Weight Loss: Know your Calories
This is one of the questions that many people should figure out before starting to diet down. Weight loss is primarily driven by caloric restriction, of course other factors could play a major role if medical conditions are present, but for the most part, a caloric deficit must be created in order to loose weight.
In order to figure out your calories, you have to:
Track your current intake for 7 days.
Include everything you eat. The more accurate you track, the better you are able to know your current calories.
Once you have all 7 days, take an average of it (you add all of them and then divide by 7).
Take this number and subtract anything going from 50 calories to 300.
Ex: Monday - 1600 kcal, Tuesday -1890 kcal, Wednesday - 1700 kcal, Thursday -2000 kcal, Friday - 1793 kcal, Saturday -1668l kcal, Sunday - 2020 kcal. Total = 12,671 / 7 = 1,810 kcal daily average.
Alternative to the process above is multiplying your current body weight by 10-13. Choose 10 if you are a sedentary person, and choose 13 if you are activate.
If you are choosing Option 1 to figure out your calories, then be smart about how many calories you are subtracting. Personally, I would NOT subtract bigger numbers like 300 calories at one time. I would start with the smallest number: subtracting 50-80 calories from my maintenance number and see how my body reacts to it. Then if I need to subtract more, I can do so because I have a “bank” of calories to play with. Remember that in weight loss, you want to consume as many calories as your body can metabolize and still loose weight.
Also take into consideration that when you subtract a huge number from your maintenance calories, let’s say 500 calories, and your maintenance is not a high number, you are pushing your metabolism to stall. Why? Because you have all of the sudden taken 500 calories and the body sees this as a TOO big of a deficit. Then, it has no other choice than to lock you on a certain weight to preserve itself.
Now, it is your turn to do your calculations.
Note: if you are loosing weight, make sure to consume enough calories coming from proteins, carbohydrates and fats!. Not sure how to figure out? Click here.