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Weight Loss, Fitness & Health Weight Loss, Fitness & Health

I read this recently, wish I remembered the source

Posted by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 4:35 PM
  • 11 Replies

I read somewhere last week that starvation mode isn't an issue unless you are very thin, that as long as you have fat to burn, it won't hurt your muscles and organs if you don't eat as much as the arbitrary 1200 calories.

I also read that it doesn't matter how fast you lose weight, that it may even be better to lose it fast vs losing 1-2 pounds a week.


Thoughts? 

I'm aiming for at least 400 miles in 2013 and to lose 45 pounds, watch me reach my goal



by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 4:35 PM
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Replies (1-10):
cnlsmommy
by Member on Feb. 5, 2013 at 4:40 PM
Hmm, I'm curious as to what others have to say. I am by no means an authority on the issue, but my opinion is that it is unhealthy as a whole. Some (very few) people may have different circumstances, but as a whole I would say this is a very bad idea.
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Idntreallycare
by Silver Member on Feb. 5, 2013 at 4:42 PM

I agree that everything I've heard makes it sound like a horrible idea.... just wondering what the toughts were on it. I just looked for the source and couldn't find it.... I swear I saw something about it last week.

Idntreallycare
by Silver Member on Feb. 5, 2013 at 4:44 PM

This is where I found it... in a fitness forum. It is written by moderators though, so I'm not sure how accurate it is (yay for the search bar, lol)

General Fitness Myths

For more info on Nutrition myths, see the Examine.com FAQ.

Myth: My metabolism is higher/lower/different than other people

No it's not. Excluding rare and serious metabolic conditions, which should be diagnosed by a doctor, people's metabolisms tend to be within 200-300 calories of each other. This is almost negligible when you consider daily calorie consumption.

Myth: Doing high reps of lighter weights will help me get toned

Firstly, being "toned" is not a valid concept. Muscle tone is the amount of tension a muscle maintains when it's at rest. What most people mean when they say "toned" is certain level of muscular definition. Being "toned" is simply a matter of having enough muscle mass and low enough body fat.

Additionally, working high repetitions of exercises at low weights will increase muscular endurance more than anything else. If your goal is strength, you should be working high weight for low repetitions. If you goal is size and definition, you should be working medium weights for medium repetitions. See What do different repetition ranges mean?.

Myth: Ab exercises can make you lose stomach fat

You can't target where you lose fat. This is called "spot reduction" and it doesn't exist. Your genes are responsible for where your body stores fat, and it's the same thing for losing fat. It's pretty much a "first on, last off" type situation, so if the first place get fat is your belly it's probably going to be the last place to lose it. Do the things mentioned above to lower your overall body-fat percentage and your belly fat will start to go away.

Myth: Eating too little puts you in Starvation Mode

Starvation mode is a myth that was popularized due to the Minnesota Starvation Experiment in which subjects were given 50% of their daily calorie intake for months. The result? Well, they lost weight until they had almost no weight left to lose and their bodies simply could not get the calories ANYWHERE. Concisely put: starvation mode happens when you are, quite literally, wasting away. Not when you have a simple caloric deficit. Your body will make up for it with fat stores. That's what they're for.Do not worry about starvation mode.

Silvertears1275
by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 4:45 PM

I don't know... there are conflicting ideas all across the board, just depends on who has what kind of interest in getting that information across, if you know what I mean.  Personally, I don't think a very calorie-restrictive diet is maintainable long-term for most people.  And I also think that since we aren't all cookie-cutter people, we can't all follow one cookie-cutter solution. 

Idntreallycare
by Silver Member on Feb. 5, 2013 at 4:46 PM

I agree that there is far too much 'information' out there about fitness and weight loss. One of my friends last week asked about losing weight and a friend of hers told her that "moderate cardio done moderately" will cause heart disease and diabetes.... he also told her that if she can't go gluten-free, to stick to white bread as a second best..... 

musicpisces
by Suzanne on Feb. 5, 2013 at 5:27 PM

I read that, too.  But I've read countless other articles, journals, texts, etc saying otherwise, so I'll stick to what I already know!  LOL

There's so much "helpful information" out there, it's hard to suss out what's real and what's not.  It sucks!  Plus, there really isn't only ONE "right" way of doing things, because our bodies are different respond differently to thing, and our metabolisms are affected by everything we do.  But I'm always hesitant to recommend such a low calorie intake for anyone, especially if they're working out. 

I also REALLY disagree with where it said that losing faster is more likely to be permanent.  By losing fast, you might stay motivated while losing, but you can also get sick of feeling restricted, and are less likely to learn lifelong habits to KEEP the weight off.  That's just what I've seen in clinical practice, anyway.  Slow and steady wins the race.

Suzanne

"Don't sacrifice what you want most for what you want right now."

chrisnjoesmom
by Adrienne on Feb. 5, 2013 at 5:37 PM

Oh wow, that's confusing.  I tried to do 1200 calories and I could not drop any weight, I increased it and I lost. So I feel like for me personally, 1200 is too low.  

If you think about it, people who are aneroxic get super skinny. And as far as I know, they don't eat.  So if starvation mode were true, then they wouldn't get so skinny.  Neither would people who are starving. So idk.

musicpisces
by Suzanne on Feb. 5, 2013 at 5:44 PM

Lose weight, yes, but at serious cost.  That's part of the problem- they literally waste away as their muscle is catabolized, and develop serious nutrient deficiencies, which can lead to seizures, heart attacks, and death, among countless other issues.  But yes, the scale does go down as they waste away.  Starvation mode IS true- the body holds onto the fat that it can, because fat is a more "efficient" way to store energy (calories)- it's less metabolically active than muscle or other tissues, and it's 9Kcal/gram, versus 4Kcal/gram for protein-based tissue.  The body switches from burning mostly fat and a little muscle to burning mostly muscle and a little fat.  It also starts burning organ and brain cells.  All of this throws the body out of whack in many ways that can be permanent.  I've worked with people who are recovering from anorexia and bulimia nervosa, and their metabolisms are never the same, because of the permanent damage they've caused.

It is because of this starvation mode that you had a hard time losing with 1200 calories, but had more success when you added more in.  Your body was able to run much more efficiently, and let go of the fat stores.

Quoting chrisnjoesmom:

Oh wow, that's confusing.  I tried to do 1200 calories and I could not drop any weight, I increased it and I lost. So I feel like for me personally, 1200 is too low.  

If you think about it, people who are aneroxic get super skinny. And as far as I know, they don't eat.  So if starvation mode were true, then they wouldn't get so skinny.  Neither would people who are starving. So idk.


Suzanne

"Don't sacrifice what you want most for what you want right now."

Hunnybadgerkins
by on Feb. 5, 2013 at 6:32 PM
Im a perfect example of the damage done. My bones are a freaking mess, I have to stay on top of everything I eat without counting calories. But the scale definitely went down and stayed down. I had heart issues, kidney issues and lived in and out of treatment.

Quoting musicpisces:

Lose weight, yes, but at serious cost.  That's part of the problem- they literally waste away as their muscle is catabolized, and develop serious nutrient deficiencies, which can lead to seizures, heart attacks, and death, among countless other issues.  But yes, the scale does go down as they waste away.  Starvation mode IS true- the body holds onto the fat that it can, because fat is a more "efficient" way to store energy (calories)- it's less metabolically active than muscle or other tissues, and it's 9Kcal/gram, versus 4Kcal/gram for protein-based tissue.  The body switches from burning mostly fat and a little muscle to burning mostly muscle and a little fat.  It also starts burning organ and brain cells.  All of this throws the body out of whack in many ways that can be permanent.  I've worked with people who are recovering from anorexia and bulimia nervosa, and their metabolisms are never the same, because of the permanent damage they've caused.

It is because of this starvation mode that you had a hard time losing with 1200 calories, but had more success when you added more in.  Your body was able to run much more efficiently, and let go of the fat stores.

Quoting chrisnjoesmom:

Oh wow, that's confusing.  I tried to do 1200 calories and I could not drop any weight, I increased it and I lost. So I feel like for me personally, 1200 is too low.  

If you think about it, people who are aneroxic get super skinny. And as far as I know, they don't eat.  So if starvation mode were true, then they wouldn't get so skinny.  Neither would people who are starving. So idk.


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M4LG5
by Bronze Member on Feb. 5, 2013 at 6:45 PM

Here is another thought about not eating enough.....

your body adjusts to your lifestyle which is why it is preferred to make small changes so that your body can adjust to less calories.  If you go way under, your body adjusts to not enough so, as a result, the body will only go into "hibernation mode" which means that since the body isn't getting as much calories, the body will begin to save what is coming in and then when you try to eat more than usual, the body doesn't take that in anymore so it turns into fat. 

Also, losing weight is a lifestyle change and to lose weight that is steady and easier to keep off, losing weight at 1-2 pounds will always be better.

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