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How to develop your personal eating plan for effective weight control

Updated on April 30, 2012
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Ben is scientist, teacher, researcher and author who loves to help you to be more, do more and achieve more. He is an Amazon kindle author

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The amount of calories that you eat is an index for working out the energy value of different foods. As a simple rule if the amount of calories that you take in (through your diets) cancels out or balances the calories you take out (through your activities of living), there'll be no weight gain.


Calories in = calories out

= no weight gain.

This energy intake and out put equation is not as simple as it is, this is because there are other dynamics that could impact on our maintaining our weight. For this discussion it will only provise us with the background knowledge of our requirements in terms of calorific intake for effective weight management.

In other to work out your personal food plan there two things we need to understand: Energy Value of foods and Basal Metabolic Rate.

Energy Value of foods

The calories are the currency whereby we measure energy values of different forms of foods - protein, carbohydrate, fat and alcohol.

The following table lists the calorific values of these food types.

Protein 4 calories per gram

Carbohydrate 3.75 calories per gram

Fat 9 calories per gram

Alcohol 7 calories per gram

As you can see, fat contains more calories per gram than any other food group.

Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)

BMR determines the amount of calories or energy that you need. BMR is the amount of energy you need when you are completely at rest.

Men usually ave higher BMR than women. The reason is that a woman with the same weight as a man has more fat and less muscle.

Your BMR uses about two third ( approximately 70 per cent) of the total calories that you eat.

Another 10 per cent is used to digest food and regulate body temperature, leaving around 20 per cent for physical activity.

The aim of this article is to develop your personal eating plan for effective weight management.

Personal Eating Plan Development - 3 steps plan

Personal eating plan is used to work our how many calories you need per day to maintain your weight and not put on any extra pounds, or if you need to loose weight. You can use this information to facilitate your weight loose program if you combine it with physical activity together with a healthy eating regime.

Working out your personal eating plan can be done in three steps:

1. You need to work out or calculate your personal resting metabolic rate (RMR). This is done through the following calculation.

Age Men Women

18 -30 years 15.3 x weight (kg) +679 14.7 x weight (kg) +496

30 - 60 years 11.6 x weight (kg) +879 8.7 x weight (kg) +829

60 years + 13.5 x weight (kg) +487 10.5 x weight (kg) +596

2. Work out your activity level

This describes how activate you are and uses certain numbers to indicate your activity

Inactive (if you sit down all day) = 1.3

Lightly active ( doing some activity, like walking, housework, general chores) = 1.4

Moderately active ( very active, involved in moderate exercise about 3 or 4 times a week as well as being on your feet) = 1.5

You will realise thst each factor increases by 0.1 which is about 10 fold increase per centage wise.

3. Do your calculation

RMR x activity level = 0000 calories

This is the number of calories you need to eat daily so as to keep your wight stable.

If you need to loose weight, subtract 500-600 calories from the answer. This will give you the number of calories you need on a daily basis to loose weight.

What is your Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR)?


Marshall, J (2004) "BBC Fat Nation The Big Challenge, Eat, think and exercise yourself for better health." Dorling Kindersley (DK), London.



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