Calorie Restriction Diet Plans: Are They Healthy?

Calorie restriction diets are intended to promote weight loss and improved wellbeing by drastically reducing daily calorie intake. These diets often involve the use of meal replacement items, including meal-replacement shakes, soups, and bars. Many calorie-restricted diets reduce daily calorie intake to 1,200 calories a day, and some plans reduce this intake to no more than eight hundred calories each day. Calorie restriction diets may be recommended by doctors in cases where patients have a body mass index of thirty or above, and they might also be considered for patients with body mass indices of twenty-seven or higher who also have conditions such as diabetes or hypertension. Since calorie restriction involves some level of risk, especially when they drop below 1200 calories, patients should ensure they are monitored by a doctor while following the diet.

The guide below explains some of the most popular types of calorie restriction diets, and it also includes information about potential benefits, side effects, and alternatives.

Defining Calorie Restriction


In terms of defining calorie restriction, most experts agree it consists of a thirty to forty percent reduction in daily caloric intake. Individual calorie needs vary depending on an individual's gender, age, and weight, so a thirty to forty percent reduction generally means consuming between eight hundred and 1,500 calories each day. Some calorie restriction plans include a daily calorie intake of approximately four hundred to seven hundred calories. Also known as very-low-calorie diets, these forms of calorie restriction are typically followed for one to three months, and patients must be monitored by a physician. Alternatively, newer forms of calorie restriction may focus on restricting weekly calorie intake. These forms of restriction have a daily limit of five to seven hundred calories for two or three days of the week, and patients can eat more calories on the other days of the week. For some patients, these plans are easier to maintain.

Get the details on some examples of specific calorie restriction diets now.