Boost Weight Loss by Knowing Your BMR
You burn most of your daily calories with little to no conscious effort. Whether you’re talking on the phone, working at a keyboard, or just watching television, your body is burning calories to keep your heart pumping, your lungs breathing, and your organs functioning. The calories used to maintain these basic bodily functions add up to your basal metabolic rate, or BMR. Basal essentially means base — think of it as the number of calories that’s just enough to cover all your body’s bases.
“These are what I call your couch-potato calories,” says dietitian Sari Greaves, RD, CDN, of Step Ahead Weight Loss Center in Bedminster, N.J. and spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. “It amounts to 60 percent to 75 percent of the total calories you use daily, and there’s no physical activity required for this.”
In other words, this is what you burn without lifting a finger. That’s why BMR is also known as the resting metabolic rate, or RMR.
Knowing your BMR can help you create a more effective strategy for weight loss, allowing you to better keep your calorie count on track and better understand the effect exercise will have on your waistline.