Calories per day
How many calories per day should you consume if you want to maintain your weight? We'll not only tell you, but also we'll provide you with an option that is both easier and more effective than constantly measuring portion sizes and calculating calories!
It depends upon many individual factors such as age, health, activity level and so on. What's an average?
According to the World Health Organization, a woman needs to consume about 2000 calories per day to maintain her weight, and the figure for men is 2500 calories per day. It may be slightly higher (for example, 2100 calories for women) or slightly lower (for example, 2300 calories for men)
If you want to maintain present weight, go to section I below. If you want to lose weight, go to section II below.
So, let's find out more.
Section I: calories per day to maintain weight
Assuming that you have access to food that is highly nutritious, simply divide the total number of calories required by the number of meals you eat. Since it’s best to eat a meal every 3 to 5 waking hours, it’s better to eat smaller meals more frequently than larger meals less frequently.
For example, if you are an adult male who only wants to maintain his weight and you eat 5 meals per day, ingest about 500 calories per meal. If you are an adult female who only wants to maintain her weight and you eat 5 meals per day, ingest about 400 calories per meal.
Instead of the usual three meals a day, simply add a mid-morning and a mid-afternoon meal while ensuring that each of the three usual meals has fewer calories than before. That will give
you 5 meals daily.
(The mid-morning and mid-afternoon meals could be “engineered” foods such as protein shakes.)
It’s that easy.
(You could add a 6th meal before bed, but eating within 2 or 3 hours of bedtime can alter normal hormone levels -- so be careful about that, especially if you have difficulty sleeping.)
Assuming that you eat well-balanced meals, this eating frequency will ensure that you don’t get too hungry. If you permit yourself to get too hungry, you’ll be tempted to eat too much.
It’s best to consume most of your calories from natural foods that are highly nutritious such as wild-caught seafood, grass-fed grazing animals, and (preferably organic) vegetables. Since these foods are the ones best suited to human beings, it’s healthiest to avoid foods that have only been consumed since the agricultural revolution and the domestication of animals (about 12,000 years ago).
Section II: calories per day to lose weight
Have you found it really difficult to lose fat and keep the extra pounds off?
Do you have a history of yo-yo dieting? Does your percentage of body fat go up and down?
Do you have insulin resistance (Syndrome X, impaired glucose tolerance)? Are you diabetic or pre-diabetic?
If your answer to any of these questions is “yes,” it may be that you are trying to starve yourself to lose fat.
That may seem like a good idea. After all, according to the law of the conservation of energy, the calories in must equal the calories out, i.e., they must balance. A calorie is a measure of heat or energy, and energy is never created or destroyed.
However, as you may have already discovered for yourself, going on a starvation (restricted calorie) diet does not promote the lasting fat loss.
Such a diet will lower your leptin level in about a week to half of normal. That will signal your body to decrease its metabolic rate, which is the opposite of what you want.
Since it doesn’t work and is usually counter-productive, we recommend never going on a starvation diet. The truth is that, all things being equal, some obese people eat fewer calories than some thin people. If voluntary lasting weight loss were as simple as starving yourself, that could never happen.
We recommend (with your physician's prior approval) one or two cheat meals on your cheat day once a week. If you consume plenty of calories and carbs during those meals, you'll restore your leptin level to normal. Even then, however, please stop eating when hunger disappears; do not continue to eat until you feel stuffed.
On the other six days of the week, consume plenty of protein and fat from natural sources and keep your carb intake to below 25 grams daily. Drink plenty of water. A slight over-consumption of protein will signal to your body that times are good and will promote fat burning rather than fat storage.
So, on your cheat day only, you may exceed your normal calories per day limit.
Also, if you exercise, please do not take that as an excuse to eat too much.
It’s Your Choice
How you decide to eat is up to you. You may try starvation diets if you like, but please come back to this website when you are finally convinced that they won’t work for you.
The truth is that you never have to starve yourself or endure food cravings to lose fat.
Furthermore, since you’ll probably only wind up fatter than you were before, it’s unhealthy to do so. Similarly, unless your physician prescribes and monitors it, never go on a fast or a semi-fast; it's simply not necessary for lasting weight loss.
Initially, if you want to count calories: if you are a man, you should eat slightly more than 2500 calories daily; if you are a woman, you should eat slightly more than 2000 calories daily.
The kinds of calories you consume matters. The frequency of your meals matters. The quality and quantity of your physical activity (such as fitness training, strength training, or physical labor) matter. The way you manage stress and your thoughts matters. How well you sleep matters.
We encourage you to use the ideas at this website to improve your understanding so that you may attain lasting weight loss. If you lose weight properly, it’s nearly certain that you’ll become healthier and fitter; furthermore, you’ll feel a lot better and find yourself with much more energy.
Measuring calories is tedious and bothersome. Instead of doing that, we suggest keeping track of grams of proteins and grams of carbs.
The number of grams of proteins we recommend daily is equal to your lean body weight. (If you weight 200 lbs. and are 25% body fat, consume 150 grams of protein daily.) Spread the consumption over all your 4 to 6 meals.
Except on cheat day, we recommend consuming no more than 25 grams of carbs daily.
You'll see that, after a week or two, this is much easier to do than measuring calories. You'll free yourself from ever worrying again about how many calories per day you are consuming. If you'll count instead grams of protein and carbs, worrying about calories per day is unnecessary.
In our experience, the method we suggest is also much more effective than constantly worrying about calories per day. If you eat as we suggest, you'll lose fat without hunger or food cravings.
To help you further
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Calories and natural weight loss video
Link to the YouTube video above, for those who might want to save it for their YouTube video list
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