“After a lifetime of losing and gaining weight, I get it. No matter how you slice it, weight loss comes down to the simple formula of calories in, calories out.”
Valerie Bertinelli, American Actress
The answer to the question posed in the title is: “It depends”. Before you scream and shout, and think that this answer is totally unfair, give us a minute to explain why we’re saying this.
There are a number of factors which determine how many calories you need on a daily basis. These are, for example:
- What age you are,
- Whether or not you’re a man or a woman,
- If you want to lose weight, and
- What your level of activity is.
Children come in all shapes and sizes. In addition, each person’s body burns energy (read calories) at different rates. This means that there isn’t one perfect number of calories that every kid should consume. Luckily, there is a recommended calorie range for most children who are between 6 and 12 years old: 1,600 to 2,200 per day, depending on how active they are.
An average woman needs to eat about 2 000 calories per day to maintain the weight that she is at. If she wants to lose about 45 grams per week, she’ll only be allowed 1 500 calories a day. An average man needs 2 500 calories to maintain his weight. If he wants to lose 45 grams of weight a week, he’ll need to consume 2 000 calories.
However, these calculations depend on a number of factors. These include age, height, current weight, activity levels and metabolic health, for example.
Weight Loss and Calories
Losing weight requires more than just cutting calories. It is vital that you need to choose nutritious foods that satiate your hunger. In addition, you need to keep track of your calories and eating habits.
Measure your food portions in order to get a realistic picture of how much you are eating. A food diary can help reveal what your eating patterns are. For example:
- The kinds of foods you’re eating, and
- Hunger triggers.
For example, if you find that you snack every day around 3 pm, you may find that you’re not actually hungry but are rather eating out of habit or boredom.
In addition, if you keep a food diary you can pinpoint if you have unhealthy eating habits like consuming too many calories at particular mealtimes.
Calories vs Exercise
The number of calories you should eat when you work out depends on different factors, such as:
- What your workout is,
- how much you exercise, and
- your goals for working out.
Different exercises burn different amounts of calories. Add the calories you burn in your workout to your baseline calorie need to get the new number of calories that you need to eat.
Want to learn more about calories and nutrition? Trifocus Fitness Academy’s Specialised Nutrition Course will teach you about this and so much more about nutrition! For more information about this and our other online fitness courses, please follow this link.