General Diet Plans and Questions - need help calculating allowed fat grams per day

02-16-2005, 11:06 PM
OK, if I'm aiming to eat 2000 calories per day, with no more than 20% fat, here's my calculation:

2000 x 20% = 400 fat calories / 9 to convert to grams = 44 fat grams per day

That really seems like alot to me! did I do that right??

02-17-2005, 08:30 AM
Your math is perfect, shyla, as is your keeping your daily fat intake in the 20% range. As long as your protein makes up 40% and "clean" carbs 40%, you'll be fine. You need a certain amount of fat each day. Of course,they need to be the EFA's (essential fattly acids) type. Besides providing for essential body functions, the other benefit of EFA's is that they keep the skin supple and elastic so that it shrinks along with you as you lose weight. Curious, but 2000 calories a day seem a bit high. Of course, I don't know your RMR, but why did you settle on 2000?

02-17-2005, 10:10 AM
Actually-at her current weight she can lose for a while on 2000 calories a day if she is active with exercise. I lost the first 15 pounds pretty easily eating between 1800-2000 calories a day.
If you can lose on this amount of calories-then go for it. I stayed at that level until the loss stopped-then I lowered it slightly from there.

02-17-2005, 10:15 AM
I had read that you can calculate calories needed per day by taking your goal weight x 12 (if you're not really that active), which in my case would be 175 x 12 = 2100 cal.

Is that not right?

02-17-2005, 10:38 AM
I wouldn't worry so much about the calculations. There are so many factors to consider-your age, fitness level, percent of body fat and muscle mass...all of these things play a role in your metabolism.
My advice would be-if you are eating 2000 calories a day and losing at a decent pace of .5 to 2 pounds per week-then you are doing fine.
I would also recommend that you start exercisgin regularly if you are not already-as the increase in muscle mass will increase your metabolism.

02-17-2005, 10:42 AM
Okay, lets take this one step at a time. Yes, I'll agree that you may lose weight at your current weight if you cut your calories to 2000 - if you are active with exercise. I see that you just indicated that you are not. The simple fact, shyla, to lose weight you have to become active. I'm not disagreeing that a person can't lose weight simply by dieting. But I don't agree with, and never will agree with, this method. The scale is not an indication of your progress. All it tells you is the pounds lost but not what those pounds are made of. You have to lose fat - NOT muscle. Muscle tissue is the most precious asset you have and you have to maintain that at all costs. The simple reason being that fat is the preferred fuel of muscle and the more muscle you have, the more fat you will burn. I repeat, it is fat you want to lose - not pounds. There is a big difference.

Now you just asked: "I had read that you can calculate calories needed per day by taking your goal weight x 12 (if you're not really that active), which in my case would be 175 x 12 = 2100 cal. Is that not right?"

No, that is not right. In my first post I refered to your RMR which is your resting metabolic rate. This is simply the number of calories you need each day to be you. If you just lay around all day and did nothing, you would still burn calories and that is your RMR. On top of that you need calories to move about. There is also a third catagory that's not important at this time that has to do with the thermogenic effect of food (TEF) but we won't worry about that for now.

There is an excellent online calculator here ( that you can use to calculate your RMR. It takes the average of five different methods. Once you have that figure, run the calculations again at your desired weight. Now if that figure at the lower number is not more than 10% less than the current figure, use that as a rough calorie guideline. You don't want to drop too drastically and put your body in "survival" mode. Remember too that these figures are only your RMR and don't account for daily activity, so you may have to up them, especially if you feel drained during the day and feel like you have no gas in your tank. But by all means, shyla, get active! I know this is a lot of information. Anything not clear, feel free to ask!

02-17-2005, 10:49 AM
But by all means, shyla, get active!


02-17-2005, 11:01 AM
Remember! You can "do all things through Christ who strengthens you"!

02-17-2005, 12:17 PM
Well...I believe that the scale is not the MAIN indication of your progress. It is one of them though. I totally agree that you must maintain your muscle mass and concentrate on fat loss...but regardless she will need to lose scale weight as well based on her current stats.
I take my measurements monthly, eat "clean", and strength train religiously as part of my regime. I exercise at least 6 days a week...and a lot of times add a light workout to the 7th day. I by no means advocate weight loss via diet alone.
But-I must reiterate that this thread has started out as a simple question on the calculation of fat grams within a certain calorie range-and it has turned into something else completely.