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The energy of food


To meet the nutrient needs of our body, ie to be well fed, just eat enough. We should not exaggerate.

When the body gets more energy than it spends, its weight increases. Obesity is usually a consequence of an excess energy in the body in relation to the expenditure. Excess carbohydrates, for example, are converted to fat and stored in cells that form adipose tissue.

Muscle activity is the main way to expend energy. Half of the energy spent by a person corresponds to his muscle activity. But this production varies according to the activities performed by each person. In a construction worker, for example, approximately ¾ of his energy is spent that way.

If you look at the body of a regular athlete, you will see how muscle activity contributes to reducing the amount of fat in the body.

Calories: Measuring Food Energy

The foods like carbohydrates, lipids and proteins, have energy. And that energy can be measured.

The unit of measurement of energy contained in food is the calorie (lime).

A calorie is the amount of heat required to increase the temperature of one gram of water by one degree Celsius (1 ° C).

Since the calorie is a very small unit, it is easier to measure the amount of food energy in kilocalories (Kcal): one kilocalorie (1Kcal) equals one thousand calories (1000 cal).

Here are some examples of foods and their approximate amounts of energy:

Food Amount Calories
Coffee with sugar 1 cup of 50 ml 33
Natural Pineapple Juice 1 cup of 240 ml 100
Pork chop 2 units (100g) 483
Beef hamburger 1 unit (56g) 116
Parsley 1 unit (40g) 120
Chocolate Stuffed Cookie 1 unit 72
Whole Wheat Biscuit 1 unit (15g) 28
Banana 1 unit (65g) 55
Potato 100g 83
Whole milk 1 cup 166
Egg 1 unit 77
            

The amount of calories a person needs depends on their age, gender, weight and physical activity. See some examples:

Life stages Required energy (approximate values ​​in Kcal / day)
Breastfeeding Bibie 950
Woman breastfeeding 3100
Male teenager 3200
Female teenager 2300

Here's the amount of calories spent on some everyday activities for 1 hour:

Activities Waste energy (approximate values ​​in Kcal / day)
Attend class 126
Watch TV 70
To sleep (8h) 60
To dance 315
Run 560
Swim slowly 560
Ride a bike 400

By examples, we find that even sleep consumes energy, because during this period, the body functions continue to occur.

Therefore, choosing food properly is an important task. Each person should seek to know how much and how much food they need. We can often get this information from health centers, from nutritionists or doctors.