Dr. Caroline Apovian - Are very low-calorie diets effective for weight loss?

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So I hear that problem many times that, I'm on a low calorie diet, I've been on a low calorie diet forever and I only eat 1200 calories a day, I only 800 calories, why can't I lose weight, there must something wrong with my metabolism. Very rarely is there something with your metabolism when you're trying to lose weight and you can't seem to do it.

We do pick up cases once in a while while hypothyroidism, which means that your thyroid is under active and you do need a medication to boost that metabolism. Many times however we check a thyroid stimulating hormone TSH, and we don't find it to be abnormal. So the problem with people who are trying to lose weight and they can't seem to do it on a low-calorie diet there are several problems.

Number one is, you may be actually underestimating what you're actually eating. Many people do that, most people do it. You think that dinner I had last night maybe that was 500 calories when actually it was a 1000 calories, and studies have shown that people who need to lose weight underestimate their caloric intake by 50%.

And so the most important problem is that you're underestimating your calorie needs and you're underestimating what you're eating. And so that's why food logs are so important, if you actually write everything down with the quantity and try to calculate from there your caloric intake you may find that actually you're eating a little bit more than what you think you're eating.