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January 29, 1927


JAMA. 1927;88(5):324. doi:10.1001/jama.1927.02680310036011

Almost every decade is contributing new points of view to the interpretation of metabolism. There was a time, just prior to the student days of the older physicians of the present generation, when considerations of the energy aspects of nutrition were only rarely emphasized. Presently, the conditions governing the energy metabolism began to be more clearly understood, so that the distinction between the exchange due to mere maintenance of the bodily functions and the larger expenditure caused by other factors, notably activity of various sorts, came to be explicitly formulated. Today, a distinction is made between "basal" energy metabolism and the total food requirement. It is recognized that activity, age and size are the most important factors affecting the rate of transformation of energy in the healthy body. The kind and amount of food consumed also measurably affect the energy metabolism. The "basal" metabolism, which is being much discussed in