What is Energy Balance?
Calories are a unit used to measure the energy in food.
One of the skills for Weight Management is understanding your energy balance, by the total number of calories you eat verse the total number of calories you expend each day.
As we are the average of what we do, if on average we consume more energy than we use we’re likely to store excess energy as fat.
Energy In > Out = Surplus = Weight Gain
Energy In < Out = Deficit = Weight Loss
Energy In = Out = Maintenance
How many calories am I burning?
Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE) is how many calories you burn a day. It depends on your gender, age, height and lifestyle.
TDEE e.g = 2000kcal is made up of:
70% BMR - Basal Metabolic Rate
Calories burned at rest for your body to function and stay alive.
10% TEF - Thermogenesis Effect on Food
Calories burned digesting food. e.g. 200kcal
10% NEAT - Non Exercise Activity Thermogenesis
Calories burned moving passively, e.g. commuting, getting dressed.
10% EAT - Exercise Activity Thermogenesis
Calories burned moving actively, e.g. planned exercise
You can calculate an estimation of your TDEE with calculators online.
It shows how your body actually burns the most calories staying alive.
How to increase expenditure?
You have most control over the energy expended by your NEAT and EAT.
So move more:
🚶🏽♀️Walk to the shops
🪜Take the stairs
🚶🏽♀️Stand up regularly
👶🏼Play with your kids
🎾Play Sports etc
Should I count calories?
It can be really helpful to learn about the energy density of different foods to have a greater awareness so you can make healthy choices in line with your goals.
Crisps 30g = 160 kcal
Strawberries 30g = 10 kcal
However there can be +/- 20% inaccuracies on labels so bare that in mind.
👉🏽If you have a goal to lose weight, I suggest setting yourself a time period e.g 2-4 weeks of tracking in myfitness pal, to build up your knowledge.
👉🏽This will also work as a food diary which can make you more mindful of your decisions.
👉🏽Create a 10% energy deficit. E.g. TDEE = 2000, Target cals = 1800 and up your NEAT and EAT to expend more energy.
👉🏽Counting calories can be all consuming before long and take away the pleasure of eating, which should be enjoyed.
👉🏽The quality of the calories is also key to a healthy diet to get the essential nutrients your body needs.
👉🏽More on Macros & Micros to come.
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