Why It’s Important To Know Your BMR

Whether your goal is to lose weight (body fat), gain weight (lean muscle), or to just maintain your current weight, knowing your BMR can help you attain and maintain your goals. If like so many women who are eating right, exercising and living a healthy lifestyle, but still can’t seem to shed those extra pounds, knowing your BMR could be one of the missing link to your weight and health goals. 

Understanding BMR

Your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) is an estimate of how many calories you’d burn if you were to do nothing but rest for 24 hours. It represents the minimum amount of energy needed to keep your body functioning, including breathing and keeping your heart beating.

Factors that affect your BMR include:

The BMR includes the number of calories used for activities from breathing, maintaining your body temperature, your heart pumping, to your brain working at various levels and other functions that occur in the body while asleep. The calories you burn when awake, moving (including exercising) are not included in the BMR. Think of your BMR as the number of calories needed to stay alive if you were bedridden.

 Things to know about BMR

So, what is the big deal with the metabolic rate and why is it so important? Your metabolism is the true indicator of your overall dieting and fitness success. You really need to keep your engine running hot in order to burn the most amount of calories each day. Unfortunately, there are lots of things that can slow it down.

These include:

Understanding BMI

BMI is a number based on your weight and height. In general, the higher the number, the more body fat a person has. BMI is often used as a screening tool to decide if your weight might be putting you at risk for health problems such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer

The problem with BMI:  BMI (body mass index), which is based on the height and weight of a person, is an inaccurate measure of body fat content and does not take into account muscle mass, bone density, overall body composition, and racial and sex differences.  Simply put: BMI is outdated.  Most doctor’s offices, insurance companies, and other health practitioners still use BMI as a way to track and identify progress, so it’s a good number to know, but it’s not the BEST number to use….