How do I calculate Daily Calorie Needs?

Calorie need calculation will help you keep an eye for calorie intake and consumption. If you are thinking about how many calories you should be taking in on daily basis, this section will provide you all of the information you need. There are numerous calculators available online that can give you daily caloric requirement but you need to know how to interpret the figures and what they mean to your health.

Let’s start with the question, why you need to calculate daily calorie needs? Because this information will let you know that if you are taking more calories than you are burning, you are more likely to gain weight. And if you are doing it the other way, you will be shedding pounds, extra or otherwise. A balance in calorie intake and consumption is necessary to maintain your ideal weight.

Calorie Calculation

Now whether your current state of health lies above or below the ideal line, accepted as normal weight, is what you need to know before deciding to increase or reduce the calorie intake. The ideal weight can be determined using body mass index (BMI) calculation.

Body Mass Index (BMI)

Measuring BMI is a simple and widely used way to evaluate obesity. BMI takes into account height, and weight to yield a number that tells your estimated body fat. The measurement can be applied to both men and women between the ages of 18 and 65 years.

The formula for calculating BMI is:
BMI = Weight in Kilograms /(Height in Meters x Height in Meters)

For example, if you weigh 75 kg and your height is 1.77 meters (5’8’’), then your BMI is 75/(1.77)2= 23.94kg/m2.

The results of BMI are used to indicate if you are overweight, obese, underweight or normal. A score of 20-25kg/m2 of BMI is considered normal, according to World Health Organization. Less than 20 is underweight, more than 25 indicates being overweight and more than 30 points to a red area, you are obese.

Harris Benedict Equation

Now that you know whether you need to gain weight or lose weight, your concern should be how much calories you should be taking on daily basis in order to maintain or modify your weight. Calorie needs determination will help you to monitor your diet.

The Harris Benedict Equation helps you to calculate how many calories you need for aiding your fitness plan. It is a method that uses your basal metabolic rate (BMR), and applies an activity factor to come up with a figure for your total daily caloric requirement.

Basal metabolic rate is the measure of calories burnt while human body whiles it is at complete rest. Harris Benedict Equation adds to that minimal limit the level of activity that you are performing and gives you a good estimate of amount of calories that you should be taking in. So you need to calculate BMR then move on to put in the activity that you intend to indulge in.

BMR Formula uses your weight, height and age. Depending on your gender, you can calculate it as:

Women: BMR = 655 + ( 9.6 x weight in kilos ) + ( 1.8 x height in cm ) – ( 4.7 x age in years )
Men: BMR = 66 + ( 13.7 x weight in kilos ) + ( 5 x height in cm ) – ( 6.8 x age in years )

Next you can determine your total daily calorie needs by multiplying BMR to the level of daily activity you spend your busy time in as:

  • Sedentary or working in sitting arrangement, little exercise: BMR x 1.2
  • Slightly active (light exercise) : BMR x 1.375
  • Moderately activity (exercise 3-5 days/week): BMR x 1.55
  • Very active routine (hard exercise 6-7 days a week): = BMR x 1.725
  • Extra active (very hard exercise): = BMR x 1.9

For example, if you are a male weighing 74kg, with 177cm height and 30 years old, your BMR will be 2168.8, as:

BMR = 66 + (13.7 x 74) + (5 x 177) – (6.8 x 30) = 66 + 1013.8 + 885 + 204 = 2168.8

Next if you spend most of your time in office, then you should be multiplying with the first activity level:

BMR x 1.2 = 2168.8 x 1.2 = 2602.56 calories per day!

Remember that after the weight machine needle starts to point to a different figure on scale, it will be high time you should be visiting this section again to re-calculate your BMR and daily calorie requirements.

Jessica Miller
About Jessica Miller 104 Articles
Author who finds and writes the most interesting topics and tries to solve your everyday problems.

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