How to Eat a Low-Calorie Diet Without Losing Energy

How to Eat a Low-Calorie Diet Without Losing Energy

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Drink water before and after your workout to boost energy.

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You're working out and feeling good, but you still need to lose weight. You want to go on a low-calorie diet, but worry that it may leave you feeling too tired. Eating too few calories can certainly make it hard for you to get through your day-to-day activities, and make it especially hard to get through your workout. But if you do it right, a low-calorie plan can help you lose weight and bolster your energy levels.


Eat enough calories. Women can safely lose weight without losing energy by eating 1,000 to 1,200 calories a day. Men and women who weigh more than 165 pounds can lose weight without losing energy by eating 1,200 to 1,600 calories a day. Eating less than 800 calories a day can cause fatigue, according to the Weight-control Information Network.


Balance your diet. Food is your body's source of energy, and feeding it right while limiting calories keeps energy levels up. So eat more whole grains; fruits and vegetables; lean proteins, such as fish and poultry; healthy fats, such as olive oil; and low-fat or nonfat dairy products.


Increase the number of meals and snacks you eat throughout the day, but keep them small. Eating every three hours keeps your brain fed and helps prevent the drowsiness you may feel in between meals. An example of a small meal may include a bowl of whole-grain cereal or a turkey sandwich on whole wheat bread. An example of a small snack may include an apple or a container of fat-free yogurt.


Drink water. Not getting enough fluids can make you tired, according to the Cleveland Clinic. How much you need depends on your activity level, but you should aim to drink enough so that your urine is clear or straw-colored.


  • If you're not feeling full on your low-calorie diet, up your intake by 100 to 200 calories.
  • Don't skip snacks or meals, especially breakfast.


  • Consult your doctor before starting a low-calorie diet.
  • Do not lose more than two pounds a week. Losing weight too quickly can cause you to lose muscle, which decreases energy levels.

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