Recommended energy values of protein, fat and carbohydrates

Carbohydrates, proteins and fats provide the energy obtained from food.

Each nutrient provides a different amount of energy, measured in kilocalories:

  • 1 gram of carbohydrate provides 3.75 kilocalories.
  • 1 gram of protein provides 4 kilocalories
  • 1 gram of fat provides 9 kilocalories

All individuals over the age of 2 have a recommendation to follow for the percentage of recommended daily energy intake.

These are referred to as Dietary Reference Values (DRVs) and are set by the government as:

  • Total carbohydrates – 50% with no more than 5% from free sugars.
  • Total fat – no more than 35% with no more than 11% from saturates.
  • Protein – 15% as a secondary source of energy.