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Difference between Active Calories and Total Calories

Difference between Active Calories and Total Calories

Do you ever wonder why the number of calories listed on nutrition labels can sometimes vary from your daily calorie tracking app? Many people assume that it’s because the food industry is trying to trick us, but actually, the difference between those two numbers comes down to how they are calculated. To truly understand our caloric intake and expenditure each day, we need to understand the distinction between active and total calories. Gaining an understanding of what each type of calorie encompasses can help us make more informed decisions about our eating habits and lead us toward healthier lifestyles. In this blog post log into more detail below along with helpful advice, we’ll explore both active and total calories in depth explaining why they matter and how they can affect our goals – whatever they may be!

What are Active Calories?

Active Calories are an important part of understanding your body’s energy levels. Active Calories are the calories burned during physical activity, such as jogging, walking, or playing sports. It is different from Basal Metabolic Rate (BRM) calories which are those burned just from everyday activities like breathing and lingering.

Active Calories provide information about how much physical activity actually contributes to overall energy expenditure. Active Calories are therefore a valuable source of insight for health-conscious individuals looking to optimize their workout routines or make dietary changes for improved performance and overall well-being.

What are Total Calories?

Total calories is a measurement used to measure how much energy our body requires daily based on factors such as age, gender, activity level, and body size. Total calories are calculated by combining the amount of energy used at rest (resting metabolic rate or RMR) with the amount of energy spent during activity (activity thermogenesis or AT).

Total calories can help inform an individual’s diet choices and allow them to create a customized meal plan that reflects their individual needs. Total calorie consumption is an important indicator of overall health and well-being, so it is important to monitor total calorie intake and make informed decisions when selecting foods to consume.

Difference between Active Calories and Total Calories

Active Calories and Total Calories are key terms in better understanding your energy output. Active Calories are the number of Calories burned through any activity such as exercise or movement. Active Calories add on to the regular calorie intake and thus increase the rate at which you burn calories. Therefore, Active Calories reflect only the energy output during physical activity while Total Calories refer to both Active Calories and the base level of energy at rest. Paying attention to both Active and Total Calories can help you monitor your metabolic rate and dietary habits for a healthier lifestyle.


The bottom line is that active calories are the number of calories you burn through intentional exercise, while total calories include the calories you burn just by being alive and doing everyday activities. Because active calorie tracking requires more effort, it may not be the best method for everyone. However, if you’re looking to lose weight or improve your fitness level, tracking your active calories can give you a better idea of how much activity you need to do to reach your goals.

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