What are calories?
Calorie is a physical unit for energy, work and heat and is used to represent the energy content of food. It takes one calorie to heat 0.001 litres of water from 14.5 to 15.5 degrees. In science, however, the unit joule is used today (1 calorie corresponds to about 4.2 joules).
Since a calorie is a very small unit, kilocalories (kcal) are usually used to calculate energy requirements or to indicate quantities of energy. This corresponds to 1,000 calories.
How many calories do you need every day?
Calorie consumption varies from person to person and depends on age, gender, size and activities. During sleep or rest, only the amount of calories needed to maintain the most important bodily functions, such as body heat, is consumed. This calorie consumption at rest is called basal metabolic rate and it is equivalent to about one kilocalorie per hour per kilogram of body weight. For an average tall, normal-weight man, this is therefore 70 kilocalories of basal metabolic rate per hour.
A female office worker weighing 60 kg consumes about 2,000 kilocalories in 24 hours, while her male counterpart weighing 80 kg consumes 2,800 kilocalories. However, if this man does a lot of sport in his free time, he may consume significantly more kilocalories per day, because muscle mass consumes more calories than fat.
Calories and BMI
A so-called ideal weight and the energy requirement can be calculated very roughly with the help of the BMI (Body Mass Index). BMI relates body weight to the square of height. Since an actual calorie requirement is directly related to daily activities, muscle mass compared to fat mass, etc., a BMI can only be a guideline.
From the calorie table to losing weight
Calories and calorie tables play a major role in diets. A calorie table gives an overview of the calories or kilocalories that foods contain and often also an overview of the nutritional values of these foods: protein, carbohydrates (sugar, fructose, starch) and fat. 100 g protein and 100 g carbohydrates each have a calorific value of about 410 kcal, fat of over 900 kcal.
However, those who want to lose weight should not rely exclusively on a calorie table and reduce calories. Physical activity and usually a change in diet are essential, as many foods contain so-called empty calories. Sugar, for example, is high in energy but low in important nutrients such as minerals or vitamins.
Which sport burns the most calories?
There are indeed sports that are known as so-called fat burners and boost fat burning. These definitely include endurance sports such as jogging, Nordic walking, cycling or swimming. The same applies to sports such as aerobics, spinning or stepping - and not to forget dancing.
Can you burn calories sitting down?
Sitting on the right chair increases your energy consumption. How can this be? It has been proven in studies that sitting on the active seat Swopper from Aeris is similar to light walking in terms of exercise and calorie consumption. In fact, the Aeris Swopper challenges and encourages the body and movement more uncompromisingly than any other office chair. This is made possible by the patented 3D Active technology from Aeris, which encourages frequent changes of position. You are always on the move and calorie consumption is boosted.