Sunday, August 31, 2008

Useful snippets from "Household Arithmetic" (1920)

Here is a book every home should have:

Household Arithmetic, Katherine F. Ball, M.A., Vocational Adviser (sic) for Women, University of Minnesota; Miriam E. West, M.A. Girls Vocational High School, Minneapolis. J.B. Lippincott Co., Philadelphia & London (1920).

I ran across the book specifically looking for the calorie content of various foods. It is useful to know these things if you are trying to figure out how long you can survive if the grocery store closes for some reason.

Some factoids I noted:

Calories burned per pound of body weight per hour (p. 131):

Sleeping 0.4
Sitting quietly 0.6
Light muscular exercise 1.0
Active muscular exercise 2.0
Severe muscular exercise 3.0

The book gives a handy little example (p. 132):

Problem.-Estimate the probable energy requirement of a stenographer, 28 years old, weighing 125 pounds, whose time is divided each day about as follows: Sleeping, 8 hours; sitting quietly at meals, reading, taking dictation, etc., 8 hours; at light muscular exercise, dressing, standing, walking, typing, etc., 6 hours; at active muscular exercise, playing tennis, etc., 2 hours. Use Table I.

8 X 0.4 Calories =3.2 Resting
8 X 0.6 Calories =4.8 sitting quitely
6 X 1.0 Calories =6.0 light activity
2 X 2.0 Calories =4.0 active

Total Calories per pound per day =18.

125 X 18=2250=total Calories per day.

Pages 135 and following give the energy value of various foods. I've saved the entire book simply for this information. Page 146 gives a thumbnail sketch:

Food Calories per lb.
1. Smoked ham 1635
2. Corned beef 1245
3. Oysters 225
4. Butter 3410
5. Entire wheat flour 1650
6. Rice 1620
7. Cheddar cheese 2075
8. Milk, whole 310
9. Buttermilk 160
10. Peanuts 1775

So our normal stenographer, who needs 2250 calories per day, could get by in a pinch with a quarter pound of pork and a bit over a pound of rice a day. Sure, it's spartan fare, but not too hard to store.

I'd suggest the book as a wonderful, free, resource.

1 comment:

Lauren said...

I am so inspired that I can offset occasional ice cream calories with sleeping, resting, and sitting quietly, but it would take days of such activity to really make a difference.

Of course, our urban hiking adventures probably keep the beans-and-rice bulge from expanding too ostentatiously.