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Nutrition | Creating a Nutrition Plan

Whether your goal is to lose, gain or maintain weight, using the Virtuagym app, you can create a nutrition plan to help you achieve your objective. Creating your new plan involves four quick steps; update your personal biometric data, select your lifestyle type, outline your personal nutrition goal and then choose the best nutrition plan to suit your needs!


Step 1 - Personal Data

Updating your personal data ensures your nutrition recommendations and the overall plan suggested is customized and based on your biometrics. Here, you fill in your gender, age, height and weight. The number of calories you are recommended to consume will depend on these factors and your nutrition goal. Your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) will be explained later in this article, but it is also calculated based on this data.

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Gender 
Calorie requirements are higher for men than for women. This difference is attributed to the fact that men are usually heavier and, therefore, burn more calories. In the instance that a man and a woman are of the same height and weight, the higher calorie requirement for a man stems from anatomical differences. Men are inherently more muscular than women and have less body fat. Muscle mass burns more calories than fat so men need more calories than women in order to perform the same activities or simply to keep the body alive.

Age
Recommended calorie intake is also age-dependent. This is because the speed of our metabolism slows down as we get older, meaning fewer calories are needed by the body. Therefore, your age is a relevant factor to be able to accurately calculate your daily caloric needs.

Height and Weight
Your height and current weight also impact the number of daily calories required for you to lose, maintain or gain weight. The taller you are and the more weight you carry, the higher your calorie requirements.

We take all of the above factors into account when calculating the right nutrition plan for you, so please ensure the data you enter is correct. Keep in mind you can always change this information and a new nutrition plan will be generated for you according to those changes.

Step 2 - Lifestyle Information

General information about your lifestyle is considered important when calculating the energy needed by your body at rest and the total amount of energy needed by your body on a daily basis.

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Your total energy need is determined by both your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) and your Physical Activity Level (PAL). The BMR represents your energy consumption while at rest and PAL value is the average degree of physical activity per day. To estimate your BMR, Virtuagym uses the James and Schofield method that is widely used in Nutrition sciences (James and Schofield 1990).

Total Energy Need = BMR X PAL

For further explanation, formulas and examples please see the How does Virtuagym calculate the BMR and the PAL value? article.

Step 3 - Personal Goal

Next, you are asked to define your personal goal as either weight loss, weight maintenance or weight gain.

We then take the previously calculated energy consumption at rest for your body and combine this with information about your sleep, work and lifestyle patterns. Depending on your goal, a calorie amount will either be added or removed from this value to enable you to reach your goals.

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Weight Loss
If your goal is to lose weight, calories will be deducted from your total energy needs. At Virtuagym, we let you choose the pace at which you want to achieve your results.

Options include:

1kg a week (depending on the amount of weight you would like to lose - this option might not be available)
0.5 kg a week (recommended)
0.25 kg a week
0.13 kg a week (depending on the amount of weight you would like to lose - this option might not be available)

To achieve your goal, we recommend weight loss of 0.5 kg a week to encourage a healthy approach to weight loss that is safe for your body. To burn 1kg of fat, the body needs to burn an extra 7000 kcals. Therefore to lose 0.5kg, an extra 3500 kcals would need to be burned (7000 (1kg) : 2 = 3500 (0.5kg)). With this in mind, we deduct 500 kcals from your calorie intake per day, which amounts to a weekly reduction of 3500 kcal, which would result in 0.5kg of weight loss per week.

The amount of calories deducted daily depends on the pace at which you want to achieve your goal.

Weight Maintenance
To maintain your weight, no calories will be deducted or added to your total energy needed.

Weight Gain
To gain weight, calories will be added to your total energy needs per day. Similarly to weight loss, you can choose the pace at which you want to achieve your goals.

Options include:

0.25 kg a week (recommended)
0.17 kg a week
0.13 kg a week

As explained above, 1kg of fat equals approximately 7000 kcal. Therefore, to gain 1kg a week, an extra 7000 kcal needs to be consumed every seven days. If your goal is to gain 0.25 kg a week, for example, an extra 250 kcal a day will be added to your recommended daily intake to help you achieve your target. Again, the amount of calories added daily depends on the pace at which you want to achieve your goal.

 

Step 4 - Nutrient Plan

In the last step, you are asked to choose a nutrition ¨plan type¨ to determine the ratio of macronutrients in your diet (carbohydrates, proteins and fats). Macronutrients are required to maintain our health and the normal function of the body, however, their proportions differ depending on your diet plan. You can either choose a plan type from the list or add customized ratios according to your preference. If you need more guidance, please see our Macronutrients and Different Plan Types article.

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Plans Offered by Virtuagym:

Weight Loss

Weight Maintenance

Weight Gain

Durable (55/15/30)

Balance (60/10/30)

High Energy (55/10/35)

High Protein (50/25/25)

After Weight-loss (50/20/30)

Athlete (55/10/35)

Low Carb (35/25/40)

Maintain Muscles (50/25/25)

Build Muscle (50/25/25)

Athlete (55/20/25)

Cardio (60/20/20)

Cardio (60/20/20)

Cardio Training (60/20/20)

Athlete (55/20/25)

Custom (chosen by you)

Custom (chosen by you)

Custom (chosen by you)

 


In the parenthesis above you can see the proportions of carbohydrates, protein and fats depending on the plan you choose. If your goal is to lose weight, we recommend the durable plan as it ensures a balance between macronutrients, as well as steady weight-loss. This plan offers a healthy proportion of carbohydrates, protein and fats which increases the likelihood of sticking with your diet for a long time, even after you have achieved your initial weight loss goal. Please see our explanation article if you need more information about macronutrient ratios.

Complete Plan
Finally, the last page shows a complete overview of the nutrition plan that Virtuagym has created for you. Here you can see your BMR, total caloric need and daily calorie advice (excluding exercise) based on the goal that you defined in the previous steps. Proportions of carbohydrates, protein and fats are also shown in a pie chart based on the selected plan type.

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If you click on ‘My Nutrition Plan’, you will be redirected to a page with your diet overview where you can track your food and see your daily and weekly statistics. If your goals change you can also click on ‘New Nutrition Plan’ and a new plan will be created for you.

 

 

 

 

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