How To Lose Weight By Creating A Calorie Deficit

While there is often much discussion regarding the best way to lose weight, ultimately, in order to shed those pounds, you must learn how to effectively count calories and create a calorie deficit. Weight loss relies on creating what is known as a negative energy balance.
This is also referred to as a calorie deficit. In order to lose just one pound per week, you must eliminate 3,500 calories, which is the equivalent of one pound.
how to burn calories fast
Using that same calculation, you would need a calorie deficit of 7,000 calories to shed two pounds per week. A calorie deficit can be created through exercise, diet, or a combination of the two. Basically, you need to consume fewer calories that your body is able to burn in a day.

For instance, suppose your body burns about 2,000 calories daily, but you only consume 1,500 calories. This creates a calorie deficit of 500 calories per day. Over the course of a week, that would equate to losing one pound.

Although such numbers might seem a bit daunting, they are quite achievable with the right balance of nutrition and exercise.

Following a low-calorie yet nutritional eating plan that includes vegetables, fruits, nuts, and whole grains is a great start.

Additionally, even making small changes to your diet can lead to big results. For instance, eliminating just one can of soda per day cut about 155 calories from your diet. In terms of exercise, it’s important to set a goal of getting about 30 minutes of physical activity daily.


The first step in creating a calorie deficit is determining the number of calories you need to eat daily in order to lose weight. Using a calorie deficit calculator is the easiest way to determine the number of calories you should be consuming to create the calorie deficit necessary to lose weight.

By taking into account the number of calories you burn on a given day, the calculator will give you options for creating a personalized calorie deficit.

An excellent calculator to use is:

Step 1:

Step 2:

Step 3:

It’s important to keep in mind that calorie deficits can be mild, moderate, or aggressive. A good option, if you are not sure which is right for you, is to choose one that will be moderate enough to produce results, but is not so aggressive that you will feel as though you are starving every day. As a general rule of thumb, a 20 percent calorie deficit is usually a good starting point.

With that said, there are some guidelines to keep in mind to ensure you do not eliminate too many calories from your diet in order to stay healthy. Women should not dip below 1,200 calories per day while men should keep their caloric intake at 1,800 calories or higher per day.

The Role of Your BMR

One of the most important factors related to the number of calories you should be consuming each day and your personal caloric deficit is your basal metabolic rate or BMR. Each individual’s energy requirements are based on a number of factors, including body composition, activity type, activity intensity and frequency, body size, and goals.

It should be noted that the formulas for determining a caloric deficit are not set in stone. You much ensure you achieve a healthy energy balance that takes into account your weight, appetite, overall health, and body fat percentage.

how to figure out basal metabolic rate

The human body consumes about 60 percent of calories just when it is at rest. The number of calories your body burns at rest is your basal metabolic rate. Greater amounts of lean muscle lead to a higher BMR. In fact, the leaner your physique, the more calories you are able to burn around the clock.

The remainder of your energy balance is divided between digestion and activity. Approximately 30 percent of calories are used for physical activity, while 10 percent of calories are used for digesting food. Have you heard it’s better to eat several small meals more frequently than a small number of large meals? This is why.

To determine your own body’s basal metabolic rate or the number of calories your body burns while it is at rest, you can use this formula:

W = weight in kilograms (weight (lbs)/2.2) =weight in kg
H = height in centimeters (inches x 2.54) =height in cm
A = age in years

Men: BMR=66.47+ (13.75 x W) + (5.0 x H) – (6.75 x A)
Women: BMR=665.09 + (9.56 x W) + (1.84 x H) – (4.67 x A)

Caloric Maintenance

While it’s vital to understand the importance of creating a caloric deficit for losing weight, it’s also crucial to understand how caloric maintenance fits into your overall weight loss goals. Caloric maintenance level refers to the point where your body burns the same number of calories you consume. If you want to maintain the same weight, this is the sweet spot you need to hit. A basic formula is Calories In = Calories Out.

To lose fat, you must create a caloric deficit, which means you must be below your calorie maintenance level to burn more calories than you consume. This allows stored body fat to be burned for energy.

In order to maintain your current weight, you will need to remain at your calorie maintenance level to ensure you are burning the same number of calories you consume.

To build muscle, you would actually need to create a caloric surplus, which means you need to be above your calorie maintenance level to ensure you are consuming more calories than your body burns, thus giving your body the additional calories necessary to build new muscle tissue.

Tracking Your Calories

Once you know how many calories you should be eating in a day, the next step is to determine how you are going to track those calories. Without a strategy in place for tracking your caloric intake, you can be virtually certain you will go over your caloric goal and destroy your caloric deficit.

Calorie tracking can be done in a variety of ways, including both online and offline as well as with pen and paper.

Using an offline or an online calorie tracker is usually the best way to do this since all of the calculations are done for you. Not only do you not have to worry about making an error, but it can also be an incredible time-saver, which means you will be more likely to actually do it. All you must do is enter the foods you eat along with the quantities and the calorie tracker does the rest for you by adding up the calories.

Calorie counter

Once you have a system in place for tracking your calorie intake, the next step is to track your food intake. Most people are surprised at how much they overeat once they begin tracking their calorie intake. If you are just starting out counting calories, which also means tracking your food intake, you will likely need to practice portion control.

Although this can seem like a lot of work at first, there’s a good chance you eat many of the same things frequently. Eventually, you will be able to size up a portion by sight and not have to worry about using a food scale or measuring cups and spoons to ensure you do not exceed your target caloric intake. After you get the hang of it, you will likely find it easy to begin making changes to not only the types of foods you eat but also portions.

A good caloric tracker will show you the number of calories you are consuming in a day as well as the number of calories you are burning daily. Remember the goal is to create a caloric deficit, which means you are burning more calories than you consume.

It is also important to pay attention to your body. Everyone is different and has different nutritional needs. If at any time, you feel weak or hungry, remember that it’s possible your calculations could be wrong and you need to eat more. It’s critical that you pay attention to your body.

Of course, this is not an excuse to binge, but if you do feel hungry or weak, increase the number of calories you consume by 100 or ensure you are getting a sufficient amount of protein and fat. This is important, as protein and fat take longer to completely digest, which means you will feel full longer. Additionally, fiber can help you to keep feeling full longer.

After you have been tracking your calories for about a week, it’s a good idea to take stock of your progress and see what is working. If you feel good and you are seeing results, stick with what you are doing. If; however, you are not seeing any progress, it’s important to evaluate what could be wrong.

In many cases, the problem could be due to not being completely honest about food intake. Remember that you must count everything. If you are not counting everything, you are only cheating yourself and the truth will eventually show in your results or lack thereof.

Should you find that your food intake is not the culprit, consider whether you need to add more exercise to your plan. Even if you are already exercising a lot, it may be necessary to increase the frequency or the intensity of your workouts.

While creating a caloric deficit might at first sound challenging and even complex, it’s actually relatively simple, particularly when you use the right tools. With a little time and practice, you can soon begin tracking your calories like a pro and watching the numbers on the scale drop.