We know that in order to lose weight we need to eat enough food, otherwise, our body will go into an emergency mode. It will start using muscle tissues instead of carbohydrates and fat, and our metabolism will slow down. Y ou can read more about it in this post. I should note that there is an option of fasting as well, which is actually both very healthy and helps you lose weight, but you need to make sure you do it right. Otherwise, instead of boosting your metabolism you may slow it down. Read more about this here.
So how many calories should you eat a day in order to lose weight?
First, let’s find out your basal metabolic rate (BMR). BMR measures how many calories your body consumes while at complete rest. Gender, age, height, and weight all play a role in determining your BMR. This is only a statistical estimate of course, but it still gives you a pretty good ballpark figure.
Now, in order to adjust the figure to your activity level, you’ll need to multiply your BMR according to this chart:
|Amount of Exercise||Daily Calories Needed|
|Little to no exercise||BMR x 1.2|
|Light exercise (1 to 3 days per week)||BMR x1.375|
|Moderate exercise (3 to 5 days per week)||BMR x 1.55|
|Heavy exercise (6 to 7 days per week)||BMR x 1.725|
|Very heavy exercise (intense workouts twice per day)||BMR x 1.9|
Now you know how many calories you need to eat daily in order to maintain your weight.
Let’s continue. One pound of body weight has about 3,500 calories. In order to lose 1 pound, you’ll need to eat 3,500 fewer calories over time. If you eat every day 500 calories less than the amount needed to maintain your current weight, you will lose one pound in a week (500×7=3,500). The typical recommendation is to lose 1-2 pounds a week. If you try to lose much more, it means that you are probably putting in too much effort in dieting and exercising, and that could be unhealthy for you. Chances are you will also not be able to stick with what you’re doing to maintain as a permanent lifestyle change. Also, when you lose weight fast, you’ll lose more weight from water and muscles than when you lose weight at a moderate pace. Dieting in moderation lets you burn more fat tissues than in crash diets.