“Keeping fit? Know more about your Daily Caloric Intake.”
Food energy is the amount of energy in food and drink that is available through digestion of our diet. The values for food energy are traditionally expressed in kilocalories (kcal) and kilojoules (kJ). The food calories = kilocalories (kcal).
Recommended daily intake of calories has been established at 2000 calories per day. However, experts believed that the calories-intake varies on each individual depending on various factors e.g. one’s lifestyle, physical work and daily activities level, body weight and height, gender, and even age group.
A segregation of individual group for the need of calories intake as follows:
1) Woman with minimal physical work out needs about 1600 calories
2) Woman with some physical activities needs about 1800 – 1940 calories
3) Man with minimal physical work out needs about 2000 calories
4) Man with physical activities needs about 2300 – 2550 calories.
5) Child aged of 2-3 years needs 1000 – 1400 calories
6) Child aged of 4-8 years needs 1400 – 1600 calories
7) Child aged of 9-13 years needs 1600 – 2000 calories for Girl/ 1800 – 2200 calories for Boy
8) Teenage of 14 – 18 years needs 2000 calories for Girl/ 2200 – 2400 for Boy
Your required daily caloric intake is to sustain your current weight. However, the energy intake to your body that is not used up will mostly store as fat in the body fat tissue.
1 pound (0.45 kilogram) of body fat represents 3500 calories (1 kilogram represents 7700 calories). If you consume 3,500 kcal more than what your body required, you will gain 1 pound of fat (consumed 7,700 kcal will gain 1 kilogram). For examples, if you consumed 500 kcal more per day, you will gain 1 pound (almost half a kilo) of fat in 1 week time.
So, if your goal is to lose weight, 1 pound (almost half a kilo) per week, you have to subtract 500 calories per day from your current daily need of calories.
This theory applies, however, do not forget in real fact, your muscle and organ mass will change as well. So, your weight loss or gained might not purely be in the form of fat, unless your diet consists mainly of fat that can be converted into fat tissue efficiently.
A gentle note: Gradual weight loss is recommended. Do not attempt to lower your calorie intake by more than 500 calories below your daily body needs to lose weight of more than 1 pound per week. A spontaneous daily calories deficit of more than 500 calories may cause your metabolic rate to slow down, and effect to an opposite response. Check out this calorie intake list of my recipes!
Seek experts’ advice if you really need to go for a mass weight loss program. As for normal weight watchers who just wish to look better and maintain fitness, the best way to do so, is to exercise regularly. The best exercise to spend your calories is ‘oxygen’ exercise, aerobics, for about 20 – 30 min long each session. Aerobic means “with oxygen.” Aerobic exercise is any large muscle activity that you can sustain for 2 min or longer, because exercising for prolonged period requires more oxygen and its delivery to the muscles.
Aerobic activities include walking, gardening, raking or mowing the yard, hiking, bicycling, lap swimming, jogging, singles tennis, basketball and cross-country skiing.
The minute you start to exercise, your metabolic rate (the amount of energy you expend) will immediately increase to between 5 and 20 times of what you expend sitting down. This change is very healthy when done on a regular basis. Regular aerobic exercise is also one of the most effective tools for reducing body fat.
Body Mass Index (BMI) calculates body fat according to the relationship of weight and height.
1. BMI > 20 is considered to be a low BMI for most people. A low BMI may indicate underweight and may be associated with health problems for some people.
2. BMI of 20-25 is considered to be good. It may indicate a healthy weight for most people.
3. BMI of > 25 is considered to be high for most people. This may indicate overweight or obesity and may increase the risk of developing health problems.
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