As the unofficial Representative Of Spanish Cuisine in the US, José Andrés happens to eat a lot of rich, fatty foods — and at one point, consequently, had a bit of a weight issue. (As Bon Appétit jealously pointed out, “The man samples jamón for a living.”) But he lost 40 pounds from his 278-pound frame, with a few obvious practices (eat more vegetables, enjoy things in moderation, etc.), and a rather alarming one: his 1000-calorie-a-day diet.
Though Andrés initialy tried to meet his caloric goals via shakes, it turned out to be too hard for the chef. (Besides, we all know that a chef’s best weight loss secret is juices. Lots of juices.) Thankfully, he’s turned back to eating actual food to meet those goals, but according to the National Institute of Health, even eating 1000 calories of fruits and vegetables (and the occasional artisan bread roll with butter) is still bordering on unhealthy. Anything below 1200 calories per day for a man constitutes a “Very Low Calorie Diet,” and they recommend the following:
Doctors must monitor all VLCD patients regularly—ideally every 2 weeks in the initial period of rapid weight loss—to be sure patients are not experiencing serious side effects.
Many patients on a VLCD for 4 to 16 weeks report minor side effects such as fatigue, constipation, nausea, or diarrhea. These conditions usually improve within a few weeks and rarely prevent patients from completing the program.
How is it that Andrés didn’t pass out from hunger after flying on a jetpack? Probably because he’s back to his normal diet after losing over 40 pounds. What a lucky crash dieter. This is the one time we recommend against doing what Andrés does.
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