(Closed) Has anyone gone on a 1,200 calorie diet? How much weight did you lose

posted 6 years ago in Fitness
Post # 30
198 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2017 - Northern Territory, Australia


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I have done this and lost 10kg in 12 weeks UNDER SUPERVISION OF PROFESSIONALS. I have done similar things with no caloretic restrictions also and gotten similar results (eating clean whole foods).

Go seek some professional advice for a tailored plan for you and your body – that way you won’t fall into the same bad habits you had before. A healthy mind is a healthy body.


Post # 32
836 posts
Busy bee

Whatever you decide to do, the easiest way is to cut out all sugar. No processed foods, no sugar, no candy, no lactose/dairy. All sweets come from fruits. Eat only lean protein, and tons of green veggies. I promise that on this, you will lose weight without even trying. Pair this with cardio and weight training a few times a week and you’re golden. No need to even count calories (but be true to yourself on when you should be full, stop eating). I am on paleo, and dropped 6 pounds I didn’t even know I had to lose, without even exercising.

Post # 33
2239 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

I do 1,200 calories and I’m fine (granted I don’t exercise a crazy amount or anything, but I work out 3-4 times a week). Obviously, I have days when I go over that, but it’s what I try and stick to. I didn’t have a ton of weight to lose in the first place (started at about 135), but dropped about 12 pounds. Then, the holidays hit and I ate everything, so I gained a little bit back. I’m at about 127 now and I’m 5’7″

I never feel famished or lightheaded only eating 1,200 calories, but I think like PPs have said – it’s really important what those 1,200 calories are made up of. I try to stick to a high protein breakfast (greek yogurt, usually), a salad with some kind of protein for lunch (usually tuna or beans) and lots of green leafy vegetables and healthy grains (like quinoa) for dinner. I don’t eat tons of meat (I never have – and no red meat at all, I just don’t like it), so that helps. I do drink wine almost every night, though, so I definitely “waste” some calories there.

Post # 34
9780 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

I did 1,200 calories/day for ~8 months before my wedding. No I did not starve or become unhealthy or ruin my metabolism, and I kept it off for two years until getting pregnant recently. If I was exercising that day (usually 30 minutes on the elliptical) I probably upped it to like 1400 or 1500 calories. And I lost ~50 lbs in those 8 months.

Post # 35
301 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2015

I know this isn’t a popular opinion, but I have to eat under 1200 cals a day just to maintain my weight of 135 at 5’2″. And I have a friend that is 5’1″, weighs 108, and if she goes over 800 calories a day she starts gaining. And she doesn’t eat processed foods either. 

My point is, everyone is different. If you’re legitimately hungry, eat something. If you aren’t, then don’t. Your body will let you know if you aren’t eating enough. Just trust yourself enough to know what works for you.

I’m currently at 1000 cals/day, but if I’m still hungry, I eat a handful of raw almonds and drink a bunch of water. Seriously, it’s not as formulaic as people think. Everyone is built differently.

Post # 36
1226 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

I went on a 1200 calorie diet for a month and didn’t lose any weight.  The proper amount of calories for you depend on metabolism, age, frame and activity level.  I used to lose weight on this amount of calories but am now on medications that make me weight loss resistant.  In my case steroids due to an organ transplant.  Though many anti anxiety and anti depressant medications also have the same effects.  I have found that daily exercise along with the restricted calories causes that most loss in inches if not weight.  So that you will look and feel betters.  I highly recommend strength training.

Post # 37
999 posts
Busy bee

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rosecut:  Personally, as someone who has struggled with an eating disorder I find it very triggering if I try to only eat 1200 calories.  It was so little food and I was still hungry that I kind of figured if I’m going to be hungry why not just eat even less.  I also found that I lost more weight eating between 1500 – 1700 with regular exercise.  

Post # 38
262 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

I want to start by saying that I am not a nutritionist or doctor but I do what to tell you what i have learned through personal experience. i am also 5′ tall and people tend to take for granted how small we are and how little we can eat without gaining weight. A 1200 calorie per day diet is absolutely reasonable for someon of our size to maintian/lose weight slowly.  What I would really recommend is purchasing a polar heart rate monitor (I’m in no way endorsed for this recommendation) and wearing it for a full day (24 hours straight) on a day you don’t exercise. This will actually tel you how many calories you expend on a daily basis without exercise. Then cut that number by 500 calories a day in order to safely lose 1 pound of fat per week.  Also, at 1200 calories per day its important to make sure you are making the most out of your calories and not having any empty calories to meet your daily nutritional needs.

Post # 39
1414 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

I don’t have the greatest self discipline but I am finally losing weight. Here is what’s helping me:

1) I switched to a mostly vegetarian diet and am even eating vegan foods a lot.

2) I’m mostly only concerned about and have eliminated high fat foods (except for special occasions)  such as my previous Baskin Robbins habit (near my home), regular diner breakfasts with bacon/sausage, chips, cookies, pizza as a habit, and anything by pepperidge farms except their bread! I’m also eating eggs in butter only once a week. 

3) I’m eating slower and not eating til I’m really full. 

4) some helpful foods for me are baby carrots, pickles, olives, steamed cooked veggies, fruit, cheese sandwich (not grilled lol) instead of pizza, pretzels, saltines, healthy soups, Annie Chuns noodle bowls, Weight watcher stir fry recipes that I make at home, pasta marinara,veggie burgers and sausage links, fruit salad , tossed green salads and anything low fat frozen by Amy’s or Trader Joes

5) I cut my soda pop consumption in half.

ive lost one and a half dress sizes since I started December 15 so it’s working! 🙂

  • This reply was modified 5 years, 6 months ago by  littlechickie.
  • This reply was modified 5 years, 6 months ago by  littlechickie.
  • This reply was modified 5 years, 6 months ago by  littlechickie.
Post # 40
688 posts
Busy bee

I don’t know why so many are saying to eat 2000 calories. 2000 calories is just a rough average estimate. As with virtually everything else, it varies by person. If you’re smaller you not only can but should eat less. We had an assignment in my vertebrate physiology laboratory a few years ago to figure out how many calories we should be intaking based on our size, amount of exercise, BMR, etc. That is a far more accurate way to determine it, and it varies quite a lot for each person. Some people require more than 2000, some less. I would be more inclined to make sure to follow not going under 1200. I don’t know where that number originated from so I can’t say that’s a magical one-size-fits-all either, but I tend to think it is probably a good number to indicate when most people go into starvation mode. Then, you’re not doing yourself any favors. It is bad for your body and when you do eat right again, you will likely gain weight back very easily. Also it’s important to note that the 1200 calorie includes exercise. So you can’t eat only 1200 and then exercise 700. Then you’ve actually only taken in 500. On a final note, body composition is more important than weight. I am in my normal weight range (119 and 4″11) and I guarantee I am not healthy and need to improve. I carry most of the weight around my midsection and clearly have more fat than muscle. Good luck.

Post # 41
11369 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

I can’t lose on 1200/day.  My normal, daily calorie intake is 1000, which I cleared with my doctor.

The culprit in my case is age.  I’m a lot older than most if you Bees & that really makes it tough.  Combine that with not having a lot to lose & a sluggish thyroid.

I do take vitamins, including biotin for my hair.  

My friend had bypass & eats 600 cals/day.  She’s medically managed & takes a LOT of supplements.

The moral of the story is, if you have weight to lose, do it while you’re young–it’s so much easier.  It may feel like a struggle now, but it’s nothing like what you’ll go through in your late 30s, 40s, 50s & beyond when your metabolism really slows down.

Post # 42
7367 posts
Busy Beekeeper

People really need educate themselves on nutrition rather than rely on anecdotal info from strangers. Everyone is unique, if you want short term results a 1200 arbitrary numberthats probably not sufficent for most, especially active people. The best thing is to goto a nutritionist and get an RMR test. I did mine and just to simply breathe over a course of a day, with no activity I require 1400 calories, . So adding activity would be an additional 200-300 on days when I work out.

http://www.healthyweightmedicalsolutions.com/default.asp?id=249 Did you know that your metabolism can differ by hundreds of calories from people of the exact same height, weight, age and gender? For the first time, technology previously available only in research facilities and hospitals makes it possible for your metabolic rate to be accurately measured through a simple, 10-minute breathing test. Trying to lose weight without knowing how many calories you burn every day is like attempting to balance your checkbook without knowing how much money you have coming in. In addition to helping you lose weight, metabolic-rate measurement is crucial when it comes to successful weight maintenance. Without an accurate picture of their metabolic needs, over 90% of people who lose weight gain it all back. Once we know our bodies’ precise requirements, we can avoid eating any more than our budget allows, or less than we can afford.

Post # 43
2910 posts
Sugar bee

Honestly, if you having a history of ED, I suspect that eating 1200 calories per day is likely to trigger binges. When you undereat and are very hungry, your body reacts and “takes over” and you can end up eating a lot more than you would have if you’d just been feeding yourself properly. I think if you are working out like you describe you would be better off with something like 1600. Look at this is a longer term experiment. Make small changes, observe what happens. Make other changes.

Post # 44
46 posts

1200 cals a day nets me a weight loss of around 1.2-1.5lbs a week. This means that if I go to the gym and burn 400 calories, I get to eat 1200+400=1600 a day. I need to go this low to lose weight as I maintain weight at 1600-1700cals a day. It’s a pretty low amount of food, but I’ve found if I’m not feeling hungry before bedtime or between meals, I don’t lose anything.

1200cals/day successfully helped me drop around 20lbs a few years ago (and keep it off).

Post # 45
79 posts
Worker bee

I lost about 17 pounds in two months on 1200 calories a day.  It works just stay healthy 🙂 

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