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Food Energy Analysis

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The intake of food energy is required by human bodies to sustain basal metabolism, and maintain the biological functions for life. The metabolism processes include cell metabolism, synthesis of enzymes and hormones, transport of substances within the body, maintenance of body temperature, and functioning of muscles. The energy content of food products should be properly labeled on the food packaging, which is under strict regulation by many governments around the world. This helps consumers better understand and control their daily energy intake. With a professional team in nutritional labeling, Lifeasible provides you with fast and accurate energy labeling services to comply with government regulations.

The energy content of a diet mainly depends on the amount of carbohydrates, fats, proteins, as well as organic acids, polyols, and ethanol present in the food. Some other important components, such as water, minerals, vitamins, cholesterol, and insoluble fiber, provide little or no energy because they cannot be further broken down by human body. The universal unit to represent food energy is calorie (kcal), which refers to the amount of energy needed to raise the temperature of 1 kilogram of water 1 degree Celsius. Sometimes the energy content of food is expressed in kilojoules (kJ), a metric unit. One kcal is equal to 4.184 kJ.

Lifeasible provides reliable food energy evaluation services using the Atwater system. The Atwater system is an indirect method for calorie estimation. Specifically, the total caloric values are calculated by adding up the calories provided by the energy-containing nutrients: protein, carbohydrate, fat, alcohol, and so on. We provide the content quantification of carbohydrates, dietary fibers, fats, proteins, and other ingredients; and the amount of food energy associated with a particular food component varies depending on the proportions of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen atoms (Table 1).

Table 1. Energy Content of Various Food Components

Food component Energy content*
kcal/g kJ/g
Carbohydrates 4 17
Proteins 4 17
Fats 9 37
Ethanols 7 29
Organic acids 3 13
Polyols 2.4 10
Dietary Fibers 2 8

*These numbers were originally determined by burning in a bomb calorimeter and then averaging.

Our nutritional analysis testing laboratories are certified by ISO, FDA, EU, AOAC, etc.. We offer you a wide range of chemical and nutritional analyses for food energy evaluation, following the international standards. Our specialists in food energy are happy to help you develop nutritional testing programs tailored to your requirements. Please feel free to contact us for further information or inquiries.