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TOPIC: Minimum calories for a man .. slightly confused

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October 11, 2010 4:24 PM
I`ve read several times on mfp that the settings wont go below 1200 for a woman because anything lower than that is too low.

I`ve always been under the impression that the absolute minimum for a male is 1500 , but the settings I entered gave me a daily calorie amount of 1320 per day. Surely this is far too low for a 44 year old male?

In the end I changed the setting from sedentary to lightly active which increased it to 1500 per day but would the 1320 it gave me be too low for me?
October 11, 2010 4:31 PM
go to tools and find out your basal metabolic rate - dont go under however many calories that is :)
October 11, 2010 4:33 PM
1320 is not too low. Look at it this way, if you work an 8-5 job at an office, don't do much when you get home, then you burn very few calories sitting around all day. To verify, I wore my HRM most of the day (had to do intervals), but it came out to about 1720 once I added the time I missed plus the extra hours I missed for sleeping. For me, it ended up being around 1800, but I got up a lot during the day to refill my water. tongue

Keep in mind that the 1320 represents the BMR less the lbs you want to lose per week...for me it was 2, so that came to 1320.
Edited by daj150 On October 11, 2010 4:36 PM
October 11, 2010 4:35 PM
I ate at 1200 calories for two months when I first started dieting, and let me tell you it was a pain to raise my metabolism back up, I still think my BMR is probably lower than it should be, I've just had to lift weights with high intensity and gradually increase my calories to get my metabolism back up.

So take it from me, just stick to your BMR, eat whatever that is, and you'll only lose fat weight, and not lean body mass weight.
October 11, 2010 4:35 PM
Yeah, it had me set around 2100-2300 calories for a while. With how much I workout and my schedule I probably would have passed out from that amount. My BMR is 2300-2500 calories depending on which calculator I use, eating below that would cause muscle loss which I don't want. I would recommend finding your basal metabolic rate and adding 100 to 300 calories to it depending on how much you workout. So I try to keep my calorie count between 2400-2800 calories a day.
October 11, 2010 4:38 PM
well there's many different theories on this. i've read many many places that for some WOMEN eating below 1500 a day isnt good for the female reproductive cycles....i apparently happen to be one of these women as i didnt have a TOM for almost 2 months and then when i started trying to eat at least 1500 i finally got my TOM. and then i also know full grown men that eat way less than 1500 calories and are healthy and fine. its more of a person to person thing then a gender thing.
October 11, 2010 4:52 PM
A lot of this makes good sense , cheers guys
October 11, 2010 4:54 PM
I'm not sure what you currently weigh but when I was 210lbs I was losing on average 2lb's per week at 1900cals and exercising 3-4 times a week (boxing and jogging at the time) I would not be lowering to 1300cals unless you do absolutely no exercise (which I don't recommend). You want to lose fat not lose weight so you need to do exercises that will help retain your strength while losing fat. Include some resistance training (compound exercises are best) and do regular cardio (whatever sport you like really) and keep your intake around your BMR (not your TDEE total daily energy expenditure) with a good amount of protein and you will be on your way to a total body transformation.
October 11, 2010 4:57 PM
Fliegenschwein, that sounds right to me. If you want to lose 2 lbs/week (the max on MFP), you need a 7000 calorie deficit for the week. I'm 44, 5'-9". My BMR is 2450 at sedentiary office computer work, so the goal set by MFP is 1470 (980 cal deficit per day to lose 2 lbs per week, before exercise). From what my doctors say, just don't stay below NET 1200 calories for days, or your body goes into starvation/conservation mode...for awhile.
October 11, 2010 5:18 PM
Ok , thanks for the input , really helpful stuff. I`ve changed a few of my settings, decreased my goal from 2lb a week to 1lb a week and its giving me 1800 calories now which is very close to my BMR so I`ll give that a go for a while and see how it works out.
October 11, 2010 5:22 PM
Thing is it has to be sustainable over the long term. Lifestyle change not a diet as they say. I don't know about you but there is absolutely no way I could survive on 1300 cals a day and I am currently 165lbs.
October 11, 2010 5:30 PM
lol no , I've been struggling a bit on 1550. This is a lot better for the long term for me. I was too tempted by the quick fix idea I think.


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