A question I often hear asked, is how to figure out how many calories one needs to eat on a daily basis. The answer is to determine your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). I have included a formula I found online:
Body Weight [lb] x 15 + (moderate activity [mins/day] x 3.5)
Since you wish to lose weight, your target = BMR – 500 kcal
So, for example, if yo weighed 200 pounds, and did 15 minutes of exercise daily, you’d do the formula as:
(200 x 15) + (15 x 3.5) so (3000) + (52.5) = 3052.5 Since you are trying to lose weight, 3052.5 – 500 = 2552.5 kcal. If you are trying to lose 1 lb per week, you’d want to stay at or under 2552.5 calories per day.
- The next step is to keep a food diary so you can determine how many calories you are currently taking in. There are several calorie counters online that can help you figure this out. Once you determine how many calories are coming in, and from where, it will make it much easier to find places to cut back and eat healthier or smaller portions.
- Do not skip meals to cut calories. That will only hurt your metabolism. Aim to eat smaller, more frequent meals throughout the day so you aren’t hungry and your metabolism stays up.
- Read labels so you are making healthy choices.
- My biggest temptation is soda. I try not to restrict myself because I KNOW I will binge. Instead, I limit myself to one per day. It’s enough for me to know I can still have it. Then, I drink water the rest of the day.
What tips/suggestions do you have to help others lose weight, get healthy, and make sure the calories we are consuming are the smartest choices?