A saltine cracker has 12 calories
What is the process of determining how many calories are in a specific
Look up the instrument called a calorimeter. This is the instrument that
is used to determine calories in food items.
Very simple. You dry it, burn it, and measure the heat given off.
This leads to a somewhat misleading number, because not all components of
food that burn are digestible. The more thorough method is to analyze the
food item to find how much fat, protein, and digestible carbohydrates it
contains, and to convert those amounts to calories.
Richard Barrans Jr., Ph.D.
A device called a bomb calorimeter is used. A piece of the food is put in
the chamber, it is sealed and it is ignited and burned. The amount of heat
energy it gives off is measured by a thermometer.
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Update: June 2012