A Christian Guide to Body Stewardship, Diet and Exercise

Chapter 2: Basic Nutrition 19 Determining Daily Caloric Intake Because water, vitamins and minerals do not contain calories, caloric intake is only determined by the consumption of carbohydrates, protein, and fats. Daily caloric needs are based on several factors (e.g., age, gender and physical activity level) and therefore differ from person to person, and even day to day. Table 2.3 provides specific recommendations for daily caloric intake as developed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2010). To be clear, the calorie ranges are simple estimates and are not adjusted for specific individual needs. If information that includes specific numbers and quantities triggers a negative response, please disregard. Negative responses include obsessing over caloric ranges, disordered eating patterns such as restricting intake, and desiring a certain body type or a particular number on the scale. Calorie recommendations can be helpful as a baseline, but should not be adhered to above or below physical hunger and fullness cues. Table 2.3. Daily Caloric Needs Based on Age, Gender and Activity Level Males Age Females Sedentary Moderately Active Active Sedentary Moderately Active Active 1,000 1,000 1,000 2-3 1,000 1,000 1,000 1,200-1,400 1,400-1,600 1,600-2,000 4-8 1,200-1,400 1,400-1,600 1,400-1,800 1,600-2,000 1,800-2,200 2,000-2,600 9-13 1,400-1,600 1,600-2,000 1,800-2,200 2,000-2,400 2,400-2,800 2,800-3,200 14-18 1,800 2,000 2,400 2,400-2,600 2,600-2,800 3,000 19-30 1,800-2,000 2,000-2,200 2,400 2,200-2,400 2,400-2,600 2,800-3,000 31-50 1,800 2,000 2,200 2,000-2,200 2,200-2,400 2,400-2,800 51+ 1,600 1,800 2,000-2,200 After we have determined how many calories we should be consuming per day, the next step is to determine what percentage of our daily calories should come by way of carbohydrates, protein and fats. Carbohydrates Carbohydrates are primarily a source of readily available energy. They also provide sweetness and flavor to foods, are a source of necessary fiber, and help to spare the use of protein as an energy source. The AMDR for carbohydrates is 45-65%, which means carbohydrates should make up 45-65% of total