Most often, the question of calculating the calorie deficit arises when you want to lose weight. In pursuit of a minus on the scales, girls often make mistakes that become an obstacle on the way to their cherished goal. One of such mistakes is a sharp restriction in calories, creating a deficit of them, which can disrupt the body's work and not lead to the desired result. We decided to ask Irina Popova, a nutritionist at the Austrian health center VerbMayr, how to correctly calculate your calorie deficit in order to lose weight as efficiently and safely as possible for your health.
Energy deficiency occurs when there is a difference between the calories consumed and expended per day. In order for a calorie deficit to allow you to lose weight without harm to health, it is necessary to take into account some rules. First, you need to know the level of basic metabolism - the amount of energy required by our body to maintain the work of all organs and systems in a calm state. You can independently calculate this using a special calculator, which is easy to find on the Internet, or you can pass a bioimpedance analysis - it will tell you in more detail about your metabolism.
Secondly, to determine the real metabolic rate, which is much higher than the basal metabolism, it is necessary to take into account the coefficient of physical activity. Behind such a complex name is nothing more than a determination of the level of one's activity during a certain period of time. So, if you lead a sedentary lifestyle, your work implies long hours at the computer and there is no time for sports, then you fall under the coefficient 1.4-1.6. But if you are an avid athlete or your work involves physical activity, then the coefficient rises to 2 and higher.
So how do you get a calorie deficit ?:
Reduce the total daily calorie intake;
Adjust the composition of products by replacing them with less fatty ones;
Increase energy expenditure by increasing physical activity and changing the usual way of life (going up and down stairs instead of an elevator, walking at a fast pace instead of transport, etc.).
The safest calorie deficit is up to 20% of your daily intake. It can be maintained for up to 10-12 months. Weight loss will not occur at a rapid pace, but the result will last for a long time. A calorie deficit of 20 to 40% gives a quick result of weight loss, but we do not recommend practicing it on your own: it is better to consult with your doctor in advance and, in general, change your diet under his control. An even more pronounced calorie deficit can be applied only for a short period (no more than 3-5 days) with a decrease in daily calorie intake, for example, by 250 kcal and an increase in activity by 250 kcal: as a result, the calorie deficit will already be 500 kcal!
When creating a calorie deficit, it is very important to maintain the balance of BJU (proteins / fats / carbohydrates), take into account their calorie content and daily requirement. So, the energy value of 1 gram of proteins and carbohydrates is 4 kcal, and 1 gram of fat is 9 kcal. On average, for weight loss, the body needs 1.5-1.8 g of protein per 1 kg of the desired weight and 0.8-1.0 g of fat, the rest is carbohydrates. That is why it is more correct to create a calorie deficit by reducing the amount of carbohydrates and fats, and not at the expense of protein.