Harris-Benedict equation estimations of energy needs as compared to measured 24-h energy expenditure by indirect calorimetry in people with early to mid-stage Huntington's disease

Nutr Neurosci. 2008 Oct;11(5):213-8. doi: 10.1179/147683008X344129.


Weight loss and energy metabolism are important clinical research areas in understanding the disease mechanisms in Huntington's disease. Having an accurate method to estimate expected total energy expenditure would likely facilitate the development of studies about these features of the disease. The Harris-Benedict equation is a formula commonly used to estimate basal energy expenditure of individuals, adjusted for height, weight, age and gender. This estimate is then multiplied by a physical activity factor to estimate total daily energy needs to maintain the given weight. Data from 24-h indirect calorimetry was utilized to derive an adjustment formula for the physical activity factor of the Harris-Benedict equation for 13 early to mid-stage Huntington's disease patients. The adjusted activity factor provided the most accurate estimate of energy needs. This adjusted formula can be used in clinical assessments of Huntington's disease patients, as well as in research studies when indirect calorimetry has not been performed.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Body Height
  • Body Mass Index
  • Body Weight
  • Calorimetry, Indirect*
  • Energy Intake*
  • Energy Metabolism*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Huntington Disease / diet therapy
  • Huntington Disease / metabolism
  • Huntington Disease / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Mathematics
  • Middle Aged
  • Motor Activity
  • Nutritional Requirements*
  • Sex Factors
  • Weight Loss