Knowing your body's daily calorie needs can be an important first step in adopting a realistic diet and physical activity plan that can help you attain and maintain a healthy weight.
Based on the National Academy of Sciences 2002 Energy Recommendations for Adults.
Between 20 to 50 percent of your daily caloric needs are determined by physical activity. The remainder are burned through basic body functions such as breathing, circulating blood and keeping cells functioning.
"It's easier to get up the will-power to turn down a 900 calorie double-burger with cheese and sauce and opt for a 400 calorie chicken sandwich or salad when you know your entire daily needs are about 1600 calories," says Joan Carter, a CNRC registered dietitian and instructor of pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.