Whether you want to gain weight, lose weight, or simply maintain a balanced diet, knowing your daily calorie intake is crucial. Nutrimuscle guides you through the different steps to determine your caloric needs and reach your goals.
- What is caloric need?
- Calculation of caloric need
- Determine weight goals
- Calorie deficit calculation
- Practical tips for adjusting your calorie intake
- Calorie Needs Calculator
What is caloric need?
Caloric requirement refers to the amount of energy in the form of calories that our body needs to function properly. It corresponds to the daily intake of calories necessary to support our vital functions, our daily activities and meet the needs of our metabolism.
Each individual has a specific calorie requirement which depends on several factors such as age, gender, height, weight, level of physical activity and basal metabolic rate. Basal metabolic rate is the calories burned at rest, that is, the energy needed to maintain our body's vital functions, such as breathing, blood circulation, body temperature regulation, and proper functioning of the body's muscles. organs.
When we're looking to achieve specific goals like gaining weight, losing weight, or maintaining our current weight, it's important to understand our caloric need. If our calorie intake exceeds our energy expenditure, we are likely to gain weight, while if our calorie intake is less than our energy expenditure, we are likely to lose weight.
Calculation of caloric need
Basal metabolic rate (MB)
Basal metabolic rate is the calories burned at rest, which is the energy needed for your body's essential functions, such as breathing, blood circulation, and temperature regulation. Several formulas exist to estimate your basal metabolic rate, such as the Harris-Benedict formula.
For men, the MB is:
13.7516 x Weight (kg) + 500.33 x Height (m) - 6.7550 x Age (years) + 66.479
For women, the MB is:
9.740 x Weight (kg) + 184.96 x Height (m) - 4.6756 x Age (years) + 655.0955
Physical activity level (PAL)
Your level of physical activity influences your daily caloric needs. If you have a desk job and moderate physical activity, you will burn fewer calories than someone with intense physical work. Estimate your level of physical activity based on your daily routine.
Sedentary : 1.2
Low activity level : 1.55
Moderate activity level : 1.725
Vigorous activity level : 1.9
These measurements represent an average in the level of activity and cannot guarantee precise data.
Calculation of daily calorie intake
Once your basal metabolism is obtained, multiply this figure by the level of activity corresponding to your lifestyle. The calculation of daily caloric intake is the product of basal metabolic rate and activity level. In mathematical terms, this is equivalent to:
Energy needs (in calories/day) = MB x PAL
Your energy needs are the number of calories your body needs given your basic needs and your level of physical activity.
Determine weight goals
To gain weight
If you want to gain weight, your calorie intake must be greater than your energy expenditure. Increase your daily calorie intake by eating foods that are nutrient-dense and calorie-dense, while maintaining a balance of macronutrients. To find out how to calculate your macronutrients according to your sports goal, go to our dedicated article.
To lose weight, you must create a calorie deficit by consuming fewer calories than you burn. Gradually reduce your calorie intake to achieve a deficit of 500 to 1000 calories per day, in a progressive and healthy way.
Calorie deficit calculation
When the goal is to lose weight, the calorie deficit plays a vital role. It represents the amount of calories you need to reduce from your daily calorie requirement to achieve your weight loss goals.
To understand how to calculate your calorie deficit, it is important to know your daily calorie requirement. The latter depends on factors such as your basal metabolic rate (calories burned at rest), your level of physical activity and other individual variables. Refer to the previous paragraph to find out your daily calorie requirement.
Once your daily calorie requirement has been determined, you can reduce your calorie intake in a moderate and controlled manner. A deficit of 500 calories per day generally results in weight loss of about 0.5 kilograms per week, while a deficit of 1000 calories per day can result in weight loss of about 1 kilogram per week. It is important to emphasize that the recommended weight loss is around 0.5 to 1 kilogram per week for a healthy and sustainable approach. Additionally, it's essential not to reduce your calorie intake too drastically, as this can negatively impact your metabolism, energy, and overall well-being.
It's also worth pointing out that calorie deficit alone is not enough to achieve your weight loss goals. A balanced and healthy eating plan, combined with regular physical activity, is essential to promote healthy weight loss, maintain muscle mass and promote your overall well-being.
Practical tips for adjusting your calorie intake
Choose nutritious and balanced foods to meet your macronutrient needs.
Pay attention to the quality of your calories by favoring natural foods and avoiding added sugars and processed foods.
Consult a health professional or nutritionist for personalized recommendations.