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Physical Activity and the PA Factor

Physical Activity and the PA Factor

Sample Answer 

Physical Activity and the PA Factor

There are varied definitions of the term physical activity (PA). In general, physical activity refers to the bodily motions resulting from the activity of skeletal muscles, with energy often required to produce the movement. According to Nix (2017), physical activity is “exercise that is involved in recreation or work accounts for wide individual variations in energy output.” Even though the normal basal energy requirements (BEE) or the basal metabolic rate (BMR) do not need any extra kilocalories, agitated movements, restlessness, and muscle tension (which results from physical activity) often increase the energy needs of certain people. BEE is the total energy required by the body when completely at rest. Therefore, the energy output needed for PA extends beyond the normal BEE. The PA factor is, therefore, calculated as a factor of basal energy expenditure by classifying the PA level based on a set of established standards, such as the Mifflin- St. Jeor equation. This is then multiplied by the resting energy expenditure or the basal energy expenditure. This means that physical activity can increase the PA factor.

From the formula above, my energy requirement can be estimated by multiplying the PA factor of 1.375 (because I am lightly active, meaning that I engage in moderate sports/exercise 1-3 days per week) by 2800 kcal/day. This brings my total energy requirement each day to 3850 kcal. Without question, this energy requirement means that I am currently meeting and, in fact, exceeding the definition of an active lifestyle (which requires a daily energy recommendation of between 1769 and 1361 kcal/day for men and women aged between 19 and 30 years, respectively).


Nix, S. (2017). Williams’ basic nutrition and diet therapy (15th ed.). St. Louis, Missouri: Elsevier.


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Physical Activity and the PA Factor

What affect does physical activity have on the PA factor? Estimate your energy requirements per day and determine if your activity level would meet the definitions of an active lifestyle. Use the material in the text and lecture to support your response. Use proper APA citation.

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Physical Activity and the PA Factor

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