# How Many Calories Do You Need?

Forget BMI. What you need to know if you want to lose fat is your BMR or Basal Metabolic Rate. You can determine the number of calories your body needs each day by determining your Basal Metabolic Rate, then adding or subtracting from that depending upon your goals. You can do the math under #4 below to get that number. First, let’s understand some other important considerations for losing fat.

1. Calories. Your body burns energy measured in calories. Counting calories is much maligned by many today, but it is still the best way to determine the amount of energy your body needs.
2. Macronutrients contain different numbers of calories. There are three of these.
• Carbohydrate 1 gram = 4.5 calories
• Protein 1 gram = 4.5 calories
• Fat 1 gram = 9 calories
• Alcohol (not a macronutrient) 1 gram = 7 calories
3. Count Calories. Each person burns a different number of calories depending upon their metabolism and activity level. Count your calories.
• Write down everything you eat in a normal day and add up the calories.
• Go online or get a calorie counting app for your smart phone. Many of these automatically calculate the number of calories you should take in per day in order to meet your goal, be that weight loss or weight gain.
4. BMR- Below is the math to figure your Basal Metabolic Rate

A) Females:

Next subtract 2% for every 10 years of life.

Example of 120 lbs 20 year old woman: 120 x 10 = 1200, 1200 + 120 = 1320, 1320 x .04 = 52.8, 1320 – 52.8 =1267.2

B) Males:

Next subtract 2% for every ten years of life.

Example of a 150 lbs 20 year old man- 150 x 10 = 1500, 150 x 2 = 300, 1500 = 300 = 1800, .04 x 1800 = 72, 1800 – 72 =1728

Activity Adjustment for Both Males and females:

Add 20% – 40% depending upon your activity level. 20% = couch potato/sedentary job, 30% average, 40% active.

Example of the female above with an average activity level: 1267.2 x .30 = 380.16, 380.16 + 1267.2 = 1647.36

1. Lose fat.
• If you want to lose fat, you must burn more calories than you eat!
• There are 3,500 calories contained in one pound of fat.
• This means once you accumulate 3,500 more calories than you need, you will gain a pound of fat.
• Eat less! Cut between 250-500 (no more!) calories per day.
• Do more! Exercise 30-45 minutes 3-4 days per week, which will enable you to burn at least 250-350 calories per workout.
• Intermittent Fasting- Stop eating between Sundown and 8:00 P. M. Don’t eat again until at least 13 hours have passed. Vary this: some days go 16hrs, then 18hrs, then 20 up to 24.
2. Gain muscle.
• If you want to gain muscle, work out with weights 3-4 times per week and take in more calories than you burn.