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WHAT IS A CALORIE DEFICIT AND WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?

Calorie Deficit

How to lose weight is one of the most discussed fitness goals throughout the year. Although it can depend from one person to the next, the basic science behind losing weight is not quite as hard as it may seem.

One of the most important aspects to consider when your goal is to lose weight is your calorie deficit. Firstly, you need work out and understand what your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) is. This is the number of calories you need per day to maintain your current weight, NOT including calories burned from exercise.

You can use this calculator below to work out your BMR (Please note that calculators are not 100% accurate).

BMR Calculator

If your goal is to lose weight/body fat, then you need to bring your total calorie intake down below your calculated number in order to create a deficit. According to Healthline, to achieve one pound of fat loss per week, this is usually reached by consuming 500 calories less than your BMR each day.

How to achieve your calorie deficit

I know 500 calories can seem like a lot, but it’s not just a case of eating less. There are various ways in which you can work with this number. In particular, exercise. Exercise is a key player and more importantly it allows us to eat more whilst still maintaining our calorie deficit.

So, if you increase your energy output by keeping to move and performing a regular exercise routine, you’re living an active lifestyle, meaning you need to consume more calories to hit your BMR, which essentially means eating more food!!

For example, a DRI (Dietary Reference Intake) of around 2500 calories and you want to lose weight. You will need to be consuming 2000 calories per day (500 less as per Healthline’s guidance). Although this is a much more reasonable number than the BMR, it is important to remember that since you’re only allowed 2000 calories per day you need to make sure these calories are good quality and relevant to your fat loss goals. There’s no use in consuming poor or ‘empty’ calories such as sugary drinks since this will only have a negative effect on your overall health and weight loss goals.

As always, a recommend high quality diet including fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grains, dairy, and lean meats since you’ll generally find you get full before you consume too much of these foods. More than anything, the protein sends signals to your brain to stop eating before you go too far.

Stu Dolman


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