Harris-Benedict Equation

Jun 8 2021

Harris-Benedict Equation

What is the Harris-Benedict Formula?

The Harris-Benedict formula calculates daily calorie needs by multiplying your BMR by your exercise level. The more active you are, the higher the number you multiply your BMR by.

Little to no exercise BMR x 1.2
Light exercise (1-3 times per week) BMR x 1.375
Moderate exercise (3-5 times per week) BMR x 1.55
Heavy exercise (6-7 times per week) BMR x 1.725
Extremely heavy exercise (more than 7 times per week + physical job) BMR x 1.9


We all have different body types, and one shortcoming of the Harris-Benedict formula is that it treats all bodies the same. This formula fails to consider leaner, more muscular individuals by underestimating the number of calories needed. Similarly, and on the opposite end of the spectrum, the number of calories needed for overweight individuals is overestimated.

Who is Harris-Benedict Equation Best for?

The Harris-Benedict equation is the most beneficial calculation for the average person trying to maintain an acceptable body weight or that wants to shed a few pounds while dieting.

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