TDEE less than 1700 cals !

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TDEE less than 1700 cals !

This topic contains 15 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by  helenscott1966 5 years, 11 months ago.

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  • Hi. I’ve just worked out my TDEE and it’s less than 1700 cals. Is anyone else this low ? I thought it was based around 2000 for a female so for me eating 1650 on non fast days would still feel like a diet every day which sort of defeats the object? TIA

    Hi Helen,

    I’m guessing that you were born in 66 which makes you in your early fifites.
    The 2000 calorie average is based on a woman in her twenties. As our bodies get older they need less to calories to maintain them so it decreases year on year. The average TDEE for a 60 year old woman is less than 1500.
    It is one of the reasons why people who don’t overreat begin to put on weight in middle age as they don’t realise the caloric requirements of their body has decreased.

    Thank you Amazon that makes sense. Yes I’m in my 50’s and have been struggling to shift a stone for over 2 years whereas previous I could always shift weight if I put my mind to it. How disappointing tho 1500 cals just to not put it on 😢😢😢

    If I understand the TDEE, mine is 1854, so I need to stay on that or less to lose weight on non-FD?

    Hi kay and welcome:

    The way 5:2 works is you eat 500 or fewer calories on your two diet days each week, and to your TDEE or less on the other five days.

    Here are some tips:

    Good Luck!

    @simcoeluv thanks for the info. I think I’m doing correct. I guess as you lose weight your TDEE will decrease too.

    As a 69 year old woman who goes to the gym 2x/week and walks 5 miles/day, my TDEE – 1450.
    Kay, as your height reduces due to age your TDEE will decrease. TDEE is not based on your weight, but on your body type, activity level, and weight goal.

    Helen, I find that my TDEE gives me lots of food to eat on a Slow Day, including dessert on some days. The longer you Fast, the smaller your appetite gets.

    Hi, There are quite a few of us here with TDEEs much lower than 2000. We are mostly women, mostly older and mostly short – as all of these things have an impact, as does activity level. My TDEE is around 1400 and I was pretty angry about that for a while. But the reality is that unless I can ramp up my activity level a lot, it’s not going to change and I have to find way to live with it. It did explain, finally, why I could eat the same as the rest of my family and I’d be the only one gaining weight.

    I know you are already concerned about your TDEE being low, but I recommend you recalculate it for your goal weight and work with that TDEE, as that is what maintenance of that goal weight will require. If you don’t do this then you’ll have to keep recalculating it as you lose weight, as every pound lost lowers your TDEE. I also found that I needed to check my calories for a while on NFDs until I was sure of portion sizes and food choices to stay within my TDEE. I don’t do it now, I just did this until I was sure I understood how to eat within my TDEE.

    I started 5:2 in January 2017 and it took me 5 months to lose the weight I wanted. It was quite slow, because with a low TDEE, eating 500 calories on a FD isn’t a large calorie deficit. Once I got to maintenance I realised I didn’t want to be confined to eating 1400 calories every day forever. So I’ve stayed with 5:2, rather than going down to the recommended 6:1 for maintenance. I still do 2 FDs per week and as I’m maintaining rather than trying to lose weight now it means I can have a bit more than 1400 calories on my NFDs which helps me feel a bit more normal and means I stress less in social events that involve food. This works well for me and a good long term approach.

    Thanks everyone. Yes old, female and short. Seems to mean short straw re TDEE. Oh well I will just have to wrap my head around it, I was so chuffed with the average 2000 cals thing but it’s obviously not to be. Sigh.


    If you have to count calories to ensure you lose weight or even maintain weight then you’re eating the wrong foods. Ive never counted calories, lost my weight over three years ago and have been in maintenance ever since. 57 yo male, 92kg down to 70kg. The CICO concept is pure crap, yet it still gets peddled about. I have a very simple method that works for me, you need to find a method that works for you. What’s mine? I do not eat grain based products. Those are very rare treats. e.g. No rice, breads etc. Also if the food is processed so that it is no longer recognizable from its original form then I don’t have it. Example. Fruit is OK. Fruit juice is not. Don’t get me started on smoothies!

    I don’t visit this site much any more as most find my mantra on healthy eating too severe. So all I can say is find what works for you and keep doing it.

    Thanks big booty. I was just following the advice and calculation tool provided by the website. I also thought the beauty of this woe was you didn’t count calories for 5 days so disappointed to see that you do and that mine are very low

    Hi Helen,

    Im confused with what you said? I don’t count calories whether its a fasting or non fasting day. The TDEE calculator is only an estimate at best. I have found that if you eat healthy whole foods your body tells you when to stop eating. I have found that many people that struggle to be success with 5:2 insist on eating the same rubbish its just that they eat less of it on their two fast days. This makes the job of being successful really hard. Not impossible but really hard.

    Good luck with it. Combine healthy whole foods with 5:2 and it will work. Go to the maintenance section and ask those that are there what they did to become successful. A common theme will emerge.

    Hi Helen,

    I’m one of those from the maintenance section!

    I’ve maintained a 14kg loss for four years now. I’m firmly in the ‘better things to be doing than counting calories’ camp, but then I’ve never been on a calorie-controlled diet so have no dieting ‘baggage’.

    I’m with bigbooty on this. I didn’t want to lose weight just so I could carry on eating the cr@p that was making me fat in the first place, I wanted a different relationship with food.

    I’ve never drunk fizzy drinks anyway, but I cut out other added sugar, so no biscuits/ cakes/ sweets/ chocolate until I reached my goal weight. And then I reintroduced some, higher quality, sweet stuff on a treat (i.e. occasional) basis. I also massively reduced the amount of processed/ refined carbohydrate in my diet. No more daily bread/ pasta/ rice. As a result I’m not controlled by blood sugar highs and lows, and I don’t really have a sweet tooth anymore.

    I did get a rough idea of what 500 calories looked like for fast days, but then ate real food in sensible portion sizes on non-fast days.

    I do weigh myself every day and use that as a guide as to whether I need to fast/ be stricter with eating. But I have no idea how many calories I consume and pay no attention to the ‘average’ TDEE. I’m not on a diet, it’s just a way of life now.

    In any case, even if you’re someone that does need to count calories to stay on track, there’s no reason to be depressed by a low(er) TDEE (than you’d hoped for). You’ll find that fewer calories go a long way if you make good food choices.

    Thanks both. I eat reasonably healthy and cook from scratch 80% of the time anyway. I rarely eat processed foods and go to Mac Donald’s about once every 2 years. It’s the menopause that has contributed to my weight gain of a stone that I can’t shift. As a new member the site directs you to working out your TDDE and sticking to that so maybe that needs less emphasis. Like you I really don’t want to start counting calories every day

    The BMR and TDEE provides a rough estimate so folks know where to begin. The 500-600 calories a day is also a rough estimate. It gives you a place to start, but it isn’t carved in stone. For those of us who have been severely eating disordered for many years, who had no idea how many calories was appropriate for our age/height/weight/activity level it is incredibly helpful.

    Counting Calories/Protein/Fat/Carbs is also a tool that you can use in the beginning because it gives you an idea of how many calories you’re actually eating, and the nature of those calories. It’s remarkably easy to fool ourselves about what and how much we’re actually eating. Not just in a perfect day, but over say, a month or two or three, including all of the wine and inevitable birthday cakes and holiday eating etc. The first week, I measured everything because I didn’t have a clue what a “serving” of cottage cheese or chicken looked like. Now I measure much less, both because I have a better idea of appropriate portions, and also because I’m eating LCHF and am simply less hungry. If you feel like you know what a serving is, then there’s no need to count or measure, just go forward and try eating at your TDEE level and see how you do.

    I think women have it slightly harder than men. All my husband has to do to lose five pounds is skip lunch for a week. However, he’s also over a foot taller and has an appropriate weight that is 100 pounds heavier than my goal weight. I can’t do that so there’s no point in my complaining about reality. 🙂

    It’s possible that menopause slows metabolism, but there may also be other factors at play. It seems that insulin resistance may also grow as we age, and that will cause weight gain around the middle where we least want it. I log everything I eat, but I have not found that being mindful has been a detriment. I’m not sure there’s any way around it if we want to lose weight. And of course keep in mind that we can raise our TDEE somewhat by being more active.

    Thanks OnlyHermes
    I agree re men having it easier. The NHS website says that you gain weight during the menopause because oestrogen is stored in fat. Cells and the body is desperately trying to hang onto oestrogen so in turn it holds onto fat cells. I don’t know re insulin resistant but I have my levels checked every so often due to having a diabetic mother, father and brother and I’m in the normal range . I do need to move more but struggle due to some physical health issues

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