A 1200 calorie diet is a low-calorie diet in which you consume up to 1200 calories a day. Just like other very-low-calorie diets, a 1200 calorie diet effectively aids in rapid weight loss.
It is because it offers considerably fewer calories than usually required for an average adult person to maintain a healthy weight.
Additionally, it is the most recommended diet by healthcare experts such as doctors and dietitians.
It commonly adds up to 1200 to 1500 calories a day for an adult female and 1500 to 1800 calories a day for an adult male.
Although a 1200 calorie diet may be suitable for a short time in various situations, still a 1200 calorie diet is below what is required for an average adult person.
Though initial experience maybe rapid weight loss as soon as you decrease calorie intake, keeping that weight off is not guaranteed.
According to Sage Journals, the study demonstrates when it comes to keeping the reduced weight off a very low-calorie diet hardly works.
1200 Calorie Diet for Weight Loss
Reducing calorie intake by 500 to 700 a day is most likely to promote weight loss for a short time.
Numerous studies prove that a low-calorie diet like a 1200 calorie diet effectively aids in weight loss.
Thus, having a calorie deficit diet is essential for weight loss.
On the other hand, 23% of 4,588 people following a 1200 calorie diet discontinued their participation.
The early weight loss by following a low-calorie diet such as a 1200 calorie diet is rapid and significant, yet, it is likely to cause excessive weight gain later on.
Furthermore, a study in 57 people by Nutrients Journal demonstrates that after following 500 to 1250 calorie diet for 5 to 12 weeks, participants regained more than half of their average weight that they lost over ten months.
It is likely to be caused by low-calorie diets. They induce metabolic changes that increase appetite and promote loss of lean body mass.
It also prevents weight loss by decreasing basal metabolic rate; thus, making it difficult for the body to maintain weight in the long term.
Benefits of Low-Calorie Restricted Diet
There are various health benefits of a 1200 calorie deficit diet if you plan to follow it.
However, these benefits are not specific to a 1200 calorie diet, but, in general, are linked to calorie restriction.
Moreover, consuming the right amount of calories is very important for optimal health. Numerous studies and research ( 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6) show that restricting your calorie intake can be beneficial for your health.
Without any doubt, weight loss has a positive impact on health; still, these diets are usually followed for a shorter period.
Over time the low-calorie restrictive dieting strategies are likely to increase the chances of excessive weight.
Consequently, while weight loss can be beneficial for health, yet it is necessary to follow a maintainable and healthy strategy over extreme ones.
According to Obesity Facts Journal, a study in moderately and severely obese patients demonstrates that following a low-calorie diet under medical supervision promotes rapid weight loss, improves blood sugar and lipid profiles.
Nevertheless, if you are following a 1200 calorie diet or any other low-calorie diet, it is recommended to consult with a health/medical professional for advice.
Side Effects of Low-Calorie Restricted Diet
Calorie requirements are different amongst individuals as calorie requirements depend upon numerous factors such as activity levels, age, and body height.
Thus, a 1200 calorie diet is unsuitable for many adults, including both males and females.
Although exact calorie requirements can be determined using calculations and specific types of equipment.
According to the Recommended Dietary Allowances (10th Edition), calorie requirement for an adult female to maintain a healthy weight is approximately 2,000 calories a day, whereas an adult male requires approx. 2,500 calories a day.
For that reason, a low-calorie restricted diet like a 1200 calorie diet is unsuitable for many individuals.
As it may cause probable side effects such as:
- Extreme hunger
Moreover, if you plan to lose weight for the long term, then a low-calorie diet might not be the right choice.
Additionally, a study shows that a low-calorie restriction diet causes metabolic changes in the body. It decreases the basal metabolic rate (BMR) and increases hormones like ghrelin and cortisol responsible for driving hunger.
Over time, it increases the odds of gaining weight with numerous periods of weight loss, followed by excessive weight regain.
This weight cycling may cause cardiac stress, increased risk of eating disorders, type 2 diabetes, and increased mortality.