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Net Calories are a mystery to me.

8/17 9:19:48

Hi, my question concerns net calories and how it works in weight loss. I am currantly at 186 pounds after losing 12 pounds in the last two months with a 1200 calorie diet and using my elliptical for an hour 3 to 4 days a week. My question is if I eat 1200 calories and burn off say 800 on the machine doesn't that mean my intake for the day is 400 calories and very low? Is this how weighloss is suppose to work or am I missing some information? Any explanation would be appreciated.


Hello Adrian!

    Thank you for your nutrition question.  Yes, you are right that after burning 800 calories on a 1,200 calorie diet you would be at a very low level of 400.  This would also be a very dangerous to your health.  Since you are 186 lbs your daily calorie intake to maintain your current weight is about 1800 calories.
    In order to lose a pound a week you should be at about 1,300 calorie daily.  This is a deficit of 500 calories from the 1800 calories needed to maintain your weight.  When you subtract 500 calories daily from your diet this will equal 3,500 calories-which is 1lb per week.
This would be a much healthier weight loss plan.
   Let me know if you have more questions.
-George Rapitis, BSc. Nutritionist
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