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What is basal metabolic rate and how is it calculated?

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approx. 2 Minutes


Basal metabolic rate is the amount of calories the body uses per day to maintain basic life functions. These include breathing, digestion, heartbeat and regulation of body temperature. Basal metabolic rate accounts for about 60-75% of daily caloric intake and depends on several factors such as age, gender, height, weight, and physical activity. People with a higher percentage of muscle also tend to have a higher basal metabolic rate because muscle burns more calories than fat tissue. Calculating basal metabolic rate can help determine individual caloric needs and create an appropriate diet and exercise plan.


There are several formulas for calculating basal metabolic rate, also known as resting metabolic rate.


The Harris-Benedict formula:

Basal metabolic rate (men) = 66 + (13.7 x body weight in kg) + (5 x height in cm) - (6.8 x age in years) Basal metabolic rate (women) = 655 + (9.6 x body weight in kg) + (1.8 x height in cm) - (4.7 x age in years)


The Mifflin-St. Jeor formula:

Basal metabolic rate (men) = (10 x body weight in kg) + (6.25 x height in cm) - (5 x age in years) + 5 Basal metabolic rate (women) = (10 x body weight in kg) + (6.25 x height in cm) - (5 x age in years) - 161


These formulas take into account a person's body weight, height and age. With their help, you can calculate approximately how many calories your body burns per day when you don't exercise. There are other formulas for calculating basal metabolic rate, but these two are the most commonly used. It is important to note that these formulas are only approximate estimates of basal metabolic rate and that actual basal metabolic rate depends on many factors, including genetic makeup, physical activity, and hormone balance.


Here you can find different calculators:

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More information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure that the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

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