Pitfalls of Losing a Pound a Day
Yes, friends, it’s January, and the hucksters are peddling their Lose-Weight-Fast diets all over the internet. Enter Rocco DiSpirito’s “Pound a Day Diet.”
On paper, it sounds great. Lose a pound a day on what he calls “metabolic fasting” (the theory is that your metabolism won’t turn to sludge if you intersperse low calorie days with higher calorie days). While on the diet, you eat delicious food that only takes a few minutes and a handful of ingredients to make, with recipes based on the “Mediterranean diet,” including lots of protein, vegetables, and moderate carbohydrates. Here’s why it works: “Pound a Day” dieters are restricted to 850 calories per day on weekdays and 1200 calories on weekends, consumed in frequent, small meals. Yes, you will lose weight. But you might lose your health and well being too.
While the “Pound a Day Diet” sounds like the perfect quick-fix to all your weight-loss problems, there’s a reason health professionals don’t recommend going below 1200 calories a day. Several reasons, in fact.
The Real Consequences of Rapid Weight Loss
- At less than 1000 calories a day, it’s nearly impossible to get the vitamins, protein and minerals your body needs to avoid malnutrition.
- At less than 100 calories, your body shifts from active calorie-burning mode into calorie-storing mode, effectively shutting down your metabolism.
- When your metabolism shuts down, you’ll feel tired and lethargic, even if you eat “snacks” throughout the day. Your body just doesn’t have enough fuel.
- Your body will start to burn muscle, not fat. This has mental, as well as physical, effects, such as: confusion, anxiety, depression, and memory loss.
Personally, I think the “Pound a Day” plan needs to add 200 to 400 calories in order to be nutritionally sound and safe. No, you may not lose weight as fast, but you’ll be better off for it. In fact, supplementing this diet with a couple mason jars of good, green juice might be just the thing to replenish missing nutrients. And don’t forget a handful of nuts – good fats are important on any diet!