Nutrient Information: Energy

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Nutrient Name: Energy
Nutrient Category: Macronutrients (Proximates)
Unit Name: kcal
Nutrient Summary: Energy is required to sustain the body’s various functions, including respiration, circulation, nerve transmission, physical work, metabolism, and protein synthesis.


Nutrient Detail Information
Nutrient Function Energy is supplied by carbohydrates, proteins, fats, and alcohol in the diet. They are generally referred to as macronutrients. The general Calories Calculation Formula is:

Carbohydrate-gram x 4 + Protein-gram x 4 + Fat-gram x 9

Expert recommended calories range for each source is:
Carbohydrate: 45-65%
Protein: 10-35%
Total Fat: 20-35%

A person's energy intake requirements and expenditure depend on this person's age, body composition, gender, and physical activity level. The Estimated Energy Requirement (EER) is defined as the average dietary energy intake required to maintain the energy balance of the body to maintain health. It reflects the average needs for those with specific characteristics, such as age, gender, weight, height, and a level of physical activity.
Deficiency Health Effects If energy intake is lower than energy needs, the body adapts by reducing voluntary physical activity, reducing growth rates for children, and mobilizing energy reserves. It will lead to weight loss. For children, chronic undernutrition will cause slow growth weight, delayed bone growth, and decreased school performance. For adult, it will decrease work capacity.
Effects if Above Upper Limit If energy intake is higher than energy needs, the excess energy cannot be eliminated and they will be deposited in the form of body fat. As a result, weight gain occurs. It consequently increases chronic disease risk, including risk of Type II diabetes, hypertension, coronary heart disease (CHD), stroke, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, and some types of cancer.
External References Learn more at:
• The National Academies of Science, Engineering, Medicine publication: Dietary Reference Intakes
• Dietary Guidelines for Americans (on official website of the United States government): Dietary Guidelines for Americans
Additional Information Measuring Unit for Energy:
- One kcalories (kcal): the amount of heat energy needed to raise the temperature of 1 kilogram (kg) of water 1°C.
- International unit One Joule: the amount of work energy that moves a mass 1 meter distance using 1 newton force.

1 kcalories (kcal) = 4.2 kilojoules (KJ, 1000 Joule)


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Daily Value Age Group Recommended Daily Values
Toddler 1 to 3 years old: 1,000 kcal
Child 4 to 8 years old: 1,400 kcal
Male 9 to 13 years old: 1,800 kcal
Male 14 to 18 years old: 2,600 kcal
Male 19 to 30 years old: 2,800 kcal
Male 31 to 50 years old: 2,600 kcal
Male 51 to 70 years old: 2,400 kcal
Male Senior 71 or older: 2,200 kcal
Female 9 to 13 years old: 1,800 kcal
Female 14 to 18 years old: 2,000 kcal
Female 19 to 30 years old: 2,200 kcal
Female 31 to 50 years old: 2,000 kcal
Female 51 to 70 years old: 1,800 kcal
Female Senior 71 or older: 1,800 kcal
Female Pregnancy (>18): 2,200 kcal
Female Lactation (>18): 2,200 kcal
FDA (Based on 2000 calorie daily diet): 2,000 kcal


Dietary Reference Intakes The nutrient Dietary Reference Intakes and nutrition facts is from Institute of Medicine of National Academies 2006. Dietary Reference Intakes: The Essential Guide to Nutrient Requirements. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. https://doi.org/10.17226/11537
US FDA Nutrition Education Nutrition facts knowledge are based on U.S. FOOD & DRUG Administration Nutrition Education Resources & Materials. https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/interactivenutritionfactslabel/
National Institutes of Health Nutrition facts knowledge are based on National Institutes of Health Dietary Supplement Fact Sheets. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/list-all
Disclaimer The nutrient information provided here should not take the place of medical advice. We encourage you to talk to your healthcare providers (such as your doctor) about your dietary requirements which are best for your overall health. We also recommend you to read organization or professional reference documents or articles mentioned, but not limited to, in this page. Any mentions and reference links in this page don't represent our endorsement of their services and advice.


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