If it is your goal to lose weight, you should reduce your total calorie intake by about 500 calories per day. This equates to an intake of about 1,200-1,400 calories per day for women (or about 1,800 calories per day for men), depending on height, weight and activity level.
How many calories per meal to lose weight?
At dinnertime, women should aim to eat between 300-400 calories, while men should limit themselves to 400-500 calories (adding some extra protein, whole grains or good fats). Make sure there is a lean protein source (such as chicken, fish, legumes, tofu, beef or eggs) and aim for at least 2-3 servings of vegetables. Add a salad with more greens (such as arugula, spinach, lettuce), cherry tomatoes and chopped cucumber, if needed, to increase the low calorie vegetable content.
Recommended exercise per week
While what you eat is critical to weight loss, increasing physical activity and exercise will also help you reach your goal, especially if you tend to be sedentary and sit all day at work. Incidental exercise, such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator or parking a block away from where you need to go, is a good idea. Physical activity guidelines recommend (for good health) that we be active most days and accumulate 2.5 to 5 hours of moderate-intensity physical activity (or 1.25 to 2.5 hours of vigorous intensity) each week. It is also important to include muscle-strengthening activities at least two days a week. Read on for 8 dinner ideas with less than 400 calories per serving.
- Peri Peri Chicken and Zoodle Salad
Prepare this gluten-free peri peri and zoodle chicken salad the night before so the chicken soaks up all the sauce.
- Sticky pork kabobs with wombok salad
This easy Asian sticky pork and wombok recipe is perfect for lunch or dinner and is low in calories. Let it marinate as long as you can for maximum flavor.
- Breaded pork with Asian slaw
This low-calorie pork escalope becomes a colorful family meal when served with vibrant Chinese cabbage, red cabbage and apple slaw.
- Pumpkin and chickpea pizza with shrimp
This gluten-free pizza recipe will satisfy your cravings while being a little fancy at the same time. Delicious shrimp on a pumpkin and chickpea pizza base is all you need to create the dinner of your dreams.
- Black rice, shrimp and asparagus stir-fry
This colorful stir-fry is a healthy combination of prawns, crunchy vegetables and antioxidant-rich black rice.
- Healthy Salmon and Zucchini Salad with Almond Dressing
Ready in 20 minutes, this fresh salmon salad is an easy dinner with great leftovers for the next day.
- Barramundi with pumpkin, carrots and lentils
This healthy dinner includes sustainably raised Australian barramundi and root vegetables, all packed with potent macro-nutrients to help you stay active.
- Spicy shrimp tacos with bean salad
Using nutrient-packed vegetables like beans and tomatoes to bulk up these low-calorie tacos makes them just as delicious and satisfying as regular tacos.