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Count calories and lose weight: how to determine your daily allowance

The caloric content or energy value of food is one of the most important characteristics of food. It is determined by the amount of energy that the body receives during the full absorption of the components included in the food consumed.

The daily calorie intake depends on age, weight, height, gender, lifestyle and is determined by the body’s energy expenditure for various activities. The minimum amount of energy needed to ensure the normal functioning of the body in women is less than in men – about 15-20%.

Why you need to count calories

The calculation of calories is based on the law of conservation of energy. It is one of the most important, fundamental laws of nature. It always works, which is why it is an important component of the most effective weight loss methods.

From a biological point of view, one calorie is the amount of energy required to heat one gram of water per degree Celsius under normal atmospheric conditions. This value is extremely small. So the calculation of calories per day is carried out in a larger value – kilocalories.

Not everyone thinks about how much energy the body spends on daily tasks. Scientists have found that the average female body spends about one and a half thousand calories to support life (this is an approximate figure). Due to this, breathing, heart rate, muscle tone, peristalsis, constant body temperature, and other processes occurring in the body are provided. For men, this value is slightly higher, it is 1800 calories and has a special name – the basic metabolism. To determine it, special formulas or special devices are used – a body composition analyzer and metallography.

Calculation of daily calories

To calculate the daily calorie intake , you can use an online calculator, which is easy to find on the Internet or calculate yourself, substituting your values in the formula:

RMR = 655 + (9.6 x weight) + (1.8 x height) – (4.7 x age in years).

It takes into account such physiological indicators as height, sex, weight and number of years. After calculating the equation, you can find out the total energy consumption per day, thanks to the coefficients:

  • 1.2 – with a sedentary lifestyle;
  • 1.375 – at moderate loadings (sports with small loading, no more than 3 times a week);
  • 1.55 – with moderate activity (exercises with an average load of up to 5 times a week);
  • 1.725 – at intensive loadings (sports 6-7 times a week);
  • 1.9 – with very intense training and heavy loads.

It is worth remembering that it does not give an accurate result, but only possible, taking into account only some factors. Now we find our activity coefficient and multiply by it the received figure – here it is, our daily norm of calories. 

To lose weight, experts do not recommend reducing calories, it can cause muscle loss. 

To slow down the metabolic process, it is necessary to find out: what calorie deficit is needed to lose excess weight. 

You can find the calorie deficit by simple calculations: you need to subtract 20% from the number found earlier (if the goal is to lose weight in the shortest possible time – 40%). But, remember: the daily norm of calories should not be less than the following value: weight (kg) ÷ 0,450х8.

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