Macro calculator and RMR for short people


Hello again, I hope you won’t get fed up of me reaching out to you again for help. I have been reading previous posts on this subject. After my fall last time I have been back on the keto horse and really want to avoid making the same mistakes as I did before. Previously I was trying to do fasting and as a result I probably entered starvation mode and eventually gave up. I don’t want to make the same mistake again and want to ensure I nourish my body well. I don’t eat breakfast but at times I may have a coffee with two spoons of heavy cream. I have used two suggested macro calculators keto gains and Maps both suggesting pretty much similar just a slight differences in protein and fat but with regards to calories pretty much the same. I have applied the one from keto gains for the purpose of this post. I’m 5 foot tall 137 lbs and the recommendation was 1060 calories with 82g protein, 74g fats and 20g carbs. The amounts of calories seems pretty low to me in fact not too far from what o was doing previously. I don’t think I can trust myself to eat intuitively yet. I don’t know what to do. I’m keeping carbs pretty low under 20g. I don’t want to enter starvation and cause a weight stall. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you for reading and advice. Ps I have been managing on 1200 calories so far.


In real life you have two options, you can get your RMR tested, BUT, that’s right then, and it’ll change, OR start tracking with MacroFactor which will tailor itself to your actual TDEE and then you don’t have to worry about it. I’d agree that sounds low, and 1200 would be the LOWEST I’d ever recommend anybody to eat regardless of whether it wasn’t working or not, plenty of ways to increase your TDEE and take care of the extra calories that way until you can build up your RMR.

At my worst (after a lot of different things that wrecked my metabolic rate) I finally got sick of not being able to eat anything and having to resort to starvation calories to lose, I have mine checked, most macro calcs had me around 2300-2600cals, I’m 5’10", lift weights 5-6x a week, do cardio, go for walks etc. I was measured in the low 1700’s! So I started tracking and went to 1400 and TADA, started losing. Took a long time to rebuild it, and that took a lot of changes as well but don’t assume you’ll wind up near what calcs come up with. They’re based on bell curves of other people, like most things.

Note, MacroFactor isn’t a free app, but it’s cheap enough and will cost about the same for a year as having your RMR measured once. That, and it’ll dynamically adapt your TDEE to your expenditure. At first it’ll make the same guesses they all do, but then every week it recalculated based on your daily weigh ins. It then takes the overall trend and makes it’s tweaks based on that, not the day to day fluctuations.


Thank you for that. I will have a look at the calculator I don’t mind paying for something that is recommended. I’m not very active I try to walk daily about 90 min with my dog but it’s just a moderate walk not cardio. I been thinking of starting some weight lifting but think I need to take it as one day at the time. Thank you I will check the calculator.


That’s not bad at all, so many people do less.

Calculators aren’t reliable as they can’t have any idea about your individual body. I mean, sure, some may be good for a starting point if you don’t have any idea about your own needs but there is a change they will be very off. It was simple for me as I looked at calculators and realized NO WAY I could eat so little. I simply ate as little as I could and that worked for me for a while. Then I changed my woe, eventually having mostly satiating food, I don’t have direct control over my macros.

I definitely wouldn’t go nearly that low, not even if I was as short and light as you are. I am 5’4" and I went down to 137lbs eating about 1800 kcal (I mostly just did some walk myself at that time, not even 90 mins every day). it was a short time after fat adaptation, 1800 kcal was super low to my liking, only recently could feel fine with that. It’s me, sure but 1060 kcal? Insanely low. By the way, I can’t eat below 130g protein unless I do a fat fast day (or a fast day but I can’t do that anymore). Other people need some specific fat/protein ratio for some reason (it can be our tastes. I had years when I automatically ate 65% fat and couldn’t change it without very big efforts).

Can’t you do what I did and find some good food choices and timing (nowadays it’s mostly the first one for me though I do my best not to eat before 3pm but it’s very very natural to me so there is no real effort) where the macros automatically fall into place? It was a very long journey for me to drop the amount of my beloved non-satiating items (and not feeling bad about it as that wouldn’t work) but it’s so much better now. I couldn’t enforce macros and be miserable but doing what is easy, most enjoyable and gives me good macros? I can do that :wink:

I have some idea about my energy need since the time when I managed to lose fat (I might have changed a bit since but probably not overly much). If you don’t, it’s tricky especially if you eat very little (1200 is that to me, I am aware it’s the right amount for some people, at least when losing fat) since some time and don’t lose fat (it’s not clear to me if that is the case) as you may have a slowed down metabolism then…
Oh and not everyone loses fat according to calories, some items may interfere (I don’t have this, thankfully, it’s challenging enough without those extra difficulties).

And I can imagine it helps with my case that I never eat very little (I mean, not longer than 1-2 days and even that is quite rare) but I regularly have higher-cal days. They may tell to my body that there is plenty of food, mine most probably tend to raise my metabolism when I eat very much so it may be a safety measure against metabolism slowing when I eat little enough on average to lose fat. I don’t do it consciously, I just can’t eat below 2000 kcal ALL the time… I typically very much enjoy my <2000 kcal days too but I need to get a bit wilder now and then… It may be a need due to my overeating past I never will fully get over but still, it may be useful, I never worry about metabolism slowing and never noticed such a thing (rather the opposite when I ate very much for a while and still didn’t gain).

That sounds good. The initial guess may be off but if one functions simple enough (many people seem to have it more complex, stalls when doing everything the same, certain items interfering, well even circumstances may and do interfere so let’s hope we don’t get more stressed or get less sleep at some point…), yep, that’s how I calculated my own TDEE in the past (my activity was pretty much the same all the time. very low, it was my least inactive time in my adult life. not like my walks and workouts are particularly much in energy usage). It is subject to change but in my case, it didn’t do it much.


Thank you both for your reply and offered advice. I am aware that calories in and calories out is not reliable but when you learning to trust your body it’s something to by. I was researching the subject and some researchers/ doctors recommends calculating protein and fat according to your ideal weight. For my hight they recommended 110g of both protein and fat. This to me seems a lot but then I don’t know really. I have decided it to use the Macro Factor calculator to start until I can trust myself but more. It suggested 1252 calories for a first week with 74 G proteins, 92g fat and 33g carbs. I will be keeping carbs under 20g though. This is just a first week and it’s more than I been taking. If I’m hungry I will increase. I can do this I’m sure. As much as I would love to be as you @Shinita I’m not at that point in my life yet. Thank you @lfod14 for suggesting the calculator. What do you think about ideal weight and protein ratio by the way?


I was going to say shoot for 100g for both protein and fat. I’m 5’2” and currently at 154lbs. My ideal weight is 130? -ish. I’m small boned but have good muscle structure, so I’m assuming the higher end of my height.

All the calculators showed my BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) to be around 1345. I think that’s the same thing as an RMR? Anyway they all had my protein calculated at 90+ grams and my fat about 100g. It was hard trying to stay within the recommended lower calories that us short people are burdened with when you’re eating 100g of fat.

But when your in your first 3-6 months of the diet higher fat is very important to help regulate hunger and become fat adapted. After that you can start lowering daily fat down, so long as it doesn’t sabotage your hunger triggers. You don’t really hurt anything at our size having 90-100g protein vs 70-80g. I wouldn’t worry about that at all. Maybe 200g of protein a day for someone small might introduce other potential problems but that’s not what you’re looking at.

Just focus on getting enough protein to help your body, enough fat to help satiety, and keep those carbs low.

As for calories, I appreciate the thinking that they don’t matter. And possibly when my body is fully functioning well at my ideal weight they really won’t be. But I feel it is different the shorter you are. They do matter in the beginning until we are well adapted to making and burning ketones. I just never let exceeding my calorie limits on any given day destroy me or my plans. I did notice that I started to gain weight again whenever I was more than 200 calories above my BMR. I’m still trying to reconcile that with the calories don’t matter wisdom and figure out what is making them matter with me.

Once I’m at my ideal weight, maybe it will be different because my metabolism will be chenged even further by then? :woman_shrugging:t3: I haven’t fretted obsessively over keeping my calories precise every single day. It has made my journey to ideal weight take longer, but I’m ok with that. I love my new health and diet and I’m still on a downward trajectory, and I’m not easily gaining all that weight back the way that happened on every other diet in this world. That tells me this is the right diet for my particular body. I’m blessed to have discovered that.


Thank you @Just_Juju I’m so happy I managed to stop eating and restart my path towards better health. I’m glad that this time it didn’t take as long as it use to previously and hence minimal damage with regards to weight gain though I felt horrible mentally as I felt I failed again. Saying that I feel super positive to continue and get where I want to be. I think support group is such a big help to me. Because of anxiety i started to isolate myself but today I walked in to the gym and signed up for 6 weeks classes. It’s my local gym and they provide small group coaching up to 5 people. I feel like a winner even just walking there today. I will still continue to do my walks but I been pushed by my daughter and husband to try and become more socially active to try and over come this menopausal anxiety. I made my decision to try the app and see but if I need to eat more then I’ll eat protein and fat and try and keep those carbs as low as possible.

(KM) #8

I have questioned recommendations that use a simple linear scale for us height challenged - floor advantaged? - people. I think about money for a moment. There is a poverty line that is extremely difficult to live below. All of us would be unhappy to lose 20% of our income, but someone who is on the brink simply cannot do that and be okay. At some point there’s a baseline for everyone, and thriving isn’t possible below it. I think energy input is similar; necessary input doesn’t simply ramp down indefinitely based on height, and while as a 5-ft 1-in person I cannot consume similar calories to someone a foot taller than I am, I cannot actually get by on a thousand calories a day, either

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #9

There is no way to calculate your energy expenditure from first principles, you have to measure it.

The most accurate way to measure would be to live in a metabolic chamber, in which your energy expenditure could be precisely determined and the amount of food you ate could be, as well. For some odd reason, most people don’t seem to consider this a useful option, though I have no idea why.

Another option would be to eat an ad libitum diet. Studies have shown that people eating enough to satisfy their hunger tend to have an eating pattern that bears little relationship to their energy needs on a daily basis. However, over any given seven- or eight-day period, researchers say, the match between intake and expenditure is “astonishingly precise.”

Yet despite these studies, t would seem that mistrust of our bodies is one of the greatest gifts of Western medicine. However, do you really think it possible to outwit a system honed by two million years of evolution?

(KM) #10

Yes! That is, the food “scientists” at megacorp inc. have created food- like substances that we will eat ad libitum in much greater quantity than our bodies need.

On a whole food, natural availability diet, no way.

(KM) #11

I think this makes a whole lot of sense (within a diet of proper foods). I think of it like putting gas in my car. I top it up. I drive around, sometimes less, sometimes more. Eventually, my car is going to tell me it’s out of gas. At which point, I fill it up again. I don’t worry morning, noon and night about feeding my car little sips of gas. I do have the convenience of a gas gauge, but even without it, I’d know when it needed more!

(Edith) #12

I think this only works properly if one is eating whole, unprocessed foods. The minute you add frankenfoods to the equation all bets are off.


Thank you for your reply. I been trying to listen to my body and it’s been asking for more protein and fat. I have ignored the calls for carbs. I have increased amounts of protein to almost 100g and fat about the same. I can’t believe how much better I feel for it in such a short time as well and on top of it the scales have moved and I’m now lighter then I been in over 5 years. It makes me feel astonished :hushed:. I been eating more beef and butter or chicken with a skin no breast. I feel fuller and happier as I don’t constantly think of foods.


I like this very much. I’ll try to think of that. I don’t think it’s right to think about food all the time. It probably means I wasn’t feeding my body enough. I’m trying to keep carbs very low now as it helps me to measure my hunger.

(Robin) #15

This is one of my favorite things about low/no carbs.


Thank you for your reply. That is my ultimate goal as I know that processed foods increase my cravings. I know my future is in my own hands. I’m doing very well at the moment but do worry when the next fall will come. I try not to think about it and just cherish how I feel at the moment. I can’t believe what a difference one week makes. I think I was seriously under eating and got myself in to right state. Feeling constantly hungry and thinking about food. Now I eat two satisfying meals, no snacks no fasting at present apart from 18 hours between evening meal and my next meal and this seems to be working ok for now.


There is that. Or if one is like me. I easily overeat on almost any diet I am able to follow (I blame my seriously overeating decades and my smallish energy need. my food is dense too) - though of course, there are things that help (or the opposite). But it’s mostly about macros (or the kind of protein, not all works well), wholeness doesn’t matter for my satiation as far as I know. Carbs and eating as fatty as I desire means overeating - unless I stick to OMAD or other special rules.
And I am pretty sure there are many people who simply don’t have proper satiation effects or they simply keep eating when they get satiated.

But yes, having a good woe helps tremendously. Usually. My SO gets satiated by calories, apparently (he eats whole food I suppose, whatever that is mean, never cared, it always made sense to me to make my own food though of course, very processed items happened too, in small amounts. I can’t even imagine people living mostly on weird things). I am very much different, my food choices matter A LOT. Well my problem lately was that I can’t use fat as a lever, I eat whatever comes with my protein and that’s too much. I don’t need all that fat (for satiation, at least. I just can’t eat lean stuff) but it is mixed with my protein and I do need the latter. Good thing I rediscovered fat fast… Maybe I have a chance. Fat fast helps me in fat minimalization and have all kinds of benefits.
And there are people with an even smaller energy need, I am sure it’s tricky sometimes. To lose fat but maybe even to maintain.

Wonderful! :slight_smile: But if you were hungry and your body wanted more fat and protein, why didn’t you give them to it right away? It may be a rhetorical question, I know not everyone is a hedonist who knows their body won’t tolerate such things (and why would I do that anyway, I don’t know)… But it’s odd to me, not listening to the body when it’s very adamant about something vital. Mine very quickly corrected my attitude when I was desperate and tried to force things :smiley: Sigh. We need to work together, my body and me.

Most probably. I think about food “all the time” (not literally but I do it a lot) either way but it’s different when it’s just interest and habit and as I am normally nicely satiated and satisfied, I don’t eat, just cook or plan or write or read about food…
But when I need food (or not but I have been fasting since days), that’s different and feels much worse. It usually comes with an urge to eat though so I eat.