If you decide to exercise to build muscle mass, want to lose weight, or just start a healthy lifestyle, start counting calories. By correctly calculating consumption rates and drawing up a nutrition plan, you can achieve your goal faster and safer for your health. In this article, we will tell you how many calories you need to lose weight, how to correctly calculate the calorie content of dishes for building muscle mass, and why cereals need to be weighed before cooking.


A calorie is a unit of heat energy produced during the digestion of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. If we receive more of them than we spend, there is a surplus; if less, there is a deficit.
When losing weight, you need to ensure a calorie deficit, then the body will be forced to spend its reserves, removing excess fat. When working on mass, a surplus is important to eliminate the risk of burning the already existing muscle mass and provide the right amount of energy and protein for muscle growth. Counting calories is also useful for those who lead a healthy lifestyle in order to get a balanced diet, consisting of a sufficient amount of proteins, fats and carbohydrates.


To calculate the calorie content of the product, use the scales and ready-made calorie tables. How to use all this and how to count calories in a particular dish, we will tell further with examples.

Nutrient Calories

Nutrients are the substances from which we get energy. There are three main groups: proteins, fats and carbohydrates (BJU). Also, the calorie content of the dish is affected by the fiber and alcohol contained in it. The table below shows the exact calculation of calories for each nutrient.

 Type of nutrient, 1 g     Calorie content, kcal
     Squirrels      4
     Carbohydrates      4
     Fats 9
     Cellulose 1.5


That is, the calorie content of a product weighing 100 grams, consisting of 30 grams of protein, 60 grams of carbohydrates and 10 grams of fat, will be 30 * 4 + 60 * 4 + 10 * 9 = 450 kcal.

Dry and raw product

If you want to count calories correctly, consider the weight of the dry product, as it is indicated in all basic tables. If this option is not for you and you eat ready-made meals, then weigh the finished product. Always count in the same way, you should not count one dish in finished form, and the other in raw.

Why is it so important? The reason is in physical and chemical processes. If you take 100 g of dry buckwheat and cook porridge from it in water without sugar, depending on the amount of water added, it will turn into 200-300 g of boiled buckwheat. Will the calorie content of the dish change? No, but in 100 g of the finished dish it will be lower. The opposite situation occurs when frying meat: it does not increase, but rather shrinks, therefore, for example, the calorie content of 100 g of raw and 70 g of fried breast will be the same (although here you need to additionally take into account the number of calories contained in frying oil).

Nuances when weighing products

  • Consider the weight of the purified ingredient. Weigh an apple without a stalk, a banana without a peel, meat without a skin, etc.
  • Weigh food before cooking. Why this is important for the correct calculation of KBJU, we have already described above.
  • Weigh everything you eat and drink. The only exception is water. Tea, especially with sugar, alcohol, milk – all contain a certain amount of calories.

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