Spring 2025 | Asia, Africa, and Europe Exploration

FSHN 150 Survey of Human Nutrition

Overview of Course

This course will explore basic nutrition principles and concepts and their application to personal and population health. Students will learn how food is digested, how individual macro-nutrients (protein carbohydrates, and fats) and micro-nutrients (vitamins and minerals) are absorbed and utilized to regulate body functions that promote health. Discussions will revolve around individual nutrient needs and how cultural food practices and the magnitude of dietary diversity are associated with health throughout the lifecycle. The prevention and treatment of nutrition-related chronic diseases, including heart disease, diabetes, and cancer will be discussed. We will also examine how body weight is regulated (genetics and behavioral factors) and the efficacy of various dietary and exercise approaches to promote maintenance of a healthy body weight. Additionally, because malnutrition is a global issue, we will examine the impact of nutrient deficiencies on growth and behavioral development, especially in children. Students will learn to use scientific evidence to evaluate nutrition information related to health, disease, and sports performance from popular websites and magazines.

Throughout the voyage, discussions will revolve around the social-ecological model – how multiple layers of influence (such as cultural practices, social systems, and environment) interact to shape a person’s food and physical activity choices. In countries around the globe, students will observe and experience food practices and systems. Post-ports, students will cultivate self-awareness through analysis and reflection – comparing and contrasting food, nutrition, and health patterns and cultural traditions.