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Energy Intake and Weight Loss

David B. Allison, PhD1; Diana M. Thomas, PhD2; Steven B. Heymsfield, MD3
[+] Author Affiliations
1Nutrition Obesity Research Center, University of Alabama, Birmingham
2Center for Quantitative Obesity Research, Montclair State University, Montclair, New Jersey
3Pennington Biomedical Research Center, Baton Rouge, Louisiana
JAMA. 2014;312(24):2687-2688. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.15513.
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To the Editor In a recent JAMA Patient Page, Dr Guth1 stated that “A total of 3500 calories equals 1 pound of body weight.” However, the energy content of body weight varies widely by race, sex, and age. The calorie density value of 3500 is based on the composition of adipose tissue. However, humans are rarely more than half adipose tissue; most of the remainder is skeletal muscle and bone, which have much lower calorie densities.

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December 24, 2014
Eve S. Guth, MD
1Jesse Brown Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois
JAMA. 2014;312(24):2688. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.15516.
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