How Many Calories Should A 5 1 Woman Eat


How many calories should a 5 1 woman eat? It all depends on your age, level of physical activity, and size. There are many different reasons why you will want to count calories. You might be trying to lose weight, or perhaps your doctor recommended that you keep a record of how many calories you consume each day. Whatever your reason, it’s important that you have the right information about how many calories you should be eating in a day.

How Many Calories Should A 5 1 Woman Eat

What are calories?

Man looks at nutritional information while shopping
The nutritional information on all food packaging will advise how many calories it contains.

Although most people primarily think about calories in terms of food and beverages, anything that carries energy also contains calories. For instance, coal has a calorie content of 7,000,000 per kilogram (kg).

There are two types of calorie:

  • A small calorie (cal) is the amount of energy required to raise the temperature of 1 gram (g) of water by 1º Celsius (º C).
  • A large calorie (kcal) is the amount of energy required to raise 1 kilogram (kg) of water by 1º C. It is also known as a kilocalorie.

1 kcal is equal to 1,000 cal.

It’s common to use the terms “big calorie” and “little calorie” interchangeably. This is deceptive. Kilocalories are used to describe the calorie content on food labels. A 250-calorie chocolate bar actually has a caloric content of 250,000.

Daily requirement

The average American needs 2,700 kcal per day for men and 2,200 kcal for women, according to the US government.

Everybody’s daily caloric requirements differ. Some people have more active lifestyles than others, and various people have distinct metabolisms that burn energy at different rates.

The number of calories that should be consumed each day varies on a number of variables, including:

  • overall general health
  • physical activity demands
  • sex
  • weight
  • height
  • body shape

Daily Recommended Caloric Intake for Women

If you eat too many calories, regular exercise won’t provide you the results you seek in terms of weight loss. Around two-thirds of American adults, including 65 percent of women, are overweight or obese, according to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015. This is partly due to the fact that American eating habits frequently give more calories than are required. Maintaining a healthy weight requires consuming the correct number of calories each day. Continue reading and make sure you are getting enough calories based on your exercise level by using this weight loss calculator.

Active Women

Women who walk more than three miles per day or engage in physical activity that is equivalent to that distance are deemed active. For good weight management, active women need roughly 2,000 to 2,400 calories per day. Women who are active require around 18 calories per pound of body weight, according to Harvard Medical School. This equates to about 2,160 calories daily for a lady weighing 120 pounds. In general, athletes require more calories. According to a 2009 article in the “North American Journal of Sports Physical Therapy,” collegiate female swimmers consume 3,229 calories on average each day.

Moderately Active Women

Women who are moderately active walk 1.5 to 3 kilometers per day on average and need 1,800 to 2,200 calories per day to maintain a healthy weight. According to Harvard Medical School, women who engage in moderate physical activity require roughly 16 calories per pound of body weight each day, or 1,920 calories per day for a woman who weighs 120 pounds.

Sedentary Women

Sedentary women don’t exercise outside of their regular, daily tasks, including cleaning the house. According to USDA recommendations, sedentary women need between 1,600 and 2,000 calories daily to maintain a healthy weight. A sedentary woman’s specific calorie requirements can be calculated by multiplying her body weight by 13. This equates to around 1,560 calories daily for a lady weighing 120 pounds who is inactive.

How Many Calories Should I Be Eating for My Height?

Grilled bacon, mozzarella sandwiches on wooden cutting boards and arugula, cherry tomato salad on dark background, top view.Delicious breakfast or snack, flat lay

In addition to your height, there are other other variables that affect how many calories you should consume.

Your daily calorie requirements are influenced by a number of variables, including your height, current weight, age, gender, and amount of activity. There isn’t a single magic number, so calculate your daily caloric needs using a calculator or by doing the math.


Whether or not you want to lose weight, the quantity of calories you should consume each day depends on your height as well as your present weight, age, gender, and degree of exercise.

Calories Needed to Lose Weight

According to the Cleveland Clinic, whether you are losing, maintaining, or gaining weight depends entirely on how many calories you consume daily compared to how many calories you expend. You will probably lose weight if you consume less calories than you expend through physical activity. But, you are more likely to accumulate fat if you consume more calories than you expend. Nonetheless, every person’s body requires a different number of calories.

You only need to consider your age, gender, and degree of exercise if you’re just trying to get a general idea of how many calories you should consume each day. You need to consume more calories to maintain your weight the more you exercise during the day. The USDA’s 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans advise the following for women:

  • Age 19 to 25: 2,000 to 2,400 calories
  • Age 26 to 50: 1,800 to 2,400 calories
  • Age 31 to 50: 1,800 to 2,200 calories
  • Age 51 to 60: 1,600 to 2,000 calories
  • Age 61 and up: 1,600 to 2,000 calories

Men typically need more calories than women, but they can still use an estimate based on age and activity level. The Dietary Guidelines recommends:

  • Age 19 to 20: 2,600 to 3,000 calories
  • Age 21 to 35: 2,400 to 3,000 calories
  • Age 36 to 40: 2,400 to 2,800 calories
  • Age 41 to 55: 2,200 to 2,800 calories
  • Age 56 to 60: 2,200 to 2,600 calories
  • Age 61 to 75: 2,000 to 2,600 calories
  • Age 76 and up: 2,000 to 2,400 calories

Taking Height Into Account

  • The number of calories you burn eating (the thermogenic effect of food, or TEF)
  • The calories you burn by regular movement (non-exercise activity thermogenesis, or NEAT)
  • The extra calories you burn after exercising (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption, or EPOC)
  • Exercise itself

According to this calculation, a 35-year-old woman who weighs 150 pounds (68 kilograms), is 65 inches (165 centimeters) tall, and has these measurements would require 1,377 calories a day. At 200 pounds (90.7 kilograms) and 72 inches (183 cm) tall, a 40-year-old guy would require roughly 1,857 calories each day.

The final figure will give you an idea of how many calories your body need each day to be at rest. Remember that it’s only an estimate; to get a precise figure, consult a specialist who can calculate your RMR using indirect calorimetry, advises the National Academy of Sports Medicine. By examining the gases you breath, this device calculates how many calories you burn each day.

The additional ways your body consumes calories outside of essential physical activities are not included in your resting metabolic rate. But, by dividing your RMR by an activity level number, you can arrive at a reliable, practical estimate rather than attempting to calculate your TEF, NEAT, EPOC, and exercise calories:

Calculating Your Calorie Needs

The first step in determining how many calories you need is to use a calories calculator or follow a formula to figure out your RMR. To do this, use the Mifflin-St Jeor Equation, which differs for men and women:

  • Male: 9.99 x weight in kilograms + 6.25 x height in centimeters – 4.92 x age + 5
  • Female: 9.99 x weight in kilograms + 6.25 x height in centimeters – 4.92 x age – 161

To determine exactly how many calories you should consume each day based on your height, you may either do some simple math yourself or utilize an online calorie calculator. Your body continues to burn calories even when you are not moving to keep vital functions like breathing and blood circulation running smoothly.

The number of calories you burn at rest, or RMR, is determined by the American Council on Exercise (ACE). Your resting metabolic rate, which accounts for your gender, age, current weight, and height, determines the quantity of calories your body needs to maintain its weight while at rest.

Your RMR isn’t the only consideration for determining how many calories you should eat, even if you typically don’t spend the majority of the day at rest. According to ACE, your daily calorie expenditure is equal to your total daily energy expenditure, or TDEE. Your RMR is one aspect that the TDEE takes into account, but there are other sources of caloric burn as well:

  • Sedentary (little exercise, desk job): multiply by 1.2
  • Lightly active (light exercise, one to three days a week): multiply by 1.375
  • Moderately active (moderate exercise, three to five days a week): multiply by 1.55
  • Very active (hard exercise, six to seven days a week): multiply by 1.725
  • Extremely active (Hard daily exercise, physical job): multiply by 1.9

Consider the previous example of a 35-year-old woman who needs 1,377 calories a day: she would need 1,652 calories a day if she lived a sedentary lifestyle, but 2,616 calories if she was extremely active. The man who needs 2,252 calories based on his RMR would need 2,702 calories if he’s sedentary and 3,490 calories if he does moderate exercise a few times a week.

Caloric Breakdown by Macronutrient

When it comes to leading a healthy life, what you eat is just as significant as how much. All food is divided into three categories, or macronutrients: fat, protein, and carbs. A typical diet should contain 45 to 65 percent carbs, 10 to 35 percent protein, and 20 to 35 percent fat, according to The National Academy of Medicine.

Your body uses carbohydrates as its main fuel source. Although there are many different foods that include carbohydrates, ACE advises focusing on the unprocessed or slightly processed kinds rather than unprocessed carbs or foods with added sugar for that 45 to 65 percent of your daily diet. According to the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes all contain unprocessed or little processed carbs that are rich in vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytonutrients.

Every cell, tissue, and organ in your body contains protein, which is essential for constructing and preserving muscle mass. Choose lean proteins when seeking for nutritious protein options. They include fish and shrimp as well as lean beef such as top sirloin and round steak, lean pork such as pork loin and ham, lean poultry such as boneless skinless chicken breasts, and lean fowl and seafood like fish and shrimp. Protein can also be found in nuts and nut butters, dairy products, some grains like quinoa, legumes like beans, and soy products like tofu.

Although fat has a long history of negative connotations, your body requires that you consume 20 to 35 percent of your daily calories from fat. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics advises choosing goods with unsaturated fats rather than saturated or trans fats. Omega-3 fatty acid-rich foods like fatty fish, walnuts, flaxseeds, and chia seeds are wise options, as are monounsaturated fats like olive and canola oil, avocado, and peanut butter.

Calculating Your BMR for Weight Loss 

Each person burns a varied number of calories each day depending on their age, size, sex, and degree of activity. It might also be more difficult or simpler for someone to lose weight depending on factors like hunger hormones and medical issues. You may get a broad sense of how many total calories you should consume each day to either maintain or lose weight using the following formula if you’re looking to understand how to lose weight and control your weight over the long term:

  1. First find your BMR (basal metabolic rate: the amount of calories needed to perform your normal bodily functions at rest).

    BMR = your current weight × 10
  2. Next, multiply your BMR by an activity factor.

    BMR × 0.30 (for average daily activities)
  3. Last, add your BMR to your activity factor.

Example for a 130- pound woman

130 pounds × 10 = BMR of 1,300 calories

1,300 calories × .30 = 390 activity factor

1,300 + 390 = 1,690 calories per day

Based on a person’s degree of activity, BMR varies. A person needs to increase their activity factor to between.40 and.60 if they engage in regular physical exercise more than three times per week. Likewise, muscle burns more calories than fat. Individuals who regularly lift weights and engage in physical activity may have a larger percentage of muscle and a lower percentage of body fat. Their bodies therefore burn calories more effectively as a result.

How to estimate your frame size

To identify your frame size use a measuring tape and the height chart below.


Height under 5’2″
Small = wrist size less than 5.5″
Medium = wrist size 5.5″ to 5.75″
Large = wrist size over 5.75″
Height 5’2″ to 5′ 5″
Small = wrist size less than 6″
Medium = wrist size 6″ to 6.25″
Large = wrist size over 6.25″
Height over 5′ 5″
Small = wrist size less than 6.25″
Medium = wrist size 6.25″ to 6.5″
Large = wrist size over 6.5″


Height over 5′ 5″
Small = wrist size 5.5″ to 6.5″
Medium = wrist size 6.5″ to 7.5″
Large = wrist size over 7.5″

No measuring tape? Use this method:

Grip your wrist using your thumb and longest finger.

  • If your finger and thumb don’t touch you are a LARGE frame.
  • If they just touch you are a MEDIUM frame.
  • If they overlap you are a SMALL frame.

Why Frame Size is Important

Some optimum body weight calculators neglect to account for frame size, a vital factor in determining the appropriate body weight for a person of your height.

Your frame size describes the largest portion of your skeletal framework. A person of similar height who has greater bone mass will weigh heavier than someone who has less bone mass. Yet, this does not take bone density into account.

A 5’6″ woman with a wide frame should weigh between 139 and 143 pounds, while a 5’6″ woman with a tiny frame should weigh between 124 and 128 pounds.

Does ideal body weight depend on age?

As every person is unique, there is no conclusive response to this issue.

Nonetheless, as compared to younger people, elderly persons typically have a greater optimal body weight.
This is because, whereas body fat percentage frequently rises with age, muscle mass and bone density frequently decline.

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