Food Energy, Calories

Food energy is measured in calories, also known as kilocalories (kcals). Food labels use the term calorie to describe the amount of energy in the individual foods described. The term calorie is used in this textbook to describe food energy.

Fruit, Vegetables, Dairy

Fruit, vegetables and dairy products provide calories.


A kilocalorie is the amount of energy needed to raise 1 kilogram of water 1 degree Celsius.

Three of the macronutrients provide energy (calories).

Carbohydrate : 4 calories per gram

Protein: 4 calories per gram

Fats: 9 calories per gram

As can be seen, carbohydrates, protein, and fats provide energy. However, there is another energy source in the diet that is not a nutrient…..alcohol.

Alcohol is NOT a nutrient! But it does provide energy. Alcohol has 7 calories per gram.