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Calories - How Many Do You Need?

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Author: Dawn Woods

When it comes to counting calories, how many do you need every day in order to lose weight? When it comes to counting calories, how many do you need every day in order to maintain your weight?

The answers two these two very important questions depends on a number of things:

- How much do you presently weigh?
- How much weight do you want to lose, or do you want to maintain your present weight?
- How quickly do you want to lose it? How many pounds per day, week, or month?
- How old are you?
- How tall are you?
- What is your typical average daily physical activity level? Are you sedentary, lightly active, moderately active, or very active?

What is your body frame? Small, medium, or large?

Based on your answers to each of the questions listed above, you should be able to zero in on a target number of calories. How many do you need?

There are a multitude of free calculators out there on the Internet that you can use to help you compute what is the average number of calories that men and women of various ages and weights typically need in order to maintain their current weight or to lose weight at a specific rate.

But you can use this rough guideline to get a quick approximation as to how many calories your body burns in one day if you were to do absolutely nothing (your Basal Metabolic Rate or BMR) for twenty-four hours and just sit idle, you can use the following calculation below:

Women: 655 + (4.35 x weight in pounds) + (4.7 x height in inches) - (4.7 x age in years)
Men: 66 + (6.23 x weight in pounds) + (12.7 x height in inches) - (6.8 x age in years)
Now, if you wan to know how many calories you must burn in order to lose 1 pound per week, for example, here is what you need to know:

One pound is equal to 3500 calories. So that means you would have to burn 3500 calories more than you consume.

So, let's say that your BMR is 1900 calories per day, that means that you would want to burn 500 calories (3500 calories / 7 days = 500 calories) per day.

This can be achieved either by eating 500 fewer calories per day than your BMR, or by burning 500 calories per day through exercise.

If you wanted to lose weight faster, like two pounds a day, you will need to burn even more calories. How many? You would need to burn 1,000 calories. You would need to have a net deficit of 1,000 calories per day. So if your BMR is 1900 calories, you would need to burn 1,900+1,000 = 2,900 calories every day for 7 days in order to lose 2 pounds in one week.

Now that you know, with respect to intake of calories, how many you need on a daily basis, you will need some way to track your daily caloric intake. An on line calorie journal might be just the thing you need.

You need to ask yourself: How do you expect to be successful in your struggle to lose weight if you aren't holding yourself accountable with diet software like this one:


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