Are you fabled with the number of calories you should eat to lose weight? You are not the only one. Most obese and overweight individuals are constantly searching for clear information on the number of calories they should consume to lose and maintain weight within the normal range.
Luckily, this is a simple but tricky question that many try to find the answer. It is most likely that you don’t know your exact caloric intake for each day. This is from the fact that you eat a variety of meal types in different portions and days. There is no need for sudden adjustment in your calorie intake so as to lose weight. You can do it gradually and reap better benefits with time.
Find out your Body Mass Index
The first step is to identify the amount of calories you would require to maintain the current weight. Use the Harris Benedict principal that allows you to evaluate your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). BMR tells you the number of calories you need each day to maintain your current weight.
This is equivalent to the amount of energy that your body requires to carry out daily functions such as heartbeat and breathing. If your intention is to lose weight, you must burn the extra calories that your body doesn’t require to carry out these vital life supporting functions.
How to calculate your BMR
- Women: 655 + (4.3 *your weight in pounds) + (4.7 * your height in inches) – (4.7 *your age in years.
- Men: 66 + (63 * your weight in pounds) + (12.9 * your height in inches) – (6.8 * age in years)
It’s worth noting that these equations are applicable in adults, without taking in account the muscle to fat ratio. This means that the equations are applicable to the vast majority unlike those that have bigger muscles. There can be some underestimations of caloric needs if you are very muscular and overestimations if extremely obese.
Establish your Activity Level
After identifying your BMR, proceed to evaluate your activity level. If you spend most of your time in a sedentary state and don’t engage in any form of exercise, multiply your BMR by 20%. If you engage in light activities, multiply your BMR by 30%.
If you are the relatively active type, multiply your BMR by 40%. If you are very active for the better part of the day, multiply your BMR by 50%. Once you obtain the result, add it to your BMR. The figure at the end of the sum reflects the number of calories that you should eat to maintain your current weight.
Come up with the number of calories to consume to lose weight
If you want to lose weight, you must ensure your calorie intake should fall short of your body’s daily energy requirements. Come up with a weekly weight loss goal to lose half a pound, a pound or two pounds every week. According to nutritionists, a pound is equivalent to 3,500 calories.
This means that if your weekly weight loss goal is to shed a pound, you must burn 3,500 calories in that particular week. Divided by 7 means you will need to create a calorie deficit of 500 every day. This is achievable through a combination of healthy diet and exercise. It is worth noting that if you intend to create a calorie deficit of 1,200 or more per day, do it under the supervision of a medical professional.
Keep track of your food intake
It’s is ideal to track your progress with the help of a food diary and workout activities. It will keep track of the amount of calories you consume in every single sitting and the amount you burn per workout. There are several online journals and platforms where you can keep track of your progress on a daily basis. Beware that changes in weight will vary from one week to the other.
This is more common, especially if you are building muscle through strength training and aerobic exercises. Monitor weekly fluctuations and make adjustments if there is weight gain, stagnation, or too little outcome. With time, minor changes will develop giving you the important final results you have always been craving for.
Equipped with the right information, it is now easier for you to tell how many calories you should consume in order to lose weight. The answer is simple; eating fewer calories but ensuring that you spend more. If your aim is to lose weight fast through sudden reduction in calorie intake, beware that possible complications can arise and sabotage your weight loss plan.
This is typical in obese individuals who have other underlying medical conditions such as heart disease or diabetes. Consult with your health care giver if you decide to become tough on your diets and workout plan for weight loss. Despite very little changes in the battle to lose weight, struggle on with the fight and keep at bay the misconceptions that come with being unaware of the amount of calories you should eat in order to lose weight.