Energy from Food :
Everything you eat gives you energy; food is the fuel that your body needs to function. The energy in food is measured in calories. It’s imperative to understand that in order to make a change in your bodies’ composition (fat loss / muscle gain), your body requires a certain metabolic expenditure / calorie consumption combination in order to achieve your goal.
Some people think that calories are something you can remove or add to a diet to gain or lose weight; and although this statement is true, healthy and permanent fat loss is a little more complicated than it sounds. If it were this simple, there would be a lot less over-weight or obese people in the world.
Nutritionists divide calories consumed into two groups. The first refers to calories expended to carry out bodily functions that occur without conscious awareness (heartbeat, breathing, digestion, etc.) is known as Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) also referred to by some as Resting Metabolic Rate. The second refers to calories expended when you are actively working.
Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) :
Even when you are resting your body is burning calories because your heart is expending energy to beat, your lungs to breath, your digestive system to function, etc. The BMR accounts for about 60% of all of the energy you need in a day.
How many calories does an average person need when they are resting?
Using the chart above, calculate your BMR for future reference.
Although there is a better way of calculating your Basal Metabolic Rate or Resting Metabolic Rate but it requires expensive equipment which measures your oxygen usage when you are at rest. The chart above is fairly accurate but an expert, with the proper equipment can give you not only a more exact calculation but they can also help you develop a diet and exercise program created specifically for you.
Energy for Voluntary Activities :
The second group refers to energy expended when you are physically active. The amount of energy expended (calories burned) depends on how active you are. The more active you are the more calories you burn; this is the reason you should exercise if you are trying to lose weight. A good exercise routine will help you lose fat and greatly reduces the risk of disease.
What’s your BMR?