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The Role of Nutrition in Our Health

1. The Role of Nutrition in Our Health. What Is Nutrition?. Food refers to plants and animals we eat Nutrition is the science that studies food: How food nourishes our bodies How food influences our health. Why Is Nutrition Important?. Proper nutrition supports wellness

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The Role of Nutrition in Our Health

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  1. 1 The Role of Nutrition in Our Health

  2. What Is Nutrition? • Food refers to plants and animals we eat • Nutrition is the science that studies food: • How food nourishes our bodies • How food influences our health

  3. Why Is Nutrition Important? • Proper nutrition supports wellness • Wellness is more than the absence of disease • Physical, emotional, and spiritual health • Active process • Critical components of wellness • Nutrition • Physical activity

  4. Why Is Nutrition Important? • Healthful diet can prevent disease • Poor nutrition causes deficiency diseases: scurvy, pellagra • Nutrition plays a role in osteoporosis and cancer • Nutrition is associated with chronic diseases: heart disease, stroke, and diabetes

  5. Why Is Nutrition Important? Obesity is a growing problem: • Eating more calories than expended • Risk factor for heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and some forms of cancer

  6. Why Is Nutrition Important? • Nutrition is a national goal to promote optimal health and disease prevention • Goals of Healthy People 2020 • Increase quality and years of healthy life • Eliminate health disparities

  7. What Are Nutrients? • Nutrients are chemicals in foods that our bodies use for growth and function • Organic nutrients contain carbon, an essential component of all living organisms • Carbohydrates, lipids, proteins, vitamins • Inorganic nutrients: nutrients that do not contain carbon • Minerals and water

  8. Determining Nutrient Needs • Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs): updated nutritional standards • Expanded on the traditional RDA values • Set standards for nutrients that do not have RDA values • Dietary standards for healthy people only • Aim to prevent deficiency diseases and reduce chronic diseases

  9. Determining Nutrient Needs Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) consist of: • Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) • Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) • Adequate Intake (AI) • Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) Determination

  10. Determining Nutrient Needs • Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) • The average daily intake level of a nutrient to meet the needs of half of the healthy people in a particular life stage or gender group • Used to define the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of a nutrient

  11. Determining Nutrient Needs • Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) • The average daily nutrient intake level that meets the needs of 97% to 98% of healthy people in a particular category

  12. Determining Nutrient Needs • Adequate Intake (AI) • Recommended average daily nutrient intake level • Based on observed and experimentally determined estimates of nutrient intake by a group of healthypeople • Used when the RDA is not available: calcium, vitamin D, vitamin K, and fluoride

  13. Determining Nutrient Needs • Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) • Highest average daily nutrient intake level likely to pose no risk of adverse health effects to most people • Consumption of a nutrient at levels above the UL increases the potential for toxic effects and health risks increases

  14. Determining Nutrient Needs • Estimated Energy Requirement (EER) • Average dietary energy intake to maintain energy balance in a healthyadult • Defined by age, gender, weight, height, and level of physical activity

  15. Determining Nutrient Needs • Acceptable Macronutrient Distribution Ranges (AMDR) • Ranges of energy intakes from macronutrients that are associated with reduced risk of chronic disease while providing adequate intakes of essential nutrients • If nutrient intake falls outside this range, there is a potential for increasing our risk for poor health

  16. Assessing Nutritional Status • Nutrition professional must have a thorough understanding of the client’s current nutritional status • Weight • Ratio of lean body tissue to body fat • Intake of energy and nutrients • Foundation of recommended dietary and lifestyle changes • Baseline for evaluation

  17. Malnutrition • Nutritional status is out of balance:too much or too little of a particular nutrient or energy over a significant period of time • Undernutrition: too little energy or too few nutrients over time, causing weight loss or a nutrient-deficiency disease • Overnutrition: too much energy or too much of a given nutrient over time, causing obesity, heart disease, or nutrient toxicity

  18. Physical Examinations • Physical exams are conducted by trained healthcare providers • Tests depend upon client’s medical history, disease symptoms, and risk factors • Typical tests include vital signs, lab tests, heart and lung sounds • Nutritional imbalances may be detected by examining hair, skin, tongue, eyes, and fingernails

  19. Health History Questionnaire • Tool to assist in cataloging history of health, illness, drug use, exercise, and diet • Socioeconomic factors (education, access to shopping/cooking facilities, marital status, ethnic/racial background) • Energy and nutrient intake questionnaires

  20. Dietary Intake Tools • Techniques to assess nutrient and energy intakes: • Diet history • Twenty-four-hour dietary recall • Food frequency questionnaire • Diet records • Strengths and limitations

  21. Diet History • Information from interview or questionnaire: • Weight (current and usual weight, goals) • Factors affecting appetite and food intake • Typical eating pattern • Disordered eating behaviors (if any) • Education and economic status • Living, cooking/food purchasing arrangements • Medication and dietary supplements • Physical activity

  22. Twenty-Four-Hour Dietary Recalls • Recalls all food and beverages consumed in the previous 24-hour period • Accurate recall includes serving sizes, food preparation methods, and brand names of convenience foods or fast foods • Limitations: • May not be typical intake • Relies on memory • Relies on ability to estimate portion sizes

  23. Food Frequency Questionnaires • Determine typical dietary pattern over a predefined period of time • Include lists of foods with the number of times these foods are eaten • Some assess only qualitative information (typical foods without amounts) • Semiquantitative questionnaires assess specific foods and quantity consumed

  24. Diet Records • List of all foods and beverages consumed over a specific time period (3−7 days) • Improved accuracy when: • Foods are weighed or measured • Labels of convenience foods and supplements are saved • Challenges to accuracy and sufficient detail

  25. Anthropometric Assessment • Common measurements include height, body weight, head circumference in infants, and limb circumference • Require trained personnel and correct tools • Compare standards specific for age/gender • Assess trends in nutritional status/growth

  26. Nutrition Deficiencies • Primary deficiencyoccurs when a person does not consume enough of a nutrient, a direct consequence of inadequate intake • Secondary deficiencyoccurs when: • A person cannot absorb enough of a nutrient in his or her body • Too much of a nutrient is excreted from the body • A nutrient is not utilized efficiently by the body

  27. Deficiency Symptoms • Subclinical deficiency occurs in the early stages; few or no symptoms are observed • Covert symptoms are hidden and require laboratory tests or other invasive procedures to detect • Symptoms of nutrition deficiency that become obvious are overt

  28. Scientific Method To ensure that certain standards and processes are used in evaluating claims, the researcher: • Makes an observation and describes a phenomenon • Proposes a hypothesis (educated guess) to explain the phenomenon • Develops an experimental design to test the hypothesis 4. Collects and analyzes data to support or reject the hypothesis

  29. Scientific Method • If the data are rejected, an alternative hypothesis is proposed and tested • If the data support the original hypothesis, a conclusion is drawn • The experiment must be repeatable, so other researchers can obtain similar results

  30. Well-Designed Experiment • The sample size (number of people being studied) should be adequate enough to ensure that the results obtained are not due to chance alone • A control group is essential to comparison between treated and untreated individuals • Control for other variables to avoid coincidentally influencing the results

  31. Advancing a Theory • A hypothesis that is supported by repeated experiments may be called a theory • A theory represents a scientific consensus (agreement) of why the phenomenon occurs • Theories can be challenged and changed as scientific knowledge evolves

  32. Epidemiological Studies • Also known as observational studies: • Involve assessing nutritional habits, disease trends, or other health phenomena of large populations • Determine the factors that may influence these phenomena

  33. Model Systems • Human studies: • Difficult to control for all of the variables • Humans have long life spans • Animal studies • Preliminary information for designing and implementing human studies • Research that cannot be done with humans • Drawbacks: results may not apply directly to humans; ethical implications of animal studies

  34. Human Studies • Case control studies are epidemiological studies done on a smaller scale • Compare a group of individuals with a particular condition to a similar group without this condition • Clinical trials are controlled experiments • Experimental group receives the intervention • Control group is not given the intervention

  35. Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study • Most likely to produce valid, reliable data • Blinding • Neither researchers nor participants know which group is really getting the treatment • Helps prevent the researchers from seeing only the results they want to see • Placebo: imitation treatment that has no scientifically recognized therapeutic value • Psychosomatic effect orplacebo effect

  36. Evaluating Media Reports • Discerning truth or fallacy: • Who is reporting the information? • Who conducted the research; who paid for it? • Is the report based on reputable research studies? • Is the report based on testimonials? • Are the claims too good to be true? • Quackery: misrepresentation of a product, program, or service for financial gain

  37. Trustworthy Nutrition Experts • Registered dietician (RD) • Licensed dietician meets the credentialing requirements of a given state • Nutritionist has no legal definition • Professional with advanced nutrition degree (master’s—MS, MA; doctoral—PhD) • Physician

  38. Government Information Sources • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) • National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) • Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) • National Institutes of Health (NIH)

  39. Reliable Nutrition Information • American Dietetic Association • American Society for Nutrition Sciences • Society for Nutrition Education • American College of Sports Medicine • North American Association for the Study of Obesity

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