Seems like everywhere you go you hear about calorie intake. Calories are constantly thought about by people with intense fitness regimens, but just what is a calorie and how do you count them? Why are they important? We will break down the answers to these questions below. But first, it’s important to know if you are consuming enough calories. Most men should average between 2,000 and 3,000 calories per day while women should take in 1,600 to 2,400 calories daily. If your goal is to lose weight, you should consume around 1,800 calories a day if you are a man and 1,200 if you are a woman.
What is a calorie?
A calorie is a unit of measurement. It’s a way to measure the energy your body is taking in when eating or drinking. That’s the simplest way to put it, anyway. Basically, a meal consisting of 800 calories is going to provide you with more sustenance than a snack with 100 calories. Sounds like common sense, right? However, just because something provides you with more energy doesn’t mean it’s necessarily healthier. High-calorie foods often contain elevated levels of fat, sugar, sodium, and carbohydrates, all of which can have negative effects when consumed in excess.
How to calculate calories
Devote special attention to your food’s nutrition labels. If you’re eating at a restaurant, the dishes’ calorie counts will almost certainly be available online or if you ask your server. It’s really just a matter of being attentive and courteous to yourself. Keep a food journal to track the estimated calories you eat each day. Again, if you’re trying to lose weight, lowering your calorie intake is a great first step.
Ordinarily, the key to losing weight is to burn more calories than you consume. This is called a calorie deficit. So, if you are eating 2,000 calories a day and maintain regular exercise and burn 2,500 calories, you will see some progress. However, it’s still important to make sure your calories are coming from healthy sources. Avoid fatty and high-carb foods as much as possible if weight-loss is your priority. To estimate how many calories you burn daily, check out the calculator below.