How Many Calories Should a Man Have Each Day?

A man's daily calorie intake is influenced by his age and activity levels, as well as his weight and other health factors. If you are trying to lose weight, you'll obviously need to intake fewer calories than the daily recommended calories for a healthy man with an "on target" weight.

Assessing Your Activity

Daily calorie intake is different for men of differing ages and activity levels. There are three activity levels to consider when choosing which daily calorie limit suits your needs.

A "sedentary" lifestyle means that you do not exercise regularly and only participate in the light activity that is crucial for day-to-day life. A person who is "moderately active" completes enough daily exercise to equal about one-and-a half to three miles of walking every day. An "active" lifestyle means that you actively exercise and do enough physical activities to equal walking more than three miles per day.

Ages 19 to 30

A man between the ages of 19 and 30 who leads a sedentary lifestyle should eat no more than 2,400 calories a day. If you are fall into the "moderately active" category, eat between 2,600 and 2,800 calories a day, and if you are active or an athlete, eat roughly 2,800 to 3,000 calories a day.

Ages 31 to 50

As you age, reduce your caloric intake slightly as you stop growing and your metabolism slows. Therefore, a man age 31 to 50 who leads a sedentary lifestyle should eat about 2,200 calories a day to maintain his current weight. If you are moderately active, aim for 2,400 to 2,600 calories a day. Men who are active and compete in athletics can still eat approximately 2,800 calories and 3,000 calories a day and avoid gaining weight.

Age 50+

After a man turns 50, his calorie intake decreases even more. Consume only 2,000 calories a day if you are sedentary. If you are moderately active, eat between 2,200 to 2,400 calories a day, and if you are active---and this means more than golfing---eat between 2,400 to 2,800 calories a day to maintain your current weight.

Cutting Calories

Of course, if you need to lose weight, you should subtract from these guidelines. Consult your physician as to the optimal calorie count (and accompanying exercise) needed to achieve your goal. Avoid greasy and fried foods, and eat lean protein (such as poultry and fish), vegetables and high-fibre grains and breads. Select low-calorie options for dessert, such as fruit or low-fat pudding. Eat smaller portions, read food labels, and don't feel that you need to eat everything on your plate.

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About the Author

Susan Elliott teaches studio art and creative writing to home schooled students. She is a graduate of Northwest Arkansas Community College and the Memphis School of Preaching Student Wives Program. She has written for Christian Woman Magazine and Virtuous Magazine. When she's not writing, she is painting or making costumes.