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Exercise regularly for best results.
Maybe you've noticed that, as you've gotten older, losing weight is a lot harder than it used to be. This can result from several things, including hormonal changes, not being as active as you once were and undergoing a general slowdown in metabolism. Eating fewer calories than your body needs can help you get closer to your desired weight, but there's not a one-size-fits-all set of weight-loss calories for women at age 50. Your calorie needs for weight loss depend on a number of specific factors. Before starting any weight-loss diet, consult with your doctor or a dietitian for a plan that fits your specific health needs.
Calories and Weight Loss
No matter what type of diet you follow, they all use the same mathematical formula to help you lose the weight, which is that the calories you eat must be less than the calories you burn. It's estimated that one pound of fat contains 3,500 calories. If you eat 250 to 500 fewer calories than your body burns each day, you should lose about 1/2 to 1 pound a week. The trick is figuring out the number of calories your body currently burns, which is different for everyone.
Why Calorie Needs Vary
Just as there isn't one diet suitable for everyone, there's not a calorie amount that works for all 50-year-old women. Your specific calorie needs depend on your height, current weight and activity level. The general range of calorie needs for women 50 years of age is 1,800 to 2,200 calories. But if you're 5 feet, 2 inches tall, weigh 140 pounds and get very little exercise, you need 1,750 calories to maintain weight. On the other hand, if you're 6 feet tall, weigh 200 pounds and work out about an hour a day, you need 2,800 calories to maintain your weight. An online calorie calculator can help you determine your specific calorie needs.
Calculating Your Calorie Deficit
Once you know your daily calorie needs to maintain your weight, you can determine how much you need to lose. For example, if you need 1,750 calories to maintain your weight, you can lose 1/2 pound a week reducing your daily intake to 1,500 calories. You shouldn't eat fewer than 1,200 calories a day unless you're being closely monitored by your doctor.
Tips for Creating a Deficit
To lose weight, you may be able to make a few modifications to your current diet without having to count every morsel you put in your mouth or feeling overly restricted. For example, instead of having a fancy cafe mocha latte, drink your coffee black and you can save at least 200 calories. Or, replace your 3-ounce bag of chips with 3 cups of air-popped popcorn for a 300-calorie savings. When creating your plate at lunch and dinner, make veggies the focus of your meals and use grains and lean proteins, such as chicken or beans, as your sides to stay full on fewer calories.