Fat (also called lipid): An oily nutrient that is the most concentrated form of energy; fat supplies 9 calories per gram, more than twice the energy in a carbohydrate or protein. Fat is one of the most abundant nutrients in food, and is a major fuel source for the body. Dietary fat supplies about 36% of total calories in the standard American diet. Fat serves 2 other functions; it carries flavors in foods and helps promote a sense of satiety (feeling full/satisfied) by slowing down the rate of stomach emptying. When the body receives an inadequate daily supply of fat it begins breaking down stored fat for fuel and this can lead to serious and lethal consequences.

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