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How do you reach your calorie "goal"

Sorry again to post about calories, but didnt want to dredge the old post up. So apologies.

Anyway I have accepted after 6 months of this, that intuition speaks volumes opposed to worrying about medical guidelines etc. I mostly am hitting between 300-400 calories. 600 calories at the most. I am feeling wonderful on this and have been able to stop my pain medications for the first time in 5 years.

Should I be concearned about having 50% of the “recommended” calorie allowance?

Weight is coming off steadily but not too fast I dont think anyway, between 4-5lb a week. Sometimes a little more.

Was a healthy weight to begin with but at the upper levels of “normal” on BMI scale.

Anyways, do any of you try to reach a calorie goal or do you just go with intuition?

I find the latter has been the best for my own comfort but now people are saying to me I am not having enough calories etc..

so.. Any thoughts most welcome!!



  • Hi Raw dancer,

    I know that I am significantly below the daily recommended allowance calorie wise. Unlike you I am well above my suggested BMI or ideal weight. My comment is not scientific nor do I have any exact references. What I think is that maybe the RDA for calories should be revisited. I feel fine consuming the 600-700 to 1000 calories tops I am consuming and feel good, so I am going on that, intuition and how I feel. :) My 2 cents worth…blessings, dea.

  • spiritedmamaspiritedmama Raw Newbie

    I use to aim for 1200 calories a day, but now I use intuition to guide me. I eat when I feel hungry, and don’t when I don’t feel hungry. This seems to be working for me well.

    deasmiles….I like your new picture! You look so happy!

  • Hi Rawdancer,

    I want to offer a word of caution. Your body is a highly adaptive machine and if you restrict your calories now be prepared to restrict your calories the REST of your life. Your body will learn to survive on the restrictive diet you give it. Your metabolism will slow down considerably and your nutritional requirements may not be met. I was on a highly restrictive 600 calorie/day “diet” and within 3 months had bottomed out and became anemic. I was hungry all the time and lacked focus. It has taken me 3 years to regain my iron stores and my metabolism still hasn’t fully recovered (complicated by hypothyroidism too). Its your body and you ultimately make the decisions that are right for you, but I would suggest you use one of the free internet food counters (calorie-count, fitday, daily plate are some that come to mind). Once you enter your food they’ll let you know the amounts of the nutrients in that food. Could be helpful in tweaking the limited food you are giving yourself so you don’t become nutrient deficient.

  • Thank you for that om..

    I am eating what I can and am completly full. I cannot eat until I feel/am sick just to reach 1200 cals.. it dosent make sense. I eat when I am hungry. Not for any other reason.

    I do use fitday, but I simply cannot get over the 600 mark. But I am in the best health I have been in for years and am healed from crohns. So.. I guess like all things you have to do what is right for your body.

    We dont all have the same appetite. Thank you for the words of warning, taking it all into consideration.

  • That is really sound advice Om, sorry to hear about your hypothyroidism.

    Spiritedmama-thanks for the compliment, that is me on a high raw diet after 1 month, that picture was taken on May 01. My other one was from January this year -blessings to all, Dea.

  • Deasmiles, I was in a similar circumstance over 3 years ago too. I was well above my “normal” BMI and thought that if I took a good multivitamin, ate fruit, had a multivitamin bar, ate a super-small balanced dinner I would be fine. I had enough “energy” all over my body, just take a meal off my blubber butt, ya know?:) I really thought that would work, but alas it did not. Its frustrating to hear and sometimes I still get impatient, but slow and steady wins the race! In 3 years I’ve lost 85 pounds and have around 10 more to lose…it will probably take me 10 years to lose them, but I have time, right? Healthy eating puts time on my side!

  • Slow but steady I agree with you, I started this weighing 221 lbs and I am down to 205 lbs, my goal is 140 lb and I am 41! I started exercising now, and this lifestyle is full of fiber rich foods so its easy to get overly full. I try to eat nutrient dense foods, nuts, avocados, spinach, I eat celery and as soon as I am back in the US (relocating to Austin in late summer) will get into sprouting, and soaking seeds and making patties and such. It is easy to under eat, or not get the right nutrients, but I can tell by how spaced out and lethargic I get. I am so glad that I found a way that works to lose the weight. Working on myself on the outside and the inside is helping me at this ripe age to finally start living and being happy! I think that being obese society treats you differently and I for one became anti-social knowing I was not liked. Well, all of that is changing, its ok to be kind, its ok to care, its ok to be nice….Life is good :) Not sure if its just the raw food or even some of the internal work I am doing but its all good. Thankd sof the support.

  • One thing I’ve noticed is that many people seem to be eating so little! What I mean to say is, I’m eating a ton in comparison! I suppose if you include my daily calorie expenditures in exercise (I rock climb 3x a week, and everday run for a half hour, swim, and jog in the resistance pool), it would be lower, but I’m still eating a bunch!

    Granted, I am new to raw foods and “fell off the wagon” for a few days, but even before that.

  • spiritedmamaspiritedmama Raw Newbie

    Shambavi, I eat a TON even for 1200 calories, I think. I also burn about 750-1000 calories a day, so sometimes have to eat a little more to replenish. So, you are not the only one!

  • Well, maybe as I continue on the raw path I’ll naturally start eating less. Most of it is psychological, plus the whole learning what to eat and all. I think I’m up in like 2,000/day (I try to keep myself from writing down r keeping track of what I eat, for other reasons)!

    Oh well, I think my biggest concern is just to be as raw as I can and enjoy the process! Baby steps…

  • when i started raw i was under the impression that calories were basically meaningless after hearing so many of the “gurus” say so. i have been losing too much weight (im down to 133 and I’m 5’11” – before diet i was a little under 150) and do not feel as strong or energized anymore. when i run or workout i feel completely exhausted after just 10 minutes. so i just ordered a juicer to try and double or triple my intake of leafy greens. i simply dont have the patience to sit down and eat greens for 30 mins straight everyday. i am already eating plenty of fats from nuts, seeds, avo and i have an intuition for fruit (if it tastes and feels good at the time then eat it). greens are the only thing i could think to add more of to my diet. havent looked into sprouts.

    the worst part of this is the psychological/social part – i just got back home from school and ive been seeing a lot of friends for the first time in months. i thought i’d be able to keep the diet a secret – its such a pain to have to explain it every time – but i cant. everyone immeidately says “you look really skinny. whats going on?” and then i have to tell them. some of my closest friends think i’m starving myself and that this is unhealthy.

    hopefully more calories and more exercise will help me gain weight. i have considered that my body is getting rid of “cooked muscle” before it starts creating tissues from all of this wonderul raw food, but i dont know.

  • ZoeZoe Raw Newbie

    I haven’t got as calorie goal, I have never counted calories in my life.

    But after becoming curious about it as I read so many posts about calories on here I went to that Fitday website and worked out my average and it was over 2,000 a day. I was really surprised!

    It doesn’t make any difference to how I eat though. I eat by intuition, whatever I want whenever I want it, and I feel better and better every day. Like you say Rawdancer, to force yourself to eat according to someone else’s guidelines when it feels unnatural just doesn’t feel right.

    When I got really thin last year it lasted for a few months and then the weight came back and filled me out healthily, and if anything I was eating less and less as the weight came back on. And eating the most raw food I ever have when the weight was lost. So my personal experience backs up my belief in eating intuitively.

  • Rawdancer, There is a great deal of fear and confusion surrounding the issues of weight loss and calorie counting in the raw world. I’ve written extensively about this on my discussion list, so anyone who’s interested may want to join and peruse the archives. It’s not possible for anyone to get “too thin” unless there is a psychological condition present that interferes with a person’s ability to respond when the body signals its needs for food (most commonly, anorexia nervosa). If a person is underconsuming food such that the body must draw upon its reserves for day to day activity, eventually the reserves will be used up and the true hunger signal will be felt. In that scenario, the need to eat will be as obvious and unmistakeable as the need to get out of the way of an oncoming train. In the meantime, weakness, low energy, headache, lightheadedness, and other similar symptoms may be felt but these are NOT hunger. It may be helpful to read my essay on “emotional eating” on my website. Cleansing and healing happens faster when the body has less digestion to do, especially of difficult to digest foods like fats and dense vegetables. In addition, a very active human body requires much less fuel than is commonly thought, even by raw gurus (most of whom advocate overeating). The hardest part, as has been expressed by others on this thread, is the social derision that we face as our bodies start to look the way human bodies are supposed to look. Take the fur and feathers off of wild animals, and you’ll see taut skin covering lean muscles, exactly the way successful raw fooders look. But in our cooked world, it is seen as normal to carry a few inches of fat over the muscles. That’s one reason why people have to work so hard to look “cut”, because muscles have to be developed even more in order to be visible through the fat. It is not necessary to count calories and there is no need to worry about “undereating”, imo. If you’d like more info, please see my website and/or discussion list, or contact me directly.


  • Thank you for that Nora

    Just confirms the way I feel. That intuition is the best way to go, I train hard and I eat when I am hungry, not bored or for emotional reasons.

    Agreed, SAD eaters might not accept this way of living/amount of calories but its right for me at this moment.

    Thanks again

  • I don’t find a problem getting up to a 1200 range of calories – I put in what I ate on fitday, which was a banana, strawberry and apple smoothie, a big salad with sprouts, other vegies and half an avocado, a raw soup for dinner and a couple of handfuls of nuts and it came in around 1150.

  • chriscarltonchriscarlton Raw Newbie

    Om… correct me if I am wrong, but your story relating to your 600 calorie/day diet, anemia and your 3 year recovery, was before you went Raw, wasn’t it. I believe it’s very important to specify such details to each other, since some may assume that everyone here on Goneraw is talking about their experiences as a Raw Foodist.

  • Your right Chris, I was vegetarian. I started to qualify the type of vegetarian I was, but then changed my mind. I guess, my overall question is whether 600 calories/day raw food is sufficient either?

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