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1,500-Calorie Diet for Men

author image Erin Coleman, R.D., L.D.
Erin Coleman is a registered and licensed dietitian. She also holds a Bachelor of Science in dietetics and has extensive experience working as a health writer and health educator. Her articles are published on various health, nutrition and fitness websites.
1,500-Calorie Diet for Men
If weight loss is your goal, a 1,500-calorie diet may be appropriate. Photo Credit: George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images

Diets containing 1,500 calories per day are weight-loss diets for the majority of men. In fact, Harvard Health Publications reports that 1,500 calories is the lowest amount a man should eat daily to lose weight -- unless supervised by a medical professional. Using a 1,500-calorie meal plan helps overweight men stick to a 1,500-calorie daily allotment for weight loss.

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Calorie Requirements

Salads are a good meal for weight loss.
Salads are a good meal for weight loss. Photo Credit: olgakr/iStock/Getty Images

In general, 1,500-calorie diets are effective for overweight men trying to lose excess body weight -- and who want to do so without the need for medical supervision. Eating fewer than 1,500 calories daily increases a man’s risk for developing nutrient deficiencies. The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute suggests adult men often require 2,000 to 3,000 calories daily to maintain healthy body weights, and active men generally need 2,400 to 3,000 calories per day.

Fruits and Vegetables

Dried fruit.
Dried fruit. Photo Credit: feri1/iStock/Getty Images

When eating 1,500 calories per day, men should consume 1.5 cups of fruits and 1.75 cups of vegetables -- based on healthy meal plans provided by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010. A 1-cup equivalent from the fruit and veggie group equals 1 cup of fresh fruits or vegetables, 1 cup of fruit or vegetable juice, 2 cups of leafy greens or one-half cup of dried fruit, according to

Protein and Grains

1/2 oz of nuts.
1/2 oz of nuts. Photo Credit: Wavebreakmedia Ltd/Wavebreak Media/Getty Images

Protein is useful for weight loss because it increases satiety and energy expenditure, according to a 2009 study published in the “Journal of Nutrition.” Fiber, abundant in whole grains, also boosts satiety because it digests slowly in your body. When eating 1,500 calories per day, men should aim for 4.5 ounces of protein foods and 5 ounces of grains. One ounce of protein equals 1 ounce of meat, one egg, 2 ounces of tofu, 1/2 ounce of nuts, 1/4 ounce of legumes or 1 tablespoon of nut butter -- while a 1-ounce equivalent of grains is one slice of bread, 1 cup of ready-to-eat cereal or 1/2 cup of cooked rice, pasta or oatmeal, notes

Dairy and Oils

Cottage cheese.
Cottage cheese. Photo Credit: YelenaYemchuk/iStock/Getty Images

According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010, men eating 1,500 calories a day need 2.75 cups of dairy foods and about 4 teaspoons from the oils food group each day. reports that a 1-cup equivalent from the dairy group equals 2 cups of cottage cheese, 1 cup of milk or yogurt or 1.5 ounces of hard cheese -- while 1 teaspoon from the oils group equals 1/3 ounce of nuts, 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil, eight large olives, 1.5 teaspoons of peanut butter or 1 tablespoon of Italian salad dressing.

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