How Many Calories Should You Consume to Lose Weight?

consume to lose weight

When I run across people who always think and trying to lose weight, and I ask them what they are actually doing to lose weight? They reply with something along the lines of “I’m just consuming fewer calories.”  After doing a little more probing and investigative work, I find out that they really have no idea about how many calories they should be consuming. Even they don’t  know how many calories they were actually consuming before they started trying to lose weight.

Here, I’m going to tell you how many calories you should be consuming in a day in order to lose weight.  But before I go into this, I do want to give you a disclaimer: In order to lose weight, not only do you have to ration your caloric intake, but you also have to be mindful of your calorie sources. So back to our regularly scheduled programming, How Many Calories Should You Consume to Lose Weight?

You need to know exactly how much you weigh if you want to lose weight

You would be surprised at how many people don’t know exactly how much they weigh; you even might be one of them.  Some people don’t know how much they weigh because they are too afraid of the number, so they avoid getting on the scale, or they are too busy living their lives to take the time to find a scale and weigh themselves.  But I don’t care! Find a scale and weigh yourself at least weekly.  That way you can be on top of any weight gain or loss. The scale will tell you your weight progress before the mirror does.  I repeat the scale will tell you your weight progress before the mirror does. So be on top of it.  And secondly, you need to know how much you weight. Then you can figure out how many calories you should consume in order to lose weight. 

Strive to lose between 1 and 2.5 lbs per week

To safely lose weight you should not look to lose more than two and a half pounds per week.  Anything more will likely be unhealthy or will result in a higher probability that you will gain it back, maybe even more.  If there is some sort of diet that promotes more than 2.5 lbs of weight loss in a week, I guarantee you that in 5-10 years you will be reading about how those people that participated will have some sort of class action lawsuit against the makers of the drug or diet because of health risks.  Let’s do this the right way.  Look to lose between 1 and 2.5 lbs per week and keep it going.


Simple as that. 1 pound equals about 3,500 calories.  If you run a deficit of 3,500 calories for the week, you will lose 1 pound.  And conversely, if you consume an additional 3,500 calories above and beyond what it takes to keep your body going (your basic metabolic rate) then you will gain a pound.

Know exactly how many calories are in the foods that you are eating

My friends laugh at me because I read the labels on everything that I eat.  They think I’m obsessive.  But guess what?  They aren’t laughing at me when we go swimsuit shopping, and everything fits me.  I read the labels on everything that I eat because I need to know what I’m putting in my body.  I need to know how many calories I’m consuming and I need to know the source.  I also need to know that I’m not putting any toxins or poisons in my body.  There are times when you may be at a restaurant. There is no label to read so you will have no idea as to what you are putting in your body.

Read also: how to lose weight in 2 weeks

Use a calorie calculator to determine how many calories you should be consuming to lose weight

There are many free online calculators that you can use to calculate how many calories you should consume to lose weight.  You will need to know your gender age height, weight (see above, and activity level.  Calculators tell you how many calories you are consuming to sustain and how many you should consume to lose weight.

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About the Author: Nasim Khan

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