Daily Calorie Burn

When researchers evaluate the total number of calories you burn, they refer to the number as your total energy expenditure (TEE) or total daily energy expenditure (TDEE). TEE (or TDEE) is a combination of these different factors:2

  • Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR): Your RMR is the amount of energy your body needs to maintain basic functions like breathing, circulating blood and building cells. Things like age, body size and gender affect your resting metabolic rate. Your RMR accounts for 60% to 75% of the total number of calories you burn each day.
  • Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT): This is the amount of energy that your body uses to do daily activities like washing dishes, typing on your computer, or walking around your office. The number of calories you burn from NEAT varies greatly based on your activity level.
  • Calories Burned During Exercise: The actual number of calories you burn during your workouts will depend on the intensity and duration of each session. Calories burned through exercise and non-exercise physical activity account for roughly 15% to 30% of your TEE.
  • Thermic Effect of Food (TEF): Your body burns calories to chew, digest, and store food. Each type of food (macronutrient) has a different TEF. Eating protein burns the most calories by a small margin. TEF accounts for about 10% of the total number of calories you burn each day.

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