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The Harris Benedict Equation: Understanding Your Basal Metabolic Rate

Updated: May 16, 2023


Harris Benedict Equation for BMR, calculate calories, TDEE

The Harris-Benedict Equation is a popular method used by dietitians and nutritionists to determine an individual’s Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). BMR is the minimum amount of energy that a person needs to function at rest and is an important factor in determining a person’s daily caloric needs. Understanding your BMR can help you make informed decisions about your diet and exercise routine, and can help you achieve your health and fitness goals.



What is the Harris-Benedict Equation?


The Harris-Benedict Equation is a formula that takes into account a person’s height, weight, age, and sex to estimate their BMR. The formula was developed by Dr. Harris and Dr. Benedict in 1919 and has since been widely used in the field of nutrition.


The equation is as follows:

For Men: BMR = 66 + (6.2 x weight in pounds) + (12.7 x height in inches) - (6.76 x age in years)

For Women: BMR = 655 + (4.35 x weight in pounds) + (4.7 x height in inches) - (4.7 x age in years)


Example of the Harris-Benedict Equation

Let’s say you are a 35-year-old woman who weighs 150 pounds and is 5’6” tall. To determine your BMR using the Harris-Benedict Equation, you would need to first convert your weight to pounds and your height to inches.


150 pounds x 0.45 = 68 kg, 150 cm x 0.39 = 59 inches


Next, plug your numbers into the formula:

BMR = 655 + (4.35 x 68) + (4.7 x 59) - (4.7 x 35) BMR = 655 + 298.8 + 279.3 - 162.5 BMR = 1279.6


So, the BMR of a 35-year-old woman weighing 150 pounds and 5’6” tall is approximately 1279.6 calories.


Harris-benedict equation male


The Harris-Benedict equation is a formula used to estimate the Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR), which represents the number of calories a person needs to maintain basic bodily functions at rest.


Here is the Harris-Benedict equation for males: BMR (kcal/day) = 66 + (6.23 × weight in pounds) + (12.7 × height in inches) - (6.8 × age in years) Note that weight should be in pounds, height in inches, and age in years. This equation provides an estimate of the calories needed for the basal metabolic rate and does not take into account physical activity or other factors that may affect total daily energy expenditure.


The harris-benedict equation for female


The Harris-Benedict equation is a formula used to estimate the Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR), which represents the number of calories a person needs to maintain basic bodily functions at rest. The original equation was developed separately for males and females.


Here is the Harris-Benedict equation for females:

BMR (kcal/day) = 655 + (4.35 × weight in pounds) + (4.7 × height in inches) - (4.7 × age in years)

Note that weight should be in pounds, height in inches, and age in years. This equation provides an estimate of the calories needed for the basal metabolic rate and does not take into account physical activity or other factors that may affect total daily energy expenditure.

Harris-benedict equation revised


The Harris-Benedict equation has been revised over the years to improve its accuracy. The most commonly used revised version is the Mifflin-St. Jeor equation, which provides a more accurate estimate of basal metabolic rate.


Here are the revised equations for both males and females: For males: BMR (kcal/day) = 10 × weight (kg) + 6.25 × height (cm) - 5 × age (years) + 5 For females: BMR (kcal/day) = 10 × weight (kg) + 6.25 × height (cm) - 5 × age (years) - 161 In these equations, weight should be in kilograms, height in centimeters, and age in years. The revised Mifflin-St. Jeor equation takes into account the individual's sex, providing separate formulas for males and females. However, it's important to note that even these revised equations provide estimates and may not perfectly reflect an individual's metabolic rate. Factors such as muscle mass, body composition, and overall health can also influence a person's calorie needs.


Harris-benedict equation vs mifflin-st Jeor

The Harris-Benedict equation and the Mifflin-St. Jeor equations are both used to estimate the Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR), which represents the number of calories a person needs to maintain basic bodily functions at rest. However, there are some differences between the two equations:

  1. Formulas: The original Harris-Benedict equation has separate formulas for males and females, while the Mifflin-St. Jeor equation also has separate formulas for males and females.

  2. Accuracy: The Mifflin-St. Jeor equation is considered to be slightly more accurate than the Harris-Benedict equation, especially in certain populations. It was developed based on a larger and more diverse sample of individuals.

  3. Weight and height units: The Harris-Benedict equation typically uses weight in pounds and height in inches, while the Mifflin-St. Jeor equation uses weight in kilograms and height in centimeters. This aligns with the metric system, which is more commonly used in scientific measurements.

  4. Constant term: The constant term in the Harris-Benedict equation is 66 for males and 655 for females, while the constant term in the Mifflin-St. Jeor equation is 5 for both males and females.

It's important to note that both equations provide estimates of BMR and may not perfectly reflect an individual's metabolic rate. Factors such as muscle mass, body composition, and overall health can also influence a person's calorie needs.


Conclusion

The Harris-Benedict Equation is a simple and effective way to determine your BMR and estimate your daily caloric needs. Understanding your BMR can help you make informed decisions about your diet and exercise routine, and can help you achieve your health and fitness goals. If you are looking for a personalized nutrition plan, it is recommended to work with a registered dietitian or nutritionist.


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