Rus Articles Journal


Would be desirable to talk, probably, about the most mentioned, and at the same time, the most incorrectly understood word connected with weight loss - about CALORIC CONTENT.

Today, you will not find the second word which, in such degree is not truly interpreted, not only the inhabitant, but also the people who are professionally going in for dietology. On the Internet, on television, in mass media, only also you hear: “calories, caloric content, power value“. Programmers write

scripts for automatic calculation of calories, designers draw beautiful tables on caloric content, authors publish reference books on power value... and all this for the sake of absolutely unnecessary (for weight loss), the enormous overestimated characteristic.

So it this caloric content?

Caloric content or as still like to call, power value, is purely physical quantity called by the specific heat of combustion.

Remembered physics lessons? there is no

If, then I will remind - Warmth of combustion, warmth of burning, calorific ability, heating capacity, heating capacity, caloric content, - the amount of heat which is allocated at full combustion of fuel; it is measured in joules or calories. Carried to unit of mass or fuel volume, is called specific.

Is frequent, and it is lawful, the used term in power and calculations of efficiency of engines.

What relation all this has to a human body? - you ask.

small historical digression

In 1891 - 1897 the American chemist Etuoter Wilbur together with American the physicist E. Roza worked on creation of the respiration calorimeter called after their names. Investigating dependence between a thermolysis of the person and caloric content of the nutrients acquired by it, Etuoter. and his pupil F. Benedict obtained the most exact data which allowed to establish applicability of the law of energy conservation to a human body.

It was purely applied work.

But with arrival 20 - go centuries, the chemist Russell Chittenden adopts Wilbur`s idea about representation of food in calories. (The calorie is the heat necessary for heating by 1 degree 1 - go water gram). Universal calculation of caloric content of food begins.

In 1917, doctor Lulu Peters publishes “Diets and health with a solution of calories“, the first book which propagandizes calculation of calories as means for reduction of weight. The main idea taught as scientific: to control weight, it is necessary to control calories. And those who do not do it, backward, undisciplined and morally unstable, people. She wrote

“You have to think of eating 100 calories of bread, but not a piece of bread“.

of Idea of unknown “woman doctor“ are supported by the authorities against the entry of the USA in World War I. For three years, calculation of calories becomes “a national entertainment“ of Americans.

during World War I, was noticed strange regularity - the stout men working at military factories with the chemical called by dinitrophenol quickly grow thin. The doctors dealing with the problems of weight first pay attention to it. Also develop on the basis of means dinitrophenol for weight loss. The fashion on calculation of calories abates.

the Second revival of calculation of calories comes in 50 - e years, and again from circles far from official science. On a fashion wave on leanness, magazines for women, remember about so “lovely“ and, in their opinion, unfairly forgotten, calculation of calories. Convenient, clear for the average housewife, the idea, symmetry due to calculation of caloric content, emerges from a non-existence again. Female fashion magazines with success write about the lucky women who grew thin by this principle. They become idols and favourites of hundreds of thousands of fat Americans.

In 1952. The article “Corpulent Personality“ written about fat men is published in the Newsweek newspaper. The author of article claims: the desire is high-calorific food goes from problems in private life, disorder and a sexual dissatisfaction.

B 60 - x years, comes to podiums the first super - model - Tviggi (stem), its forms become a standard for long decades. In fashionable magazines food, without calculation of calories, is called immoral.

Since then, the term “caloric content“ any more never descended from pages of the press and masses - media.

a few figures

However we will return, from history depths, presently. How determine product caloric content?

Yes is very simple. In a tight chamber burn the studied product, the energy emitted at the same time and is its caloric content.

If you read what 100gr apple contains 45 kcal then, there is so much heat, was allocated when burning these hundred grams.

But our organism not a chamber of a calorimeter, we cannot burn apple completely. We only partially digest it, acquiring part of nutrients. The rest goes to waste...

Here if, after each meal, we had an opportunity to burn “dung“ in a chamber, and then to subtract that from the declared caloric content of a product that left us... here then it was possible to speak about the figure having though some relation to food.

But there is more to come.

you think what all products which are in so-called tables of caloric content burn for researches in chambers? At all not.

are By practical consideration removed approximate figures of the energy emitted when processing: fat 1 of - 9,0 kcal, carbohydrates 1 of - 3,75 kcal, proteins 1 of - 4,0 kcal, organic acids 1 of - 3,0 kcal, ethyl alcohol 1 of - 7,0 kcal. (Sometimes indicators it is terrible to be separated, for example margarine and fat of sea inhabitants show results from 4 to 8,5 kcal/g. But it concerns originators a little)

Any product, is displayed on components in a weight equivalent, multiplied on the corresponding average values and... caloric content of any product is ready. As you understand, all this very much and very much approximately...

But also it not everything (No. 2)

Let`s try to calculate the caloric content of 100 g of milk. we find

a chemical composition of milk of a cow In specialized literature: fat - 3,2%, proteins - 3,5%, dairy sugar - 4,7%

Then in 100gr milk:

1. fat on 9 • 3,2 = 28,8 kcal.

2. proteins on 4 • 3,5 = 14,0 kcal.

3. carbohydrates on 3,75 • 4,7 = 17,6 kcal.

in Only 100 g of milk will be 28,8 kcal + 14,0 kcal + 17,6 kcal = 60,4 kcal

such indicator costs in all tables of caloric content for milk of similar fat content. But each person has

the metabolism, the comprehensibility and the genotipichny set of enzymes. Even if to take the average, standard values of comprehensibility: (fats - 94%, proteins - 84,5%, carbohydrates - 95,6%), at us it will turn out:

Actual caloric content of milk (100 g): (28,8 • 94): 100 + (14,0 • 84,5): 100 + (17,6 • 95,6): 100 = 54,73 kcal

the Difference, as you can see considerable (20%), even for such digestible product as milk.

It turns out that a heap of approximate parameters are multiplied among themselves (and at multiplication also errors are multiplied), then all this develops and given as result for an organism... mermaids. Only mermaids, from the known mythological beings, have no back pass, i.e. acquire food is waste-free.

But the most ridiculous, even not in it.

Let, to us in a magic way, will be known the actual power value of any product, is concrete for our organism. Let us around a navel have a counter of calories which after the next meal will give us result: “So many calories are acquired by an organism“.

and it will give nothing to us, and that is why...

As it is known from 60 to 75% of energy is spent for internal requirements of an organism, for its main exchange (work of heart, blood circulation, breath, thermal control etc.) this value for the organism which is in rest. As you can see, even in it a state the difference reaches 15%, in daily life, within days, these expenses, depending on this or that situation, can differ to 50%.

I for what to you in that case to know caloric content eaten, how many you spent during training if you do not know the size of the main day expense?

Often in councils of pseudo-experts and professional nutritionists it is possible to hear, “you have to spend as much energy how many and consume“. In general right conclusion, with only that difference that experts use it as purely theoretical slogan, not executable in reality, but an uncountable great number of “consultants from food“ as an appeal to practical action.

Let`s review an example. we Will assume

that you, since early morning, several hours in a row, performed a hard work, having spent 1000 kcal. Whether you will be able to observe zero balance having eaten, in the second half of day, products on 1000 kcal (with a condition of their full assimilation)?

On “consultants“ leaves that you will be able.

I claim that I am not present! And that is why:

At once after completion of work, your organism will be engaged in restoration. But in the beginning he will try to save on the main exchange.

What it is feeling of fatigue? Dozing, apathetic state.

It is also braking. To a brain flows blood less, other bodies are served in “half-forces“, blood vessels in them are narrowed, breath to become is more rare, thermal control worsens (you remember a fever after hard work). The organism saves on restoration.

In several hours, by the time of acceptance of food, from 1000 spent calories, will already fill an organism (due to reduction of internal requirements) 300 and from accepted by you thousands, will only 700 be necessary on alignment of balance. 300 will remain unclaimed and can quietly be postponed in fat.

For this reason, not calculation of caloric content, but the correct consumption is important.

That it was even more clear, we will pass to cars. Present to

the lorry with the conditioner and a tank on 100 liters, since morning, during 3kh hours, hauling heavy freight. Naturally more gasoline is spent for the increased power, we will assume 50 liters. In 5 hours which remained before the termination of the working day, without loading to be spent 50 liters too.

But the driver is afraid to fall short of garage, and switches off the conditioner, thus, by the time of gas station, 5 l are saved. Now, that the car, as usual, began work with a full tank, it needs not 100, 95 liters. all of you still continue to consider by


PS. It is worth understanding that the caloric content of a product is important for understanding and comparison of power value of products, but not for applied calculations. And the more so for drawing up a food allowance on them.