what is basal metabolic rate

What is Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)?

Although your metabolism is somehow connected to weight, it is seldom the cause of weight increase. In this article, we are going to discuss why basal metabolic rate matters, how to measure it and how it can help control your weight.  

Basal Metabolic Rate definition 

Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) is the number of calories your body needs to perform basic functions. These fundamental tasks include adjusting levels of hormone, circulating blood, growing and repairing cells and breathing. Additionally, they require energy which comes from both food and drinks you consume. In fact, your body needs energy all the time even during your sleep. 

basal metabolic rate

How are calories burned?  

BMR is your assistant when it comes to burning calories. Exercise or any kind of motion is another method to use up calories. Keeping an eye on what you eat on a daily basis and not eating too excessive or too minimal calories, helps you avert undesirable weight fluctuations. 

How to calculate your basal metabolic rate 

The Harris-Benedict principle (also known as the Harris-Benedict equation) and is a formula you can use to measure your BMR and inform you about the number of kilocalories you need to take on a daily basis. 

In this calculation, you need to multiply the approximated BMR figure by a number that to the extent of your activity.  

Below is how you can calculate the Harris-Benedict: 

Male: (10 × weight in kg) + (6.25 × height in cm) – (5 × age in years) + 5 

Female: (10 × weight in kg) + (6.25 × height in cm) – (5 × age in years) – 161 

The following table will help you calculate your recommended daily intake to maintain your current weight. 

 Daily Kilocalories Needed 
Little to no exercise BMR × 1.2 
Light exercise (1 – 3 days per week) BMR × 1.375 
Moderate exercise (3 – 5 days per week) BMR × 1.55 
Heavy exercise (6 – 7 days per week) BMR × 1.725 
Very heavy exercise  
(twice per day, extra heavy workouts) 
BMR × 2