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By definition, a calorie is the amount of energy it takes to raise 1 gram of water 1 degree Celsius.

However, the calorie listing you see for food actually uses what is known as large calories (typically written as Calories), or kilocalories. Which is enough energy to raise 1 liter of water 1 degree Celsius.

So a candy bar that has 400 Calories has enough energy to boil 4 liters (a little more than a gallon) of water.

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