Fitness

What is the Physical Activity Level (PAL) Index ? How to calculate our PAL ?

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The physical activity level index (PAL) is a method of expressing a person’s daily physical activity and is represented by a number. In fact, this figure is used to estimate the total energy consumption. In this article, we will discuss the concept, importance and method of measuring this body Index .

Concept of Physical Activity Level Indicator (PAL INDEX)

A physical activity level indicator is a measure of how active a person is on a daily basis. This value represents the ratio of total energy consumption to basic energy needs (BMR). This indicator is used to adjust calorie intake according to the level of activity of individuals.
In general, it can be said that in combination with the basal metabolic rate, this indicator can be used to calculate the amount of food energy that a person needs to maintain a certain lifestyle. The level of physical activity for a non-pregnant and non-lactating adult is called the total energy consumed by that person (TEE) and determines the level of physical activity in a 24-hour period divided by the basal metabolic rate (BMR).

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The physical activity level index can be estimated based on a list of physical activities that a person performs on a daily basis. Each activity is related to a number, and the level of physical activity is considered the weighted average of the ratios of physical activity.



Why is it important to calculate the Physical Activity Level Index ?

To help calculate the total calorie requirement for a person’s day, the level of physical activity (PAL) determines that they need to consume a few extra kilocalories to meet their lifestyle needs. The extra kilocalories are characterized as a percentage and added to the basal metabolic rate, and this gives an idea of the amount of kilocalories needed for that person.

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Which Factors depend on the actual Amount of Energy consumed?

  1. Frequency: so how often does a person train, work or exercise
  2. Intensity: what is the intensity and difficulty of practicing a person ?
  3. Time: how long does it take to do a person’s activities or exercises ?
  4. Type of activity: different activities consume different energy. What is the type of activity ?



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Energy needs and their relationship to the Physical Activity Level Index

The energy required by each plow is different from the other and may be determined by a variety of factors. For example, age, gender, weight, height, type of activity performed, and energy intake are effective. So a nutritionist needs to know how to use this information to get their clients to their goals and gain a better understanding of the needs in relation to physical activity levels.



How do we Calculate our Physical Activity Levels?

The calculation of the indicator of the level of physical activity consists of several definitions. First, it is better to give a definite definition of each and have a better understanding of how each is used to determine the amount of physical activity.

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What is MET in Sports ?

MET is known as the metabolic equivalent and is one of the ways to determine the amount of energy consumed in sports or activity. This number can be represented by a value to describe the intensity level. A MET is approximately 3.5 ml of oxygen consumed per kilogram of body weight per minute. It is important to know this amount in order to obtain an indicator of the level of physical activity.
A MET is the amount of energy spent at rest, so if an activity has MET 4, it means that a person applies four times the energy compared to a sitting position. Therefore, the higher the MET goes, the more energy is needed to carry out that particular activity.
The following are some general MET guidelines for common activities:

  • Amount 2: brushing your teeth or removing clothes from the washing machine.
  • Value 3 to 5.5: moderate intensity activities, such as sweeping the ground, walking fast, vacuuming or pushing the lawn mower forward.
  • Less than 6: activities with high intensity, such as running or dancing, swimming, cycling, playing football, skiing or walking at high speed.



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What Factors do MET depend on?

Remember that MET is a guide and not an accurate mathematical formula. Energy consumption varies for everyone and can depend on fitness levels, body composition, and even ambient temperature.

Formula for calculating the Level of Physical Activity

PAL can be calculated from the TEE average in 24 hours and BMR (basal metabolic rate) by the following equation:
PAL = TEE/BMR

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Why is MET measured to determine the Activity Level Index?

The Met notification gives you a better understanding of current physical activity levels, energy expenditure and nutritional needs. It also helps to determine whether physical activity should be corrected, i.e. increased or Decreased, duration or intensity of activity.
Knowing MET is important for nutritional advice because it gives people a deeper insight into calorie burning.



Examples of Physical Activity Levels :

The PAL value is between 1.40 and 1.69: a sedentary lifestyle.
The PAL value is between 1.70 and 1.99: a relatively active lifestyle.
The PAL value is between 2.00 and 2.40: a lively or very active lifestyle.

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Importance of finding an Indicator of Physical Activity Level

Finding an indicator of the level of physical activity is of great importance in many ways. Its most important benefit is to help individuals and nutritionists and health experts accurately determine each person’s energy needs. This indicator is widely used in nutritional planning, diets, and regular exercise programs. Here are some other benefits:

  1. Adjusting calorie intake

With the knowledge of PAL, the amount of calories needed to maintain, lose or gain weight can be adjusted according to the level of activity of each person. This helps people to pursue their health goals more effectively.

2. Predicting health status

It is important to identify low levels of physical activity as this may cause health-related problems such as obesity, Type II diabetes, and heart disease. These can be identified using the activity level index.

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3. Personalization of fitness programs

The use of this indicator allows coaches and fitness and sports professionals to specify and adjust appropriate and personal sports programs according to each person’s energy needs and activity levels.

4. Monitoring progress

Knowing the PAL index over time, individuals are able to observe and review their progress in increasing physical activity and increasing and improving public health.



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Last Word

As mentioned, the physical activity level index is a method of expressing daily physical activity as a number and is used to estimate the total energy consumed by a person (TEE). In conclusion, it is better to say that the PAL index is a practical tool to help improve public health and improve the quality of food and exercise programs and is very important.



Source :

Wikipedia

Wikipedia 2

Researchgate

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