Saturday, June 14, 2008

Determine Your Daily Calories

Fourth Entry: Finding out how many calories you need to consume in a day to either maintain or lose weight, is easier than ever. There are numerous websites and books on the subject. Find a good one. The Calorie Control Council at is an excellent website that contains a number of wonderful calculators to help you figure this out. The website includes how to burn calories by activity levels, calculating calories for meal planning, and of course guidelines for maintaining your weight.

First, their Healthy Weight Calculator helped me determine my proper weight, that is the weight I SHOULD weigh, based on my height and gender. For me at my height of 5'4, that is 120 pounds. The Maintenance Calculator helped me figure out how many daily calories I would need to achieve my goal. I put in my vital information that included my sex, height, age, and regular level of activity. Then where it asked: "weight to maintain," I instead put in my goal of 120 that I wanted to reach. The result was the number of calories I would need to maintain that weight, around 1500 a day. Since I was then 140-pounds, I knew that amount had to be less than I was already consuming. It would undoubtedly allow me to lose.

These calculations are, of course, only guidelines. Every one of us has a different body type with its own unique metabolism. All I can say is that for me, it worked. It still does. :)

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