How many calories to lose weight
“How many calories to lose weight?” is a very popular question among people searching for ways to shed the extra pounds. Calculating the number of calories you consume daily and the number of calories you burn can give you an indication on how long it will take you to lose weight.
A calorie is the unit of measurement for energy we get from the food we eat. That means, the more calories you consume, the more energy you’ll have. However, when calories are left unconverted due to less energy expenditure, they are deposited in the body as fats which can still be converted as energy at a later stage, thus body fat is also referred to as “reserved energy”.
People have different calorie requirements and have different paces of burning the calories. More than half of the daily amount of calories converted to energy goes to the normal physiologic functioning of the body such as respiration and blood circulation while the other half goes to physical activities like walking and working. Factors that determine the daily calorie requirement of an individual are age, gender, body size, and activity level.
Another important fact to remember is the pound calorie ratio of 3500:1. This means, in every 3500 excess calories your body gains, you gain a pound; in every 3500 excess calories your body burns, you lose a pound; and if you are consuming just the right amount of calories that your body burns daily, you keep your weight.
So, how many calories to lose weight? Let’s discuss this by examining each determining factor.
The amount of calories that the body needs gradually increases from birth to mid adulthood (20 to 39 years old) and gradually decreases from late adulthood to old age (40 years old and above). This is because the body’s metabolism naturally slows down as we get older due to hormonal changes, increase in body fat percentage, etc. Considering this factor, you need to increase you energy spending as you get older to cope with the drop of your metabolism.
Because men are blessed to naturally have more muscle mass and less fat percentage compare to women, they lose weight faster. For this reason, women should apply more effort to burn calories than men.
People who are overweight or obese lose weight faster compared to those who are already slender. This is because they have more weight to lose. Unlike fat people, people who are already slim and slender need to decrease their fat burning activity to conserve energy reserves.
People who are more active tend to lose weight easier than those who are living a sedentary life. Though this seems obvious, the explanation is simply because their bodies burn more calories to meet the energy requirements of the different physical activities they perform.
Overall, if you want to lose weight, you simply need to decrease the amount of calories you take in daily and increase the amount of activities you do everyday.
Based on the weight-calorie ratio, you simply need to lose 500 calories daily to lose one pound in one week. Increasing the amount of calories you burn daily will also increase the number of pounds you lose per week. However, a person’s daily calorie intake should not go lower than 1200 to avoid any interruptions in the body’s normal functioning.
Consider the factors stated in this article and start planning your weight loss strategy today. You may seek the help of nutritionist and fitness experts to help you with your weight loss plan. You may also find this post useful: How to lose weight in 2 weeks.