How to Calculate BMR

Your basal metabolic rate (BMR) is the number of calories your body burns at rest to maintain normal body functions.

Your Basal metabolism rate is also one of the key factors in how much food should we eat if we want to lose weight, gain weight or maintain weight. And it is influenced by the following factors:

Weight The more weight, the more energy is expended.
Height The greater your height, the higher is your BMR.
Age BMR decreases with age. After the age of 20 years, it reduces about 2% every decade.
Gender Men have a lower body fat percentage and a greater muscle mass, so they have a higher BMR.
DNA Some individuals are born with a higher metabolism rate than others.
Body Fat If your body fat percentage is lower, then your BMR will be higher.
Body Temperature With an increase of 0.5°C (33ºF) in the internal body temperature, BMR increases by about 7%.
Diet The weight loss diets can cause dropping of BMR to up to 20%.
Exercise Physical exercise decreases body weight by burning calories as well as increases BMR by building extra lean tissue.
External Temperature Exposure to cold temperatures leads to an increase in the BMR in order to maintain body's internal temperature.
Glands The Thyroxine accelerates the metabolic activity of the body. More the thyroxine produced, higher is the BMR.

Your basal metabolic rate, also known as your BMR, is your minimum calorie expenditure rate, the rate at which you must expend calories in order to stay alive. Your BMR assumes you’re in the post-absorptive phase of digestion, meaning you aren’t actively digesting food. You’ll typically need to know your BMR when you design a weight-loss to plan so that you can predict your weight-loss rate. You can calculate your BMR from your age, height and weight by using a gender-specific formula.

While you can’t change your BMR immediately, knowing your personal data and which factors most influence your metabolism, you can create a smarter strategy for weight loss and obtain your ideal weight.

How to calculate BMR for men

To calculate your basal metabolic rate (your minimum calorie expenditure rate), you will need your weight measurement in pounds and your height in inches.

You can know your height in feet and inches only, so you will need to multiply your number of feet by 12 and add them to the number of extra inches.

  • Example: My height is 5 feet and 8 inches = 68 inches (5 x 12 = 60 and 60 + 8 = 68)

The BMR formula for men is:

BMR for men

(88.3 + ( 13.4 x ( weight in pounds / 2.2 ) ) + ( 4.81 x ( height in inches / 0.39 ) ) - ( 5.7 x age in years) )

How to calculate BMR for men - Example:

  • My weight: 165 pounds.
  • My Height: 71 inches.
  • My Age: 36.

Step #1: Weight in pounds / 2.2 = 165 / 2.2 = 75

Step #2: Height in inches / 0.39 = 71 / 0.39 = 182.05

Step #3: Age in years x 5.7 = 36 x 5.7 = 205.2

Step #4: Step #1 x 13.4 = 75 x 13.4 = 1,005

Step #5: Step #2 x 4.81 = 182.05 x 4.81 = 875.66

Step #6: 88.3 + Step #4 + Step #5 - Step #3 = 1,763 calories per day.

How to calculate BMR for women

To calculate your basal metabolic rate (your minimum calorie expenditure rate) if you are a woman, you will need your weight measurement in pounds and your height in inches.

You can know your height in feet and inches only, so you will need to multiply your number of feet by 12 and add them to the number of extra inches.

  • Example:My height is 5 feet and 8 inches = 68 inches (5 x 12 = 60 and 60 + 8 = 68)

The BMR formula for women is:

BMR for women

( 447.6 + ( 9.2 x ( weight in pounds / 2.2 ) ) + ( 3.1 x ( height in pounds / 0.39 ) ) - ( 4.3 x age in years ) )

How to calculate BMR for women - Example:

  • My weight: 172 pounds.
  • My Height: 68 inches.
  • My Age: 35.

Step #1: Weight in pounds / 2.2 = 172 / 2.2 = 78.18

Step #2: Height in inches / 0.39 = 68 / 0.39 = 174.35

Step #3: Age in years x 4.3 = 35 x 4.3 = 150.5

Step #4: Step #1 x 9.2 = 78.18 x 9.2 = 719.25

Step #5: Step #2 x 3.1 = 174.35 x 3.1 = 540.48

Step #6: 447.6 + Step #4 + Step #5 - Step #3 = 1,556 calories per day.

Calories to maintain your weight

BMR only represent resting energy expenditure, and adjustment must be made to calculate your total calorie intake required to maintain your current weight.

The Harris-Benedict Formula: To calculate your total daily calorie needs, multiply your BMR by the appropriate activity factor, as follows:

Activity Level Activity Factor
Sedentary
Light or no exercise and desk job
BMR x 1.2
Lightly Active
Light exercise or sports 1-3 days a week
BMR x 1.375
Moderately Active
Moderate exercise or sports 3-5 days a week
BMR x 1.55
Very Active
Hard exercise or sports 6-7 days a week
BMR x 1.725
Extremely Active
Hard daily exercise or sports and physical job
BMR x 1.9

Calculate your BMR - Automatically

Manual calculations are not 100% accurate. To get a completely accurate BMR calculation you can use our BMR calculator here: