The Energy Balance Equation

The Energy Balance Equation: L3 Nutrition Revision

This blog will explain the energy balance equation in preparation for your Level 3 Nutrition exam

You’ll discover:

  • Why FitPros find the Energy Balance hard to understand
  • A 7 mins Video Tutorial teaches you all about The Energy balance equation
  • What’s the difference between Energy Input and Energy output
  • How to learn with simplicity for the rest of the modules
  • Three Example Mock Question about Energy Balance

Why FitPros find the Energy balance hard to understand

The Energy Balance equation is often seen a s a tricky module within Level 3 Nutrition exam syllabus, so you are not alone if you find this area difficult to understand.

Most fitpros understand the concept of weight maintenance, weight loss, and weight gain through manipulating Energy input and Energy output

However, confusion often occurs when learners believe that the only energy expenditure we have is exercise

7 mins Video Tutorial: The Energy Balance Equation

What’s the difference between Energy Input and Energy output

Energy Input

The term Energy Input makes reference to anything we consume that has calories associated to it:

  • Food from all three Macronutrients
  • Drink that has a caloric value (incl alcoholic drinks)

Energy Output

The term Energy output makes reference to anything that we do that requires energy. This is not just exercise but also our metabolic rate and thermic effect of food.

  • Basal Metabolic Rate (aka BMR): This is the energy required to keep all vital organs and processes working whilst at rest. This makes up most of the Energy Output Volume
  • Thermic Effect of Food: This is the energy required to break down and absorb the foods we eat.
  • Activity Levels: This includes structured exercise, also called EAT (exercise activity thermogenesis). It also includes NEAT (non-exercise activity thermogenesis) which is all unstructured exercise, like walking around the house, fidgeting etc.

Understanding Weight management with the energy balance equation

The Energy Balance Equation simply states that if the energy Input is 2,000 kcal per day, and the combined energy Output is also 2,000 kcals then there will be weight maintenance.

Weight loss occurs if the energy Output exceeds the energy input

Weight gain occurs if the energy input exceeds the energy output

In summary:

  • The energy balance equation shows the relationship between energy input and energy output. 
  • Energy output is not just structured activity, it also includes NEAT, BMR and Thermic effect of food
  • Knowing the energy balance equation will be key as you can expect 4 to 6 exam questions in your L3 Nutrition exam
  • Here’s what Carly said about our L3 Nutrition Revision Mastery Bootcamp:

All videos are easy to watch and follow, great tips for remembering things. I couldn’t have passed my exams without this help . Highly recommend xx


Test your knowledge with today’s Energy Balance Equation mock questions:

[NOTE: The answers are below the 3rd questions]

1. According to the energy balance equation, why would a client be experiencing weight gain?
A. Energy Output exceeds Energy Input
B. Energy Input exceeds Energy Output
C. Energy Output equals Energy Input
D. They have consumed too much sugar

2. Which of the following is not an energy expenditure?
A. Sleeping
B. Basal Metabolic Rate
C. Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenisis
D. Thermic Effect of Food

3. Which of the following does not form an aspect of Energy Input in the energy balance equation?
A. Alcohol
B. Carrots
C. Water
D. Orange Juice

What’s the CORRECT answer?

Answers to the mock questions are :

Question 1= B, Question 2 = A, Question 3 = C

Need More Help with your Nutrition Exam Revision?

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Are you tired of staring at your manual and not knowing where to start?

Our revision mastery bootcamp breaks everything down into a clear and easy to follow structure.

You can download the videos to MP3 and MP4 to slice your revision time in half and finally understand the key principles of exercise.

This is not another course with more exams – it HELPS pass the course you’re already enrolled on!

“EVERYTHING You Need To Learn, Revise And Pass Your Fitness Exam”

If you want to get your revision structured, learn everything you need to know and feel confident on exam day, then click the link below:

Dedicated to More

Hayley “Energy Balance Equation” Bergman

Parallel Coaching

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