How to Track Calories with the Apple Watch

Posted by Melissa Holt on November 5, 2018
apple watch track calories

For those of us with an eye on body weight, tracking calorie intake and output can be a crucial component in reaching our goals. So what’s the best way to get an idea of how many calories you should consume in a day? Well, you could use a TDEE (Total Daily Energy Expenditure) calculator like this one, which lets you plug in your stats to get an estimate of how much you should eat to maintain your weight (or change it!).
But if you’ve got an Apple Watch, you can actually check your stats on your paired iPhone to see that same info, which you may find to be more accurate since it’s tracking your actual activity levels rather than relying on estimates. So here’s how you can track calories using your Apple Watch, which will then help you determine goals for caloric intake.

Apple Watch Calorie Tracker

iphone calories

  1. On the iPhone that’s paired to your Apple Watch, open the Health app.
  2. Tap on the “Today” tab if you’re not already there.
  3. Check the numbers for “Active Energy” (the calories you’ve burned while working out) and “Resting Energy” (the calories you’ve burned at rest). If you add those together, you’ll get a good estimate for the total number of calories you’re burning each day and then you can adjust your diet as necessary to reach your goal of losing, gaining, or maintaining weight. You can also use the calendar at the top of the screen to view this information for any previous days.

If you’d like a more comprehensive explanation for what Apple means by “Resting” or “Active,” the health app will show you a description if you tap on either of those categories.
iphone calories active resting
So for example, if I were as active every day as I was on October 25th, my Apple Watch thinks I could consume almost 2600 calories per day and still maintain my weight. (Geez, I want to be that busy so I can actually eat that much!) Of course, if you would like to be even more accurate with these numbers, you could add up a week’s worth and divide by seven to use an average of how you performed over the course of that week.
Finally, it’s important to know that your Watch is using the age, height, weight, and gender info that you’ve provided to calculate these numbers. To make sure that information is correct, or to change it as your weight or age changes, launch the Apple Watch app on your iPhone and head to My Watch > Health > Edit.
iphone apple watch health stats
Yeah, okay, I blurred out my weight. I’m not ashamed of it, but still…telling a bunch of folks on the Internet what I weigh just feels weird somehow. So sue me.

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