If you’re planning to lose weight and get fit, the first thing that you would have to set right is your diet. Limiting your calorie intake is not only the easiest, but also the best way to reduce your body fat percentage. But then, the question is, how does one go about doing that?

The answer is quite simple – by being in a caloric deficit. You are said to be in a caloric deficit when the amount of calories that you consume is lower than your maintenance calories. Wondering what maintenance calories are and how to calculate it? Continue reading to find out.

What are maintenance calories?

The total number of calories that you need to consume each day to remain at the weight that you’re currently in is what is termed as maintenance calories. Maintenance calories are something that’s very specific to a person and tends to vary depending on factors such as age, weight, gender, and activity levels.

This is precisely why it is extremely important to calculate the maintenance calories that are applicable to you. Read on to find out how you can do it easily within just a few minutes.

How to calculate your maintenance calories?

Although you can use a maintenance calories calculator to do it, knowing the logic behind the calculation is essential. Especially since it can help you understand how the tool works. Here’s the process flow for calculating your maintenance calories.

  1. Multiply your weight (in kilograms) by 1.0 if you’re a male and by 0.9 if you’re a female.
  2. Multiply the figure that you got in step 1 by 24.
  3. Again, multiply the figure in step 2 by the lean factor applicable to you. Check out the table below for the lean factors.
  4. Multiply the figure that you got in step 3 by the activity modifier. The activity modifiers are given below.
  5. That’s it! The resulting figure is your maintenance calories.

Lean Factor

Body Fat Percentage Lean Factor for Males Lean Factor for Females
10 – 14% 1.0 1.0
15 – 20% 0.95 1.0
21 – 28% 0.90 0.95
Over 28% 0.85 0.95

Activity Modifier

Your Daily Activity Levels Activity Modifier
Very Light 1.3
Light 1.55
Moderate 1.65
Heavy 1.80
Very Heavy 2.00

Here’s an example that can help you understand how a typical maintenance calories calculation would work.

Say you’re a very active female weighing around 65 kilograms with a body fat percentage of around 18%. This is what your maintenance calories would be.

65 kilograms x 0.9 x 24 x 1.0 x 2.00 = 2,808 calories.  

What this effectively means is that you would have to consume roughly around 2,808 calories to stay at the weight that you’re currently in.


So, now that you know how to calculate your maintenance calories, all that you need to do to lose weight is ensure that you consume lower than what your maintenance calories are. You could enlist the help of an online food calorie calculator to determine just how many calories your food contains.

Now, even when you’re fit as a fiddle, tragedy can strike you at any time in the form of a medical emergency or an ailment. Therefore, it is important to protect yourself financially from such incidents. And health insurance is the perfect way to do that. You can compare multiple plans to see which one fits your requirements the best before committing to a purchase as well.


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