Getting out of starvation to a normal diet?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Apr 22, 2010 12:43 PM GMT
    Long story short, I got extremely busy at work starting at the end of January until now. I am working 90+ hours/week with no days off. In addition to the hours, I have been extremely stressed out and have not been getting hungry at all. Because of time constraints and lack of hunger, I was only consuming 500-700 calories per day for over two months. I am 5'10 and went from 200lbs to currently at 175lbs.

    I realize it was unhealthy, but I am coming across a break at work and want to get back to "normal" so to speak. I wanted to lose extra fat, but I lost more muscle during this period (went from 23% body fat to only 21% body fat during this same period). I am usually active (run 20 miles per week) but stopped when my work schedule picked up and due to injuries. I will be starting to run and work out again in addition to a better diet.


    My question is: How should I change my diet back to normal? I don't want to make a drastic change (from 500 calories to 2000 calories) because of possible quick weight gain. I know a body in starvation mode will naturally store fat than normal. I am wondering if there is a gradual way or diet that I can ease into so I can keep the same fat percentage while increasing my caloric intake?
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    Apr 22, 2010 2:51 PM GMT
    500 calories is kind of disconcerting. Actually it's really disconcerting. The reason you're at 20%+ body fat at such a low caloric intake is that basically your body was protecting itself from death. Our bodies don't like to think we've run out of food sources.

    Eat constantly. Don't eat huge meals or huge portions, just multiple small meals. BTW, 2000 calories is still a low daily caloric intake number for your height and weight. Your absolute first priority before thinking about muscle or fat or fitness is to get your body OUT of starvation mode.
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    Apr 22, 2010 3:02 PM GMT
    I don´t understand how you got into your present state.. sure you were busy. You need to have a think about priorities and also about planning.

    Ciarsolo is right... graze small amounts of good quality foods. Your weight may spike to start with, but will settle down once your body understands that the famine is over.

    And then never do it again.
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    Apr 22, 2010 3:04 PM GMT
    As any fitness professional would tell you also, you should really consult a doctor before making any changes - particularly if this has been going on for 2-3 months.
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    Apr 22, 2010 6:00 PM GMT
    Lostboy saidI don´t understand how you got into your present state.. sure you were busy. You need to have a think about priorities and also about planning.

    Ciarsolo is right... graze small amounts of good quality foods. Your weight may spike to start with, but will settle down once your body understands that the famine is over.

    And then never do it again.


    I concur.

    I'd suggest also the possibility of an eating disorder. 500 calories is nothing. You need about 400 calories in carbs just to have proper brain function.
  • JayDT

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    Apr 22, 2010 11:14 PM GMT
    Snack all day on low fat high protein snacks or on fruit. Milk is great at making you feel full without being too fattening or too many calories.
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    Apr 24, 2010 6:42 AM GMT
    JayDT saidSnack all day on low fat high protein snacks or on fruit. Milk is great at making you feel full without being too fattening or too many calories.


    Huh? Ever look at the caloric composition of milk? Clearly, you haven't. It's over the top in saturated fat. Get real here. Fat causes satiation but all that saturated fat is NOT good for you.
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    Apr 24, 2010 4:19 PM GMT
    I kind of have a related problem - I just have no appetite, and have to force myself to eat. I routinely throw away half my meal because I just can't stand the thought of eating any more. Some days the only thing that keeps me going are the protein drinks that I force myself to chug down.