automatic asked in HealthDiet & Fitness · 1 decade ago

What exactly is a calorie deficit?

People always say you need a deficit of calories to lose weight. Are you supposed to exercise to lose the, lets say, 500 calories or do you just remove excess food from your diet so you consume 500 less than you normally would?

7 Answers

  • Rose .
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    A calorie deficit is created when the amount of food energy (calories) you taken in is less than the total calories you use, resulting in weight loss. A calorie deficit is the difference between what you burn and what you eat. If you eat 2,000 calories and burn 2,500 today, you calorie deficit is 500. It is important because the size of your calorie deficit will determine how much weight you lose each week. Creating a calorie deficit forces your body to use stored energy which will cause the weight loss.

    The general rule is that you have to burn 3,500 calories more than you eat to lose one pound. Since you cannot do all of that in one day, you spread it out over a greater period of time: a week. To lose one pound in a week, you need to create a calorie deficit of 3,500 calories during the week. Since a week has seven days, you divide 3,500 calories by seven and get 500. Five hundred is the calorie deficit you need to create each day in order to lose one pound per week. This means that you need to burn 500 calories more than you eat everyday for a week to lose one pound. If you want to lose two pounds per week, you need to double your calorie deficit to 7,000 calories per week or 1,000 per day.


  • 5 years ago

    The amount of calories you eat under maintenance. So for example you burn 2000 calories in one day and your calorie deficit is 500, then you consumed 1500 calories that day. Looking at the numbers given I'd say your deficit is too high. You should eat closer to 1500 calories a day for a calorie deficit of 500. Hope this helps.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    If you burn 2,500 hundred calories a day (your expenature) and you eat 1500( your intake). the difference will be your calorie deficit. In this case 1,000 calories.

    A calorie deficit of 3,500 calories equals a burning of 1lb of fat! Losing 1-2 lbs a fat a week is a healthy amount, so depending on your weight loss goal you should have a calorie deficit of 500-1000 calories a day

  • 1 decade ago

    You can remove the "excess" food from your diet and lose those extra calories, but I wouldn't alter your diet too dramatically. If it is junk food, by all means get rid of those.

    A balance between good food and exercise will help you lose the weight.

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  • NYG
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    It's where you consume 500 calories less then you use too

  • 1 decade ago

    there are 2 ways...

    1) Count yr food calories & less 500 thru that or

    2) Exercise to Burn 500 calories

    see sites like caloriescounter... to know calories in yr food

  • 1 decade ago

    Either works, and both are usually done together, reducing intake some, and gradually increasing exercise.

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