Daily Calorie Intake, How Many Calories do I Need? Nutrition is a critical part of our human life. What we put into our bodies determines a lot about our health. Proper nutrition is key to a healthy lifestyle. A lot of the food we consume are processed thus it needs to be taken in moderation. This often begs the question which has been probably asked a million time;
• How many calories should I eat?
• How many calories should I eat to lose weight?
• How many calories should I eat to gain muscle?
These are the questions many people who want to lose weight, maintain or gain muscle ask. It is also not only about losing weight but also keeping that weight off. It would not make any sense for you to work hard to lose weight then gain it back again.
There are general factors that determine the calories intake;
• Average Weight
• Activity Level
Average calorie intake
For a healthy person who does not want to either lose or gain weight, the average recommended calorie intake per day for a woman is 2000 to 2200 calories while for a man is 2500 to 2700 calories. This again might vary depending on the activity level of a person. People who do strenuous activities like the construction workers tend to use up a lot of energy compared to those in an office setting thus requiring more calories. If you want to gain muscle mass, the average calorie intake should be in surplus. Muscle cannot be built on thin air; extra calories should be consumed. For a woman, additional around 125 calories should be consumed on top of the average calorie maintenance level while a man is around 250 calories. Too many calories slow down the muscle build up.
For someone who wants to lose weight, two factors are considered;
• How fast do you want to lose weight?
• What is the current calorie maintenance level; level you neither to gain or lose.
When you burn 2800 calories through exercises, routine activities like showering, sleeping, and normal body functions like digestion, breathing among others, this means 2800 calories is your daily calorie maintenance level. If then you consume 2800 calories daily, the body neither loses or gains weight. To lose weight, the rule of the thumb is to consume less than what the body needs, i.e., your calorie maintenance level. The appropriate type of food is necessary. The body requires healthy calories to maintain the energy levels. Foods like carbohydrates and fats have high calorific values. However, fruits are very healthy yet have low calories.
Burn more Calories
When exercising the body ought to burn more calories to eliminate the excess calories that might be stored as fat. To lose weight you need to create a calorie deficit. For example, if your calorie maintenance level is 2000 calories, 1 pound is equivalent to 3500 calories. If you eat 600 less calories daily, you shall lose a more than a pound in a week. The body will convert body fat into energy to fill up the deficit thus making you lose weight. A loss of a pound per week is considered healthy.
Remember calorie maintenance level is key to either losing, gaining or maintaining weight. It is very paramount to know your calorie maintenance level before embarking on any exercise. A key is weight loss as fitness experts state is a healthy breakfast. Never skip breakfast. Also never consume extremely minimal calories as the body might go into starvation mode. This way you will never lose any weight. The key to a healthy body is doing everything in moderation. Always consume the right types of food in moderate quantities and combine with slight physical activities.