How to Figure out Your Daily Total Caloric Needs
It is imperative to find out your total daily caloric needs. You must know how many calories your body will need before you can decide on cutting back to lose weight. Determining caloric needs is the first and most important part of any weight loss program.
It is impossible to figure out your exact caloric needs with with a math formula. Each person is unique in their physiology and work habits. Some rare individuals must consume less calories than the formula shown and some people must consume more calories. The formula will get most people pretty close to their base caloric maintenance rate. Cutting additional calories, to lose weight, is up to the individual.
Nutritionists and weight loss counselors use the BMR or basal metabolic rate plus an activity rate to determine potential calories to be expended. A popular formula is the Mifflin and some people think it is the most accurate.
Calculating BMR ( For Adults) : The Mifflin St Jeor Equations
Metric SystemMale: BMR = 10×weight (in kg) + 6.25×height (in cm) - 5×age + 5
Female: BMR = 10×weight (in lg) + 6.25×height(in cm) - 5×age – 161
American SystemMen: BMR = 66 + (6.23 x weight in pounds) + (12.7 x height in inches) – (6.8 x age in years)
Women: BMR = 655 + (4.35 x weight in pounds) + (4.7 x height in inches) – (4.7 x age in years)
After You Calculate BMR, Multiply by Activity Rate to Get Total Calorie NeedsYou must then multiply the BMR times the activity level. Please don't over estimate your activity level. This is a common mistake that people make.
1.200 = sedentary (little or no exercise)
1.375 = lightly active (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/week)
1.550 = moderately active (moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/week)
1.725 = very active (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days a week)
1.900 = extra active (very hard exercise/sports and physical job)
Example of How to Use the Equations
An twenty five year old, sedentary, adult female that weighed 75 kg and that was 158 centimeters tall would be calculated as follows. Take 10 times 75 (kg) to equal 750. This gives you the first part of the equation. Next, take 6.25 times height (158 cm) to equal 987.5. Then take 5 times 25 to get 125. The next step is to add and subtract. Add 750 + 987.5 – 125 – 161. Your answer or BMR will be 1451.5. That is the amount of calories you burn by just being alive.
The next step is to estimate how much exercise you get. According to the chart, multiply the BMR (1,451.5) times Activity Rate (1.2 - Sedentary). In this case your answer will be 1451.5*1.2=1741.8. That means that 1,741.8 is the amount of calories needed to maintain the current weight. Any weight loss will require the calories consumed to be lower. To lose a pound a week, you will need to cut at least 500 calories per day because one pound is 3500 calories and there are seven days in a week.
Many people do not realize that it took them many years to become obese. You can't reverse the trend overnight and do it in a healthy way. Please don't get discouraged.
Here is a link to an online caloric calculator http://calorieneedscalculator.com/ or the government as a great calculator at