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American cheese, a common type of processed cheese found in America, is yellow or white in color. Initially, it was made by blending cheddar and Colby cheese, both of which originated in America. However, things have changed and today American cheese is nothing but a mixture of milk, milk fats, whey, milk proteins and salt. It is for this reason that if you look at the legal definition of cheese in the U.S., as defined by the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), you'll find that it is defined as a type of pasteurized cheese. It is mandatory in several jurisdictions in the U.S. that American cheese be labeled as processed cheese, 'cheese product' or 'cheese analogue'. The reason American cheese is so popular in spite of the fact that it is not considered the "real thing" is that it melts in the mouth and has a flavor that is mild as compared to cheddar cheese. It is used primarily in snacks, cheeseburgers and grilled sandwiches. It is also the ingredient of hot cheese dips. The American cheese, as it is known today, originated during the 1950s.

When it comes to the nutritional value, American cheese is rich in proteins and also minerals such as calcium and sodium. However, it is also high in fat content and hence, is something that you should avoid eating too much if you wish to lose weight and stay fit. But how much calories are there in a slice of American cheese? In the subsequent part of the article, we shall have a look at the nutritional value of American cheese and also have a look at the number of calories per serving.

Nutritional Value of American Cheese
Before we move on to know about the calorie content of cheese, let's have a look at its nutritional value. Note that the percentage of daily value (DV) given against each of the nutrients, is determined by assuming that your daily intake is 2000 calories.

Nutrient Quantity (in grams) % of Daily Value
Fat 7 g 11%
Cholesterol 0.020 g 5%
Sodium 0.280 g 11%
Carbohydrates 2 g 1%
Proteins 4 g 6%
Calcium 0.616 g 10%

In addition to these, a slice of American cheese also contains traces of minerals such as potassium, phosphorous, copper and vitamins A, B, and C. Due to the presence of calcium, American cheese is good for teeth and keeps your bones strong and healthy. The vitamin A in it improves vision and helps in strengthening the body's immune system.

Calories in American Cheese
For the purpose of analyzing the number of calories in American cheese, we shall consider a slice that is equal to 16 g. For a 16 g slice, the total calorie count approximately equals 70 calories. Note that for a 28 g slice, the total calorie count is 95. The high calorie count of American cheese is chiefly due to the presence of fats, carbohydrates and proteins. While the major chunk of calories comes from fat (70%), the rest come from proteins (20%) and carbohydrates (7%). The graph below will clearly illustrate the contribution of each of the constituents towards the total calorie count of American cheese.

A
 
 70%
B
 
 20%
C
 
 7%
D
 
 3%

What Contributes to Calories in American Cheese
A - Fats
B - Protiens
C - Carbohydrates
D - Other constituents

Thus, we see that American cheese is rich in calories and too much of it is bad for you. Moreover, in spite of its great taste, it doesn't have much to offer in terms of nutrition, either. So, the next time you set out for the fast food joint down the street for a cheeseburger, think twice and you might save yourself from consuming empty calories!