What happens when you starve yourself and exercise?
Starvation mode is when the body realizes that it doesn’t have access to enough food, so it slows down. It does this to protect your organs. Starvation mode occurs around 6-12 hours after not eating anything.
When you begin burning fat for energy, ketosis occurs when your liver starts breaking down fat cells into molecules called ketones, which are used as fuel by your brain and muscles for energy.
Ketosis can also occur during starvation mode if there aren’t enough carbohydrates around for the body to use instead of fat. How long starvation mode lasts seems to vary from person to person depending on how much they’re eating before they stop or cut back drastically on their calorie intake or fast.
Hunger can be uncomfortable, but it is a natural sensation that will pass if you ignore it. Hunger pangs are only a problem if they’re persistent and unpleasant. If this happens to you, don’t panic. Try eating something bland like crackers or bread. This may help your stomach settle down, so the hunger pangs diminish.
You can safely eat 1200 calories or less each day without doing damage to your internal organs, but anything below that isn’t good for you and could be dangerous (malnourishment).
And trying to do things like starve yourself and exercise daily isn’t going to make you lose any significant amount of weight on your own either! Exercise does nothing for fat loss; losing fat requires a caloric deficit! If we want to get technical, we could say there’s no such thing as “weight loss” because the only way something can “lose weight” is when it’s lost its mass.
So what happens in starvation mode is the body isn’t losing fat…it’s losing water and muscle tissue.
Don’t forget about the rebound effect too! As you lose weight, your muscles become increasingly weaker, so more of your bones are being carried by the same amount of forces, increasing their load proportionally to where they were before you began dieting/starving yourself/crash-dieting.
So when you do start eating again normally after “starvation mode,” even though you may have lost some weight, most of that loss will be water and muscle since you’re starting at a higher carrying capacity for your bones due to your increased strength from getting back into shape.
Fitness enthusiasts should also take into consideration that the more you do to your muscles during/after “starvation mode,” the harder it will be to start back up again (If you’re used to 2hr+ workouts, don’t expect anything like that when you get back into heavy weightlifting or intense cardio) not only because of how weak they are but also because, after a lot of intensive training, your muscles become very tight and stiff!
This can lead to injuries if you go all out right away after coming out of starvation mode…so at least give yourself a couple of weeks before trying any physically demanding exercise unless you want another injury.
Every individual has their own calorie needs based on many factors, but there are some guidelines you can use to find out how much your body needs to function correctly. Most people need between 1200-1500 calories a day, depending on their size and activity level, but it’s always best to check with your doctor before drastically changing your diet.
Starvation mode is real, but if you’re still worried about what happens when you starve yourself or cut back on calories too far, know that the only thing that will happen over time is muscle loss (which is staying in starvation mode for more than three days) which will also make your metabolism spike every time you eat after coming back from starving yourself!
So while continually starving yourself may cause serious health problems later on in life, all of these things take a significant amount of time to occur.
As long as you aren’t starving yourself for too long, don’t fret! If you are concerned about the effects of starvation mode on your body, follow a healthy diet plan/nutrition program and exercise regularly without drastically changing your calorie intake or depriving yourself of food. As with anything in life, moderation is key.
Just remember that guilt-tripping yourself into eating more doesn’t do anything for you except cause you to feel guilty after every meal because deep down, you know you’re not being true to yourself by taking in too many calories when it’s not needed…so try to relax and eat what your body needs no matter how much that is each day.
Starvation mode is a myth passed down since bodybuilding became a thing. As long as you eat what’s suitable for your goals, don’t overdo it, and put in the work to get results, there should be nothing to worry about! Just have fun with it and enjoy yourself while working hard to meet your goals.