Starvation Mode – Fact or Fiction

07 Nov

Most if not all serious dieting sources mention ‘Starvation Mode’ as a state your body goes into if your food intake is too low hindering your weight loss. But for every place which says it exists, another says it’s a myth.

The fact is that there is a starvation response in all animals, it is well researched and documented and there is genuine science behind it.

Our bodies need energy to function, our hearts need to pump, our lungs need to draw air and our blood needs to be cleaned. This energy comes from food and fat. When we eat less energy than we use, our bodies burn our fat stores, this is how we lose weight. However if we try to lose weight too quickly, the starvation response will kick in and start to break down lean muscle. You will still lose weight but now you’re risking Cardiac Dysrhythmia which can cause instant death.

Most sources recommend an absolute minimum of 1200 calories per day. I know no different so will requote it.

I have of course oversimplified the starvation response process. Wikipedia has a great article on it at Starvation Response. Malnutrition is also an interesting read.

Losing weight slowly and steadily is by far the best way forward. It is easier, and proven to be longer lasting than a quick fast.

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Posted by on November 7, 2011 in Health and Weight Loss


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