We wish everything we ate or drank didn't have as many calories as they did. Many people struggle with eating what they want, AND maintaining a healthy weight. In reality it's tough, but it could help once you know how many calories you really need. Start living a healthier life now by learning your body's needs.
How Many Calories Do You Need?
The average amount of calories per day depends on the person. The most accurate and expensive way to figure this out is to get into an insulated chamber to measure how much heat your body is producing. Though this is impossible to many, there's a much simpler way to figure out how many calories you need by putting your personal data into an equation. For instance, a tall and young athlete may need 10,000 calories a day, when an elder office worker may only need 1,800 calories a day. Besides solely yourself, it also depends upon your end goals.
What Factors Are Involved?
Since everyone is different, the number of calories you need depends on a lot of factors. This includes your weight, height, age, gender, and activity level. Take the example we mentioned earlier. Then we add in the last one: your weight goals. Many people want to cut calories to lose weight. When it comes to weight loss, what you eat is more important than how much you exercise. Thus it's essential to track your calories you burn and intake, and cut out any excess calories you don't need. Food logging is a great way to do this to get a sense of how many calories you're typically eating in a day. Then you can come up with a new amount of calories in to meet your weight loss goals, which is typically 500 to 750 calories less than the average you calculated. If you stick to the same amount of calories per day, you'll start to see weight loss results in weeks!
Is 2,000 Calories A Day Valid?
When the FDA updated the nutrition labels, they simply needed a nice round number to compare percent daily values to. Ergo they picked 2,000 calories, which is really a rough average and not meant to be a recommendation for how many calories to eat. So is 2,000 calories a day really valid? According to research, Americans actually eat 2,500 calories a day. If everyone ate 2,000 calories, the national weight might actually go down. Therefore, setting 2,000 calories a day is just an easy way to understand food labels and is used as a starting point to calculate your personal needs. It is not the exact number for you since you are an individual and not an average.