How Many Calories Should I Eat to Lose Weight?

how many calories should I eat to lose weight

It's no secret that lots of people struggle with weight issues. It's a big public health issue by now, but lots of people are conscious of the dangers that excess weight poses to their health.

That's why more people than ever before are trying to lose excess weight by making adjustments to both their diet and lifestyle. They inevitably ask themselves "how many calories should I eat to lose weight?"

If you are on a journey to lose weight, it's important that you keep your calorie intake in check. Keeping yourself in a calorie deficit or meeting your daily calorie requirement is one of the best ways to lose weight.

That's easier said than done, though. There are lots of foods high-calorie foods that can quickly tip you over your limit and make it impossible for you to burn fat and shift your excess weight.

We are going to help you, though. In this post, we are going to look at exactly how many calories to eat a day, how to monitor your progress and the techniques that you can use to accelerate your weight loss.

Use of calorie counters for awareness

First things first, we need to dig a little deeper to understand eating habits and how many calories to eat a day to lose weight.

The average man will need to eat around 2,500 calories each day to maintain his weight. The average woman would need to consume around 2,000 calories each day to maintain their weight.

This figure will vary, though, according to a range of factors like age, metabolism, and lifestyle choices. It's important that you keep this baseline figure in mind, though, to give yourself a benchmark and target.

You should be sure to diligently track the number of calories that you consume over the course of the day. This activity can shine a light on the reality of your diet and help you to cut out any unhealthy habits or foods to stick to the calories needed per day to lose weight.

There are lots of calorie counters that you can use to help you accurately track your calorie intake. There are countless apps out there and these make it simpler than ever before to monitor your diet. In fact, lots of them offer the ability to scan barcodes to get detailed and accurate nutritional information.

How can you easily reduce calorie intake?

Now that we understand how many calories to eat to lose weight, let's take a look at some tips that can help you achieve your targets.

High-calorie foods to avoid (and what to replace them with)

Lots of people hit a point on their weightloss journey where they ask themselves "how many calories should I eat to lose fat?" It's a great question to ask, and many people are satisfied with the answers that they find.

Unfortunately, those people often find that their favorite foods are loaded with a huge number of calories. Those foods make it very difficult for people to reduce their calorie intake, hit their targets, and lose weight.

To give you a helping hand, here's a look at some of the worst offenders out there and what you can replace them with.

how many calories a day to lose weight

Ice Cream

It will come as no surprise that ice cream comes loaded with empty calories that are often bad for you. Organic and natural ice creams are the best, but synthetic options are loaded with sugars and sweeteners that can push you far beyond your recommended daily calorie intake.

  • You could consider replacing ice cream with frozen fruits and more natural products. These can satisfy your sweet tooth without pushing you over your daily calorie limit.


Natural juices are often seen as being very healthy, but many of them come loaded with an incredible number of calories. Lots of people are surprised to learn that liquid calories can push them beyond their calorie intake while also delivering lots of fats and sugars.

  • If you are trying to lose weight, you should be sure to stay hydrated by drinking water. There is no adequate replacement for water, and you should cut out sugar-loaded drinks in favor of water.

Fast Food

Fast food is great when you're in a rush and need a convenient meal, but it is often very unhealthy and contains a lot of calories. That high number often makes it impossible for you to lose weight and hit your targets.

  • Fast food is so attractive due to the way it sneaks into your life. Consider packing meals and carrying snacks with you to resist the temptation of fast food.

Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is a delicious paste that is really delicious. Unfortunately, it contains a huge number of sweeteners and emulsifiers while delivering a huge amount of calories and fat content. You can expect to find around 100 calories on one tablespoon alone!

  • Try to think of ways that you can easily replace peanut butter. If you use it on sandwiches, for instance, look at some healthier alternatives for sandwich fillings.


Chocolate is loaded with empty calories that threaten to push you far beyond your target calorie intake. Even dark chocolate - often touted as a healthier option - can still come with a high number of calories, so you should be careful.

  • There are lots of healthy snacks out there - you should adjust your habits to avoid eating chocolate but instead switch it out for a healthier alternative.

Increase protein intake

It's great to ask yourself how many calories do I need to lose weight, but you've also got to think about how those calories are divided. You could stay below your calorie intake limit, but you've got to make sure that you still enjoy a healthy diet.

You should make sure to incorporate sufficient levels of protein into your diet, even when you are trying to lose weight. Protein can really help you to lose weight, too, given that it can reduce your feelings of hunger and boost your metabolism.

Try to cut out fats and sugar from your diet and replace them with proteins - these foods will make it easier for you to fight back against cravings and reduce your appetite. 

There are lots of foods that are high in protein - here are just some of the great options that you can incorporate into your diet:

  • Eggs
  • Chicken breast
  • Milk
  • Broccoli
  • Oats
  • Cottage cheese

There are many more, too, and they make it simple for you to stick to your particular diet.

how many calories do i need to lose weight

Avoid sugars

It's important that you control the amount of sugar that you consume. If you eat too much, you will find that your body struggles to burn fat and effectively work through the foods that you consume.

Simple sugars are also very concentrated. This means that if you eat a food that is high in sugar, you'll eat far more calories than if you were eating something lower in sugar.

The American Heart Association offers some assistance, here, and recommends that men and women should limit the amounts of sugar that they eat each day. In fact, it recommends that men limit their intake to 150 calories per day while women reduce their intake to 100 calories per day.

Sticking to this routine can make it easier to burn fat and lose weight.

Reduce carbs

If you are trying to lose weight, it's also important that you are more deliberate when it comes to consuming carbohydrates. These carbs accelerate your appetite and they also affect your body in a range of ways: they can raise your blood sugar levels and blood pressure.

If you are serious about losing weight, you will want to seriously consider following a low-carb diet. There are lots of options out there and the keto diet is becoming more popular than ever before, given that it helps people to reduce their carb intake to achieve their desired results.

You will also find that carbohydrates are often loaded into unhealthy foods. If you are more conscious about the carbs that you eat, you'll find it easier to cut your calories.

Exercise regularly

There are lots of factors that affect your weight. Your diet is the most important factor, but you'll find that exercise comes just behind.

You should complement and concerted dieting regime you follow with regular and varied exercise. Exercise means that your body burns more calories in a shorter timeframe, putting you further into a state of calorie deficit.

There are countless types of exercise out there for you: you could take up walking, cycling, weight training, swimming, yoga, or something else! There are more options than ever before and you'll be sure to find something that you adore.

how many calories should I eat to lose fat

Closing thoughts

We hope that this guide has shown you how many calories are needed to lose weight. As you can see, there is a lot to think about and you will want to eat and exercise carefully to boost your chances of success.