900 Calorie Diet

Extreme dieting is never a good idea, but if you are facing severe health problems such as diabetes or high blood pressure--and taking off a considerable amount of weight is the answer--you could venture into the world of low-calorie dieting. A 900-calorie diet can be implemented to lose between four to seven pounds per week and can help to jump start your metabolism.

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

All diets have pros and cons, and diving into a 900-calorie diet is no exception. The upside to extreme low caloric eating is rapid weight loss. During the initial few weeks, your body will experience caloric shock and begin dropping weight at a rapid pace. You also might experience renewed energy levels and lower sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

The bad part of eating only 900 calories a day is that you might virtually be hungry 24/7. Because your body is accustomed to eating more (an inactive woman needs between 1,500 to 1,800 calories to maintain weight per day) you will hear a lot more rumbling in your stomach. Although you might have higher energy levels throughout the day, you also might feel sudden fatigue or exhaustion, too. Additionally, your metabolism will naturally slow down to accommodate the low calorie intake.

Be concerned with maintaining a 900-calorie diet for an extended amount of time. People who don't eat enough for an extended amount of time can suffer from gallstones, nausea, diarrhea and constipation as a result of rapid weight loss. Additionally, most people who eat less than what their body needs to maintain a healthy life eventually will gain the weight back (and possibly more) if they don't change their lifestyle to include healthier foods.

Eating 900 Calories per Day

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Depending upon your eating pattern, you can essentially divide your day into three 300 calorie meals to meet the 900-calorie a day program.

An example of a daily 900-calorie meal plan would be one cup of oatmeal with raisins, one cup of fruit, coffee or tea and a banana. Lunch could be a medium baked potato with two tablespoons sour cream, two tablespoons salsa, one cup of sliced melon and water. For dinner, you could enjoy six ounces of chicken (grilled or boiled), one cup of green beans, two pats of low-fat butter, one small tossed salad, two tablespoons reduced-oil and vinegar dressing.

Try to drink as much water in your day as possible. Cold water will rev up your metabolism and keep you hydrated.

Maintaining 900 Calories and Beyond

Boredom certainly can set in when you are limited to 900 calories per day, but you can get creative with your meal plans. One way is to purchase low-calorie frozen entrees that contain 275 to 300 calories. Eating these dinners is a fast and easy way to get nutrients and meet your caloric goal. Also, incorporate different fruits and vegetables into your daily routine.

Consuming 900 calories per day will garner results up to a point, and then your body will plateau. You will want to practice caloric cycling in order to maximize your weight loss goal and avoid plateauing. Try the 900-calorie diet for approximately two to three weeks (when you will see the most weight loss), and then cycle to a 1,300- to 1,500-calorie diet. Follow a higher calorie diet for two weeks, then go back to the 900 calorie diet for two weeks.