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to start a very low calorie diet even though there's a small chance I might be pregnant?

(29 Posts)
RitaMorgan Sun 21-Aug-11 19:34:03

I recently bought a month's supply of a meal replacement diet (you know, shakes instead of food) - I was planning to start it on Monday as I have a month before going on holiday.

But, in the last week DP and I have had unprotected sex a couple of times. So there's a chance I could be pregnant. We're not TTC at the moment though so a baby isn't part of my immediate plans but would be welcomed.

Would a crash diet be likely to damage an early stage pregnancy? I have enough spare fat on me that I'm not going to starve or anything grin but I have no idea if a sudden drop in calorie intake could cause a miscarriage. AIBU to take the risk?

squeakytoy Sun 21-Aug-11 19:36:35

You are not going to be replacing ALL your meals, and the shakes provide good nutrition for the meals you do swap them for.

Eat a healthy diet and you wont be doing yourself or a potential baby any harm.

ragged Sun 21-Aug-11 19:38:33

Those of us with severe morning sickness start every pregnancy with a crash diet. wink

I think you're all right, OP, but obv. abrupt change of plans if you get a bfp.

HeidiHole Sun 21-Aug-11 19:39:32

The chance you're pregnant is slim, and i don't think at this stage of a pregnancy a diet would hurt the baby.

mummymeister Sun 21-Aug-11 19:42:23

Why are you having unprotected sex if a baby isnt part of your immediate plans?

Grainger Sun 21-Aug-11 19:43:39

You are advised not to go on one of those diets if you are pg, BUT they also state that if you find out you are pg to just come off it asap, and that no real harm will be done. Given that they tend to have all the required nutrients in them but just mega-low calories, you should be fine.

IgnoringTheChildren Sun 21-Aug-11 19:44:41

A developing baby is a parasite and will get the nutrition it needs even if you don't. But definitely be prepared to ditch the crash diet in favour of cakes more healthy eating if you get a BFP. smile

RitaMorgan Sun 21-Aug-11 19:45:53

squeaky - no, it's a total meal replacement diet, so no food at all.

It is a fairly small chance of being pregnant, but I do seem to get pregnant at the drop of a hat. If a crash diet is unlikely to do any harm I'll go ahead though.

Also slightly selfishly this diet cost a lot of money and I don't want to waste it - and I'd like to at least lose some of the weight from the last baby before having another one grin

smoggii Sun 21-Aug-11 19:48:59

Having been on LL when I got pregnant (half way through management) I would say that they will not sell you packs as soon as you find out (tell them) you are upduffed. I was on management so was eating a bit before I found out but I was even more tired than I ususally was on the diet which was my first clue.

If you are TTC losing weight will help so don't use this as an excuse not to start and If you have been accepted onto a VLCD I am assuming that you have a highish BMI so will have energy that can be used for the baby.

The packs probably contain more nutrients than you would normally get grin so they may actually help you in the early stages, probably find they contain the required amount of folate too (but mum to be vits will help)

I wish you luck on TTC and your VLCD

RitaMorgan Sun 21-Aug-11 20:05:42

mummymeister - good question, but that's probably a whole other AIBU grin I guess it's not part of my immediate plans but equally I'm not desperate not to get pregnant either.

smoggii - thanks, I have a BMI of 30 and have 2-3 stone to lose really. It's Exante which isn't as structured/regulated as LL, I didn't have to speak to anyone before buying it.

madmomma Sun 21-Aug-11 20:07:31

I'd take folic acid as a precaution.

smoggii Sun 21-Aug-11 20:09:03

Oh I've heard of that, meals are supposed to be yummy (relatively smile )
Do it but if you feel very unwell beyond the three days required to put you in ketosis then get yourself checked over

RitaMorgan Sun 21-Aug-11 20:09:11

Good thinking, hadn't considered folic acid.

foreverondiet Sun 21-Aug-11 20:13:28

Assuming you have some spare padding, and assuming that you'll test when your period is due I think its fine. The shakes contain all the nutrients you need, and as other have pointed out many woman manage to give birth to healthy babies despite living on crackers or similar for the first three months.

squeakytoy Sun 21-Aug-11 20:15:27

You are completely mad to be doing a month of nothing but meal replacements. It is horrendously bad for your own health, your digestive system, etc, but hey, if you want to go on holiday feeling like shit, then go for it. confused

smoggii Sun 21-Aug-11 20:23:04

Being obese is also 'horrendously bad for your health' so some may argue that a VLCD is better than remaining overweight.

FWIW when I was on a VLCD I felt really good and not like shit at all but everyone is different smile

Empusa Sun 21-Aug-11 20:23:19

What ragged said!

But anyway, a crash diet is always a silly choice. Your body will just try to compensate, so if the aim is to lose weight then you'll find it'll most likely backfire on you.

squeakytoy Sun 21-Aug-11 20:31:36

If you are obese, a crash diet is the worst thing you can do, because your metabolism just shuts down, and you do not lose the weight, you just stay the same. To lose weight steadily and successfully, and keep it off, you need to eat the right food, at regular times, and cut the crap out of your diet, and drink lots of water.

I know lots of people who have done the LL diet. They lost a fair bit of weight very quickly... and put it ALL back on even more quickly.

RitaMorgan Sun 21-Aug-11 20:37:51

I appreciate your points squeaky, but I just want to lose a stone and get a bit of a kick-start in shifting the baby weight! I'm 2 stone heavier than before I got pregnant (and was probably 10lbs overweight then anyway).

smoggii Sun 21-Aug-11 20:43:24

As I said everyone's different. I lost 10st 3.5 years ago and although my weight fluctuates a bit (as does everyones) and not withstanding pregnancy I have kept it off.

So it wasn't the worst thing I could have done, It changed my life in an incredibly positive way.

Any weight lost can be regained, the same could be said for SW, WW etc if it weren't the case then all these companies would go out of business.

It's amazing but everyone knows that the advice provided by squeakytoy is true but if it were really that simple we'd all be skinny.

squeakytoy Sun 21-Aug-11 20:54:36

Rita, you can lose a stone in a month, without resorting to starvation. Honestly.

And I dont expect you want to keep that regime of meal replacements up while you are on holiday, so doing a month of LL, then going on holiday, will just put you back to where you started.

I have lost almost 3 stone in the last 6 months, and the first stone was the easiest. If you aim at losing 3 - 4lbs a week, you will have lost your first stone. You can do that on a sensible low calorie diet with real food. Cut out carbs, cut out as much sugar as you can, and eat mainly protein and veg or salad. And exercise.. that is most definately the key. Keep your metabolism burning off the calories. For the first month I made up a huge salad each day, and had small bowls of that, throughout the day, and a pint of water every hour.. it keeps you from hunger pangs, and you do drop the weight quite quickly. I used the MyFitnessPal phone app to keep a track of the calories I was eating, and the calories I was burning. It really helps to motivate you too doing it that way I thought.

KenDoddsDadsDog Sun 21-Aug-11 20:56:19

I started the Cambridge not realising I was pregnant. Passed out after 4 days! No harm to DD though smile

MrsHicks Sun 21-Aug-11 20:56:32

squeakytoy I'm sorry, but those are all myths. You metabolism does not "shut down" or you'd be dead - that simply isn't how metabolic rate works. Your BMR will reduce, but it does whenever you lose weight. BMR is determined by your body mass mainly. As you'll be in ketosis, the calories available/used by your body are just as much as if you were eating the full calorie requirements. VLCDs are not bad for your health - please find me a reputable source of research/evidence on Pubmed that backs up your claims. With you know, proper science and a basis in physiology.

Most diets fail, including slow ones, there are all sorts of reasons for it but actually many people who have done VLCDs, particularly ones who've included therapy and done the slow return to eating afterwards, maintain their weight just as well and sometimes better than others - and there is proper research on that too.

squeakytoy Sun 21-Aug-11 21:01:26

Really MrsHicks, that does surprise me, as that is what I have been told by nutritionists and my own GP.

MrsHicks Sun 21-Aug-11 21:08:26

Yes, really. Do your own research into it if you're interesting. Some GPs/nutritionists are pretty well informed. Others aren't. I know a GP who told me much the same and when I asked him how much he really knew about it and what evidence he was basing his statements on, he admitted he'd never actually ever looked into it.

I had a trained nutritionist tell me the other day about 'flushing toxins' out of the body, which we all know is medically not possible - unless of course you're having your stomach pumped after ingesting poison. www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/health/features/article5517912.ece

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