Free Shipping on Orders Above $25
× Supersmart Learn by health topic New articles Popular articles Visit our shop My account Smart Prescription Blog Loyalty program Language: English
Slimming and weight control Features

Nutritional requirements and recommended intakes: what you need to know

Intake of calories, macronutrients, micronutrients and fibre: finally, a comprehensive article on adult nutritional requirements and recommended intakes.
Friends whose nutritional needs are being met
What should your daily calorie intake be? What quantity of protein and vitamins do you need?
Rédaction Supersmart.
2022-08-30Commentaires (0)

A healthy diet as defined by the WHO

Before we address the question of calorie intake, let’s first look at what the World Health Organization (WHO) regards as a healthy, balanced diet (1).

According to the WHO, in order to satisfy the body’s nutritional requirements without promoting the development of modern Western diseases (cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity, etc), this is what a healthy diet should look like:

Calories, basal metabolic rate, activity modifiers

For information:

That being said, we must remember that the body is a machine which runs on energy. This energy is provided by food. A calorie is a unit that measures the amount of energy provided by food to the body.

Even when lying down doing nothing, our bodies need energy to perform various functions: to breathe, renew cells, keep the heart beating and the brain working, etc. This is referred to as the basal metabolic rate (2).

For any activity beyond this (moving, carrying, exercising, etc.), the body requires additional calories.

So according to the WHO (3):

Recommended intakes of calories and macronutrients

On this basis, recommended calorie intakes are as follows:


According to the WHO, it’s very difficult to determine exact requirements for protein, vitamins and minerals as they vary from one individual to another. It has, however, established guidelines for ensuring an adequate intake.

These guidelines have been set bearing in mind that:

In other words, it’s always better to consume too many vitamins, minerals and trace-elements than too few – without overdoing it, of course (4)!

To achieve these levels, you need to eat a healthy, balanced diet. You also have the option of taking specific dietary supplements such as:


The health benefits of fibre-rich foods, especially for lowering blood glucose and cholesterol levels, have been recognized by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) for some time (5).

But recent studies have also demonstrated benefits for the body’s immune defenses: by influencing the gut microbiota, it seems fibre boosts the immune system.

That’s why the recommended intake of fibre is 25-30g a day for an adult. Some people choose to boost their intake by taking a dietary supplement such as Fructo-Oligosaccharides (6).


  1. https://www.who.int/fr/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/healthy-diet
  2. BOOTHBY, Walter M. et SANDIFORD, Irene. Basal metabolism. Physiological Reviews, 1924, vol. 4, no 1, p. 69-162.
  3. Manuel sur les besoins nutritionnels de l’Homme, Organisation Mondiale de la Santé, Série de Monographies n°61
  4. HIGDON, Jane, et al. An evidence-based approach to vitamins and minerals health benefits and intake recommendations. Thieme Medical Publishers, Inc., 2003.
  5. https://cordis.europa.eu/article/id/150431-dietary-fibres-to-boost-the-immune-system/fr
  6. ANDERSON, James W., BAIRD, Pat, DAVIS, Richard H., et al. Health benefits of dietary fiber. Nutrition reviews, 2009, vol. 67, no 4, p. 188-205.


You must be connected to your account to leave a comment
Be the first to review this article
Our selection of articles
Fat cells (adipocytes) under the microscope
That’s what happens to your fat cells when you put on weight

If you’re overweight or have developed a paunch, you’re probably suffering from chronic inflammation of your adipose tissue. This is a silent pathological process which sooner or later will become a ticking time bomb, so it makes sense to read up on the latest findings and take action fast.

Ectomorph, endomorph and mesomorph
The 3 types of metabolism: which is yours? What can you do to optimize it?

Which is your morphotype and metabolism according to William Sheldon’s characterisation? Discover how to gain, stabilise or lose weight, depending on your particular classification.

Coconut water
Coconut drinks: what’s their nutritional value?

Coconut water, coconut milk, coconut oil: from fans of the keto diet to the biggest Hollywood stars, it seems everyone’s addicted to coconut! Supersmart gives you the lowdown on whether these products are good for our health.

Fan of chrononutrition
Chrononutrition: 3 great recipe options for each meal of the day

Have you heard of chrononutrition, the approach to eating that’s matched to the body’s circadian rhythms? Here are 3 ready-made recipe options for successfully implementing the chrononutrition approach across the day’s meals.

Woman losing weight
Phytotherapy for weight loss: which plants should you choose?

What’s the best way of using phytotherapy to help you lose weight? Discover the 7 most effective plants for burning fat and achieving a trimmer figure.

Woman counting calories
How many calories should you eat and burn each day?

How can you slim down and lose fat without also losing muscle (and maybe even gain muscle)? We give you the lowdown on daily calorie intake and expenditure.

Products which must be of interest

© 1997-2023 Fondation pour le Libre Choix. All rights reserved
© 1997-2023 Fondation pour le Libre Choix. All rights reserved