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cal·o·rie  audio  (kl-r) KEY 

NOUN:
  1. Abbr. cal Any of several approximately equal units of heat, each measured as the quantity of heat required to raise the temperature of 1 gram of water by 1°C from a standard initial temperature, especially from 3.98°C, 14.5°C, or 19.5°C, at 1 atmosphere pressure. Also called gram calorie, small calorie.
  2. Abbr. cal The unit of heat equal to 1/100 the quantity of heat required to raise the temperature of 1 gram of water from 0 to 100°C at 1 atmosphere pressure. Also called mean calorie.
    1. Abbr. Cal The unit of heat equal to the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of 1 kilogram of water by 1°C at 1 atmosphere pressure. Also called kilocalorie, kilogram calorie, large calorie.
    2. A unit of energy-producing potential equal to this amount of heat that is contained in food and released upon oxidation by the body. Also called nutritionist's calorie.

ETYMOLOGY:
French, from Latin calor, heat ; see caloric


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