Next Article in Journal
Mineral Analysis of Pine Nuts (Pinus spp.) Grown in New Zealand
Previous Article in Journal
Bioactive Compounds and Antioxidant Capacity of Camarosa and Selva Strawberries (Fragaria x ananassa Duch.)
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Foods 2013, 2(2), 132-142; doi:10.3390/foods2020132

Energy Balance of a Typical U.S. Diet

Jordan College of Agricultural Sciences and Technology, California State University-Fresno, Fresno, CA 93710, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 6 February 2013 / Revised: 8 March 2013 / Accepted: 14 March 2013 / Published: 28 March 2013
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [613 KB, uploaded 28 March 2013]


Today’s agriculture provides an ever increasing population with sufficient quantities of food. During food production, processing, handling and transportation, an amount of energy is invested into the various products. An energy analysis of a typical American diet provides policy makers, farmers and the public with the necessary information to evaluate and make informed decisions as to how to improve the efficient use of energy. At the same time, an informed consumer may become energy conscious and be able to make dietary choices based on food energy balance. This paper studies the energy sequestered in a typical American diet as defined in Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Statistics Division (FAOSTAT). The amount of energy incorporated in this diet of 3628 kcal (15.18 MJ) per person and day to produce, transport, handle and process the foods is calculated and found to have approximately 39.92 GJ (9.54 Gcal) sequestered per person and year. It is shown that a diet in line with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommendation of around 2100 kcal (8.79 MJ) per day person will result in a reduction of energy inputs by 42% on an annual basis. This reduction for the whole population of the United States of America (USA), corresponds to approximately 879 million barrels of oil equivalent (boe) savings. Energy efficiency for the food categories studied varies from 3.4% to 56.5% with an average of 21.7%. Food energy efficiency can be further improved in some food categories through either a reduction of energy inputs or yield increase.
Keywords: U.S. diet; energy sequestered; energy efficiency; energy balance U.S. diet; energy sequestered; energy efficiency; energy balance
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Alexandrou, A.; Tenbergen, K.; Adhikari, D. Energy Balance of a Typical U.S. Diet. Foods 2013, 2, 132-142.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Foods EISSN 2304-8158 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top