page preview of the biological effects of calorie restriction

This non-branded handout helps your client to understand the biological effects of not eating enough or getting enough energy. It reviews some of the ways that the body responds to starvation and the consequences of these survival mechanisms. The concepts are presented visually in a simplistic flow chart.

Who this resource is for:


  • with a long standing history of restrictive dieting
  • recovering from an Eating Disorder and restrictive disordered eating patterns
  • pursing weight loss in a very restrictive and unhealthy way

Diet Culture normalizes Calorie Restriction and labels it as”Healthy”

With North America being an extremely weight centric culture, weight loss is always a topic that clients are bound to bring up. Often times, very low calorie intakes are promoted by diets, social media, influencers etc. The reality is that our bodies need a certain level of energy in order to function. Help your clients to learn about why calories are important for survival and optimal wellbeing; shift their focus from subtracting calories to adding nutrition.

Like this FREE resource? Expand on your client’s understanding with the Understanding Metabolism Handout!



View the full Eating Disorder Resources store!

Terms and Conditions

This document is to be used as a tool in nutrition counselling or nutrition groups. The content is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment. Users are encouraged to advise their clients to always seek the advice of a qualified healthcare practitioner for questions about their health or nutritional requirements. The author is not responsible for errors, omissions or individual usage. All materials are protected under copyright and are only intended for use by the sole individual or entity who purchased the resource.

License: You may not share, sell or distribute these files to others. Printed files are permitted for use with clients in individual or group sessions only. By purchasing and using this file, you agree to include copyright information on all pages. You may not remove copyright information.

Social Media: Should you decide to use any content from this resource to create social media images, please give credit to the creator (Brittaney Berendsen RD) as the source.

© 2023 Brittaney Berendsen RD. Brittaney Berendsen RD maintains all rights to the designs and files.

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Average rating: 5.00 out of 5 stars
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  • useful handout

    Nicely laid out and something I can use. thank you!

  • The Biological Effects of Calorie Restriction

    This is a good educational resource with clients. It is comprehensive, well organized and visually attractive.

  • simple, easy to follow, concise, visually appealing.
    thank you!

  • Simple and concise for clients

    A great handout with a good mix of visual and written explanation in a concise manner.

  • Clear and easy to understand

    This is clear and concise. I like the diagram instead of just dialog.

  • The Biologic Effects of Calorie Restriction

    Thank you for this great resource ! It is concise, comprehensive and easy to use !

  • simple and useful for ED and disordered eating

    this handout is simple and straight forward. I love the info. I work in ED and its just what I need.

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