Calorie Calculators

Why does every calorie calculator show different numbers? One says my maintenance is 1230 another says 1850. That's a huge difference!! Which one to use? Any recommendations for which is an accurate calculator to use? Stats: 5'4", 116lbs. Female, 40.

Replies

  • Spliner1969
    Spliner1969 Posts: 3,233 Member
    Because they are all based on different formulas. The best ones will take into account your daily activity levels and even allow you to enter exercise to figure out your TDEE. Even then, they aren't going to be 100% accurate. You use them as a starting point, then adjust over a period of time based on your own results. I, personally, find the most accurate (for me) to be iifym.com, but it was less accurate when I was heavier. Now that I'm at my goal weight and stay around 15% or less body fat it's very accurate for me. However, it's always done a better job of calculating my macros than MFP (again, for ME). Everyone's results are going to be different.

    Pick one you trust from a trusted source (use your best judgement), and start with it and watch your weight loss/gain over the next few weeks. If you find it's off, adjust you calories.
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 41,876 Member
    kokonani wrote: »
    Why does every calorie calculator show different numbers? One says my maintenance is 1230 another says 1850. That's a huge difference!! Which one to use? Any recommendations for which is an accurate calculator to use? Stats: 5'4", 116lbs. Female, 40.

    They all use different algorithms...I can't imagine anyone's maintenance being 1230 though...make sure you're putting in your information correctly. Also, some calculators like MFP don't include exercise in your activity level and utilize the NEAT method, so you would get a smaller number than a calculator that uses the TDEE method and includes exercise activity.

    My wife is 5'2" and 42 and about 125...with exercise she maintains around 2200-2300.
  • kokonani
    kokonani Posts: 507 Member
    Wow! 2200 a day sounds like a dream number to eat! No wonder I'm so hungry all the time! Thanks, I'll look into more calculators.
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
    kokonani wrote: »
    Wow! 2200 a day sounds like a dream number to eat! No wonder I'm so hungry all the time! Thanks, I'll look into more calculators.

    Why not use your own real life data if you have used mfp to lose weight?
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 41,876 Member
    kokonani wrote: »
    Wow! 2200 a day sounds like a dream number to eat! No wonder I'm so hungry all the time! Thanks, I'll look into more calculators.

    She is an avid runner and runs 4-5 days per week and lifts once per week...her lifting sessions are pretty intense...her trainer doesn't mess around...
  • DamieBird
    DamieBird Posts: 651 Member
    @heybales has a great spreadsheet somewhere that does TDEE and deficit. If I knew where to find it, I would post the link. Maybe he'll chime in?
  • heybales
    heybales Posts: 18,842 Member
    edited July 2017
    and that's why it's heybales, not haybales!

    On my profile page - conveniently just had to click on my name in your post, hadn't thought about that method before.

    Just TDEE Please spreadsheet - better than rough 5 level TDEE charts. (takes into account daily activity and several workout types/times)

    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1G7FgNzPq3v5WMjDtH0n93LXSMRY_hjmzNTMJb3aZSxM/edit?usp=sharing

    There's a more involved one there for tracking results better and doing the math based on results.