What Should my Daily Intake of Calories Be?

On average, a healthy woman should eat about 2000 calories to maintain her weight. On the other hand, a man needs 2500 calories a day. However, this is subject to some factors such as age, current weight, height, activity level, metabolic health and many more. For example, a woman needs 1500 calories per day to lose weight while a man should consume 2000 calories a day to cut on some pounds.

What Are Calories?

When most people come across they come across the word calorie, they think of how fattening a specific food is. But in dietary terms, calories refer to the amount of energy a certain food provides. The weight gain comes in when you constantly take in more energy than required. Alternatively, less intake of this energy leads to loss of weight, fat and ultimately muscle mass.

The food type and amount determine the level of calories you consume that day. Also, when and how you eat plays a role because the body uses energy differently throughout the day. You’re advised to use calorie counter frequently to know how many carbs, proteins, fat, mineral, vitamins, and fiber you’re taking in. Plus, this will help you to make changes if needed.

Facts On Calories Intake and Use

  • The brain requires around 20 percent of the energy used in the human body.
  • Having a heavy breakfast could be useful in weight reduction and maintenance.
  • Factors such as age, bone density, and muscle to fat ratio affect the ideal calorific intake.
  • Eating a 500 calories rich food consisting of fruits and vegetable is more beneficial to the body and keeps you fuller as opposed to a 500 calorie snack.

Burning Calories

The human body burns calories throughout the day for its functioning. The brain uses 20 percent of all the energy we take in. The rest is used in basal metabolism, the energy required when our bodies are in a resting state, for functions like blood circulation, digestion, and breathing. Basically, your body needs calories to fuel bodily functions like thinking, breathing, moving around and maintaining posture.

Tips for Weight Loss

For those looking to lose weight, the tips below will help you burn more calories to lose weight effectively. Remember counting calories isn’t just a matter of what you eat but also how much you burn.

Eat breakfast: Go for a protein-rich breakfast with healthy fats, which will leave you feeling full for longer and help prevent unhealthy snacking.

Eat slow-burning calories: Foods high in fiber and healthy fats take long to release energy, therefore, you will not get hungry faster.

Drink water: Water has zero calories, it’s healthy and fills you up. Sodas provide lots of calories and are not heart healthy. If you must have sweet drinks, choose unsweetened fruit juice or eat whole fruits.

Eat more fiber: Vegetables, fruits, and whole grains are rich in fiber which promote digestion and have a satiety effect.

Exercise: Working out encourages the burning of extra calories. There are plenty of exercises that are useful in weight loss including, full body workouts. Additionally, you become physically fit and avoid any risks of cardiovascular diseases.

Read the label: Most of the items have hidden fats and sugars. An indication of ten percent less fat doesn’t necessarily mean less fat, neither does it mean you eat more of it because it has less fat. if you’re losing weight through counting calories then the label will help you keep track.

Recommended Food Choice

For you to attain the recommended daily calories intake, you need to adopt a certain mode of eating. In addition to that, if your aim is to lose weight you should eat unprocessed and whole foods more. Note that different food types have different effects on the body. Consume more of slow release carbs such as legumes which help with weight control. Avoid refined carbs since they raise insulin levels more compared to healthy fats and proteins. In fact, some carbs get into the bloodstream in the form of sugar or glucose faster than others. Such carbs should be avoided if possible.

Conclusion

Your daily calorie intake depends on whether you want to maintain, lose or gain weight, not forgetting various factors like age, gender, current weight, and activity levels. Focus on eating a healthy and well-balanced diet that can sustain you for long. Ultimately, you need to be physically active to balance the calories consumed that day with the energy used. For one to gain weight, they must eat more calories than the body uses every day.

All images by Pixabay

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