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Is a 1000-calorie Diet Safe?

by
author image Charmaine Jones
Charmaine Jones began freelance writing in 2010, specializing in health, diet and nutrition. She has experience with writing and editing grants and has written publications for nonprofit organizations. Jones holds a Master of Public Health in health promotion from the University of South Carolina.
Is a 1000-calorie Diet Safe?
A tuna salad. Photo Credit Mizina/iStock/Getty Images

A 1000-calorie diet is a low-calorie diet that may require approval and careful monitoring from your doctor. A 1000-calorie diet is not recommended for everyone, because it is so low in calories. Do not begin this type of diet until you have been cleared by your doctor and have spoken to a dietitian about diet plans that fit your lifestyle and will help you meet your health and nutrition goals.

Weight-loss Programs

Many popular weight-loss programs offer very low-calorie diets that are usually not conventional diet plans. The disadvantage of some very low-calorie diets is that they do not promote healthy lifestyles or behavior modification. On a 1000-calorie diet, the body uses its fat storage for energy, causing weight loss. A 1000-calorie diet can be safe for individuals who want to lose a large amount of weight quickly while receiving adequate nutrition and preserving lean body mass. If you're short and thin, you might not need much more than 1,000 calories to supply your daily nutritional needs. Because of possible medical risks, however, the American Dietetic Association does not recommend very low-calorie diets for individuals with a body mass index greater than 30.

MyPyramid

It is possible to consume a well-balanced diet on a 1000-calorie eating plan. The U.S. Department of Agriculture's MyPyramid 1000-calorie plan recommends daily servings of 3 oz. of grains -- at least half from whole grains -- 1 cup of vegetables, 1 cup of fruit, 2 cups of milk and 2 oz. of meat or meat substitutes such as nuts and beans.

Recommendations

Unless medically supervised on a very low-calorie diet, the lowest recommended caloric intake for weight loss is 1200 calories for women and 1500 calories for men, according to MedlinePlus. A slow weight loss of 1 or 2 lbs. a week, until the desirable body weight is reached, is best. To lose 1 lb. a week, reduce calories by 500 every day, or for 2 lbs. per week reduce daily calories by 1000. A combination of reducing caloric intake and burning energy through exercise can help you achieve your goals.

Warning

Quick weight-loss results may be problematic to maintain over a period of time. Adopting healthy eating behaviors early in your weight-loss journey and exercising most days of the week can support your new weight. A 1000-calorie diet is not recommended for very active individuals and women who are pregnant. Recommended energy intakes are set by the U.S. Committee on Dietary Allowance for various age and sex groups. Calorie suggestions depend on your activity level and medical conditions, including pregnancy.

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