NUTRITION – 4780 Half year - ½ credit

Grades 11, 12

Prerequisites: Earth Science and Living Environment

Overview of Course – This is an introductory nutrition course, designed for the promotion and achievement of optimal health. Topics to be discussed include: the role of nutrition and fitness in pursuing optimal health, the impact of harmful eating patterns, evaluation of diets and nutritional information, and understanding and building a healthy eating program.

Instructional Philosophy – Nutrition is designed to educate the students to the health dangers of improper eating patterns, and how to correct them. The goal is to enable the students to be able understand how foods affect the body’s operational systems and have them construct a basic food plan which will allow them to achieve a lifetime of optimal health.

Knowledge and Skills Objectives – We will discuss the average fitness and well being of the American population and the trends of poor health we are presently racing towards. In doing so, we will analyze some of the causes behind the epidemic rise in obesity, type II diabetes, heart and circulatory diseases as a function of poor nutrition. Hopefully, new doors will be opened to allow the student new research avenues that they can utilize in understanding and constructing a better nutritional program for themselves.

Students will analyze their own nutritional habits and draw conclusions as to how and why they could improve their lives in this area.

Our major project will be to develop a well nutritionally balanced plan for a three day period, through an application of the knowledge gained during the course.

Readings from the text, supplemental articles and various other media sources are required of the students. Homework completion will be required as a means of developing an understanding of the material the students need to achieve success in this area. Exams will follow major units of study, with quizzes interspersed between exams. 

Units of Study –  

  1. Introduction to nutrition 
    1. define nutrition
    2. USDA food pyramid

-       requirements

-       macronutrient contents

-       servings of nutrients

    1. General health trends since inception of Food Pyramid

-       trends of obesity, heart disease, cardio-pulmonary related ailments

    1. Food Journal

-       students construct a food journal of their consumption of meals, snacks, and beverages for a three day period

-       food journal is analyzed as to the macronutrient composition as per serving of each

-       comparison of students macronutrient composition to the Food Pyramid recommendations is made

  1. The Fattening of America, and other recent health problems moving in the wrong direction 

            a. Obesity

-       definition

-       recent trends

-       epidemic increase

-       youth obesity and trends

    1. Obesity and Nutrition

-       fatten cattle for market with large high carbohydrate diets

-       fatten humans with large high carbohydrate diets 

    1. Confusion in dietary expertise

-       inconsistency in ideal dietary plans

-       relation between carbohydrate consumption and body fat storage

-       biochemical effects of food on human system (hormonal responses of body to foods)

    1. Fat loss versus weight loss

-       define body weight as a number representing Lean Body Mass and Body Fat

-       weight loss means loss of body fat

-       ideal body fat amounts

-       current average body fat counts

    1. Importance of macronutrient ratios

-       what are macronutrients

-       examples of each

-       hormonal effects of particular macronutrients

    1. Carbohydrates

-       define

-       examples

-       storage of glucose as glycogen

-       storage limits

-       after stores full stored as body fat

-       insulin as stogie agent

-       glycemic indices of carbohydrates

-       effects on glycemic indices

-       fiber, glycemic indices, and carbohydrate totals

    1. Protein

-       define

-       examples

-       importance to body

-       amino acids, essential amino acids

-       protein and ketosis

-       high protein diets and ketosis

    1. Fats

-       fat phobia

-       dietary fat and its need in nutrition

-       eating certain fats helps you burn fat

-       examples of tests

-       burning fat, losing body weight

-       types of fats to eat

-       linoleic acids

-       fat (oil) flow chart in the body, LA,GLA,DGLA

-       eating fat does not make you fat

  1. Hormonal Effects of Food

            a. Definition of

-       systemic regulators

-       endocrine, paracrine, autocrine systems

-       examples 

    1. insulin-glucagon axis

-       effects on blood sugar levels

-       hypoglycemia and hyperinsulinemia

-       relation to storing body fat and causing diabetes (type II)

    1. Foods effect on hormonal systems

-       what you eat affects all hormonal responses 

    1. Food is a Drug

-       causes powerful hormonal responses like prescription drugs

-       must be administered carefully and accurately

-       food-macronutrients-hormonal responses 

    1. Balance macronutrients, Balance hormonal responses, Operate optimally

-       maintain balances blood sugar levels

-       balances insulin glucagon response

-       insulin stores, glucagon releases fat

-       achieved through correct protein-carbohydrate ratios

-       effects last 4-6 hours, good or bad

-       not everyone is affected in same way, 25% indifferent, 75% moderate to severe responses to p/c ratios

4. Eicosanoids – the Wonder Hormones

    1. What controls endocrine hormones insulin/glucagon?
    2. What are eicosanoids
    3. Functions of eicosanoids
    4. Super hormones: prostaglandins, thromboxanes, leukotrienes, lipoxins, hydroxylated fatty acids
    5. Balance eicosanoids, control body responses, achieve optimal health
    6. History of discovery and body function association
    7. “Good” and “Bad” eicosanoids and need for balance
    8. Examples: platelet aggregation/prevention, etc.
    9. Eicosanoids, Disease, Wellness
    10. Wellness vs Optimal health
    11. Food, eicosanoids optimal health

5. Importance of Dietary Fat and Eicosanoid Balance (Optimal Health)

    1. Need dietary fat to insure optimal health
    2. Fats are necessary to maximize eicosanoid production
    3. Linoleic acids form dietary fat
    4. Conversion to GLA-DGLA (activated fatty acids) to eicosanoid production
    5. Importance of proper protein/carbohydrate ratio in producing a good eicosanoid ratio
    6. Enzymes delta 5 and 6 desaturase, their role in eicosanoid production
    7. Factors effecting delta 6 desaturase activity
    8. Arachidonic acid (an essential fatty acid)
    9. Effects on health and eicosanoid production
    10. EPA importance
    11. Sources
    12. Summary of eicosanoids and food

 6. Balanced Nutrition

    1. Food pyramid vs balanced nutrition
    2. Compare macronutrient ratios between Food pyramid, American Diabetes Association, Vegetarian diets, to Balanced diet
    3. Compare hormonal effects of all
    4. Describe ideal macronutrient ratios needed on order to achieve constant blood sugar levels that promote good eicosanoid balance
    5. Compare candy bars protein/ carb. ratio to some of the above diets mentione

7. Road Map to A Balanced  Nutritional Plan

    1. General picture of balanced nutrition
    2. Macronutrient ratios needed to achieve optimal hormonal results
    3. Protein requirements for the individual based upon Lean Body Mass (LBM) and activity level
    4. Carbohydrate requirements based upon protein needs
    5. Fats requirements
    6. Calculation of LBM
    7. Build sample meals, snacks based upon daily macronutrient requirements
    8. General summary of successful meal planning

8. Vitamins & Minerals

    1. Supplements or balanced meals
    2. Antioxidants

-       E, C, beta carotene

-       Free radicals roles

-       Antioxidants and eicosanoids

-       Antioxidants in food

    1. Enzymatic cofactors

-       B complex, magnesium, zinc

-       Roles

-       Food sources

  1. Exercise
    1. hormonal effects of exercise
    2. Burning calories vs burning fat
    3. Aerobic benefits of exercise
    4. Anaerobic benefits of exercise


Major resources –

Text – Nutrition & You, Blake

Zone series of books, Dr. Barry Sears

Protein Power – Drs. Eades and Eades

Carbohydrate Addicted Kids – Drs. Heller and Heller