How nutritious is your beef
burger? The new
Calculator will generate a nutrient profile for ground beef products
containing any fat level between 5 and 30 percent.
Ground Beef Nutrient Profiles Now Made to Order
Marion Bliss October 6, 2006
A broiled hamburger patty that's 80 percent lean and 20 percent fat
has 20 grams of protein in itbut how much protein would the same-sized
patty have if it were 94 percent lean and only 6 percent fat? Solving this
puzzle would have been a problem in the past, but not today.
A new computer program, the
Calculator, is now available online free of charge at the Agricultural
Research Service's Nutrient Data Laboratory (NDL)
web site. ARS is the chief scientific
research agency of the U.S. Department of
Ground beef is the most commonly consumed beef product in the United
States. It is offered in retail stores at differing fat levels and can be
prepared in various ways. The calculator program generates a custom nutrient
profile for a variety of ground beef products containing any fat level between
5 percent and 30 percent. Estimates for most vitamins and minerals and the
major fatty acid classes are also calculated automatically, based on chemical
analyses and mathematical equations.
Users simply type in the percent fat or lean of any one of five
product types: raw ground beef, broiled patty, pan-broiled patty, pan-browned
crumbles or baked loaf. The nutrient profiles generated can then be printed
directly from the web page.
The calculator was produced by ARS lead nutritionist
C. Howe and colleagues at the NDL, which is part of the Beltsville (Md.)
Nutrition Research Center. They collaborated with researcher Dennis R.
Buege with the University of Wisconsin, and
statistician Larry A. Douglass with the University of Maryland.
To access the Ground Beef Calculator, go to
The computer program also can be accessed through the online search
feature of the USDA
National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference (SR), which has recently
been updated with the launch of version SR19. The NDL produces and manages the
Standard Reference for public use.
The calculator allows consumers, dietitians and researchers to
estimate dietary nutrient intakes based on ground beef products available in
the marketplace. Industry also will use the nutrient information generated by
the program to meet labeling requirements for their products containing ground