Werner Simon - Ernährungslexikon

Our nutritional dictionary

  • Calorific value

    The physiological calorific value of foodstuffs indicates the specific energy or energy density, which can be made available in the body of an organism when metabolized (cellatization). The energetic effort that the body must perform on the other hand is not taken into account; so these are gross values. The physiological calorific value is generally less than the physical calorific value for complete combustion.

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  • Cholesterol

    The cholesterol (Greek χολή cholé, “bile” and στερεός stereós, “solid”), is a natural substance occurring in all animal cells. The name derives from the fact that cholesterol was already found in bile stones in the 18th century.

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  • Protein

    Protein is a biological macromolecule, which is composed of amino acids by peptide bonds. Proteins are found in all cells and usually account for more than 50% of their dry weight. Not only do they confer structure, but they also function as “molecular machines” by facilitating cell movements, transporting metabolites, catalyzing ionic pumping, chemical reactions and detecting signaling agents. Heart, brain, skin and hair are predominantly made of proteins.

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  • Fat

    Fats are obtained either from animal products or from plants (crops), partly also from the chemical industry. Animal fats are either melted directly from adipose tissue (lard, tran, tallow) or from milk (butter). The vegetable oils and fats used for food are extracted from oil plants or oilseed by pressing or extraction with steam or solvents. Refining and thus removal of unwanted ingredients makes the fats usable for humans. Margarine was originally of animal origin, but is now obtained by hydrogenation (fatty hardening) of the C=C double bond(s) in the fatty acid residues of vegetable oils (sunflower oil, rapeseed oil). Trans fatty acids can also form, which is undesirable.

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  • Fatty acids

    Fats are obtained either from animal products or from plants (crops), partly also from the chemical industry. Animal fats are either melted directly from adipose tissue (lard, tran, tallow) or from milk (butter). The vegetable oils and fats used for food are extracted from oil plants or oilseed by pressing or extraction with steam or solvents. Refining and thus removal of unwanted ingredients makes the fats usable for humans. Margarine was originally of animal origin, but is now obtained by hydrogenation (fatty hardening) of the C=C double bond(s) in the fatty acid residues of vegetable oils (sunflower oil, rapeseed oil). Trans fatty acids can also form, which is undesirable.

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  • Glucose

    Glucose (Glc, written by Greek γλυκύς, “sweet”, colloquial dextrose) is a naturally occurring chemical compound with the sum formula C6H12O6. It is a monosaccharide (single sugar) and therefore belongs to the carbohydrates. There are two enantiomers: D-glucose and L-glucose (for an explanation of the terms “D” and “L” see Fischer projection). In nature, only D-glucose occurs. This is also referred to as glucose or in older literature as dextrose.

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  • Iodine salt

    Iodine salt is a food salt enriched with iodate. It is offered for the prevention (iodine prophylaxis) or treatment of an iodine deficiency. Iodine salt contains about 15 to 25 mg iodate per kilogram of salt. Iodination of the sold saline is or has been prescribed in Switzerland, Austria, the USA and until reunification in the GDR. In the United States, the use of iodized salt is not required by law, but it is now used by the majority of households and restaurants.

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  • Carbohydrates

    Carbohydrates or saccharides form a biologically and chemically important substance class. As a product of photosynthesis, carbohydrates make up most of the biomass. Mono-, di- and polysaccharides (including starch and cellulose), together with the fats and proteins, they provide quantitatively the most useable and non-usable (dietary fiber) portion of a diet.

    The monosaccharides (single sugars, eg glucose, fruit sugar), disaccharides (two-sugar sugars, eg crystal sugar, milk sugar, malt sugar) and oligosaccharides (multiple sugars, eg raffinose) are water soluble, have a sweet taste and thus are called sugar. The polysaccharides (multi-sugars, eg starch, cellulose, chitin), on the other hand, are often poorly soluble or not at all soluble in water and are neutral to the taste.

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  • Preservatives

    Food additives which are intended to prevent the spoilage of food, for example by bacteria, yeast and mold. They play an important role in food preservation and prevent dangerous diseases such as botulism and listeriosis. Preservatives must be declared by generic name, name and E-number (200 to 299).

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  • Food can

    It is obvious that the history of the food can began in France, the land of gourmets:
    At the end of the 18th century Napoleon Bonaparte offered a reward of 12,000 Gold Franken to a scientist, who would succeed in making food durable and transportable for longer durations. For many years the cook and confectioner Nicolas Appert had experimented with making meat, fish, fruit and vegetables durable. He used champagne bottles to fill foodstuffs airtight and heat them to 100°C to kill germs. This method is still called “Appertising” today. Mr. Appert received the reward with the condition of publicizing his knowledge to lay men. The idea of filling food in tin cans, however, was an idea of Frenchman Pierre Durand, who then emigrated to England. On 25 August the King of England, George III. presented him 1810 the patent for the preservation method of perishable food in cans.

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  • Nutritional values

    Nutritional value refers to the physiological value of a food, depending on the quantity and ratio of its ingredients and their availability for the human organism.

    The nutritional value is not a completely objective quantity, since the availability and utilization of the substances is dependent on the preparation and the combination of the foodstuffs, since the nutritional science assessment of individual ingredients is not assured.

    The main ingredients of the nutritional value of a food are the four so-called macronutrients carbohydrates, fats, proteins and the digestible energy (physiological calorific value). In addition, numerous micronutrients such as vitamins and minerals (quantity and trace elements) as well as secondary plant materials play a role.

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  • Vitamins

    Vitamins are involved in many metabolic reactions. Their task is to regulate the utilization of carbohydrates, proteins and minerals, they provide for their dismantling and / or conversion and are thus also used for energy production. Vitamins strengthen the immune system and are indispensable in building cells, blood cells, bones and teeth. Each individual vitamin performs certain tasks. They also differ in their various effects.

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