What Does Net Calories Mean?

TW: Mention of disordered eating and EDs 

When you first get into fitness, there may be a lot of new terms that you hear for the first time and you do not understand, “net calories” being one of them. Don’t worry, we’ve all been there! 

What Does Net Calories Mean?

We know what it’s like to begin a new lifestyle routine and feel totally out of depth. So, we are here to help! 

In this article, we will be discussing everything you need to know about net calories. This includes what “net calories” actually means, and more!

So, if you’re new to the world of fitness and want to improve your understanding of its terms and phrases, then read on! 

What Does Net Calories Mean?

As you may know, if you want to lose weight you need to burn more calories through physical activity than you are taking in through food and drink.

Your net calories are related to this idea. 

Net calories is the term used to describe your daily calorie budget.

In other words, how much energy your body needs to perform physical activities like housework, walking, etc, and physiological processes?

Net calories do not include the calories that you burn while exercising. 

To work out your net calories, find out the total number of calories that you eat in a day and take away the total number of calories you burn in a day, excluding calories burned through exercise, and voila!

This is your net calories. 

It looks like this: 

Amount of calories consumed – amount of calories burned = net calories

You will lose more weight the lower your net calories are on any given day

What Is The Best Way To Determine Your Net Calories?

The best way to determine your net calories is to keep track of them, and this can be done by keeping a food diary or by using an online calculator.

It is important to know the food and drinks you consume during the day in order to get an accurate count of your calories

Your BMR, also known as your basal metabolic rate, and your level of activity is equal to the number of calories you burn, so by using an online calculator you will be able to see how many calories you burn every day. 

How To Understand Net Calories?

Here is another way to understand net calories. If your net calories one day is 0, then you are burning the exact same number of calories that you are consuming.

So, you will maintain your weight if you continue to have a net calorie number of 0 consistently.

However, if your net calorie number is anything over 0 for a consistent amount of time, then you will gain weight.

If it is under 0 for a consistent amount of time, then this will result in weight loss. 

How To Reduce Your Calorie Intake?

What Does Net Calories Mean?

If you have weight loss goals in mind, then you need to go into a calorie deficit. In other words, you need to reduce your calorie intake. 

A good fact to note is this. One pound of fat equals around 3500 calories.

So, you will need to go into a deficit of 500 calories every day to lose one pound a week.

However, you do not need to go into a deficit this large to lose weight, and you should consult a doctor or medical professional before starting any kind of diet. 

Once you have chosen a deficit after speaking to a doctor or medical professional, you can start your weight loss journey.

There are many different ways you can lose weight. The first is by eating less food while tracking the calories, or by choosing to eat foods that have a lower calorie count. 

Alternatively, you can begin exercising more. 

The worst thing you can do to try and lose weight is by starting a fad diet or by participating in activities that increase your risk of disordered eating or eating disorders.

Speak to a medical professional if you are worried about any of these things. 

Precautions To Take When Reducing Your Calories 

As previously mentioned, it is important that you maintain a healthy mindset toward weight loss to avoid health risks.

You should always speak to a doctor or a medical professional, and seek a physical examination before starting an exercise program or diet. 

It may also be a good idea to speak to a dietician about your diet.

A dietician will be able to help you decrease the number of calories you eat in a day while still ensuring you are eating a balanced diet, with the correct amount of protein, vitamins, carbs, fats, minerals, and fiber that is needed by your body. 

Also, it is important to note that there is no need to stress or panic if you eat over your calorie deficit.

This is inevitable sometimes and it is more important to start again the next day than it is to try and “make up for it” or worry about your weight.

To reiterate, it is important to speak to a medical professional or doctor if you have concerns about anything during your weight loss journey. 

Final Thoughts 

Your net calories are your daily budget of calories. It is how much energy your body needs to be able to carry out daily activities and meet your physiological needs.

You can work out your net calories by using this formula: 

Amount of calories consumed – amount of calories burned = net calories

Working out your net calories is great for your weight loss journey. If your net calories are under 0 consistently, then this means you are going to lose weight over time.

This is because you need to be burning more calories than you are consuming to lose weight, and the best way to do this safely is by being in a slight calorie deficit, or by exercising. 

You should always speak to a doctor or medical professional before starting any kind of diet.

Jenna Priestly
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