Vicki Gunvalson, one of the stars of the hit reality TV series The Real Housewives of Orange Country, recently split from boyfriend Brooks Ayers. To overcome post breakup depression, the 54-year-old took time to focus on herself.
Gunvalson decided to focus on her diet and a weight loss plan instead of an exercise routine. Despite expert recommendations, she lost 22 pounds in three months from following a 500-calorie per day program.
Most experts recommend against calorie restriction for weight loss. The general expert recommendation is 1,200 calories daily for women and 1,800 calories for men. Although not advised, Vicki Gunvalson would skip lunch. Raw foods were also a big part of her weight loss diet. By nature, Vicki Gunvalson is a determined woman. She has posted on social media in the past about her 21-day juice cleanses and vegan meals. It definitely takes will power to complete such challenges.
500-Calorie Diet: What do the Experts Say?
However, many health experts agree that calorie restriction not only fails to produce long-term weight loss, but it can also produce serious health problems. You will see some weight loss at first, but at a potential cost to your health.
It is also better to gradually lower your calories. A sudden drop in calories may cause your metabolism to slow. However, when calorie intake is too low, muscle mass is broken down for energy, and your metabolic rate will typically drop after a three-day period of very low calories. As a result, muscle mass is lost. This could lead to sluggishness, tiredness, fatigue, irritability, malnutrition, and nutritional deficiencies.
It is important to note that different calorie sources can have a vastly different effect on hormones, hunger, brain regions that control food intake, and energy expenditure. Calories may be important, but counting them or being aware of them is not necessary for weight loss.
A woman like Vicki Gunvalson, who may not be that active, should focus less on calories and more on a well-balanced, nutrient-dense diet, which includes lots of vegetables, fruits, lean protein, nuts, and seeds, and healthy fats like avocado or olive oil. Some of these may be included in the reality star’s diet already, but eating greater amounts will actually lead to better long-term health.
Although Vicki Gunvalson has had success with her weight loss diet, her calorie restriction should only be short term. A poor diet, nutritional deficiencies, and unresolved emotional issues also factor into her depression. Losing weight can help a person look good on the outside; however, feeling good on the inside often takes further inner development.
Sources for Today’s Article:
Mazziotta, J., “Vicki Gunvalson Lost 22 Lbs. After Splitting From Brooks Ayers by Eating 500 Calories a Day,” People website, June 22, 2016; http://www.people.com/article/vicki-gunvalson-weight-loss-500-calorie-diet.
“Calorie Calculator – Daily Calorie Needs,” Free Dieting website; http://www.freedieting.com/tools/calorie_calculator.htm, last accessed June 24, 2016.
Gunnars, K., “6 Reasons Why a Calorie is NOT a Calorie,” Authority Nutrition website, November 2015; https://authoritynutrition.com/6-reasons-why-a-calorie-is-not-a-calorie/.
Hellesvig-Gaskell, K., “Can You Survive on 500 Calories a Day?” LIVESTRONG.com website, June 27, 2015; http://www.livestrong.com/article/528830-can-you-survive-on-500-calories-a-day/.