Don't Just Get Along! These are the Health Risks Behind the Very Low Calorie Diet

For the sake of having a slim body, some people are willing to go on extreme diets, such as very low calorie diet (VLCD). Although you can lose weight quickly, this kind of diet has the risk of causing various health problems and diseases. you know.

Very low calorie diet is a fast weight loss program that limits calorie intake to very low levels. People who are on this diet are recommended to limit their calorie intake to only about 800-1000 calories a day. In fact, adult calorie needs per day are around 2000-2500 calories, depending on activity, weight, age, and body metabolism.

Facts aboutVery Low Calorie Diet

Very low calorie diet is one type of diet that was initiated to lose weight in obese people, so that their weight and health conditions are more controlled.

This type of diet is not recommended for pregnant or lactating women, children, adolescents, and people with certain diseases, except under the supervision of a doctor.

On the other hand, very low calorie diet should only be done for a short period of time, ie no more than 12 weeks and should be closely monitored by a doctor. By applying this diet, an obese person is expected to lose around 18–20 kg in 3 months.

In obese people, this diet aims to help them achieve an ideal body weight and reduce the risk of certain diseases due to obesity, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and osteoarthritis.

Risk Very Low Calorie Diet for Health

Given that this type of diet is very low in calories, doing the VLCD diet without the supervision of a doctor is not recommended because it can pose health risks.

Before trying this extreme diet, you need to know some of the effects very low calorie diet that can happen, namely:

1. Lack of nutrition

Going on a low-calorie diet without a doctor's supervision can make you lacking in important nutrients needed by the body, such as carbohydrates, protein, fat, fiber, and various vitamins and minerals.

Because it is not monitored by a doctor, what you eat may not necessarily meet your daily nutritional needs, while the calories that enter your body are very less than the normal recommended number of calories. If this diet is carried out for a long time, you are at high risk of experiencing malnutrition or malnutrition.

2. Changes in body metabolism

Reducing calories too drastically can cause changes in metabolic processes in your body. This can slow down metabolism, increase the risk of organ dysfunction, and accelerate aging.

3. Easily tired and weak

Calories are the body's main source of energy. When calorie intake is reduced, your body will become less energetic. This can make you tired and weak. As a result, you will find it difficult to concentrate and perform various daily activities.

4. The immune system becomes weak

The body needs adequate calorie and nutrient intake, so that the immune system can remain strong and function properly. When you are on the VLCD diet, your immune system is at risk of weakening due to nutritional deficiencies.

In fact, a strong immune system is very important to prevent various types of diseases, including flu and COVID-19.

5. Decreased bone density

When you are deficient in certain nutrients, such as calcium, vitamin D, and protein, your bone tissue can become more porous.

In addition, a lack of calorie intake can also cause levels of the hormones estrogen and testosterone to decrease, thereby hampering the process of bone tissue formation. As a result, your bones will become weaker and break easily.

6. Formation of gallstones

One of the health risks that is quite common experienced by people who undergo very low calorie diet is the formation of gallstones. When the body experiences a lack of calories, fat tissue will be used as a backup energy source.

This makes the liver (liver) secrete more cholesterol and bile. When cholesterol builds up in the gallbladder, it can lead to gallstones.

7. Hair loss

Extremely low-calorie diets can reduce the intake of protein, iron, vitamins, and carbohydrates. In fact, various types of these nutrients play an important role for the growth of body tissues, including hair and nails. When you go on an excessive VLCD diet, your hair can fall out due to a lack of nutrients.

Very low calorie diet it can lose weight, but this diet can also harm your health condition. Instead of going on an extreme diet to lose weight fast, you are better off choosing a healthier diet that is safer to achieve your ideal weight.

As a rule, the ideal weight loss target is 0.5–1 kg per week. Not only by limiting calorie intake as needed, you can also lose weight by exercising regularly for 30 minutes every day or at least 3-5 times per week.

If you are interested in trying very low calorie diet or difficulty achieving the ideal weight even though you have tried various ways, try to consult a doctor first, so that the doctor can determine the type of diet that is right for you.