ADF–is this enough calories? Eating 800 calories on "eating days" for two weeks

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ADF–is this enough calories? Eating 800 calories on "eating days" for two weeks

This topic contains 2 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  165gw 1 week, 1 day ago.

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  • I’ve been ADF (water fasting on fasting days, normal eating on eating days) since January 6th, so for two months now.

    I’m not sure how much I lost since I did’t have a scale when I started, but at least three inches around my chest and around 6″ around my hips / waist. Roughly, as I didn’t measure either.

    I’m 6′ tall, female, 43, and I stepped on the scale and OMG I have 45lb to my goal weight, which is in the middle of my range! This simply means that I started with a much higher weight that I imagined…sigh…

    So with 45-50 lb to lose and here is the situation. The check that was supposed to arrive didn’t so my grocery money for the next two weeks is very tight. I have plenty of food for my kids, not a problem there. My neighbour gave me a bunch of her nutritional supplements she no longer wants. High quality vanilla protein powder, green powder with all kind of good stuff, and some bottles of Equate meal replacements as well. This is like FREE FOOD!

    So I concocted this plan. For the next 10 days I will continue water fasting on alternate days, but on my eating days I will drink a large smoothie (meal replacement, the powders, ice, water) which would be about 600 calories in total.

    Would this be “enough calories” for the 10 days?

    Another option I would eat something small and what I already have, like lentils or beans, to supplement my smoothie and bring my calories to 800ish range? A slice of dark rye bread? (Already have frozen and my kids don’t like it lol)

    Will this be enough calories?

    Other than having a tight budget for the next 10-12 days, I’m also looking at this as an experiment. I was just reading a book on the siege of Leningrand during WWII and how little people had to eat.

    Can I simply go for 2 weeks “always hungry” without this being damaging for my health?

    I’ve read enough on water fasting to be excited to try a 5 day fast in the summer, but it seems to me that water fasting is very different for the body than just a caloric reduction. Am I wrong?

    So given that I have PLENTY of fat to lose, the unexpected gift of the supplements, tight grocery budget for the next 2 weeks and my keen interest in experimentation–is it doable to eat so little and still be fine?

    I don’t want this to be damaging to my health.

    I personally would not restrict so low. I can say from my past experience of restricting calories to a very low number made me so tired and I felt foggy like I couldn’t get a clear head. From a quick search I found this info…
    “Regularly eating fewer calories than your body needs can cause your metabolism to slow down.

    Several studies show that low-calorie diets can decrease the number of calories the body burns by as much as 23%.

    What’s more, this lower metabolism can persist long after the calorie-restricted diet is stopped.
    One of the ways that calorie-restricted diets slow your metabolism is by causing muscle loss.”

    —– and while I realize this would only be for two weeks… I’m not sure of the time line it takes for the body to hit that slump where it feels deprived and it screws up the metabolism. I would up the calories if it were me. Maybe two shakes a day or actually having a sandwich at least.

    If you are getting enough nutrition — protein, vitamins, minerals — from your rye bread [good choice] and lentils [good choice] and meal replacement shakes, then go for the 800 calories per eating day rather than 500. You could eat 1000 calories on alternate days and still lose weight. There is a down-side to losing weight too fast and that is that the body doesn’t have a chance to reabsorb the cells [think extra-wide skin] as weight is lost.
    The idea of replicating the Siege of Leningrad Diet is historically interesting, but starving is not what Fasting is about. Is there not a Food Pantry or Soup Kitchen near you which could supplement the meals for you and your children?
    Good luck. Keep us posted on your progress. I hope the check arrives…..

    Thank you for your replies.

    I ended up not restricting to 800, as I found I was not ready emotionally for this. I’m really enjoying my water fasting days, and then I’m enjoying my eating days.

    I’d also like to note that my children had plenty of nutritious meal options, I was trying to stretch my food for a bit more. In any case, this didn’t happen. Well, I stretched my food by being invited for dinner with friends lol.

    I actually ended up eating around 2000 calories on non-fasting days, and 600 on the last eating day (I felt like I needed a lower intake). I also ended up NOT LOSING ANY WEIGHT! Which I found frustrating and surprising. I didn’t track my calories, but I didn’t overeat either.

    This week I’m carefully tracking my calories to see what next Monday brings.

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