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Nutrition shakes are often used in very low-calorie diets.
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Eating 500 calories a day may mean you're failing to meet your body's daily nutrient needs. However, in some cases, 500-calorie diets are appropriate, especially for morbidly obese individuals seeking rapid weight loss and reduced disease risks. If you're considering eating 500 calories a day to lose weight, only do so under your doctor's careful supervision.
Diets providing 500 calories a day are classified as very low-calorie diets, which are diets containing 800 calories or less daily, notes Weight-control Information Network. Obese individuals at high risk for obesity-related health conditions may benefit from consuming 500 to 800 calories daily, but only under medical supervision. Five hundred-calorie diets may also be used in a clinical setting for patients who have recently undergone gastric bypass weight-loss surgery.
Weight loss - if you're overweight or obese - is the biggest benefit of eating 500 calories a day. Rapid weight loss of 3 to 5 pounds weekly often occurs when using very low-calorie diets, Weight-control Information Network reports. A study published in 2013 in вЂњDiabetesвЂќ reports that eating 500 calories a day helped diabetic patients lose just as much weight - and improve insulin sensitivity and fasting glucose levels - as patients who had undergone roux-en-y gastric bypass weight-loss surgery.
Very low-calorie diets, especially 500-calorie plans, come with several drawbacks. Many adults feel hungry when eating just 500 calories a day. These very low-calorie diets require regular doctor visits and close medical supervision. Weight-control Information Network reports that very low-calorie diets can cause constipation, diarrhea, nausea, fatigue and gallstone formation caused by rapid weight loss. Some doctors may recommend you take medication to prevent gallstone formation when eating 500 to 800 calories a day.
You don't have to eat 500 calories a day to shed pounds. In fact, unless you're morbidly obese and supervised by a medical professional, 500-calorie diets aren't the best choice. A review published in 2006 in вЂњObesityвЂќ reports that very low-calorie diets are not more effective long term than low-calorie diets providing 1,000 to 1,500 calories daily. The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute suggests women eat 1,000 to 1,600 calories daily and men consume 1,200 to 1,600 calories a day if they are overweight or obese and want to shed pounds safely and effectively.