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 Post subject: TDEE calculator that does not use gender?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2015 2:50 am 
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Naked Under Apron
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Asking for a friend - this friend of mine is trans and going on testosterone. They are trying to calculate their caloric needs but so far, all calculators rely on "gender". Do you guys know a way to determine caloric needs based on measurable inputs like muscle mass / body fat, regardless of sex or gender?


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 Post subject: Re: TDEE calculator that does not use gender?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2015 8:11 am 
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A sort of quick and dirty calculation that many dietitians use in practice is 25 - 30 kcal/kg. Is there a reason your friend needs a very precise answer?

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 Post subject: Re: TDEE calculator that does not use gender?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2015 8:20 am 
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They lift weights, and they want to hit a particular calorie deficit to lose fat without hindering their performance too much.

So dietiticans don't typically differentiate between genders? That's interesting, all the online calculators I've seen so far ask for it even when they also ask for your weight.


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 Post subject: Re: TDEE calculator that does not use gender?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2015 3:54 pm 
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yeah, we kind of realize that your exact amount of calories doesn't matter all that much. The best way to tell if you're eating the right amount is to monitor your weight, but then there can also be other factors affecting that, too. The gold standard calculation that I use sometimes factors in gender and age, but the different between genders is about 150 calories, which isn't really a big deal and usually works out to something similar to 25-30kcal/kg anyway.

the most truly accurate way would be to have your co2 output measured in a hospital or lab. Have your friend try a few different calculations. Probably none of them are going to be more than 200 calories off from each other. In a clinical setting even on a tube feeding, we get as close as we can to an accurate estimated needs assessment and then monitor their weight and visual appearance to make sure they are doing ok.

In my opinion there's no reason to try to be that specific with your calories. even for weight loss and exercise, they should just get a good estimate and see what works for them.

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 Post subject: Re: TDEE calculator that does not use gender?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 21, 2015 2:08 am 
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Thank you for the explanation!


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 Post subject: Re: TDEE calculator that does not use gender?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 23, 2015 12:53 pm 
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Yeah, the only reason for gender is those with higher testosterone will have more muscle mass. If your friend hasn't been on testosterone for years, then the female estimate would be closer to reality. I know I read something about trans athletes and how muscle mass affects performance and is it 'fair' to have someone who was born a man to compete as a woman. The person in question had been on female hormones for many years so it was determined that any advantage that previously naturally having male hormones offered were long gone.

And your friend certainly will gain muscle mass but it takes time to do that so eventually the male calculator would be closer to reality.

But like IDJI states, you don't have to be that specific.

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 Post subject: Re: TDEE calculator that does not use gender?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 23, 2015 5:04 pm 
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Some people can have a pretty big deficit and still perform at a high level, others can't have any deficit (ie can't be losing weight) if they want to perform their best. The performance piece is so subjective and not really something a calculator could figure out. I can personally put in muscle even when losing 2+ pounds a week - that's really unusual I think (and I'm a woman). I think the types of food you're eating can also really affect performance, but it's also subjective.


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 Post subject: Re: TDEE calculator that does not use gender?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 23, 2015 5:07 pm 
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Some people can have a pretty big deficit and still perform at a high level, others can't have any deficit (ie can't be losing weight) if they want to perform their best. The performance piece is so subjective and not really something a calculator could figure out. I can personally put in muscle even when losing 2+ pounds a week - that's really unusual I think (and I'm a woman). I think the types of food you're eating can also really affect performance, but it's also subjective.


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 Post subject: Re: TDEE calculator that does not use gender?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 24, 2015 5:05 pm 
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Well if someone is just starting out with weight training (first year), it is definitely possible to gain muscle and lose weight. Also, higher weights help with this (someone who has 10 lbs to lose will lose fat more slowly than someone who is 100 lbs overweight). It is a well known beginner phenomenon. If you can do that after years of training, it would be highly unusual even among men.

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 Post subject: Re: TDEE calculator that does not use gender?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2015 10:33 pm 
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I am lucky enough that the phenomenon of easy muscle building never seems to go away, but certainly my weight loss will eventually slow or stop.


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