A calorie is a unit of energy that the body uses to perform various functions. The number of calories a person consumes each day affects weight gain or loss. When people eat more calories than they burn, they store the excess energy as fat. People who consume fewer calories than they burn lose weight over time because their bodies use stored fat for energy.
Are you trying to lose weight or gain it? Your success may have more to do with counting calories than you think. In this article, we’ll explore how calories influence weight gain or loss and what you can do to make sure you’re getting the results you want. Keep reading to find out more.
Calculating Your Calories
When it comes to calories and weight, one of the most important things to understand is that human beings expend energy in three different ways: basal metabolic rate, activity thermogenesis (the energy used during physical activity), and diet-induced thermogenesis (the energy used to digest and process food). To lose weight, you need to create a calorie deficit by expending more energy than you take in. The good news is that even a small increase in activity can help you burn more calories.
Your BMR accounts for the majority of the energy your body burns each day. It’s what keeps you alive when you’re resting and accounts for about 60-70 percent of the total number of calories you burn each day. Factors that affect your BMR include age, sex, muscle mass, genetics, and thyroid function. To maintain your current weight, your BMR needs to be equal to the number of calories you consume each day. If your goal is to lose weight, then you’ll need to create a calorie deficit by burning more calories than you eat or drink.
Physical activity also plays a role in how many calories we burn each day. Activity thermogenesis includes everything from walking and running to household chores and gardening. The amount of energy expended during physical activity varies depending on intensity level and duration. For example, a 150-pound person will expend about 265 calories per hour while running at a moderate pace but just 69 calories per hour while walking at a leisurely pace.
The final factor affecting daily caloric expenditure is diet-induced thermogenesis (DIT). This refers to the number of calories needed to digest and process food. On average, DIT accounts for about 10 percent of our total daily caloric expenditure. How much DIT contributes depends on such factors as meal size and composition, digestive efficiency, and whether we eat frequently or infrequently throughout the day.
You can use a calories calculator to estimate the number of calories needed to maintain or lose weight. The calculator takes into account factors such as sex, age, height, weight, and activity level. To use the calculator, input information into each of the designated fields.
Calories are the energy in food. They are burned by the body to do everything from keeping your heart beating to moving your muscles. The number of calories you need each day depends on your age, sex, activity level, and whether you’re trying to maintain or lose weight. If you want to lose weight, you need to eat fewer calories than you burn. You can do this by eating smaller portions and choosing lower-calorie foods. To maintain your current weight, eat the same number of calories that you burn each day.
The amount of energy that we expend is determined by basal metabolic rate (BMR), which is the minimal level of energy required for life – breathing, circulating blood, and digesting food uses up most of this energy. BMR accounts for about 60-75 percent of total daily energy expenditure (TDEE) in sedentary individuals. It increases with greater levels of physical activity. The thermic effect of food (TEF) refers to the increase in metabolic rate that occurs after consuming a meal because the body works harder to digest and absorb food. TEF accounts for about 10 percent of TDEE in sedentary individuals and 15-20 percent in highly active people. The thermic effects of exercise account for 5-10 percent of TDEE, depending on how vigorously one exercises. So together, all these factors explain approximately 90-95 percent of our total daily caloric needs!
Eating for Weight Loss/Maintenance
How many calories a person needs each day varies based on factors such as age, gender, and activity level. However, most people need between 1,600 and 2,400 per day to maintain their weight. To lose weight, you need to consume fewer calories than your body needs. This can be done by eating smaller portions or reducing the number of unhealthy foods in your diet. You can also burn more calories through physical activity. For example, 30 minutes of jogging burns about 300 calories. When combined with a healthy diet, this can help you lose about 1-2 pounds per week.
To maintain your current weight, aim to eat the same number of calories that your body requires each day. This may vary depending on how active you are and how much muscle mass you have; muscle tissue burns more calories than fat tissue does, even when at rest). You don’t need to cut out all unhealthy foods from your diet; just make sure that the majority of what you eat is healthy and low in calorie density (items like fruits and vegetables). Also, try to include physical activity in your daily routine; this could be anything from walking briskly for 30 minutes to taking an hour-long fitness class several times a week.
Although genetics and other factors play a role in weight, calories are still the key determinant. To lose weight, you need to consume fewer calories than you burn; to gain weight, you need to consume more.