What does… actually mean?

“kJ” and “kcal” in nutritional information

There is now accurate nutritional information on all food packaging. The energy content of food is provided in two units. Kilojoule (kJ) and kilocalorie (kcal). The difference: the calorie is an outdated unit and was replaced by the unit joule in science. Although, in common language use calories tend to be spoken about more than kilojoules. One kilocalorie equals roughly 4.2 kilojoules. The Food Information Regulation contains reference values for an average adult. An energy consumption of 2,000 kcal per day is given as a basis.

Daily energy supply

The German Nutrition Society (DGE) recommends a daily energy supply of 2,300 kcal for men and 1,800 kcal for women as a guideline. Women’s lower energy metabolism is down to the different composition of body tissue. Men usually have a larger muscle mass, less body fat and heavier bones than women. That is why men burn more calories than women. People with special requirements, such as athletes, sick people or pregnant women have different values to the recommended energy supply.

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