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Is it more accurate to weigh or to measure out food?

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I find that if I input a food in by weight rather than volume, the calories are much higher. So which is the more accurate reading? For example:

1 cup of pineapple = 78 calories

but if that cup of pineapple weighs 3/4 pound = 170 calories

Which value should I put into my food log?


8 Replies (last)
number one calories are joules burned per mole celsius, correct? Therefore the burned amt(by your body) would not actually be affected by the volume but rather, te weight.
number two are you sure you measured right?

joules burned per mole celsius?  WHAT!?!?


A calorie is a unit of measure, it doesn't have units that follow it. Where did you come up with joules and moles?


A calorie is the amt. of energy needed to heat 1 g of water by 1 degree Celsius, which is roughly equivalent to 4.12 (I think? I can't remember) Joules.


It's directly related to weight, not to volume.

Ok thanks. I'll just weigh my food instead of just scooping it into a measuring cup.

Chefs weigh. It is the most accurate.
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No, Calories are a measurement of energy what you defined was specific heat, and even then is it ever related to moles unless you are dealing with chemistry. A calorie is defined by the amount of energy required to raise 1 gram of water 1 degree Celsius. Technically this means that the energy value of a calorie is loosely defined since the specific heat capacity of water changes with temperature and pressure; but, it does remains relatively close to about 4.2 Joules per calorie. Or in the case of food 420 000 joules per calorie consumed.

As for how to measure food, note that when it says 1 cup in parenthesis it give you the weight at which one cup is defined. So in your case 1 cup of pineapple is equivalent to 155 grams. I would say that when measuring anything that is not a liquid go by the weight. The issue with measuring a pineapple by volume is if you can squeeze and pack a lot of pineapple into 1 cup, or you can loosely toss them in and still measure a cup. Obviously they are not equivalent and there is no standard on how to fill a pineapple with one cup.

Thanks, Oshsur. That was very informative and well explained. I will be sure to weigh most of my dry foods from now on...

i meant grams. wow im super tired. sorry about that. and yeah its 4.12 for water.
8 Replies