Students will notice that the pecan burns much longer and with a larger flame than the oat cereal. This difference is due to the high fat content of pecans (and nuts, in general). Fats are rich sources of energy and provide about nine Calories per gram. Carbohydrates and proteins each provide four Calories per gram. Certain fats and oils are healthier than others. In general, fats, such as shortening, margarine and lard, that are solid at room temperature should be avoided. Healthier choices include plant-based oils like olive, flaxseed, nut or canola oils.
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This work was supported by National Space Biomedical Research Institute through NASA cooperative agreement NCC 9-58.