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TOPIC: Devil's advocate: 1200 calories for petite/short women?

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« Prev 1 3 4 5 10 11
 
April 5, 2012 8:11 AM
It's interesting to hear this on countless "1200 calories" vs. "eat more to lose weight" discussions... people often say, "unless you're a dwarf" or "unless you're 4'8" " you really need at least 1200 calories a day. Well guess what? I happen to know that there are quite a few "dwarfs" :-) and petite women posting on MFP, me being one of them! (No offense taken to the "dwarf" comment, we're all just fun sized!) :-)

This isn't really a question for calorie advice for me personally, but for all smaller ladies out there. Do smaller women really need more than 1200 calories? Surely if you're less than 5' and pretty sedentary, you won't need as much as a 5'7" woman, right?



******FYI, I'm 4'10" 105 lbs. and my mantra is that women in general should eat more and be more active. I personally can not live off of 1200 calories a day. I am waaaay too active (am a long distance runner) and love food and exercise way too much, but I realize not all women are training for marathons like I am.

Thus, I welcome the different opinions, what do y'all think??
  11590041
April 5, 2012 8:18 AM
Hi all!

I am also short at 5ft and I find it very hard sticking to 1200 calories a day. I try to do some exercise each day and I then eat more. I have already lost 25lb in 6 months and still need to lose 10lb. I have joined mfp so that I can see how many calories I am eating and burning each day. I also think that each persons body is slightly diffrent and some people may burn more than others.
April 5, 2012 8:23 AM
You make a valid point. The calorie needs for petite women can be on the low side.

However, when you're getting down around 1200, adequate daily micronutrition starts to become an issue, IMO. Women that need to eat that little to lose weight would be better served to increase their activity and eat a little more.
April 5, 2012 8:24 AM
I'm 5'4", neither petite nor tall. LOL. Too tall for petites, too short for average.

I've survived off of lower than 1200 calories for a time. Longer than I might wish to admit to. My doctor has me on an ultra low calorie diet plan (like 700-800 calories a day), but I was finding I couldn't exercise doing that. She says I must exercise, even on that few calories. I don't think her idea of exercise and my idea of exercise are the same thing! Me, exercise is 30-60 minutes of giving every thing I've got at least twice a day. I don't think that's what she meant! I have upped my calories to 1300, and am finding that I can really see the improvements now. My weight isn't dropping as quickly, but I'm also not ravenous all the time. I am even considering going up to 1500 calories in the near future, because I want to seriously start lifting but still keep running as well. Gonna need more fuel for that! I stalled for a long time because of trying to stick with the doctor's food plan and getting all that exercise. Just couldn't do both!
  1710900
April 5, 2012 8:27 AM
OMGosh! I'm am 5'1" and there is no way on God's green earth I could go down to 1200... I would be so cranky and tired... that's it's just not worth it to me to cut my calories that low... even if I should eat to lose 2 pounds a week...
April 5, 2012 8:29 AM
I'm 5'4" which is the top consideration for petite.
I eat 1550 calories and I can't imagine eating 1200 since it leaves me hungry all day. I've lost more weight by eating at 1550 cals
Also, I mostly do strength training (heavy lifting) so I know I'd be a cranky person if I stuck to 1200
Edited by kperk91 On April 5, 2012 8:31 AM
April 5, 2012 8:32 AM
i'm 5'4", weight 130, hoping to lose 15lbs. The only way i can do this is eating 1200 calories net...so i eat around 1600 and burn off 400. I have a desk job and work from home, so i class that as pretty sedentary for a lot of the day.

I order to lose weight i have to stick to 1200 cals, which makes sense because i maintain at between 1550-1700 calories.
  5004588
April 5, 2012 8:35 AM
I am 5'2', age 47 (so lower metabolisium then a 20 year) Medium built) Desk job

I have done 1200 calories, and also lower at times. With and without exercise.

At 1200, I am somewhat hungry, but not starved. And I do lose weight - for a time.

But I always plateau, and stall. And then nothing seems to budge the weight,

So for me, I need more calories, about 1500 roughly seems a good range for me now, I do workout heavily, now. But have not always done so.

Have played with calories, macros, exercise ranges a lot over the past 4-5 years. Finally at my goal size now.

Also for me protein seems key. if my protein is to low, I also stall out.

So I need cal, and protein.
Edited by tangal88 On April 5, 2012 8:37 AM
April 5, 2012 8:35 AM
I'm 5'4" and 57. Plus I am not a huge fan of working out. So keeping to 1200 - 1350 calories is optimal for me. That said, it requires that I make mostly good food choices--making each calorie count. I sometimes wish MFP would allow you to track more micronutrients to see how I stand on some of those. I track calcium and iron, and know I far exceed recommended allowances for vitamins A and C. But the rest is a mystery.
April 5, 2012 8:35 AM
I'm finding it hard to use up my 1200 calories. I'm following the Couch to 5k exercise program and exercise everyday. I've also added a 30 minute brisk walk at work at lunchtime.
I've lost 8.5lbs since I started about 5 weeks ago. I think my problem is that I'm trying to limit my caloric intake to Breakfast, Lunch or Dinner only. I guess I need to add a snack or two in. I just don't want to get into a snacking habit.
I use up my protein allotment but my sodium, cholesterol and calories are always left with pretty hefty numbers. Maybe I'm eating too healthy??? lol NOT.
  18892225
April 5, 2012 8:37 AM
I am 5' tall and 149lbs. I have used the calculators that those on the "eat more to lose" and "1200 calories is not enough for a squirrel" threads always talk about and my BMR is roughly between 1214 and 1416, depending on the method used. When I factor in my sedentary lifestyle that gives me a few hundred more for TDEE. I am also breastfeeding so I add 500 calories, which seems to be a good place for me. I don't usually eat back exercise calories (my workouts are not that strenuous as of yet) but will eat extra if I am super hungry. Most days I am satisfied but some days I am ravenous. I hope that once I am not breastfeeding anymore I will be at goal and will continue to be able to eat about the same as I am now without gaining. I think I would feel very deprived at 1200 calories--not just in hunger but in feeling like I can't ever eat what "other" people eat because it has too many calories (birthday cake, going out to eat once in awhile, or even having a snack more than 50 calories).

I have entered in my goal weight and goal body fat% and my BMR is still about the same, so I will always need to watch what I eat. :( Increasing exercise is important, as is making good food choices to make sure that I am getting the most nutrition for my caloric "buck". I need to continue to make improvements in that area.
  14068738
April 5, 2012 8:38 AM
bump for later
  8915669
April 5, 2012 8:40 AM
I'm 5.2 and currently 115lbs, halleluia! I lost 10lbs by going down to 1000 calories, and then I lost another 5 slowly as I went up to 1200 calories. I eat a lot- check out my food diary b/c I I'm not eating junk. I went from a tight 6p to a loose 4p. I'm trying to eat more primal- less carbs and more healthy fat/protein.
April 5, 2012 8:40 AM
I'm 4'9 and 97 lbs, I eat roughly 1000-1200 calories a day if I'm hungry. When I'm not that hungry, I eat a lot less. I have literally gone a day or two without eating, because I just didn't think about it. To be honest, I wouldn't be on here if I didn't have kids, I almost done losing my baby weight.
Edited by bluberrygoo On April 5, 2012 8:42 AM
April 5, 2012 8:42 AM
I am 5'1 and have about 30 lbs to lose...it is hard for me to stay at 1200...I recently upped it to 1300 and feels so much better. I have energy and i'm not as cranky anymore. I haven't seen any significant weight loss (bouncing 3 lbs up and down) but hoping this higher intake will boost my metabolism like so many people on here say it will.
April 5, 2012 8:42 AM
I am 5'2, 130 lbs, 30 years old. It also has calculated 1200 calories a day for me. I can eat 1200 calories on most days, but if I work out then I do increase my calories to 1400. I don't stress too much about it. I am capable, without starving, of eating 1200 a day, but don't stress if it's 1300-1400. I am a HUGE believer it's what you put into your mouth that is more important than counting calories to the "T".
  13737652
April 5, 2012 8:43 AM
I'm 4'11 and sedentary or not I wouldn't eat 1200 calories. that's only slightly more than i ate with an eating disorder. not okay.
April 5, 2012 8:43 AM
QUOTE:

I am 5'1 and have about 30 lbs to lose...it is hard for me to stay at 1200...I recently upped it to 1300 and feels so much better. I have energy and i'm not as cranky anymore. I haven't seen any significant weight loss (bouncing 3 lbs up and down) but hoping this higher intake will boost my metabolism like so many people on here say it will.


100 calories is NOT going to boost your metabolism. it's rather negligible.
April 5, 2012 8:43 AM
so here is what I have found out over the last 2 or so months.

1. started with 1200 calories. I didn't look at NET calories, just ate. worked out. Lost 20 pounds

2. started reading the posts. Upped my calories to 1400 (slightly above my BMR) - gained 6 pounds. Went to the doctor - based on thyroid, and everything else...1400 was above where I needed to be.

3. started on a high protein no carb 1000 calories...losing weight.

Upping my calories did not help me at all.

5'2'
  15326066
April 5, 2012 8:44 AM
I'm 5'5" but often think along those same lines when I hear the generic "1200 is way too little!!" posts. 1200 net calories is enough for many average sized women and probably plenty for most of the fun-sized ladies. We humans are not 'one size fits all'.
April 5, 2012 8:44 AM
I'm 4 11 and on 1200 calories. I have no problems "surviving" on 1200. In most cases I'm right at or a little below unless I work out that day, then obviously I eat back my calories. I'm not starving at the end of the day and I've been dropping pounds. It works for me.
  4224376
April 5, 2012 8:45 AM
I'm 5'1 and a lot more weight to loose.. according to my MFP my goal should be about 1700 a day . I have my goal set at 1900 so that I can focus on healthy eating. what I find very interesting is when I count calories or set my goal to low. say 1400. I stay hungry all the time and can never stay under my goal.. when I don't think about it and just eat when i'm hungry and stop when I'm satisfied I naturally come in somewhere between 1200-1400 some days I'm under 1000 and not hungry at all....
April 5, 2012 8:45 AM
QUOTE:

I'm 4'9 and 97 lbs, I eat roughly 1000-1200 calories a day if I'm hungry. When I'm not that hungry, I eat a lot less. I have literally gone a day or two without eating, because I just didn't think about it. To be honest, I wouldn't be on here if I didn't have kids, I almost done losing my baby weight.


wow--not sure how you survive but i would surely recommend eating more!
April 5, 2012 8:46 AM
I am 4'11" - I find it diffcult - when I am eating healthy to even eat 1200 calories per day. I exercise every day except for the past few as I have been sick. The only time I have trouble sticking to 1200 calories is when we eat out or eat processed foods. I havent lost weight yet however it is because of a recently discovered thyroid issue. Per my doctor once the meds kick in - I should start losing 1 to 2 punds per week given my current eating and exercise plan.
  19767855
April 5, 2012 8:47 AM
QUOTE:

I'm 4'9 and 97 lbs, I eat roughly 1000-1200 calories a day if I'm hungry. When I'm not that hungry, I eat a lot less. I have literally gone a day or two without eating, because I just didn't think about it. To be honest, I wouldn't be on here if I didn't have kids, I almost done losing my baby weight.


Not sure how you had energy to function or take care of the kiddos. Curious how you could "forget" to eat, especially while feeding the kiddos. I would really increase your calories. Set a reminder on your phone if you have to!
  13737652

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