# confused about which is correct calorie intake amount tp go by.

Do I go by what it says on my BMI total in my profile to use as my total calorie intake. It shows a deficit from the burned calories.

• edited August 2018 Answer ✓

The calories calculated for your BMI is an estimate of the amount of calories that you need to maintain your body functioning at rest. Cronometer will add a number of calories for the activity level that you have chosen in your profile, and together this would be the amount of calories you need to maintain your current weight.

If you have set a weight loss goal, Cronometer will calculate subtract the amount of calories required to achieve your weight loss goal. If you are looking to lose some weight, then this is the number of calories you want to stay under. The budget will tell you how many calories you have left (or have gone over) to reach your weight loss goal.
Hover over the icon in the top right corner of the purple budget to get a description of your calories left for the day:

In the example below, I have 1491 kcal for my BMI + activity

I have a weight loss goal of 1 lb per week, which requires a deficit of about 499 kcal each day.

1491 kcal - 499 kcal = 992 kcal total that I can consume to lose about 1 lb per week

I have consumed 872 kcal so far today.

992 kcal total - 872 kcal consumed = 120 kcal left

The difference between my BMI + Activity and the calories I have eaten so far today is also shown. This is the amount of calories I could eat today to maintain my current weight:

1491 kcal - 872 = 619 kcal

Best,

• Thank you for your great response, explanation and examples.

• just want to throw my amateur two cents in

Remember to stress that the calcs are 'estimates' to find your true metabolic rate keep track of your calories and use the scale to reverse solve for it, look at your avg intake over the course of 2-3 months and pull an avg for the time between when the scale shifts. then figure 3500 cals a pound and divide by the number of days to find how more or less you were consuming. better to use that than the cals. they say i burn 2500 cals sedentary, i actually burn ~2820-2810...(ain't it great to be a man, lol)

and the scales changed 3-5 pounds just by how much food is in your guts and water in your body, so look for long term changes in the scale

I am an amateur. I've been using CRON-O-Meter for 10 years and counting, still learning.....

• and another thing every pound you lose that calorie rate goes down ~10 cals

I am an amateur. I've been using CRON-O-Meter for 10 years and counting, still learning.....

• @bracconiere

For an "amateur", this was really great advice! Formulas are just really good guesstimates of how many calories we think someone is burning at rest. From there, monitoring of the scale, kcal intake, and physical activity level is necessary in order to tweak someone's calorie needs.

And you're absolutely right; losing weight causes the metabolism to either stay the same, or in many cases, decrease. This is why it's so important to find a weight loss diet that can be followed for the long-term.

Keep up the great work!

Susan Macfarlane, MScA, RD
Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
cronometer.com
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