How Many Calories Should You Eat on Average?
An average woman needs to eat about 2000 calories per day to maintain, and 1500 calories to lose one pound of weight per week. An average man needs 2500 calories to maintain, and 2000 to lose one pound of weight per week.
However, this depends on numerous factors. These include age, height, current weight, activity levels, metabolic health and several others.
How to Reduce Calorie Intake Without Starving Yourself
Calories are simply a measure of energy.
It’s a known fact that in order to gain weight, more calories need to be entering your body than leaving it.
Conversely, you lose weight if more calories leave your body than enter it.
That being said, cutting calories without taking the foods you eat into account is usually not a sustainable way to lose weight.
Though it works for some people, the most end up hungry and eventually give up on their diet.
For this reason, it’s highly recommended to make a few other permanent changes to help you maintain a calorie deficit in the long term, without feeling starved.
Here are 5 evidence-based diet and lifestyle changes that have been shown to help people lose weight in numerous studies.
1. Eating More Protein Can Reduce Appetite, Cut Cravings and Increase the Number of Calories You Burn
2.Avoid Sugary Soft Drinks and Fruit Juices
3. Drinking More Water Can Aid Weight Loss
4. Exercise and Lift Weights
5. Reduce Carbohydrate Intake, Especially Refined Carbs and Sugars
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Fast facts on calorie intake and use
- Recommended calorie intake depends on factors such as age, size, height, sex, lifestyle, and overall general health.
- Recommended daily calorie intakes in the US are around 2,500 for men and 2,000 for women.
- Eating a big breakfast could help with weight reduction and maintenance.
- The brain uses around 20 percent of the energy used in the human body.
- Factors affecting ideal calorific intake include age, bone density, and muscle-fat ratio.
- A 500-calorie meal consisting of fruits and vegetables has more health benefits and will keep you feeling full for longer than a 500-calorie snack of pop
Here are some tips for burning energy and losing weight more effectively.
Counting calories is not just a matter of what we eat, but how much we burn, too.
1. Eat breakfast: A protein and healthy fat breakfast can keep you full for longer and help prevent snacking during the day.
2. Eat regular meals: This can help you burn calories more effectively and helps prevent mindless snacking.
3. Remember your “five-a-day:” Fruits and vegetables can be a tasty snack and they can bulk out your meals. They are high in nutrients and fiber and low in calories and fat.
4. Eat slow-burning calories: High-fiber carbohydrates, such as legumes, and healthy fats, such as avocado, take longer to release energy, so you will not get hungry as quickly.
5. Exercise: This can help burn off extra calories, and it can make you feel good. A brisk daily walk is easy for most people to do and costs nothing. Challenge yourself with a pedometer. For people who use a wheelchair, there are exercises that can boost heart health and strength.
6. Drink water: It is healthful, has no calories, and can fill you up. Avoid alcohol and sodas as these can easily provide far too many calories. If you crave sweet drinks, choose unsweetened fruit juices, or better still, get a juice maker.
7. Eat more fiber: Fiber, found in fruits, vegetables, and wholegrains, can help you feel full and encourage healthy digestion.
8. Check the label: Some items have hidden fats or sugars. “Ten percent less fat,” might not actually mean very much less fat, and it does not necessarily mean that you can eat more of it or that it is really more healthful. If you are counting calories, the label will help you keep track.
9. Use smaller plates: Research indicates that portion sizes have increased over the last 3 decades, and this may contribute to obesity. Using a smaller plate encourages smaller portions.
10. Slow down: Eat slowly and rest between courses or extra servings, as it can take 20 to 30 minutes for your body to realize it feels full.
11. Make a shopping list: Plan a week of healthful meals and snacks, list the ingredients you need, and when you go grocery shopping, stick to it.
12. A little of what you fancy: Banning foods can lead to cravings and bingeing. Spoil yourself occasionally with a favorite treat, but in smaller amounts.
13. Get enough sleep: Sleep loss affects the metabolism, and it has been linked to weight gain.
14. Avoid eating 2 hours before bed: Eating within 2 hours of sleeping can interfere with sleep quality and promote weight gain.
The Bottom Line
How many calories you need per day, depends on whether you want to maintain, lose or gain weight, as well as various factors such as your gender, age, height, current weight, activity levels and metabolic health.
Reducing calories does not have to mean starving yourself. A few simple diet and lifestyle changes like exercise, proper hydration and increased protein and reduced carb intake can help you lose weight and feel satisfied.
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