Increasing exercise duration boosts your calorie needs.

How Many Calories Should a 135-pound Woman Intake Each Day to Stay That Weight?

by Erin Coleman, R.D., L.D.

Many women weighing 135 pounds are at a healthy weight. Exceptions are short-statured women who are 5-foot-1 or shorter, because when they weigh 135 pounds their body mass index falls into the overweight category, according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. The number of calories a 135-pound woman requires to maintain her current weight is based on her activity level.

Sedentary Women

Women weighing 135 pounds who are sedentary – that is, they avoid regular physical activity – need about 13 calories for each pound of their body weight to maintain their weight, according to Harvard Medical School. Therefore, sedentary 135-pound women require about 1,755 calories daily to stay at their current weight. However, individualized calorie needs vary by age. Women’s calorie requirements for weight maintenance decrease at age 26 and again at age 51, according to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010.

Moderately Active

Moderately active 135-pound women need 15 to 16 calories for each pound of their body weight daily to maintain their current weight. The University of Washington suggests moderately active women aim for 15 calories per pound, and Harvard Medical School reports moderately active females need 16 calories for each pound of their body weight daily. Therefore, 135-pound moderately active women seeking weight maintenance should shoot for 2,025 to 2,160 calories a day.

Regular Physical Activity

Active women not only expend more calories during exercise, they generally have more muscle mass – which boosts metabolism throughout the entire day. Women who regularly participate in strenuous exercise need about 18 calories per pound of their body weights on a daily basis, suggest Harvard Medical School and the University of Washington. Based on these recommendations, 135-pound active females require about 2,430 calories daily to maintain their current weight.


Because women athletes often engage in intense physical training at high intensities for long periods of time, their calorie needs generally exceed those of non-athletes. According to the University of Missouri Extension, female athletes generally require 20 to 23 calories per pound of their body weights on a daily basis. Therefore, a 135-pound female athlete might need 2,700 to 3,105 calories a day to maintain her current body weight.

About the Author

Erin Coleman is a registered and licensed dietitian. She also holds a Bachelor of Science in dietetics and has extensive experience working as a health writer and health educator. Her articles are published on various health, nutrition and fitness websites.

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