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Understand the different energy needs of people

In this activity, we will explore how the energy needs of people differ and how the energy contained within foods is measured.

'Understand the different energy needs of people' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 3

Curriculum topic:   Biology: Structure and Function of Living Organisms

Curriculum subtopic:   Nutrition and Digestion

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

Your body changes the chemical energy contained within the food you eat into the energy you need to stay alive. 

 

Different foods contain different amounts of energy. For example, a typical meal of a hamburger, chips and a fizzy drink contains about 4000 kJ of energy.

 

Fast food

 

The hamburger contains approximately 2000 kJ, the chips contain 1300 kJ and the fizzy drink contains about 700 kJ of energy.

 

This may seem like a lot of energy, but different people have different energy needs depending on their age and lifestyle. Shown below are the approximate energy needs of a wide range of people.

 

People of differing ages


 

Person Energy need per day (kJ)
2 year old  4000
10 year old 8000
14-year-old girl 10000
14-year-old boy 12000
Adult female 10000
Adult male 11000
Adult male with an active job 14000

 

The energy needs depend on age and lifestyle. An active person requires more energy than a person who works at a computer most of the day. A teenage boy will typically need more energy than a teenage girl of the same age, often because teenage boys are likely to be physically bigger than teenage girls, this isn't always the case though and depends on the lifestyle they lead.

 

It's important to provide your body with the correct amount of energy. 

 

If a person takes in a lot of energy but does not lead an active lifestyle then they may become overweight, but a person who doesn't take in enough energy may become underweight, both of which can cause health issues.

 

It's also important to have a balanced diet, containing the correct amounts of vitamins, minerals and water. These are needed so your body can grow and do a lot of important jobs properly, for example, iron is a mineral and it transports oxygen in the blood. Vitamins like vitamin C helps us to fight off illness and many of the reactions in our body happen in water. Water needs to be replaced because we lose some when we sweat, breathe out and when we go to the toilet!

 

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