Energy balance. How much energy do I need?

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Why am I gaining weight if I am eating healthy? Why am I losing weight if I am eating a lot? These and other similar questions are usually heard almost daily, and is that regardless of genetic factors, it can be the cause of an energy imbalance, let me explain:

Energy balance refers to the balance between energy (calories or kcal) ingested, and that expended during the day.

What is understood by energy imbalance?

An energy imbalance occurs when there is either an energy deficit (fewer calories are consumed than are expended) or an energy surplus (more calories are consumed than are expended).

When the energy balance is positive, that is, more calories are consumed than are expended, the body tends to “save” the excess energy, usually in the form of fat. On the contrary, when the energy balance is negative, consuming fewer calories than is expended, the organism tends to normally burn fat in the organism to generate the necessary energy to compensate it with the energy expended.

Now, when the energy balance is neutral, that is, the energy ingested is equal to the energy expended, the body does not tend to undergo any physical change, or what is the same, neither weight is gained nor lost.

How do I calculate the energy I need?

And of course, I plan to clarify it in the following paragraphs.

I really like to base myself on the Harris-Benedict formula, it is a formula to calculate the basal metabolism (MTB = Calories or energy needed in a state of rest) and it is the following:

  • Men BMR = 66.4730 + (13.7516 x weight in kg) + (5.0033 x height in cm) – (6.7550 x age in years)
  • Women BMR = 655.0955 + (9.5634 x weight in kg) + (1.8496 x height in cm) – (4.6756 x age in years)

Calculating this, we will know the calories that your body needs in a state of rest, but to this, we must add the factor of physical activity, as shown in the following table:

  1. Little or no exercise Daily calories needed = BMR x 1.2
  2. Light exercise (1-3 days a week) Daily Calories Needed = BMR x 1,375
  3. Moderate exercise (3-5 days a week) Daily calories needed = BMR x 1.55
  4. Strong exercise (6-7 days a week) Daily calories needed = BMR x 1,725
  5. Very strong exercise (twice a day, very hard workouts) Daily calories needed = BMR x 1.9

Performing this equation, the calories or energy that your body needs to avoid physical changes, that is, neither gain weight nor lose weight will come out.

These calories have to be divided between three macronutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, and fats) and although it will depend on the sport that is performed (since a person who does weight work is not the same, with a person who does athletics, for example), it is estimated that the amounts have to be distributed as follows:

25% Proteins | 30% Fat | 45% Carbohydrates

As I have said before, these percentages will depend on the sport to be practiced, they are not entirely exact, let it be clear, it is an approximate percentage.

Nothing else in this post, I hope you liked it and if so, I appreciate that you share it and thus be able to reach more people, information that I believe will help. Thanks a lot.

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