Overweight is a problem for more and more people, being related to aesthetic reasons, but more importantly, to health. In trying to have a healthier life and lose weight, many people turn to diets built on different principles of nutrition, all centered around a common concept: calories. Often the term "calorie" is too abstract for the general public, which hardly seems to correlate it with the daily food and beverage. Therefore, let’s shed light on this topic.
What Are Calories?
A calorie is the universal measure of the energy unit. For example, the physical distance is measured in meters or feet. A calorie is used in the scientific sense to measure the heat, but the scale is used in the nutritional control.
With it, we can express the amount of energy that our body requires to function properly. In other words, the calories, which are the abstract representation of the energy supplied to the body, are the all-important "fuel" of the human body.
All of the food and drinks we ingest become measurable energy in calories, exactly like the energy we consume during day or night.
How Many Calories Should we Consume?
We can not talk about a standard number of calories, being differences in gender, age, weight and height, type of physical activity performed. For example, a child needs about 1,800 calories daily, a woman about 2,000 calories per day, while the caloric needs of a man up go to 2,800.
General Description of 1000 Calories per Day Diet
As we said earlier, the number of calories vital on a daily basis for a grown-up will fluctuate depending on several elements, but in normal conditions 2,000 calories per day are usually lost. Compared to this value, the diet of 1000 calories is certainly a low calorie diet. This kind of diet is usually used to promote quick weight loss, often as a way to start a program for the treatment of obesity. Since it is so restrictive with calorie intake, it is recommended that the diet to be followed for a short period of time. People who are close to their normal weight should follow this diet for a week or less, while people with severe obesity can use it for up to 12 weeks. Continuing this diet after the recommended period can lead to nutritional deficiency.
How Many Pounds Are Lost?
With the 1000 calories per day meal plan, a person with moderate or severe obesity can lose about 3 to 6 pounds per week, which means an average weight loss of about 40 to 44 pounds in 12 weeks.
This diet can be used as a starting shock for metabolism by those who have been using an ineffective diet (and weight loss was stopped).
This low-calorie diet is not suitable for everyone. Doctors generally recommend it depending on the individual case. 1000 calorie per day regime is clearly not recommended for pregnant or nursing women, children and teenagers and people over 50 years.
Even if your daily caloric intake is 1000 calories, diet must include protein, fruits and vegetables. Food plan must be balanced and varied. This involves three main meals and 2-3 snacks, as recommended by modern nutritionists. Meals should be quantitatively small, but consumed frequently. They should reduce fat, sugar and carbohydrate intake.
Physical Activites, Alcohol and Fluids
During this diet, calories should be counted and limited to 1000. People who use it must keep handy a list of calories contained in the food.
As the calorie intake is so low, no physical exercise seems to be necessary. Dieters usually feel weak and have no energy to engage in physical activities.
During this regime is vital to drink at least 10-12 glasses of fluids (water, herbal teas, unsweetened green tea). Soda and black coffee are allowed. Alcohol should not be consumed.
If this diet is followed for a longer period than recommended, it will eventually lead to nausea, fatigue, diarrhea or constipation, intolerance to cold, irregular periods (for women) or hair loss. Quick weight loss can also lead to gallstones in people who are susceptible to this.
Here's what a 1000 calorie per day menu plan should consist of:
- 2 slices of bread or some fresh dietary tortilla, low cheese (2 tablespoons) or half a cup of yogurt (kefir)
- fruits: an apple, pear, lemon, orange or 2 apricots
- 100 g of lean meat (chicken or turkey) or 150 g of fish or a vegetarian schnitzel
- bean soup
- mixed vegetable salad (50 g lettuce, 50 g red/yellow sweet peppers, 10 g onions)
- any kind of fruit
- 8 pieces of almonds
- 1 egg or 3-4 sardines in oil
- Half a cup of oatmeal or buckwheat
- Salad of cucumbers, tomatoes, lettuce
- Before you sleep, you can eat a spoonful of low-fat cheese and a slice of bread diet.
Why Should We Reduce the Number of Calories From Our Daily Menu?
It is important to provide as much energy as the body needs, without exceeding the limit, in order to keep us healthy. The 1000 calories per day diet has very encouraging benefits: it reduces the likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes by half and it also reduces the risk of heart disease. For that, it takes discipline and a good knowledge of nutritional values for each type of food. A first step has been made!
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