It's easy to get answers about health and nutrition! Just send your question by email to and Dr. Harlan will respond to selected questions of general interest. Answers will be posted in the Ask Dr. Gourmet newsletter (sign up now!) and archived in the Ask Dr. Gourmet section of the website.

Please note that the Ask Dr. Gourmet feature is restricted to questions regarding food and nutrition. Due to the many questions we receive, not all questions may be answered. For more specific questions about your individual health, please contact your doctor. About Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy



Ask Dr. Gourmet

Dear Dr. Gourmet,

I've signed up for The Dr. Gourmet Diet Plan. I selected 1800 calories per day (not "Let Dr. Gourmet decide") and it keeps returning to 2300 calories for me. Is there a problem with the program?

Dr. Gourmet Says...

If you're exercising regularly and have listed your exercises in your profile, the system will add the calories you burn while exercising to the level of calories you have chosen. So if you're averaging burning 500 calories per day exercising, choosing 1800 (base) calories per day will yield a 2300 calorie-per-day diet.

To be allotted only 1800 calories per day in your diet, you have two choices: remove your exercises from your profile (then add them in to your exercise tracker as you do them), or select a lower base number of calories. Maintaining your current level of exercise, but changing your base caloric intake to 1500 calories per day will allow you to lose about a pound a week, which is what I recommend for effective long term weight loss and weight maintenance.

Thanks for writing.

Dr. Gourmet
Eat well, eat healthy, enjoy life!