This course will teach you how the digestive system works to extract critical nutrients from food, how we incorporate those nutrients into our body, and how the autonomic nervous system facilitates these processes. You will also learn how bacteria from the environment may affect our digestive processes and why consuming foods containing specific nutrients can minimize some illnesses that occur with normal living.
The nutrients our bodies use fall into two major categories: macronutrients and micronutrients. In this course, you will learn about carbohydrates—macronutrients that comprise the majority of all calories we consume. You will explore why we need to eat carbohydrates, how their energy is transformed and stored in our bodies as glucose, and how diseases like diabetes can be managed by regulating the intake of carbohydrates and the expenditure of energy.
In this course, you will learn about fats—a major macronutrient in our diets—and how they are used and transported in our bodies. You will also learn how atherosclerosis develops; this dangerous condition, in which fats build up and clog arteries, is a major cause of heart disease and stroke. This course walks you through what happens when too much fat circulates in our arteries and offers ways to delay and prevent atherosclerosis so you can live the longest and the healthiest life possible.
The rise in chronic diseases linked to obesity is one of the most important public health issues facing our society today. From diabetes and heart disease to certain kinds of cancers and breathing disorders, such conditions lead to costly lifelong management and suffering. In this course, you will learn why obesity is on the rise, the underlying metabolic causes of weight gain, and how to correctly measure energy intake and expenditure in order to compare the effects of each on weight loss. You also will build your understanding of how biological and environmental factors determine body weight, as well as the amount of food we eat daily.
For people who want to lose weight, navigating the hundreds of weight loss programs available can be confusing. How then to choose a sound, workable method? This course provides you with the tools you need to critically evaluate weight loss claims and understand who stands to profit from each program. Then, you will learn how social and psychological mechanisms impact how much you eat in order to learn what factors you can control to manage your weight in a healthy, sustainable way.
In this course, you will learn the latest research on how nutrition may prevent and improve symptoms of cancer, hypertension (high blood pressure), and osteoporosis. Specifically, you will explore the relationships between the food we eat and risk, understanding the role of animal protein, vitamins, and minerals in these major diseases and conditions. This course also builds your ability to critically analyze nutrition labels, understand dietary recommendations, and provides three key principles to follow for leading a healthy lifestyle.