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Health and Fitness News

Intake < 1,500

What effect do they have on your body?

A unit of energy that you get from the foods and drinks you consume, calories are essential to your body’s ability to carry out basic body functions and to digest and metabolize foods. They’re also what make it possible for you to perform normal physical activities. Important as they are, eating too many calories leads to weight gain.

To maintain weight, women need to eat an average of 2,000 calories a day and men need an average of 2,500. In their efforts to lose weight, many people turn to low-calorie diets. For women, that means eating fewer than 1,500 calories a day. For men, low-calorie means consuming fewer than 2,000 calories.

However, did you know that only obese people are recommended to go on a low-calorie diet? And that low-calorie diets should always be followed under the supervision of a doctor?

That’s because while you’ll shed pounds and lose inches when you drastically restrict calories, you may harm your health in the process. Keep reading to learn about six ways you put your good health at risk with a low-calorie diet.

1. Fatigue

Limiting the number of calories you consume will likely make you feel sluggish and fatigued. When this happens, doing everyday activities may be a challenge and you may have trouble focusing. If you’re obese, your body has plenty of energy stores to pull from. The reason you experience fatigue is that you’re not eating carbs or enough foods with nutrients like folate, iron, and vitamin B12 that provide energy.

2. Gallstones

Rapid weight loss can lead to gallstones. Without enough calories, your body turns to fat stores for energy. This triggers the liver to produce more cholesterol, which puts you at risk for gallstones. If a gallstone gets stuck in a duct or blocks a duct, you may have extreme abdominal pain, nausea, and vomiting.

Sometimes medications work to dissolve gallstones, but in most cases surgery is required.

3. Dry Hair, Skin, and Nails

Without enough protein, thiamine, or biotin in your diet, you may notice your hair falling out or breaking easily. Your nails may seem thinner and more brittle than usual and your skin may be dry and scaly. All of this because you cut calories from your daily routine.

4. Weak Bones

This side effect may not be detected until years have passed following a low-calorie diet. It happens because your bones suffer from inadequate amounts of calcium that comes from dairy, leafy greens, and fortified foods. In addition, a lack of calories causes a reduction in estrogen and testosterone, two hormones that help keep your bones strong. On a low-calorie diet, you’re putting yourself at a greater risk for irreversible bone loss, osteoporosis, and fractures.

5. Slowed Metabolism

Metabolism is the process of converting calories into usable energy. A fast metabolism is associated with weight loss and weight maintenance, a slow metabolism with weight gain. Without enough calories, your body begins to slow its metabolism by up to 23 percent in an effort to conserve energy.

Making your metabolism problem worse is the fact that much weight lost on a low-calorie-diet is muscle weight. Since losing muscle also slows metabolism, you’re getting twice the trouble with a single diet. But there’s more damage done. Following a low-calorie diet, your slowed metabolism doesn’t pick up. So when you go back to your old eating ways, your slower metabolism makes it much easier to regain any pounds you lost.

6. Lowered Immunity

When restricting calories, don’t be surprised if you get sick more often, especially if you’re also doing strenuous exercise. Your immune system suffers when you don’t eat enough foods that contain vitamin A.

Are low-calorie diets worth the risks? Only you can answer that. But don’t answer it alone. Talk with your physician to work on a safe, effective weight-loss and –management plan.

About Training with Mr. America
About my programs: Mr. America Jason Kozma's Personal Training is a triple threat of body shaping weight workouts, precision fat-loss cardio and holistic nutrition using regular foods. Using his system, you can radically upgrade your fitness, health appearance and self-confidence. Clients routinely shed 20 pounds of body fat in eight weeks or less, increase their strength and flexibility, and achieve extreme cardiovascular fitness.

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