How To: Calculate Your Daily Calories

By Jim F
Calorie Intake Calculator
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How Many Calories Should a Woman or Man Eat?

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Instant calculation of Daily Calories

According to basic government guidelines: Men should eat 2500 Calories per day, and Women 2000 Calories per day.

This is meaningless!

We are all different shapes and sizes, and do different amounts of exercise – this is why you NEED to use a calculator.

Daily Calories for Weight Loss

Check the fat loss range above. This is what you need to be aiming for.

You must be able to track calories each day for a minimum of a week to determine how and what you are eating. You can then begin reducing daily calories (only reduce by a maximum of 500 per day at first).

Be careful of hidden calories. Such as those in coffee drinks or sugary sodas.

Which Foods Should You Eat?

It’s entirely possible to lose weight without any specific food restrictions – this is called Flexible Dieting. Rather than eliminate foods, you eat according to specific macronutrient levels (a set amount of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats).

Find out more in the flexible dieting guidebook.

Calorie Maintenance Levels

Check the maintenance range above. This is how much you should be eating each day so that you WILL NOT gain weight.

Are you aware of how many Calories some foods contain? Take a look at these 300 Calorie meals (many people find these meals too small). We’ve also measured out 100 Calorie snacks for you to look at.

How This Works

This calculator uses the Mifflin St Jeor formula, which is acknowledged as one of the most accurate predictive equations for both normal weight and obese individuals.

The calculator predicts REE (Resting Energy Expenditure). Exercise levels are then factored in. Fat loss levels are calculated by subtracting 20% of daily calories. There is always a “rock bottom” value factored in – which is 8 calories per pound of body weight.

See also, the flexible dieting macro calculator, or a nutrient calculator (multiple diets).

253 Comments

  1. Miranda Cisneros

    So 88 lbs isn’t an valid weight?

    Reply
    • Ted

      This calculator is intended for adults so 88lbs would be under the weight range of what is considered a healthy adult weight.

      Reply
  2. sandra forber

    hi my name is sandra would like to know how to count the calories i need, im one of those people that dont like to count calories but have been told thats the best way to lose the wait . thank you from someone who is desprate to lose the weight .

    Reply
  3. Carla Messer

    I am 48yrs old. I used to weigh 120lbs in my 20s and 30s. Since I’m in my 40s. It’s a daily struggle. I work hard everyday at work walking about 6 miles a day. Taking care or elderly people. CNA.it’s a demanding job. I currently weigh 145lbs. Plz give me a way to get my figure back.

    Reply

References

  • Amirkalali, B., Hosseini, S., Heshmat, R., & Larijani, B. (2008). Comparison of Harris Benedict and Mifflin-ST Jeor equations with indirect calorimetry in evaluating resting energy expenditure. Indian journal of medical sciences, 62(7), 283.
  • Mifflin, M. D., St Jeor, S. T., Hill, L. A., Scott, B. J., Daugherty, S. A., & Koh, Y. O. (1990). A new predictive equation for resting energy expenditure in healthy individuals. The American journal of clinical nutrition, 51(2), 241-247.