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TOPIC: How do you know if your body is in "Starvation Mode"

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March 3, 2011 2:54 PM
OK, don't anyone slap me, I know this subjuct gets all kinds of people worked up. I was just wondering with all the talk recently on this subject. How do you know if you are? Really it is not like you will wake up one day and say YES I made it into starvation mode. I am NOT glamorizing it in anyway and I do not want this post to be a farse, I just want to know how does one know? Do you lose hair, are you weak, pale, what? I am actually terrified of entering the phase, so I try very hard to eat all my calories everyday and to pack as much of a nutritional punch from every bite I take. I do not want to mess up my whole system and or progress.
March 3, 2011 2:55 PM
BuMpwink
March 3, 2011 2:57 PM
I think of it in terms of "nutritionally deficient" more than anything....it was explained to me that when you are nutritionally deficient, you compromise your metabolism and since I def. do not want to do anything to slow down my little fat burnin buddies, I make sure to eat almost all my exercise calories back.
March 3, 2011 3:00 PM
BUMP!
March 3, 2011 3:01 PM
so thats the only way you know if you stop losing weight?
March 3, 2011 3:02 PM
more like you're too strict with the calories, working out too much, and not seeing any loses of body fat or weight.

Everyone Plateaus.

When that happens you have to re-evaluate what you're doing and see where you can improve.

I've watched many a weight loss reality special. Sometimes when you're working out too much and eating too little, you need to add a few hundred calories back(eat back some of your workout calories) in order to keep the fat coming off.

Seems counter productive.

But true.
March 3, 2011 3:03 PM
You starve? I'd assume REAL starvation is obvious...
March 3, 2011 3:04 PM
QUOTE:

OK, don't anyone slap me, I know this subjuct gets all kinds of people worked up. I was just wondering with all the talk recently on this subject. How do you know if you are? Really it is not like you will wake up one day and say YES I made it into starvation mode. I am NOT glamorizing it in anyway and I do not want this post to be a farse, I just want to know how does one know? Do you lose hair, are you weak, pale, what? I am actually terrified of entering the phase, so I try very hard to eat all my calories everyday and to pack as much of a nutritional punch from every bite I take. I do not want to mess up my whole system and or progress.


**slap, slap** ;p

Sorry hun....couldn't resist that one.

On a serious note, I'm glad you posted this because like you, and so many others, I too am afraid of hitting "starvation mode" and MFP tells me that every night when I complete my diary. I know I don't eat all my exercise calories because I usually burn over 1000 cals (and I exercise in the evening). Someone in another post told me not to burn so many calories each time I go to the gym. So I'm going to try that.
March 3, 2011 3:05 PM
Starvation mode is a state in which the body is responding to prolonged periods of low caloric intake levels. During short periods of caloric abstinence, the human body will burn primarily free fatty acids from body fat stores. After prolonged periods of starvation the body has depleted its body fat and begins to burn lean tissue and muscle as a fuel source.

As long as you keep giving your body something to digest every 3 hours or so and keep your caloric intake above 1,200 you should keep your body out of starvation mode. If your diets calorie goal is below 1,200 per day you need to make up the deficit with exercise and not calorie cutting. Calculate your BMR in the tools section and it will tell you how many calories you burn each day at rest. If you keep your caloric intake below that number you will create a deficit. When you create that deficit your body has to replace those calories from its stockpile of fat. Each pound of fat takes 3500 calories to burn. So in a week if you want to lose 1 pound you need at least a 3500 calorie deficit when you calculate your weeks intake.

Just remember, you need to take in at LEAST 1200 calories (for most people, the number does vary) and create your deficit with exercise.
Edited by TheWatchStander On March 3, 2011 3:07 PM
  4552167
March 3, 2011 3:05 PM
Why do people post the word..."Bump"?
March 3, 2011 3:05 PM
You won't get pale or orange, your eyes won't get red and you won't grow a third arm :) Starvation mode means your body doesn't have enough nutrients to work efficiently, so your metabolism slows down and fat loss slows down. It also gets harder to work out and you notice your stamina decreases.
  4423141
March 3, 2011 3:05 PM
Haven't you heard? First your body eats all your muscle mass, then it eats your organ tissue, then you lose all your energy, get REALLY fat, and then you die.

I'M KIDDING, DON'T HURT ME!!!!!

Those ARE a few of the things I was told yesterday by other MFP users, though.

I am really interested in reading the HONEST (not scare tactic) answers to this question.

Thank you for asking it! (I wouldn't dare after yesterday noway )
  3849501
March 3, 2011 3:06 PM
opps
Edited by FearAnLoathing On March 3, 2011 3:06 PM
March 3, 2011 3:08 PM
Forum topics are ordered by when they had activity last (comments). People say bump to bring the forum topic back to the top of the list of most recent forum topics so that more people will see it and potentially respond.
  4552167
March 3, 2011 3:09 PM
QUOTE:

You won't get pale or orange, your eyes won't get red and you won't grow a third arm :) Starvation mode means your body doesn't have enough nutrients to work efficiently, so your metabolism slows down and fat loss slows down. It also gets harder to work out and you notice your stamina decreases.


so then even though on the days I exercise im only netting like 900 and have been this way for a year.Since im still losing and my stamina is great im not in starvation mode
March 3, 2011 3:10 PM
QUOTE:

Why do people post the word..."Bump"?


it keeps the thread recent "bumping the post to the top of the list"
  4066039
March 3, 2011 3:10 PM
QUOTE:

Haven't you heard? First your body eats all your muscle mass, then it eats your organ tissue, then you lose all your energy, get REALLY fat, and then you die.




LMAO. Loved that!!
March 3, 2011 3:11 PM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

You won't get pale or orange, your eyes won't get red and you won't grow a third arm :) Starvation mode means your body doesn't have enough nutrients to work efficiently, so your metabolism slows down and fat loss slows down. It also gets harder to work out and you notice your stamina decreases.


so then even though on the days I exercise im only netting like 900 and have been this way for a year.Since im still losing and my stamina is great im not in starvation mode


Right, are you keeping your intake before exercise above 1200 or so?
  4552167
March 3, 2011 3:11 PM
When my body goes into "survival mode" I get really tired and run down and I stop losing fat.
  838963
March 3, 2011 3:11 PM
Studies show that if you eat under 1200 calories a day then your body will go into starvation mode. If you are hungrey eat at least 20 grams of protein that will fill you up and increase your metabolism.
  2355556
March 3, 2011 3:12 PM
BUmp
March 3, 2011 3:13 PM
QUOTE:

You won't get pale or orange, your eyes won't get red and you won't grow a third arm :) Starvation mode means your body doesn't have enough nutrients to work efficiently, so your metabolism slows down and fat loss slows down. It also gets harder to work out and you notice your stamina decreases.


damn, i needed that third arm!!!!
March 3, 2011 3:13 PM
Thanks so much!
March 3, 2011 3:15 PM
QUOTE:

After prolonged periods of starvation the body has depleted its body fat and begins to burn lean tissue and muscle as a fuel source.


So.... I'm just trying to understand, please don't hurt me... starvation mode (when your body burns lean tissue and muscle as fuel) happens AFTER the body has depleted its body fat?

Would that mean that an obese or overweight person (someone with lots of body fat) would have a difficult time going into starvation mode?
  3849501
March 3, 2011 3:17 PM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

After prolonged periods of starvation the body has depleted its body fat and begins to burn lean tissue and muscle as a fuel source.


So.... I'm just trying to understand, please don't hurt me... starvation mode (when your body burns lean tissue and muscle as fuel) happens AFTER the body has depleted its body fat?

Would that mean that an obese or overweight person (someone with lots of body fat) would have a difficult time going into starvation mode?


No, starvation mode is a slowing of the bodies metabolism. It still burns fat just much slower. If you were in starvation mode for long enough to burn through all the fat then yes your body would then begin burning lean tissue. No matter how much body fat you have you can still go into starvation mode if the criteria I stated above that is not met.
  4552167

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