside, make sure you avoid:
- Fad diets. While many of these are, by definition, LCD and VLCD diets, they don’t teach effective long-term eating habits, and once off the plan, many dieters gain back the weight they lost.
- Sticking to the same foods. Picking the same items, day after day, means you’re getting limited nutrition and less variety. It’s also said that a limited diet reduces your energy for physical activity.
- Any low-calorie plan if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, if you’re over age 50 and on certain medications, and if you’re feeding a child or teen, unless he or she is on a specialized treatment program.
- Resuming your old habits right after the diet. As mentioned above, patients who don’t attempt to make permanent lifestyle changes see all of the weight lost return and, in some cases, may even gain more pounds, as the LCD or VLCD has slowed your metabolism.
Looking to get started on a low-calorie or a very low-calorie diet with medical supervision? Begin with a free consultation from Medical Weight Loss Solutions. To learn more, contact us for an appointment today.*
Category: Weight Loss Tips
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