In this article, I am going to introduce a basic approach to calorie counting that should help anyone wanting to start counting calories for weight loss.
The basics of calorie counting comes down to calories in and calories out. How many calories are you consuming and how many are you burning. In order to achieve consistent, maintainable weight loss, you should aim to introduce a calorie deficit into your diet and exercise regime.
Gaining an understanding of the calories you burn a day is the first step in this process. In order to do this, you should take a look at a calorie calculator that will give you an estimate of this. The first metric these calculators should return is your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate). This can be interpreted as an estimate of the number of calories you burn with no real activity or digestion occurring. This can be calculated by a calorie calculator by inputting some basic details about yourself such as you gender, age, weight and height. Your BMR is then adjusted by a multiplier based on your general level of activity to compute an estimate of the actual number of calories you burn a day.
To gain a stronger understanding of the number of calories you are burning, you can also look at the typical number of calories burned during different exercises and activities. This information can be calculated by a calories burned calculator and only requires basic inputs such as your gender, weight and the duration of your exercise.
The next step in calorie counting is to then look at how many calories you are consuming a day. Useful tools for this are online calorie counters that allow you to search for foods and see the number of calories in standard servings. It can be useful to maintain a food journal, where you keep a record of the foods you are eating. You can then total the calories of the foods in your diary to see how many calories you consume.
It is recommended that by consuming approximately 3500 calories less than you burn over a period of time, you should lose approximately one pound of weight. You can reduce the amount of food you eat, replace some high calorie foods with lower calorie alternatives or increase your exercise to achieve a desired calorie deficit.
You should not introduce to severe a calorie deficit into your diet but rather maintain a basic deficit until a healthy weight is reached. It has been suggested that your body can compensate for too large a calorie deficit by reducing the number of calories your body is burning and can thus be counterproductive for weight loss.
It is important to maintain a well balanced diet with all the necessary minerals and vitamins as you adjust your diet for your weight loss process. Be sure to consult your doctor about this process so you can be more confident you are adopting a healthy approach and understand any factors that may be specific to your situation.
Source by Alec Heffon