Calorie Intake Calculator (Simple)

Created by Dominika Śmiałek, MD, PhD candidate
Reviewed by Dominik Czernia, PhD and Jack Bowater
Based on research by
Mifflin MD, St Jeor ST, Hill LA, Scott BJ, Daugherty SA, Koh YO. A new predictive equation for resting energy expenditure in healthy individuals; The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition; February 1990
Last updated: Sep 18, 2023

With this calorie intake calculator, you can estimate the number of calories you need to consume each day. It takes into consideration your basal metabolic rate, and your activity level. For more advanced advice, take a look at our calorie calculator.

We try our best to make our Omni Calculators as precise and reliable as possible. However, this tool can never replace a professional doctor's assessment. All information on this website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to serve as a substitute for medical consultation. Always consult your results with a health care provider.

Who is this calorie intake calculator for?

As mentioned above, this calculator quickly estimates the number of (kilo)calories a healthy adult should eat everyday to maintain weight.

Our calculator is based on Mifflin-St Jeor equation for BMR and the physical activity level. BMR stands for basal metabolic rate and is the amount of energy needed while the body is completely at rest. This amount of calories is needed to support breathing, circulation, and basic organ functions.

Women: 'BMR (kcal/day) = 10 × weight (kg) + 6.25 × height (cm) – 5 × age (years) – 161'
Men: 'BMR (kcal/day) = 10 × weight (kg) + 6.25 × height (cm) – 5 × age (years) + 5'

Total daily calorie requirement is calculated by multiplying the BMR and physical activity level.

'TDEE (kcal/day) = BMR × PAL'

Where PAL is your daily activity level:

  • Little or no exercise - 1.2
  • Light exercise (1-2 times/week) - 1.4
  • Moderate exercise (2-3 times/week) - 1.6
  • Hard exercise (3-5 times/week) - 1.75
  • Physical job/Hard exercise (6-7 times/week) - 2.0

Be aware that, although in everyday language we often say calories, the proper name is kilocalories (kcal) - a unit 1000x larger than a calorie. So, the average person needs 15 kcal (kilocalories), which is equal to 15 000 cal (calories) per pound to maintain their current weight.

Your maintenance calories may differ, especially if you're pregnant, breastfeeding, or a professional athlete. Also, people with some health conditions may require a more individual approach.

How many calories to maintain weight should I eat?

Have you ever wondered how many calories to maintain your weight? Assuming that you exercise an average amount, and that your BMI is within a healthy range, use our calculator. Let's say you are a 50 year old woman, with a height of 165 cm and weighting 65 kg. You do some light exercise once or twice a week.

Your calorie intake for maintaining current weight is 1778.4 kcal per day.

How to gain muscle?

Unfortunately, there's no unified and easy way to gain muscle. They say that the key to keeping a healthy body is 20% exercise and 80% nutrition. For a muscle gain diet, you should control the number of calories eaten daily, either with our meal calorie calculator and macro calculator.
Apart from calories, your muscle gain diet ought to control the number of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats in your meals - macro nutrients, and that's where the latter becomes useful.

Weight loss tips

Finally, the question that you've probably asked yourself - how do I lose weight?. To lose some pounds, you have to have a calorie intake that is below your TDEE (Total Daily Energy Expenditure). Keep in mind that, to make dieting efficient, you should never go below your BMR, estimated with BMR calculator.

In case of any doubts, always consult a doctor or a dietician.

Dominika Śmiałek, MD, PhD candidate
Light exercise 1-2 times/week
Calories to maintain weight
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