Posted by: SUE | 2008/10/08

Cal intake vs Cal burned

Good day doc !
I have been trying to loose weight for the last 4 months but only managed to maintain it. I use to be with a weighless group but only maintaining weight (30y - 79.5kg - 1.68m)is a bit of money not well spend, I then kept a book of all my cal. that I consume as well as what I excersice (I LOVE EXCERCISE !) I saw a patern and wanted your prof. opinion with regards to my eating habbits. I drink my 8glasses of water every single day.
I consume 1300 cal (max) from Mon - Friday (w/less eating plan) , I exercise 5times a week burning 3000 cal.(hr of 60 - 85% max) BUT my problem comes in over the weekend when I consume 1800 to 2200 cal pday. My thoughts were that whilst I excercise a lot I am allowed a bit xtra and I am only cheating 2 days out of the 7 ? Is this the reason why I am only maintaining and not loosing ?Doc then also will it be correct to think that if I consume a chocolate with approx 300 cal. can' t I just excercise more to burn this xtra 300 cal. or does it not work like it ? I must add that both my mom and sis has got under active thyroid could this maybe have something to do with me not able to loose weight ?
Your opinion is much appreciated - thank you !

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageDietDoc

Dear Sue
If you are eating a low calorie diet (it words out to 1557 cal/day on average) and are exercising so vigorously and you are not losing weight (BMI = 28,2 which is above the normal range), then I really wonder if you don't have an underlying hormonal imbalance (thyroid esp in view of the family history, or insulin or female hormone problems like polycystic ovarian syndrom (PCOS)). You could ask your dr to send you for the necessary tests or consult an endocrinologist (a physician who has specialised in hormonal problems - your gp can refer you). If you should suffer from an underactive thyroid the dr will prescribe the necessary thyroid hormone therapy like Eltroxin. If you have insulin resistance (IR), I would recommend that you consult a clinical dietitian, because the correct diet is one of the most important factors in treatment. Visit the Association for Dietetics in SA Website at: and click on "Find a Dietitian" to find a dietitian in your area. The dietitian will take your IR, medications and other conditions such as overweight, into account when working out a diet for you, which will be based on low-fat foods with a low glycaemic index (GI). Click on 'Diet' and 'Weight loss' and 'The Glycaemic Index' and read the articles on the GI. Also click on ‘Food as Medicine' on the Diet Site and then on ‘Type 2 diabetes’.
Hopefully the dr will be able to diagnose why you struggle to lose weight.
Best regards

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