What is Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)?
Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) refers to the minimum amount of energy or calories that a person requires to maintain basic bodily functions such as breathing, circulation, and cell production. In other words, it is the amount of energy that your body burns when you are at rest.
How to Calculate BMR?
The Harris Benedict equation is one of several formulas used to estimate the number of calories a person needs to consume each day in order to maintain their current weight. This equation takes into account a person’s age, height, weight, and gender, and is based on the principle that the more active a person is, the more calories they need to consume in order to maintain their weight.
To use the Harris Benedict equation, you will need to know your basal metabolic rate (BMR), which is the number of calories your body burns at rest. This can be calculated using the following formula:
For men: BMR = 88.36 + (13.4 x weight in kg) + (4.8 x height in cm) – (5.7 x age in years)
For women: BMR = 447.6 + (9.2 x weight in kg) + (3.1 x height in cm) – (4.3 x age in years)
Once you have calculated your BMR, you can then multiply it by a number that represents your activity level, as follows:
Sedentary (little or no exercise): BMR x 1.2
Lightly active (light exercise or sports 1-3 days per week): BMR x 1.375
Moderately active (moderate exercise or sports 3-5 days per week): BMR x 1.55
Very active (hard exercise or sports 6-7 days per week): BMR x 1.725
Extra active (very hard exercise or sports, physical job or training twice per day): BMR x 1.9
This will give you an estimate of the number of calories you need to consume each day in order to maintain your current weight. If you want to lose weight, you will need to consume fewer calories than this amount, while if you want to gain weight, you will need to consume more calories.
Factors Affecting BMR
Several factors can affect a person’s BMR, including age, gender, weight, height, body composition, and genetics. Generally, men have a higher BMR than women, and as we age, our BMR tends to decrease. People with more muscle mass tend to have a higher BMR than those with more fat.
Importance of Knowing Your BMR
Knowing your BMR can help you understand how many calories your body needs to maintain its basic functions. This information is crucial if you are trying to lose weight or gain muscle mass. If you consume more calories than your BMR, you will gain weight, and if you consume fewer calories than your BMR, you will lose weight. Therefore, knowing your BMR can help you set realistic and achievable weight loss or weight gain goals.
How to Increase BMR
There are several ways to increase your BMR, including building more muscle mass, doing high-intensity interval training (HIIT), eating protein-rich foods, and getting enough sleep. Building more muscle mass through strength training can increase your BMR because muscle tissue burns more calories than fat tissue. HIIT workouts can also increase your BMR by keeping your metabolism elevated for several hours after your workout. Eating protein rich foods can help you build more muscle mass, which, in turn, can increase your BMR. Finally, getting enough sleep is crucial because lack of sleep can slow down your metabolism and decrease your BMR.
In conclusion, knowing your BMR and taking steps to increase it can help you achieve your weight loss or weight gain goals. By understanding how your body burns calories, you can make informed decisions about your diet and exercise routine to achieve optimal health and fitness.