Last updated on October 3rd, 2021 at 10:08 pm

If you follow a calorie-counting diet, that means you should stay within a specific number of calories daily. Today, this article is about eating 700 calories a day, which is one of the famous ways that are used by many people, especially to lose weight.

This diet is considered a very low-calorie diet that depends mainly on consuming only 700 calories per day for a specific time.

There are many questions regarding this diet, which we will try to answer throughout the article below.

What is a 700-calorie diet?

This diet is about restricting the number of calories that are consumed daily. It is considered a very low-calorie diet that does not include restrictions on food groups, which means that you have many food options that you can eat.

It’s not an easy task to follow this diet because it needs determination and planning to avoid the risks that might happen when you follow it. Being low in carbs means your body will search for another source of energy, which is protein and fat.

It’s basically used by obese people who need to get rid of the extra pounds especially before medical procedures or who suffer from health issues due to obesity.

So, this severe restriction of calories is used for specific times and should be under the supervision of a doctor or a nutritionist.

Is eating 700 calories a day safe

Is eating 700 calories a day safe and healthy?

Consuming 700 calories per day is used to lose weight rapidly in some cases. Children and teens should not use this diet because it has side effects that can affect their growth and health. Also, pregnant women should avoid this calorie restriction and also during breastfeeding.

It is mainly recommended for overweight and obese people who need to lose weight rapidly for medical conditions and it should be under supervision by a doctor.

It also may be recommended by doctors for people with diabetes or who are preparing for fertility treatment. If it is used for the long term, it may cause health problems and damage to body organs.

When you severely restrict the daily calorie intake, this means you should be aware of what you eat to avoid nutrients deficiency and many more side effects that you may experience during following this severe calorie restriction including:

  • A deficiency in essential nutrients

Consuming 700 calories per day is basically not enough to provide the body with the necessary nutrients that are needed for the body to function properly and stay healthy, so it leads to a lack of many healthy nutrients, which may lead to dangerous issues.

  • Gallstones

The quick weight loss makes the liver secretes the extra cholesterol and that leads to increasing the cholesterol levels in the bile, which may cause gallstones

  • Fatigue

When following a very low-calorie diet, it’s difficult for the body to get the needed energy, which is generated from carbs. So, it’s normal in the early stages of the diet to feel tired and not be able to do much physical activity. 

  • Muscle loss

The quick weight loss mainly comes from the muscle tissues, which leads to muscle weakness. Also, severely limiting calories leads to calcium deficiency that causes muscle weakness as well.

More symptoms including:

  • Nausea
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Muscle cramps
  • Headaches
  • Skin rash
  • Bad breath
  • Menstrual irregularities

Most of these symptoms disappear within a few weeks. Especially, if you try to vary the foods that you eat to try to get the necessary nutrients for the body.

Does the 700 calories a day diet have benefits?

  • Rapid weight loss, especially for obese people who are in need of losing weight quickly for certain medical conditions 
  • Following a very low calories diet helps to curb appetite and helps the body to get used to eating fewer amounts of food
  • It’s useful for some medical conditions including people with diabetes and high blood pressure

Is 700 calories a day enough?

This is a famous question that many people ask, so to answer this question, we should be aware that the daily needed calories vary from one person to another depending on age, gender, and daily physical activity.

In general, the estimated number of calories that men need is about 2000 to 3000 calories per day. And for women, it is about 1600 to 2400 calories per day.

And as we mentioned before, it depends on other factors such as the activity level, which is an important factor because if you do physical activity, you will need more calories than others who are inactive.

So, this diet can be used for the short term if you want to lose weight, and you should try to eat healthy foods as much as you can to try to avoid the shortage of necessary nutrients.

It’s difficult to meet all the body’s nutritional needs in this diet, which can negatively affect the bones, heart, brain, and other body organs. 

Is a 700 calories diet safe for children and teens?

 It’s not recommended for children and teens to follow a severe calorie restriction diet, which can affect their growth and development negatively.

If they need to lose some weight, they can reduce the calorie intake in a way that does not cause health problems and they have to exercise regularly. 

Does eating 700 calories a day help you to lose weight?

Following a low-calorie diet mainly leads to a quick weight loss and the results are different between persons depending on age, weight, gender, and activity level.

The average weight that can be lost is about 2.5 pounds per week. And it could be around 10 pounds in a month. And it’s important to mention that this rapid weight is from muscle tissues, so it’s necessary to train the muscles to strengthen them.

Furthermore, having nutritional supplements is essential to make up for the nutritional deficiencies.

What to eat in the 700 calories a day diet

What to eat in the 700 calories a day diet?

To follow this diet, the best-balanced division should be about 50% protein, 30% fat, and 20% carbs. The most important thing is to include all the healthy foods into a balanced daily plan.

  • It’s important to eat vegetables that are rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber
  • Protein is essential for the health of the body, so you should enrich your meals with various protein sources such as fish, eggs, chicken, etc.
  • You should eat fruits that are low in sugar and rich in antioxidants, fiber, and nutrients
  • It is recommended to eat complex carbohydrates such as quinoa, oatmeal, sweet potatoes, barley, etc.
  • Drinking plenty of water

What to avoid in the 700 calories a day diet?

  • Sugary drinks
  • Sugary snacks and candies
  • Desserts such as cakes, pies, cookies, etc.
  • Energy drinks 
  • Alcohol
  • salty foods
  • Solid fats

700 calories diet meal plan for a week

700 calories diet meal plan for a week

Here is a sample of a 700 calorie-diet meal plan for one week that can help you lose around 2-2.5 pounds.

Day 1

  • Breakfast: A cup of milk or skimmed milk + bread slice
  • Lunch: (45 grams) of grilled meat or chicken breast + half a cup of rice + green salad
  • For morning snack: An apple
  • Dinner: Half a cup of fresh juice + half a cup of boiled vegetables + a quarter of whole grain bread

Day 2

  • Breakfast: 2  boiled eggs + one cup of tea or coffee without sugar
  • Morning snack: One serving of grapefruit
  • Lunch: 300 grams of any cooked non-starchy vegetables
  • Afternoon snack: 6 strawberries + 2 almonds
  • Dinner: Low-fat kefir (250 ml) + grilled chicken breast

Day 3

  • Breakfast: Half grapefruit + one boiled egg + one slice of toast + one cup of tea without sugar
  • Lunch: One cup of vegetable soup + tuna salad
  • Afternoon snack: One orange
  • Dinner: 120 grams of grilled fish + one green salad

Day 4

  • Breakfast: 2 tablespoons of oatmeal + 1 banana + 1 glass of skimmed milk
  • Morning snack: 2 apricots
  • Lunch: 80 to 100 grams of grilled fish + mixed green salad of lettuce, 1 tomato, and 1 cucumber
  • Dinner: 1 bowl of yogurt + 2 boiled eggs

Day 5

  • Breakfast: One slice of fat-free cheese + 3 black olives + one cherry tomato + one slice of bread + one cup of tea without sugar
  • Snack:  one pear
  • Lunch: 1 portion of oven-fried chicken breast + 30 grams of boiled broccoli
  • Dinner: Mushroom soup + green salad

Day 6

  • Breakfast:  1 slice of whole wheat bread + 1 omelet egg + one cup of green tea
  • Snack: 2 walnuts
  • Lunch: 1 glass of buttermilk + mixed green salad
  • Dinner: 3 pieces of meatballs + 1 portion of salad

Day 7

  • Breakfast: Fat-free yogurt + 4 almonds + 1 slice of light bread
  • Snack: 1 glass of skimmed milk + one tablespoon of raisins
  • Lunch: 80-100 grams of steak + mixed green salad
  • Dinner: 1 slice of wholemeal bread + 80 grams of tuna salad

Exercise in the 700-calorie-diet

Following a balanced diet and exercise are the best ways to lose weight. Exercising regularly with tracking calories intake helps too much to shed pounds in a healthy way.

Regular exercise helps to burn more calories, which helps in reducing the need to severely restrict the daily calories intake, and that leads to a better-balanced diet that meets the nutritional needs of the body.

To be clear, consuming 700 calories per day is not enough to give you the needed energy to exercise. So, if you follow this diet, you should try to eat highly nutritious foods that contain high amounts of protein to help you feel full and to curb hunger, and also provide you with energy to maintain exercise.

Swimming, running, skipping rope, or walking for half an hour daily are examples of light exercises that you can do.

counting calories

The importance of counting calories

Let’s mention first that each one needs a different number of calories depending on many factors such as age, gender, weight, and activity level. When you consume the number of calories that meet your daily need, the extra calories are stored in your body to be used in the future which leads to weight gain if your body does not burn them.

Moreover, counting calories is important to lose weight more easily than eating fewer amounts of food and helps you to know how much exercise that you need when you follow a diet to lose weight.

Furthermore, tracking the calories helps you to be aware of what you eat and to monitor your eating behavior. There are many famous apps that are used to count calories. MyFitnessPal is one of them. So, counting calories is considered one of the most effective methods for weight loss. 

Important steps to follow when you eat 700 calories a day

  • Drink plenty of water to keep hydrated since water is very important for body organs and also it helps you to feel full and less hungry, which means you will eat less. 
  • Keep a regular exercise routine
  • Avoid eating empty calories that come from unhealthy foods such as solid fats, sugary drinks, alcohol, highly processed foods, etc.
  • Eat a lot of vegetables, and when you cook them, use a little amount of water in cooking to avoid losing healthy vitamins and minerals
  • Eat foods that are rich in fiber, which is extremely important to reduce appetite and it can help also absorb some calories from other foods
  • Eat fruits, especially those that contain low sugar content
  • Eat foods that are high in protein to provide your body with energy and to increase the feeling of  fullness, and boosting metabolic rate
  • Choose skimmed milk instead of full-fat milk
  • Use healthier cooking methods
  • Record your daily intake
  • Read food labels

Read Also+50 Easy To Digest Foods For an Upset Stomach

Last words

After all, it’s worth mentioning that following a very low-calorie diet carries many dangerous risks and it should be under medical supervision by a doctor or a nutritionist. It is mainly based on putting 700 calories as a daily target.

So, you have to do your best to make good choices of the foods that provide your body with healthy nutritional needs. It’s always advisable to use a balanced diet while maintaining regular exercise to lose weight and stay in a good health as well.

I am a registered dietitian nutritionist and own a private nutrition practice, where I provide one-on-one nutritional counseling to patients. I specialize in chronic disease prevention/ management, vegan/ vegetarian nutrition, pre-natal/ postpartum nutrition, wellness coaching, medical nutrition therapy, and weight management.

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