💤 Learn, “4 types of ways you burn calories while sleeping”

 In benefits, Corporate Wellness, employee wellness

Hi – Everyone!

I hope everyone is well during these COVID-19 times. I thought today we would learn a bit about BMR and how it impacts calorie expenditure during sleep. Just a quick reminder, we’re providing COVID-19 Corporate support programs for the next few weeks. Learn More (Here).


So I started with a subject that weighs 165 lbs and carries 11.6% body fat. He carries 19.14lbs off fat (165 * 0.116) and 145.86 lbs of lean tissue.

The basal metabolic rate (BMR), is the amount of energy that the body expends to perform basic bodily functions (i.e. organ functioning, breathing, digestion, etc.). BMR is lowest during sleep and it is an estimate of the numbers of calories burned over a 24-hour period while lying down, but not sleeping. 

To calculate total daily caloric expenditure or metabolic rate, this requires calculating BMR and adding the caloric cost of all the activities engaged throughout the day. The amount of energy, or calories, expended in a day depends on many factors, including diet and physical activity. A rough estimate of BMR is calculated by using the following formula for a male :1 × Body weight in kilograms ×24 hours. For the subject the BMR is 1,800 (1 x (165/2.2) x 24). Since the subject falls into the lean category, the multiplier of 1.0 is used, requiring 75 calories per hour. 

The hour-by-hour approach is the best way to estimate your daily calorie needs, but it is also the most involved.  The following table outlines the daily caloric needs for the subject during training days

Hour Activity % of BMR Calories Used
1 sleeping -20% 60
2 sleeping -20% 60
3 sleeping -20% 60
4 sleeping -20% 60
5 sleeping -20% 60
6 sleeping -20% 60
7 sleeping -20% 60
8 sleeping -20% 60
9 Very light 200% 150
10 Very light 200% 150
11 Very light 200% 150
12 Very light 200% 150
13 Very light 200% 150
14 Very light 200% 150
15 Very light 200% 150
16 Very light 200% 150
17 moderate 400% 300
18 Exceptionally heavy 600% 450
19 Exceptionally heavy 600% 450
20 lying down 0% 75
21 Very light 200% 150
22 Very light 200% 150
23 Very light 200% 150
24 Very light 200% 150
Total daily calories 3195


This assumes 8 hours sleep per day, 8 hours of work (very light), one hour of relaxing (lying down), 2 hours of exercise (exceptionally heavy), and 4 more hours of other activities (cooking, cleaning, etc.).  This gives an average 160% activity level. Using the reference chart on page 410 of the textbook, taking the average between 160 and 170 male at a 165% average daily activity level, the estimate is that the subject will require 2,673 calories per day. 

For a competition day, the two hours of activity increase from exceptionally heavy to sport and therefore require 3,345 calories.

For a non-training day, the two hours of activity have been replaced with 2 hours of very light activity. These days require 2,595 calories. 

Given that the subject is in the offseason and the goal is to lose fat, this requires a daily caloric decrease of 3-4 calories per lean body mass. The lean tissue for the subject is approximately 146 lbs; multiplied by 4 calories results in a decrease of 584 calories per day. Therefore, he will consume 2,611 calories per day (3195-584).

If you’ve any questions, please feel free to reach out to our team! (Here).


EP Health Wellness Team



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