Published By: Ishani Karmakar

What Is Reverse Dieting?

If you've recently reached your target weight or are just trying to find out how to keep the weight off without regaining it, you may want to consider increasing the number of calories you consume each day. You could come across the concept of reverse dieting in your research on alternative eating patterns.

It may sound counter-intuitive to eat more when dieting in reverse, but experts say that's not the case. Instead, you have to work your way out of a calorie shortage by gradually reintroducing food into your diet. People coming off of calorie-restricted diets aren't the only ones who try reverse dieting; bodybuilders and athletes also use this method.

Learn all about the ins and outs of the reverse diet:

What is the goal of a reverse diet, and how does it work?

While the term "reverse diet" is sometimes used interchangeably with "after a restricted eating plan," it refers to a different process altogether (which, many experts recommend against in the first place). After a period of being hypocaloric and reaching your ideal body fat percentage, the purpose of reverse dieting is to have the opposite impact. This will assist your hunger signals and metabolism readjust, reducing the likelihood of regaining weight due to overeating.

A Reversal Diet Plan

The technique of actually doing a reverse diet is straightforward. Reviewing your calorie intake while on the restrictive diet allows you to gradually increase your consumption until you reach a new baseline where you can maintain your target weight.

It's recommended to increase caloric intake by 50–100 per week for a minimum of four weeks and up to three months.

If you're trying to lose weight, does the reverse diet work?

Unfortunately, there is no solid proof that adopting a reverse diet plan would lead to significant weight reduction. But there might be something to the idea that encouraging people to eat regularly can help them maintain a healthy metabolism.

Scientific evidence suggests that regaining lost weight following a rigorous calorie-cutting diet is simple. After restricting calories for at least a year, you may experience an increase in hunger due to changes in the hormones that regulate appetite.

Studies in animals have also hinted at the possibility of a communication channel between the gut flora and the metabolism during a severe calorie deficit.

Most people are not likely to lose weight because of reverse dieting. The best that can be hoped for is stability in body weight, and even then, the evidence is scant.

What happens if you stop dieting and start eating normally?

Individuals who seek to reverse their diet may experience weight swings, depending on their current body composition and previous dietary habits. However, this is to be expected when your metabolism readjusts to a diet that provides adequate nourishment rather than one that causes you to feel deprived. Losing between one and two pounds every week is what the experts recommend for long-term weight maintenance.