What I Eat in a Day to Lose Weight (1200 calories)
Before I say aaaanything else, I just want to make it clear: I am not advocating for extreme calorie restriction. Everyone’s energy needs are different and you have to consult with your physician to determine a weight loss plan that works for your body. With that said, considering my health, weight, height, age, and activity level my doc OK’d the occasional 1200-1300 calorie days as long as I eat wholesome meals rich in complex proteins and a variety of fruit, grains, veggies, and legumes. For real though, this is not just a cliche disclaimer to protect myself against trolls and naysayers. The amount of calories we need to consume to lose weight varies greatly from person to person, and for a lot of people 1200/day would be too little.
If your energy needs are similar to mine, I thought it would be fun to share what I eat in a day to lose weight on a 1200 calorie budget, or in this case around 1240 calories.
- 1 cup Chobani Plain Whole Milk Greek Yogurt
- 2 tbsp homemade blueberry puree – blueberries, lemon juice, and a little bit of honey cooked down on medium heat until the berries pop.
- 2 tbsp NOW Foods Organic Flax Seeds
- a few fresh blueberries for the pretties 😉
Total: 300 calories
- 1 sheet rice paper wrapper
- 3 large cooked shrimp, cut lengthwise into six halves – they fit better that way
- 1/4 cup baby spinach
- a few slices of julienned carrot
- a few slices of julienned cucumber
- sweet chili dipping sauce – I buy the brand Fusia from Aldi
Total: 100 calories per wrap. In the photo that’s one wrap, sliced in half.
- 1 cup homemade cashew milk, that I make by soaking a small handful of NOW Foods Organic Raw Cashews overnight, then blended with water, a dash of stevia, and a few drops of vanilla extract.
- 1 scoop NOW Sports Plant Protein Powder Creamy Vanilla
- 1 cup chopped kale leaves
- 1/2 cup frozen pineapple chunks, no sugar added
- I also sprinkled in a dash of chili flakes but they didn’t really add much to the flavor 🙁
Total: 350 calories
- 4 oz ahi tuna marinated in soy sauce
- 1 cup cooked white rice
- 1/3 cup diced fresh cucumber
- 1 tsp dark roasted sesame oil
- cilantro, sesame seeds, scallions for garnish
Total: 490 calories
Some of you may remember that I was doing Haylie Pomroy’s Fast Metabolism Diet not too long ago with moderate success. I loved the results from that diet, but quite frankly I am just tired of the whole dieting thing and wanted to follow a lifestyle that’s a little more sustainable long-term. In the end I decided to go back to the OG – the calorie counting. I don’t have 1200 calorie days all that often really, but when I do, it can be challenging to come up with low-cal nutritious meals that are easy to whip up in 30 minutes or less.
I found two sure ways to keep the calories on the low end: all you have to do is watch the portion sizes for fats and simple carbs. I don’t like to exclude any food groups, so I still eat my avocado toast and mac and cheese. However, instead of the whole sandwich I eat half, and instead of an entire bowl of mac I will have 1/2 cup with a nice helping of steamed veggies and a fresh salad on the side. I don’t think it’s cheating at all, as long as I stop eating once the craving is satisfied. And by the way, so far I am down 22 lbs from my starting weight back in March. It was a gradual process, but I never felt like I was depriving myself of anything, which is the best feeling when you’re trying to lose weight.
For more low-cal inspiration check out r/1200isplenty subreddit, I lurk there daily! 🙂