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Calories in 1 Tsp. of Sugar

By Frank Whittemore

Sugar, typically made from sugar cane or sugar beets, consists of pure sucrose. Though sugar contains no vitamins or minerals and is generally not considered a good source of nutrition, it is relatively high in caloric value, per serving.


According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, there are 16 calories within a 1-tsp. serving of sugar, of which carbohydrates deliver the entire amount. No calories come from protein or fat.

Total Caloric Intake

A single 1-tsp. serving of sugar contains just 0.2 percent of the daily recommended intake of calories for the average adult. This percentage is based on a typical 2,000-calorie-per-day diet.

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One tsp. of sugar weighs just 4.2 g, as stated by the USDA. There are no indigestible ingredients, other nutrients or water in sugar.


According to the dietary reference intakes from the Institute of Medicine, infants up to 6 months should consume around 60 g of carbohydrates, including sugar, per day, while infants from 7 to 12 months should take in around 95 g. The daily reference intake for both children and adults is 130 g of carbohydrates per day. Women who are pregnant should consume approximately 175 g and women who are breast-feeding should take in 210 g, on average.

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