How Many Calories Do I Need To Eat?
“How many calories should I eat?”– There is no one-size fit all answer to that question. People come in all shapes and sizes and have different levels of activity and therefore calorie recommendations must be customised to each person. Our calculator is based on the results of peer reviewed scientific studies and is broken up into 4 sections to help provide you with the most accurate number of calories required to achieve your weight loss, muscle growth or fitness goals. Click the button below to go straight to our Calorie Calculator or continue reading to find out more about using our calculator and the topic of calories and weight loss.
Guide To Calculating Your Calorie Targets
Step 1: “You”
To accurately determine your daily calorie target, enter your current weight, age, height, and sex into the calculator. Values can be entered in both imperial and metric measurement systems.
Step 2 (optional): “Body fat”
This is an optional step but answering it may potentially increase the accuracy of the final result (particularly if you have a very low or very high level of body fat). If you are unsure of your body fat percentage you can use our body fat percentage calculator
Step 3: “Your activity”
Choose which option you believe is most accurate in terms of much exercise you get each week. It’s important to be honest with yourself here as this can have quite a big effect on the end calorie recommendation. This allows the calculator to calculate your Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE)- the number of calories you need to consume to maintain your current body weight.
Step 4: “Your target”
This is the part where you decide whether you want your calorie recommendation to be for weight loss or weight gain. We highly suggest you begin with choosing the recommended option and monitor the results over the first 2 weeks. Going too aggressive to begin with might impact your ability to adhere to your diet plan and may even have negative effects on body fat or loss of lean tissue depending on what your goal is.
Target Daily Calorie Intake
Depending on what goal you chose the results will show how many calories you may eat in order to lose weight, maintain weight or gain weight. It is important to understand that this is just an estimate based on the results of scientific studies and while these results are proven to be quite reliable you may find you have to slightly adapt the amount of calories based on change or lack of change in weight after a couple of weeks.
The following points should also be taken into account:
1: As you lose weight you will need to use recalculate the amount of calories you eat based on your new weight
2: Your body does adapt to the lowered calorie level over time and this may lead to a “plateau”
What Can I Do If I Reach A Weight Loss Plateau?
It is quite common the closer you get to your target weight the slower your weight loss becomes. If you have already lowered your calories significantly and have been dieting for a while it may be best to look at other ways to continue your weight loss.
Common strategies tend to be the following:
- Increase your general activity throughout the day such as walking more and walking up stairs
- Cardio such as running, swimming and cycling
- Weight training and bodyweight circuits
- Intermittent fasting
- Some people, especially those already with low body fat, try manipulating their macro nutrient ratios
Do I Still Need To Worry About Calories After I Finish My Diet?
You don’t necessarily need to worry about them but they certainly are still important. Read more about what to do after you finish your diet plan here
Our Automatic Meal Planner
Our diet planner creates a meal plan designed for your calorie target and nutritional needs – it’s easy and highly effective.