BMR and TDEE Calculator

How many calories do you burn each day?

Does it matter? Strictly speaking: no – at least not to everyone.

But, if you're serious about losing weight or building muscle, then yes – I would strongly recommend you track and understand your progress – at least for the first 1-3 months, using one of the many calorie tracking applications available.

After that, it's up to you. If you're ready to change your life, start by using the calculator below to get your:

1. BMR–TDEE

Estimate BMR (not BMI) and TDEE according to your current physical activity-level (PAL). (See corresponding table below and take care not to overestimate your level.)

2. FUTURE TDEE

Determine your future TDEE to fulfil one of the pre-set goals, or a customized one.

3. GOAL-SPECIFIC MACRONUTRIENT RATIOS

Obtain macronutrient ratios to support your fitness-goals.

(Terms and formulas briefly explained below. For details and supporting research, see: Understanding the BMR-TDEE calculator)

1. BMR-TDEE (Basal Metabolic Rate and Total Daily Energy Expenditure)

Age
Gender   Male   Female
Height Feet & Inches Centimeters
 ft  in 
 cm 
Weight Pounds Stone Kilograms
 lbs 
 st  lbs 
 kg 

Although the Mifflin-St Jeor formula is considered the most reliable and accurate, the Katch-McArdle formula is a better option if you're leaner and know your body fat percentage. Here's a practical and inexpensive tool: 'Accu-Measure' fat caliper

Mifflin-St Jeor Formula
Katch-McArdle Formula
Body Fat   % 
Physical activity-level Sedentary
Lightly Active
Moderately Active
Very Active
Extremely Active
 Calculate BMR   Calculate TDEE 


2. FUTURE TDEE
3. MACRONUTRIENT RATIOS

Terms and formulas

TOTAL DAILY ENERGY EXPENDITURE (TDEE)

This is also known as TEE, and is the sum of all your calorie needs over a 24-hour period, in order to maintain your current weight.

It comprises these 4 components:

  • BMR – Basal Metabolic Rate is derived from the internal heat (thermogenesis) generated while driving your vital functions;
  • TEF – Thermic Effect of Feeding (energy costs of processing the food you eat);
  • NEAT – Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis. Low-intensity movements like sitting, walking or standing. (Since NEAT represents a negligible contribution to TDEE, it isn't factored into the mathematical formulas on its own, but is instead taken into account as part of PAL.);
  • PAL – Physical Activity Level, corresponding to a factor best estimating the energy expended by an individual (as shown below).
CATEGORY AND LEVEL ACTIVITY FACTOR
SEDENTARY - (Little to no exercise. Desk job.) 1.2
LIGHTLY ACTIVE - (Light exercise on 1-3 days a week or 2 hours of walking a day.) 1.375
MODERATELY ACTIVE - (Moderate exercise/sport on 3-5 days a week or 3 hours of walking a day.) 1.55
VERY ACTIVE - (Hard exercise/sport on 6-7 days a week or 4 hours of walking a day.) 1.725
EXTREMELY ACTIVE - (Hard daily exercise/sport and physical job including 5 or more hours of walking a day.) 1.9

FORMULAS FOR ESTIMATING BMR

Of the several models available for calculating BMR, the more contemporary are those established by Harris-Benedict, Mifflin-St Jeor and Katch-McArdle.

Both the Harris-Benedict and Mifflin-St Jeor equations estimate BMR by taking mass, gender, weight and height into account. Although the Harris-Benedict formula (established in 1919) was revised in 1984, it is the Mifflin-St Jeor formula of 1990 (around 5% more accurate), which is more widely accepted. (See: Understanding the BMR-TDEE Calculator to learn more.)

IN CLOSING

Although these formulas have been devised on the basis of scientific procedures, you do need to allow some margin for error – primarily because of  the law of individual differences. 

Therefore, none of the predictive equations will be free of inaccuracy. Because of this, you might find that they over or under-estimate BMR-TDEE values.

However, if you're consistent in applying and monitoring your numbers, you'll find that these tools can be used as effective guidelines and adjusted to you – the individual.

Establishing your metabolic 'set-point' is of significant help in monitoring calorie-expenditure, whether to lose, maintain or add mass. (The page on: Understanding the BMR-TDEE Calculator, has more on fine-tuning your calorie-intake for specific needs.)

Don't hesitate to reach out, should you have any doubts or questions.