Total daily energy expenditure is a good measure to find the total number of calories you will ideally burn throughout the day.

Our TDEE calculator will allow you to see the total amount of calories you expend each day and is based on factors like your activity level, basal metabolic rate, and the effect food digestion has on the body.

This metric is vital for someone who wishes to attain certain fitness and physique goals, as it gives you an ideal number of calories to take in or burn.

If your caloric intake is greater than your total amount of energy taken in, you will gain weight, and your body weight will increase.

On the other hand, if you take in fewer calories than the total calories you need for your TDEE, your body burns some cells, whether it be fat or muscle, or both.

Check out the TDEE calculator below and enter your age, sex, height, weight, and current estimated daily activity level. This will give you a close estimate of your TDEE.

This number will allow you to know how many calories will allow you to reach what is known as maintenance levels.

How Is Total Daily Energy Expenditure Calculated?

TDEE is calculated with the Mifflin St. Jeor formula, which first finds the basal metabolic rate or BMR. Then it multiplies the BMR by a number representing your chosen activity level.

The Mifflin St. Jeor equation is written as follows:

  • For men: 10 x weight (kg) + 6.25 x height (cm) – 5 x age (y) + 5 (kcal / day)
  • For women: 10 x weight (kg) + 6.25 x height (cm) – 5 x age (y) -161 (kcal / day)

Then once you have this BMR determined, you must multiply it by one of the following values that apply most to your activity level:

  • Sedentary = 1.2
  • Lightly active = 1.375
  • Moderately active = 1.550
  • Very active = 1.725
  • Extra active = 1.9

So, the TDEE is found in our calculator on this page by going through the equation based on gender and then multiplication based on activity level.

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For the finding of Total Daily Expenditure, the Mifflin St. Jeor calculation is the gold standard in the industry.

Is The TDEE calculator Accurate?

TDEE calculation is accurate as an estimate and will not give the same results you would get from a nutrition professional.

One reason this is stated as an estimate is that your total daily energy expenditure will change daily, as opposed to other calculations like basal metabolic rate, which remains rather constant.

And, it is always going to be most accurate when a professional is doing the calculation of any fitness and nutrition calculation.

With that said the calculators are relatively accurate and can help for a general idea of how many calories you burn on an average day based on your schedule.

You can use these numbers to adjust your calories and reach the goals you set, which we will discuss next.

How Can I Use My Total Daily Expenditure To Gain Weight?

If your goal is to gain weight over time, then knowing a close estimate of your TDEE will allow you to adjust your calorie intake to gain weight.

To do this, typically, you will want to get your TDEE number and then add 500 calories to allow your body to gain weight, but also not too much weight to where you gain a lot of fat.

This is a common goal in fitness for people wanting to put on muscle mass, and this is the ideal way for you to start that goal.

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Adding 500 calories over your TDEE will allow you to prioritize adding lean body mass over adding more fat mass. Either way, your BMI will increase, which is not always bad.

Over time, adding lean body mass will also increase your total daily expenditure, and you might have to adjust for the added weight afterward.

So, if your TDEE is 2,800 calories, you must get 3,300 calories.

This would allow you to gain weight and lessen the amount of fat gained.

How Can I Use My Total Daily Expenditure To Lose Weight?

This goal is a bit more common in fitness and wellness. If you are looking for weight loss tips, this is technically all you will need to do to lose weight.

We will use the same number of calories we used for gaining weight, but to lose weight, we will shoot for about 500 calories less than your TDEE.

So, if your TDEE is calculated at 2,800 calories, you should aim to take only 2,300 calories at the most and maybe even take off fewer calories to avoid losing valuable muscle mass.

So, at the most, we should be taking off 500 calories, but to ensure we avoid losing lean body weight, we can even shoot for a percentage like 10 – 20% of total daily expenditure.

This is the safest way to lose weight and you can use the TDEE to do this effectively.

How Else Can I Lose Weight?

There are ways to increase your daily energy expenditure to burn more calories effectively throughout the day.

The most popular way is through exercise and, thus, burning more calories through a physical activity during your day.

But, this might not be realistic in all scenarios, and you might cause extra stress to your body in the long run.

So, another way to burn more calories is by changing non-exercise activity thermogenesis, or NEAT.

The factors that go into NEAT are outside exercise but may still involve light activity.

To increase the non-exercise activity thermogenesis, you will aim to do these things:

  • Choosing walking over driving when the distances are shorter
  • Parking your car further away from the entrance when you are out shopping
  • Doing more work around the house or in your yard

Doing these three activities or other little ways to move a tad more can easily increase calorie burn throughout the day.

You can also add more muscle mass and things like that to increase your basal metabolic rate or BMR.

We hope the total daily expenditure calculator has somehow helped you with your fitness goals.

Make sure to check out our other calculators here on PTPioneer!

Tyler Read - Certified Personal Trainer with PTPioneer

Tyler Read


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