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A calorie is a unit of energy that measures the amount of energy provided by a food. When we eat or drink, we consume calories which the body uses as fuel for everyday functions, such as walking, breathing, and sleeping. Therefore, the number of calories we consume plays a significant role in maintaining our weight and overall health.

What does it mean?

Calorie represents the amount of energy required to raise the temperature of one gram of water by one degree Celsius. There are two types of calories: small calorie (cal), which is the energy needed to heat up one gram of water, and large calorie (Cal), which is equivalent to 1,000 small calories or the energy needed to heat up one kilogram of water. In nutrition and fitness, the large calorie (Cal) is used to measure the energy value of foods and drinks.

How to calculate calorie intake?

The number of calories you need to maintain your weight depends on factors such as your age, gender, weight, height, and activity level. To lose weight, you need to create a calorie deficit by consuming fewer calories than your body burns. Conversely, to gain weight, you need to consume more calories than you burn. You can use online calorie calculators to estimate your daily calorie needs, or consult a registered dietitian to create a customized meal plan based on your specific needs and goals.

How to monitor calorie intake?

Tracking your calorie intake is an effective way to ensure that you are eating the right amount of food to achieve your weight and health goals. You can do this by reading food labels, using a food diary, or using a smartphone app that tracks your food and exercise. It's essential to note that while monitoring calorie intake is helpful, it's not the only factor involved in achieving a healthy and balanced diet.

Madeleine Smith

Content Lead at

Madeleine is passionate about empowering individuals with the information and tools they need to transform their bodies and lives.