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Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR)

What is Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR)

Resting metabolic rate (RMR) is the measurement of how much energy (calories) is required to maintain basic body functions such as heartbeat, breathing, and maintenance of body heat while you are in a state of rest. It is the most accurate way to determine your individual caloric need per day.

Exercise and movement are both important for overall health, but they actually make up a relatively low percentage of total calories burned per day when compared to your resting metabolic rate!





Why Test RMR for

Nutritional Counseling?

Daily caloric needs are normally estimated through calculated formulas.

(Harris Benedict, Miffin, etc)

These calculations are close, but not always accurate, and being off even by a hundred calories a day can lead to weight gain in the long run.

Performing the Test and Getting Accurate Results

It is desirable to measure a person’s metabolic rate at a true resting level.
To ensure one is at rest, we recommend the following preparation:


  1. Avoid eating a large meal 4 hours before the test.

  2. Avoid exercising before testing.

  3. If possible, avoid the use of stimulants such as caffeine prior to testing.

  4. During the test it is important relax as much as possible.

  5. Keep lips sealed lightly around the mouthpiece. It is important that all the air breathed out is analyzed.

The test is easy and comfortable, and it only takes about 10 minutes to complete. The client sits comfortably in a chair while breathing normally through a hose that is connected to the Korr machine. A nose clip is placed to close the nostrils to ensure that all breaths in and out are being measured through the hose.


Benefits of RMR Testing

Pinpoint caloric weight loss zone
When restricting calories, knowing a baseline RMR is invaluable. KORR Metabolic Analyzers calculate a “weight loss zone” for a healthy 1 ½ pound a week weight loss. Unique adjustments can then be made if necessary.


Stabilize weight loss
Regardless of the method used to lose weight, a patient’s RMR will decrease after weight loss. The decrease is actually below the level predicted by fat-free mass (FFM). Although the cause is unclear, it appears that in most cases, if a patient can maintain his new weight for 6 months, his RMR will eventually rise to the expected level. Pinpointing the precise number of calories necessary to maintain is key to surviving this crucial period.

Detection and Diagnosis of hypo-metabolism
Like mentioned above, a daily caloric goal can be calculated with a few statistics plugged into an equation. This would give a person an approximate caloric goal for a day, assuming everything is normal. If your RMR results in a number drastically different than the expected number, then something is off with your metabolism. Dietary adjustments are needed, and other things need to be evaluated like thyroid and adrenal function.

Assess the effect of weight loss treatment on metabolism
Once calories are restricted, medications are introduced, or an exercise plan has been implemented, the human body will respond. The caloric goals of a dietary plan will rarely sustain a patient throughout an entire weight loss regimen. The result is the dreaded “plateau.” Periodic assessment of RMR will show the effects of the treatments and allow adjustments to the caloric goals.

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