Periodically, I record my food intake. Over the years, I've tried to hone my methods for capturing the most accurate data possible, but since I don't have my own lab, I am forced to rely on data that I find on a food label or online. Recently, as I began recording a turkey burger I had eaten, I wondered how best to calculate the 1/8 of an ounce of olive oil I cooked it in. Below is a description of how I prepare my turkey burgers and you'll see my dilemma:

I pour olive oil into a frying pan until the scale reads 1/8 of a fluid ounce. I then place the frying pan over high heat. Next, I take a pastry brush and make sure the pan is thoroughly covered with olive oil. I then place the turkey patties into the pan. I cook them on high heat for 10-15 minutes, searing frequently as they cook. I then remove the turkey patties and place them on a square of paper towels, using another square of paper towels to blot out the surface fat. This is not a light blotting; this is a firm press of the turkey patty between absorbent paper towels.

So, as you can see, this doesn't seem to be an easy matter of simply finding the nutrient data for 1/8 of a fluid ounce of olive oil. Previously, I used to calculate just nutrient data for the turkey patties, and paid no attention to the oil I cooked it in. (Actually, in the past I've used non-stick olive oil spray and even butter sometimes.) I am certain that oils food is cooked in are absorbed into the food to some degree, but what would be a good, fair way to calculate it?

  • Hrm. Interesting, but at 31 calories for the entire 1/8 oz I don't know how significant the abosrbed calories would be, especially when weighed against the calories lost from the turkey in the cooking process. Might be a wash, but as you say, I'm not exactly sure how you'd quanity it outside a lab. This might be a better question for the food SE, I'll ask one of their moderators.
    – JohnP
    Commented Nov 5, 2015 at 19:32
  • Your answer puts things into perspective, but still made me long for my own lab or even just the chance to visit one. Since so many other things previously unattainable have been made available to the average consumer (e.g., water purifiers, drones, movie making software, ...) I wondered why something so beneficial to health hadn't been developed. Then I discovered someone has already taken steps to move this from a lab to the hands of the consumer. GE to the rescue! About a year ago GE developed a prototype according to this article here: goo.gl/YM8rIy. Anyone know how safe this is?
    – Lisa Beck
    Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 17:03
  • Watching bomb calorimetry is kind of fun, our college had a lab that did that. As far as your question about safety, I don't know. You'd have to research.
    – JohnP
    Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 17:27
  • 2
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it does not relate to health
    – YviDe
    Commented Mar 14, 2016 at 23:44


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