1000 Calorie Diet Plan – Is It Good For Weight Loss?

Reviewed By Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and certified Personal Trainer Alexandra Dusenberry, MS, RDN
by Charushila Biswas
ISSA Certified Specialist in Fitness & Nutrition

A 1000 calorie diet plan or a low-calorie diet plan is used for rapid weight loss. The rationale behind the 1000 calorie diet plan is that a drastic reduction in calorie intake results in weight loss with little or no physical activity. In this diet plan, you are allowed to consume limited carbohydrates, more low-calorie fruits and vegetables, and lean proteins. A low-calorie diet is effective in reducing body weight by an average of  8%, but this is a short-term approach (1).

Caution: Consult a doctor or a nutritionist before going on this diet as it involves a drastic reduction in calorie intake.

The 1000 Calorie Diet Chart (Sample Plan)

This 1000 calorie diet chart is a sample menu that can be followed by anyone who wants to lose weight drastically. The plan may vary based on your weight and physical activity. Consult a doctor or a dietitian to adjust it according to your body’s requirements.

Variation 1

MEALWHAT TO EATCALORIES
Early MorningApple cider vinegar and warm water6
Breakfast2 boiled egg whites and a bowl of fruit86
Pre-Lunch100 g of low-fat yogurt154
LunchLettuce taco with yogurt sauce351
Post-Lunch1 bowl of watermelon46
Evening SnackGreen tea and 2 digestive biscuits142
DinnerVegan salads with fat-free salad dressing221

Total Calorie Intake – 1008

Useful Tip – You can also have green tea in the morning instead of a detox drink. Green tea has 0 calories. A study done on mice states that it is rich in the antioxidant epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) that has an anti-obesity effect (2).

Variation 2

MEALWHAT TO EATCALORIES
Early MorningHoney, lemon juice, and warm water70
BreakfastOatmeal with strawberries101
Pre-LunchGreen tea0
LunchCabbage soup and 100 g low-fat yogurt227
Post-Lunch1 peach and 1 orange98
Evening SnackGreen tea and 2 digestive biscuits142
Dinner1 bowl of boiled lentils with stir-fried French beans, capsicum, and peas with a dash of chopped garlic386

Total Calorie Intake – 1024

Variation 3

MEALWHAT TO EATCALORIES
Early MorningVeggie smoothie made of 1 carrot, 1 tomato, 1 cucumber, and a handful of spinach98
BreakfastSoy milk, 1 slice of multigrain bread, and 2 boiled egg whites OR Soy milk and 1 banana157 OR 159
Pre- Lunch1 glass buttermilk (if following a non-vegan diet) OR 1 glass watermelon and kiwi juice40 OR 91
LunchChicken clear soup with veggies OR Roasted veggies with 100 g yogurt187 OR 152
Post-Lunch1 pear and 1 orange143
Evening SnackGreen tea and 2 digestive biscuits142
DinnerBaked fish and 100g yogurt OR Vegetable clear soup (cabbage, onion, garlic, carrot) with 2 slices of whole wheat bread.296 OR  265

Total Calorie Intake – 1050

Video – Expert Speaks About 1000 Calorie Diet

In this video, StyleCraze’s in-house diet expert speaks about the 1000-calorie diet. She provides a complete picture of what is good for dieters who want to try the 1000-calorie diet. Watch this video to know more:

What To Eat

The selection of foods for a 1000-calorie diet should be done carefully to create a healthy menu that will get you the desired results.

  • The 1000-calorie diet plan should incorporate foods that are rich in vitamin B, proteins, and fiber, normally found in wheat foods and enzymes.
  • The diet demands a reduction in whole food types, like carbs or trans fats, as your body requires nutrition to improve overall health.
  • Calcium can be included by taking low-fat milk and green vegetables. Do not ignore fruits and vegetables.
  • Fruits like oranges, cantaloupes, kiwi, pears, strawberries, and numerous other berries that offer minimal calories can be used in salads.
  • Green veggies like spinach, celery, zucchini, broccoli, and artichokes are rich in vitamins and minerals besides being low-calorie ingredients.
  • A single portion of cabbage contains just 35 calories but is pretty rich in nutritional fiber.
  • Apart from this, vegetables like cucumber, celery, and eco-friendly peppers have high water content.

4. What Not To Eat

Here is the list of foods you should absolutely avoid when you are on the 1000-calorie diet:

  • Fats And Oils – Coconut oil, groundnut oil, walnut oil, palm oil, avocado oil, lard, and other animal fat oil, butter, peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter, cheese, cream cheese, and ghee.
  • Seeds And Nuts – Hazelnuts, cashew nuts, watermelon seeds, walnuts, pine nuts, desiccated coconut, peanuts, Brazil nuts, pistachio, and chia seeds.
  • Dry Fruits – Dates, prunes, dried currants, apricots, figs, and cranberries.
  • Fruits, Veggies, And Legumes – Avocado, mango, litchi, chiku, custard apple, potato, corn, lima beans, and soybeans.
  • Proteins – Beef, pork, lamb, and tofu.

Grocery List

Before creating a 1000-calorie diet plan, you need to make your kitchen healthy. Plan your grocery list beforehand. Here is a list of items that you need to stock up on before you start this diet:

  • As it is a low-carb plan, limit buying any grains.
  • Seafood, fish, and lean protein like chicken breast.
  • Pulses and legumes.
  • Seasonal colorful fruits and vegetables.
  • Low-fat milk and dairy products.
  • Spices and condiments to boost your metabolism.

The 1000 Calorie Diet Recipe

You can control your calorie intake per day, but that does not mean you have to eat boring food. Make your meals exciting and tasty using seasonal veggies, meat, and spices available in the supermarket, but with a twist.

1. Lettuce Taco With Yogurt Sauce

Image: Shutterstock

What You Need
  • 2 fresh lettuce leaves
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 1/2 red and yellow bell peppers
  • 1 tomato
  • 1/2 skinless chicken breast
  • 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 jalapeno
  • 100 g yogurt
  • A handful of cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes
  • A pinch of salt
  • A pinch of pepper
How To Prepare
  1. Season the skinless chicken breast with salt and pepper and boil it.
  2. Shred the boiled chicken breast.
  3. Grate the cucumber.
  4. Julienne the bell peppers and slice the tomato.
  5. Slice the jalapeno.
  6. Take 100 g yogurt in a medium-sized bowl.
  7. Add the grated cucumber, a pinch of salt, and chili flakes. Mix well.
  8. Wash the lettuce leaves.
  9. Place the sliced tomatoes on the lettuce leaves.
  10. Add the shredded chicken.
  11. Add a little salt and black pepper if needed.
  12. Add the bell peppers and jalapenos.
  13. Put a generous dollop of yogurt sauce on top.
  14. Finally, add a few cilantro/coriander leaves.
Vegetarian Alternative

If you are a vegetarian, instead of chicken, you can add carrots, stir-fried broccoli florets, and button mushrooms.

Benefits
  • The skinless chicken breast is low in calories and a good source of protein, iron, and polyunsaturated fat (3).
  • Cucumbers are super low in calories. They are good sources of vitamins C and A, magnesium, iron, calcium, and potassium (4).
  • The colorful bell peppers are rich in vitamins C and A, potassium, dietary fiber, and minerals, such as magnesium, potassium, and iron (5).
  • Lettuce leaves are low in calories and a good source of vitamins A and C, iron, calcium, magnesium, and potassium (6).
  • Yogurt is a good source of good gut bacteria that help in digestion (7).

2. Delicious Vegan Ribbons Salad

Image: Shutterstock

What You Need
  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 tomato
  • A handful of spinach
  • 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • A few coriander leaves
  • A pinch of salt and black pepper
How To Prepare
  1. Peel the zucchini and carrot into thin ribbons.
  2. Julienne the tomato.
  3. Roughly chop a handful of spinach.
  4. Make the salad dressing by adding sesame oil and lemon juice in a separate bowl and beating the mixture.
  5. Add a little salt and pepper to the salad dressing. Mix well.
  6. Add the salad dressing to the veggies.
  7. Mix well to coat the dressing evenly on the veggies.
  8. Garnish with coriander leaves.
Non-Vegetarian Alternative

You can add 2-3 thin slices of turkey bacon to this salad.

Benefits
  • Zucchini is a low-calorie food and a good source of vitamins C, B6, and A. It has a good amount of potassium, magnesium, dietary fiber, and iron (8).
  • Carrots are very rich in vitamin A, potassium, magnesium, and dietary fiber (9).
  • Spinach has a good amount of vitamins A, C, and B6. It is also a good source of magnesium, iron, potassium, calcium, and dietary fiber (10).

Role Of Exercise When On The 1000-Calorie Diet

Exercising is a healthy habit. However, the 1000-calorie diet is a low-calorie diet plan for you to lose weight quickly. That is why rigorous exercising is not recommended when you are on this diet. Here’s what you can do:

Caution:If you feel weak after exercising, consult a doctor and stop working out.

Benefits Of The 1000 Calorie Diet

  • The 1000 calorie diet is considered useful when it comes to burning calories at a fast rate as it is a low-calorie diet. This diet is apt if you intend to lose a few pounds quickly or pave the way for a long-term weight loss plan.
  • The sample menu of this diet plan provides good nutrition when it is well-balanced.
  • This diet primarily emphasizes the consumption of fruits and vegetables as they have few calories and high content of water and fiber, which provides a feeling of fullness and prevents you from overeating.
  • It is simple and easy to follow, encourages healthy eating, enables you to shed a few extra pounds, and boosts your confidence.

Side Effects Of The 1000 Calorie Diet

  • As it is a low-calorie diet, it lacks certain vital nutrients that provide energy to the body.
  • Due to the lack of nutrition, this diet can cause dehydration, loss in muscle mass, lack of energy, slower heart rate, hair loss, and weaker nails.
  • The drastic cut in calories lowers your metabolism. A lower metabolic rate results in rapid weight gain when the caloric intake is increased in the future (11).
  • This diet is suitable for women who have a small frame. It is not considered suitable for men. It can be potentially dangerous for people who have well-built or athletic bodies.
  • Starvation is another ill effect of this diet. Exhaustion resulting from the diet can make you susceptible to injuries.
  • It can cause fatigue and loss of concentration and make you moody.
  • It can cause insomnia.

What Should You Follow?

Do’sDon’ts
Follow the diet for not more than 10 days.Do not overeat.
Consult your doctor before following the 1000-calorie diet.Avoid alcohol and sweetened and carbonated beverages.
Go for medium-paced walks and light exercises.Do not sit in one place for too long.
Include lots of fresh fruits and veggies in your diet.Do not skip any of the meals.
Consume a good amount of proteins to build your muscle strength.Do not take stress if you have gone a little above 1000 calories one day. Skip the bowl of watermelon the next day and have a cup of green tea instead.
Drink enough water.Do not stay awake late at night.

Note: As it is a low-calorie diet plan, you must consume multivitamin and mineral supplements along with vitamin D3. Always consult a doctor before taking any supplements.

Conclusion

Though the 1000-calorie diet is an effective way to reduce weight quickly, it should be done under the guidance of a doctor or a nutritionist. A low-calorie diet plan involves balancing macronutrients with low carbs and fat and moderate protein. Your plate should be loaded with low-calorie fruits and vegetables. Starving yourself or following an imbalanced low-calorie diet will lead to more weight gain once you stop following the diet. 

Expert’s Answers for Readers Questions

How many pounds can you lose if you go on a 1000-calorie diet?

With a 1000-calorie diet, you can reduce up to 8% of your present weight. Every body type is different, so weight loss may vary from anywhere between 5 pounds to 10 pounds.

What lean proteins can I have while on the 1000-calorie diet?

You can have skinless chicken, turkey, fish, button mushrooms, and lentils. Avoid beans, tofu, beef, and pork.

I weigh 250 lbs and want to lose weight quickly. Can I go on the 1000-calorie diet for a month?

Depending on your body type, metabolic rate, genetics, age, and medical history, you need to follow a diet that will not harm your body in the long term. Exercising is a healthy option to start with. If you starve yourself, you will gain weight instead of losing it. Seek your doctor’s advice so that your calorie intake is reduced gradually.

Can I lose weight without exercising if I am on the 1000-calorie diet?

Since the 1000-calorie diet has way lesser calories than what you should normally intake, you can pretty much do without exercising. Do some stretching and medium-paced walks to maintain your blood circulation and muscle strength.

I am a breastfeeding mother. Is the 1000-calorie diet right for me?

If you are breastfeeding, it is not advisable to go on a low-calorie diet. You should consult your doctor or dietitian to know whether you can go on a low-calorie diet so soon.

Can I have a cheat day while on the 1000-calorie diet?

Yes, you can. Make sure you eat in less portions. This will help you the next day. If you eat about 2000 calories (or more), and the next day you want to fast, that is not an option and is not recommended at all. Once a week, you can have slightly more than 1000 calories, say 1300-1400 calories. Nullify the effect by sticking to the diet and drinking green tea at least twice a day for the next two days.

11 sources

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Charushila Biswas

Charushila Biswas is a Senior Content Writer and an ISSA Certified Fitness Nutritionist. She is an alumni of VIT University, Vellore and has worked on transgenic wheat as a part of her Masters dissertation from NRCPB (IARI), New Delhi. After completing her Masters, she developed a passion for nutrition and fitness, which are closely related to human psychology. And that prompted her to author a review article in 2015. She has written over 200 articles on Fitness and Nutrition. In her leisure time, Charushila loves to cook and enjoys mobile photography.
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