If you want to lose weight, do you know how many calories you should be eating? Do you count calories? Is it even necessary today? I say that it is necessary to count calories. It gives you a road map to success.
In fact, the secret to losing weight for good isn’t in fad diets that eliminate food groups or have you eating grapefruit for every meal. According to My Calorie Counter, a new book from Everyday Health, “sustained, healthy weight loss comes down to a pretty basic equation: fewer calories plus more exercise.” Authors Jenny Sucov and Maureen Namkoong, MS, RD. “By keeping track of how many calories you consume and burn every day, you can slim down, hain energy, and stave off a whole host of health problems.” So count calories to lose weight.
The first step though is to figure out how many calories you should eat in a day to maintain and then how many you should cut to lose weight. First calculate your Base Metabolic Rate (BMR).
- Women: Multiply your current weight by 10. Men by 11. This is your BMR. Easy so far?
- Then take 20% of that number and add it to your BMR if you are a sedentary person, 30% if you are somewhat active, 40% if you are moderately active and 50% if you are very active.
- The final number is how many calories you need to maintain your weight.
For example: If you’re a somewhat active 145-pound woman, your BMR is 1,450 calories a day, and your lifestyle quotient is 30 percent of that, or an additional 435 calories. So your daily total for maintaining your current weight is 1,885 calories. If you want to lose one pound per week, you simply need to cut or burn an extra 500 calories a day.
So, if you aren’t counting calories, you should be. It’s not as difficult as you think.
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