If your question is how many calories should I eat per day, then let me say you, it’s not possible to ‘eat calories’. We eat food! The food undergoes digestion and metabolism in our body to generate energy. This is stored or consumed by the body for its general operation. Calorie is the earliest known unit of energy and hence, the general (mis) conception regarding ‘eating calories’ which actually signifies energy intake.
The best answer to the point is that it’s relative! But, if you insist on numbers, it’s noted that the average need for a woman is to consume 1500 calories a day and only for a man, it’s 2000 calories a day. But, this is an unsatisfactory answer. This is completely based on the right of averages, and for those relating to the extremes, this data is irrelevant.
So this begs the question: Is there a way how to lose a pound a day without counting calories? The answer is yes.
The simplest answer is, it depends on a small number of factors. Here, the possible purposes might be to lose weight, gain weight, or during convalescence. In such a case, factors like, ‘how active are you physically? ‘, ‘what is the proportion of fat in your body? ‘ And ‘what is your current weight? ‘, Come into picture. It is likewise possible that you may be absolutely fit and want to avoid gaining or losing weight.
The caloric scale is broken into three categories: maintaining weight, gaining weight and losing weight. Maintaining weight means that the caloric scale is in balance. The body is taking in as many calories as it is using meaning weight will remain stable. Gaining weight means there is a caloric excess. The body is taking in more calories than it is using, causing the body to gain weight. Losing weight implies that the body is located in a caloric deficit. The body is using more calories than it is gaining, causing the body to lose weight.
The basic principle of losing weight, is to burn more calories than you eat. In other words, it’s essential to maintain a calorie deficit between calories consumed and calories burnt. This is similar to spending more than you earn. Now, to know how much calorie deficit is to be maintained, you must first know the calories in 1 lb of fat. There are roughly 3, 500 calories in 1 lb fat. This means you need to burn 3, 500 calories of energy to bring about a pound of fat loss. If you wish to lose weight, you must attempt it stepwise.
How many calories should you eat to build muscles or for weight gain? The answer lies in the Step 3 and Step 4 mentioned above. Instead of maintaining a deficit, if one sustains a surplus of 3, 500 calories per week, then he/she can gain a pound of weight. Similarly, you can make the corresponding changes in the following step. The calorie surplus can be maintained by, either increasing the intake, or reducing the expenditure (I.e. By decreasing TDEE).
Cutting is basically in its simplest form taking in less calories than your body’s ‘maintenance’ requirement is. If your maintenance is say….2500 calories then if you eat 2500 calories in a day you’ll neither gain or lose weight. When cutting you’ll still want to be in a caloric deficit which means that your total daily calories must be less than your maintenance. So if your maintenance is 2500 calories you want to have fewer than that amount to be losing weight. As you eat less (or exercise more to burn calories) each day and have less calories you’ll begin to trim the fat and weight off your frame. Be careful though, since you’ll also lose muscle as well as fat if you do not engage in any weight lifting programs since your body is getting less calories than is require to keep the weight. People who’re overweight or extremely obese should consider cutting first before bulking.
Next, you need to calculate the Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE). To calculate TDEE, multiply the BMR by a factor that corresponds to the degree of activity you’re involved in everyday. The following table gives the multiplication factors corresponding to the degree of activity.
What if you want to keep your body weight constant? If you are happy with your current fitness levels, then you should completely ignore the Step 3 and Step 4. Maintain an equilibrium between the intake and calorie expenditure. Spending your earnings without saving any is what you’ve got to do. For example, if your TDEE is 2, 400 calories, then without maintaining a surplus or a deficit, consume 2, 400 calories per day, to sustain your current status.
Whether you’re attempting to simply maintain your number on a bathroom scale, add, or subtract to it, you’ll need to calculate how many calories you need RIGHT NOW to keep your current weight. As a general (though rough) estimate, find out your current weight in pounds and multiply that by 12. This will give you the number of calories you need per day to sustain your current weight. For example, if you weight 150 pounds, when multiplied by 12, you’ll get a rough daily calorie estimate of 1800 calories. This is only an estimate, not an exacting number, so if you’re using this to maintain your weight, than keep this as a maximum number.
I hope you now your query is answered. The concept of BMR and TDEE should be very useful in going a long way towards helping you manage your calorie intake in order to reach your goals.