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QUESTION: Hello:

A fruit juice contains 120% of vitamin C. How can more than 100% of vitamin C be contained in a fruit juice or in anything else?

I thank you for your reply.

ANSWER: The 120% refers to the RDA, or recommended dietary allowance. It means an 8-ounce serving provides you with more than the recommended amount of vitamin C. It's safe because your body eliminates the excess.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hello:

I want to thank you for the reply.

How can there be more than 100% of something in something else?

If a classroom contains 10 students, 100% of these students is 10. Can there be 120% in the classroom?

ANSWER: You can have more than 100% of something, just as you can have more than one apple.

If a classroom contains 120% of 10 students, there are 12 students.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hello:

I want to thank you for the reply.

There are 10 students in a class and these 10 students represent 100% of the class. Now, two more new students are added to the class. Does the class now have 120% students?

Here's another example: Add one cup of cheerios to the bowl. Now add another 1/4 cup to the bowl. Does it make sense to think that there is 125% of Cheerios in the bowl.

or Add 3/4 cups of Cheerios to the bowl; this is 75%. Now add another 1/4 cup to the bowl; this is 25%. Does the bowl now contain 100% of Cheerios?

I'm just guessing on these examples, but I does make some sense to me.

I thank you for your last reply.

"Does the class now have 120% students?"

No, the class does not have 120% students. Like a fraction, a percentage can represent a number by itself, or it can indicate a proportion of or comparison to another quantity.

120% by itself is the number 1.20. However, the class has 12 students, not 1.20 students!

Initially, the 10 students were 100% of the class. After the two new students join, the 12 students still represents 100% of the class, but the class size is now 120% of the original class size. Note the "of" clause. If you are using 120% as a proportion or comparison of something, you have indicate what the something is. In this case, it is the original class size.

:::::

"Does it make sense to think that there is 125% of Cheerios in the bowl."

Again, 125% by itself is just the number 1.25, which is not the number of Cheerios.

The 125% is a comparison to the original amount. The bowl now contains 125% of the original amount.

:::::

"Does the bowl now contain 100% of Cheerios?"

No, it contains 1 cup of Cheerios, which is considerably more than 100% = 1 Cheerio.

If the bowl is now full, you can say that that Cheerios fill 100% of the capacity of the bowl.

Janet

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