I admit that I know as much about how the human body works as your average Philosophy major, but there’s something about calorie restriction that I don’t get.
It seems to me that calories, being units of energy, are going to be stored if you take in too many. Namely, they’ll be stored as fat. If you take in just enough calories, you’ll get through your day without storing more fat. And if you eat fewer calories than you need to get through your day, you’ll take calories out of fat reserves, and maybe lose weight.
I realize that the above simplification may be too simple, but for my question, it suffices. Basically, how can people consistently, in the long run, use a calorie-restricted diet without dying? Your body needs energy to do what it does. So if you consume fewer calories, your body is going to eventually just atrophy. It won’t be able to run anymore.
So am I missing something? How can calorie restriction fail to be anything but an attempt to run on empty?